It wasn’t that long ago that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle did the unthinkable: they stepped down as senior royals and left the royal family behind. As big as this decision was, their reasoning was simple. They wanted to start a new life.
What, then, does that new life really look like? And did they truly leave royalty behind, or do they still have drama back in England? We’ve got the full scoop on what their new life really looks like.
Their Own ‘Declaration of Independence’
When Meghan married Prince Harry, she accomplished the dream of many American girls: to become a princess and live a life of royalty.
Early in 2020, though, she and Harry brought an older American dream to life: making their own declaration of independence! Their bombshell statement reads as follows:
“After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution. We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment.”
They went on to say they’d be splitting their time between England and North America, and made good on their promise when they temporarily moved to Canada, and then to Los Angeles. The public wasted no time calling their move “Megxit” (a combination of “Meghan” and “Brexit”), but no public name-calling could stop their new life together.
Titles Kept and Titles Lost
Marrying into royalty means getting a cool new title. For example, Meghan Markle became the Duchess of Sussex alongside the Duke of Sussex (Prince Harry). A common question about Megxit is what happens to those titles. And the answer is a bit complicated.
For example, the two will get to keep their royal titles. They remain the Duke and Duchess of Sussex despite straying from both England and the royal family. However, they will no longer have the title “Royal Highnesses.”
The two also tried to trademark the name “Sussex Royal, The Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex” in reference to their foundation. However, their plans fell through when they lost the right to use the term “Sussex Royal.”
It seems like the couple may not be taking these decisions well. For example, a Sussex Royal statement weirdly flexed that nothing kept them from using the term “Royal” overseas. The same statement then clarified they had no plans to do that.
But, seemingly, they could if they wanted to. Then again, royal titles don’t mean as much once you get to America!
Escaping Royal Drama
So, how much of “Megxit” was motivated by royal drama? It depends on who you listen to.
Publicly, the couple has been the picture of respect and decorum regarding the royal family and royal affairs. And Meghan seemed particularly sad about leaving this life behind, reportedly crying as she bid goodbye to their royal staff at their last private function.
However, numerous royal insiders claimed that Megxit was fueled by the British press and their nonstop criticism of Meghan (someone they perceived as an outsider). Furthermore, some of these insiders claim the couple was disappointed that the queen didn’t publicly intervene on Meghan’s behalf.
Leaving the country, then, was a way to literally leave all of this drama behind them.
Harry the Hero
Ever see a prank yield a surprisingly wholesome result? That’s exactly what happened when Prince Harry opened up his heart to a couple of Russian practical jokers in March 2020.
The pranksters were pretending to be Greta Thunberg and her dad, and have a history of fooling celebrities and politicians with their fake phone calls. While speaking to them, Harry said that this was “the right decision for our family, the right decision to be able to protect my son” and that he and Meghan were “putting our family first.”
The prank was likely meant to make Harry look bad. Instead, he came across as a man making a self-sacrificial decision for the sake of his family.
Blessing of the Queen
Anything having to do with the royal family always brings about a simple question: what does the Queen think of all this?
While there was plenty of gossip about bitterness behind the scenes, it all worked out in the end. The Queen ended up giving her blessing to Harry, Meghan, and their new life together.
Her blessing was arguably the most important one that the couple could get. However, other members of the family may still be dealing with the emotional fallout.
Getting the blessing of the Queen was a big deal. However, Megxit may have made some existing sibling rivalries in the royal family that much worse.
Sources claimed that Prince William was insanely angry at Harry over the whole Megxit deal and was previously angry that Harry even began a relationship with Meghan. Insiders claim that their relationship is now “forever changed” by Harry and Meghan’s decision.
Meanwhile, things seem pretty tense between Meghan and Kate Middleton. Previously, Meghan allegedly made Middleton cry before Meghan married Harry. Now, insiders claim that she is sad that Meghan is taking Harry away and that she and Meghan “couldn’t be further apart.” This may be why the two didn’t even make eye contact when they attended Commonwealth Day together earlier this year.
Dramatic West Coast Move
You might think that once Harry and Meghan left England behind, the rest would be smooth sailing. However, their North American adventure encountered some road bumps almost right away.
Their first stop was Vancouver, Canada. While the couple enjoyed their time in Canada, it seems like the game plan was always to move to Los Angeles (where Meghan’s mother lives). They had to move that game plan up, though, when Canada planned to close their borders thanks to COVID-19.
Fortunately, the two safely made it to Los Angeles with their baby Archie. Harry and Meghan have even been spotted around Los Angeles wearing face masks and delivering food on behalf of a charity called Project Angel Food.
Markle’s Return to Hollywood?
Los Angeles was attractive to Meghan Markle for many reasons. Sure, her mom lives there, but as a former actress, this is also where Markle previously made her living. And now, she may be getting back to those roots.
For her first post-royal return to Hollywood, she has narrated the Disneynature documentary Elephants. There is no news yet of further acting gigs for Markle. Fans hoping for a televised Suits reunion shouldn’t hold their breath!