Doria Ragland Won't Join the Royal Family on Christmas Day, in Spite of Earlier Reports

Meghan Markle's mother, Doria Ragland, will not spend Christmas with the royal family. This news comes after earlier reports that the Queen was inviting Ragland to the festivities in an unprecedented move.

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The royal family has a lot of strict traditions, but the Queen (opens in new tab) has famously made exceptions for Meghan Markle (opens in new tab) throughout her engagement and marriage to Prince Harry. (opens in new tab) Last year, for example, Meghan was invited (opens in new tab) to Christmas with the royal family even though she and Harry were only engaged. This was a huge break in tradition (opens in new tab), since usually significant others have to wait until they're officially married into The Firm to score an invitation to Christmas with the Queen (opens in new tab).

But, since the precedence for bending the Christmas rules for Meghan was established, it seemed reasonable when reports circulated earlier this year that her mother (opens in new tab)Doria Ragland, had been invited (opens in new tab) to spend the holidays with the royal family in Sandringham.

"It’s a mark of the Queen’s respect for Meghan and an acknowledgement that she doesn’t have any other relations in this country—unlike Kate who has the support of a very close family," the senior source told Daily Express (opens in new tab).

Now, royal correspondent Victoria Murphy (opens in new tab) has gone on the record, with her name attached and everything, to dispute the claims in a new interview with Yahoo UK‘s The Royal Box.

"My understanding is that she’s not going. I don’t think that’s because they weren’t able to or anything like that, I just think it’s not usual for in-laws to go...I know it was suggested that she was going to go, but that was never confirmed."

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This doesn't mean that the royal family doesn't love Doria (opens in new tab)by all accounts (opens in new tab), they really, really, do—but tradition has won out (opens in new tab) this time. 

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Kayleigh Roberts
Weekend Editor

Kayleigh Roberts is a freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of professional experience. Her byline has appeared in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, The Atlantic, Allure, Entertainment Weekly, MTV, Bustle, Refinery29, Girls’ Life Magazine, Just Jared, and Tiger Beat, among other publications. She's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.