Anyone with a sibling knows disagreements are inevitable — but most of the time, those squabbles take place behind closed doors. Unless, of course, you’re a celebrity (Remember when the Jonas Brothers’ were struggling?) or a certain pair of very famous British royals. On the same day that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced they’re taking a step back from their royal duties, it was reported that there is some troubling drama between Harry and his big brother, Prince William.
According to Page Six, Harry’s pal, British journalist Tom Bradby, confirmed rumors that the pair hasn’t been getting along lately. Keep reading for more insight into the potential tension between the sons of the late Princess Diana and Prince Charles and what the riff could mean for the crown.
Harry and William are juggling different priorities
Journalist Tom Bradby discussed the alleged rift between Prince Harry and Prince William on Good Morning Britain on Jan. 8, 2020. “There are lots of people … including I think the brothers themselves, [who would] love them to be closer again. And with any luck, that will happen,” he said (via Us Weekly.) “But with families, we all know stuff happens, things are said.”
Those comments are intriguing but vague. Bradby left out exactly what has been said between Harry and William. When host Piers Morgan said, “And having a family dispute in public can’t be easy,” Bradby elaborated further: “And also a family dispute within a family firm. You are working in a big family firm, everyone has their wishes and desires and ambitions and if they have to be balanced up and it’s very hard.”
Let’s be clear: There was no mention of Prince William in Harry and Meghan’s groundbreaking Instagram message posted the same day as Bradby’s interview. Instead, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex said stepping back from royal duties and splitting their time between the U.K. and North America would “enable [them] to raise [their] son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing [their] family with the space to focus on the next chapter.” They claimed they would still “fully support Her Majesty.”
But will they also fully support Prince William, who is second in line to the throne?
Prince Harry and Prince William are on ‘different paths’
In October 2019, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were interviewed for an ITV documentary called Harry & Meghan: An African Journey. The interview was conducted by the same aforementioned friend/journalist, Tom Bradby. When discussing Prince William, Harry said (per CNN), “Part of this role and part of this job, this family, being under the pressure that it’s under, inevitably stuff happens. But look, we’re brothers, we’ll always be brothers. We’re certainly on different paths at the moment but I’ll always be there for him and as I know he’ll always be there for me.”
The “different paths” comment certainly takes on a deeper meaning now, but the upside is that William’s little brother emphasized they’ll always be family — even if he and Meghan aren’t part of it in the formal sense. Harry also said in the doc: “I love [William] dearly… But as brothers, you have good days and you have bad days.”
Don’t blame Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton
Before you even think of going there, no, this brotherly tiff isn’t Meghan Markle or Kate Middleton’s fault. In the past, the two royal wives have repeatedly been pitted against each other by the media, despite their actions suggesting otherwise. In July 2019, the sisters-in-law attended the women’s finals at Wimbledon together to cheer on Meghan’s good friend, Serena Williams, per People.
They also attended another tennis match together without their husbands the year prior. Royal expert Katie Nicholl told Entertainment Tonight that the summer hangout “hopefully put to rest the rumors that Kate and Meghan don’t get along because they certainly look like two duchesses who had plenty in common.”
In fact, Kensington Palace attempted to shut down feud rumors between the two women in late 2018, releasing a statement to The Sun that read: “This never happened.” For the palace to actually step in shows that the speculation had gotten out of hand.
Prince Harry is so over the media scrutiny
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been vocal about the toxic nature of the British press, and that likely played a role in their decision to walk away from their royal duties. In 2019, Prince Harry announced legal action against the tabloids and made a statement comparing the treatment of his wife to that of his late mother Princess Diana. “I’ve seen what happens when someone I love is commoditized to the point that they are no longer treated or seen as a real person,” he said (via NBC News.) “I lost my mother and now I watch my wife falling victim to the same powerful forces.”
Considering he’s not the biggest fan of stories getting misinterpreted in the press, don’t expect Prince Harry to say much about the alleged drama with Prince William anytime soon. He has already made it clear that he has lots of love for his brother, even if it does sound like Buckingham Palace is struggling to cope with his decision to create distance between his marriage and the monarchy.
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