Statements from Buckingham Palace and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex show signs of a rift in the family that could not be fixed, believes Rhiannon Mills, a journalist on royal affairs.
“While the statements are largely official in tone on both sides they do portray a sense of sadness, disappointment, and deep frustration, showing signs of a rift in the family that couldn’t be patched up, and a couple who feel they’ve been pushed out”she opined in her article for Sky News.
A year ago, Harry and Meghan had said that they wanted to continue serving the queen and have a financially independent life. However, family members doubted how those two things would be compatible.
During the Sandringham summit last January, where the family discussed the Sussexes’ new plan, it became clear that the Queen, the Prince of Wales, and Prince William didn’t see how they could be half in and half out, earn their own money but still doing some royal duties on behalf of the queen, Mills said.
“you work for the monarchy, the monarchy doesn’t work for you,” she explained, detailing that many in the Palace saw the return of sponsorships as something inevitable and as a way to tie up loose ends.
The independence of the Sussexes and the royal family
The journalist indicates that the problem in the relations between the Dukes of Sussex and the royal family has not necessarily been rooted in the financial agreements that the Sussexes have signed with companies such as Netflix or Spotify. What is most unacceptable to the Palace is the way they have made announcements without the rest of the royal family knowing.
For example, the announcement, they are expecting the second baby and the confirmation of their interview with Oprah Winfrey have taken the palace by surprise.
As they are “No longer working royals, they didn’t have to tell the institution but it’s how it makes the rest of the family look,” she stressed, doubting that Harry’s family members can tolerate it.
Also, the upcoming interview with Oprah raises expectations about what the Sussexes can say about this breakup.
Prince Harry, before meeting Meghan, had his own star power and was happy when he was with members of his military family, the journalist said.
“He once told me he could never move away because of his commitment to helping his grandmother. She was the boss of the Armed Forces, the matriarch of the royal family and it was his duty to serve Queen and country”she said.
However, his wife and son turned out to be the priority, and a new life was more important to them.
In a way, the couple is a loss to the institution, Mills believes, but “Overall no one comes out of this well. It was Harry and Meghan’s decision to step away, but this certainly wasn’t how they wanted it. As the Queen has shown many times before she loves her family very much, but no one is bigger than the reputation of the institution,” she concluded.