CONTENT WARNING: This article discusses suicide.
While the Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Oprah interview is yet to air in Australia, news from across the globe – where the CBS special has already run – is trickling through. Already, the interview sounds both harrowing and incredibly damning for the royal family.
Easily the most important revelation is just how bad Meghan’s mental health became as she endured the relentless scrutiny – and, according to her, lack of support from the royal family.
“Yeah, there was [a breaking point],” she told Oprah. “I just didn’t see a solution. I would sit up at night, and I was just like, ‘I don’t understand how all of this is being churned out’—and again I wasn’t seeing it—but it’s almost worse when you feel it through the expression of my mom or my friends or them calling me crying like, ‘Meg, they’re not protecting you.’ And I realised it was all happening just because I was breathing.”
She went on to say her mental health became so bad, she was having suicidal thoughts.
“Look, I was really ashamed to say it at the time and ashamed to have to admit it, to Harry especially, because I know how much loss he’s suffered. But I knew that if I didn’t say it that I would do it—and I just didn’t want to be alive anymore. And that was a very clear and real and frightening constant thought.”
The most concerning revelation, however, is that even when Meghan approached the royals to address her deteriorating mental health, she says they actively discouraged her from seeing anyone about it.
“And I remember how [Harry] just cradled me and I was, I went to the institution and said that I needed to go somewhere to get help, said that I’ve never felt this way before and I need to go somewhere, and they said I couldn’t, that it wouldn’t be good for the institution.”
Harry, too, was very candid about Meghan’s mental health struggle and how he felt incapable of helping her.
“I had no idea what to do,” he said. I wasn’t prepared for that. I went to a very dark place as well. And I wanted to be there for her. I was terrified.”
He told Oprah that he felt he “didn’t have anyone to turn to”.
“I guess I was ashamed of admitting it to them. I don’t know whether they’ve had the same feelings or thoughts. I have no idea. It’s a very trapping environment that a lot of them are stuck in.”
Meghan told Oprah that she was being transparent about her struggle to help others who may be battling with mental health.
“I share this because there’s so many people who are afraid to voice that they need help. And I know personally how hard it is to—not just hard it is but when your voice is silenced, to be told no…This was emails, begging for help, saying very specifically I am concerned for my mental welfare…Nothing was ever done. So we had to find a solution.”
On a more heart-warming note, Meghan and Harry announced that their baby is a girl, telling Oprah she will be their last child.