Meghan Markle Is Taking a Firm Stance on How to Deal with Her Dad's Behavior

We've probably seen the last of the royal engagements until Christmas, with the Fab Four (Meghan Markle, Prince Harry, Prince William, and Kate Middleton) arriving to the Queen's Christmas luncheon yesterday. Apparently there's some royal tension right now—Meghan and the Queen aren't seeing eye to eye when it comes to Meghan's dad

The Duchess Of Sussex Undertakes Her First Official Engagement With Queen Elizabeth II
(Image credit: Max Mumby/Indigo)

We've probably seen the last of the royal engagements until Christmas, with the Fab Four—Meghan Markle, Prince Harry, Prince William, and Kate Middletonarriving to the Queen's Christmas luncheon yesterday. Even though Buckingham Palace isn't commenting officially, beyond saying everything is just fine with the royals, Vanity Fair is reporting that there's some tension—but not between the people you might think. Apparently, Meghan and the Queen aren't seeing totally eye to eye when it comes to Meghan's dad, Thomas Markle Sr.

As anyone with a vested interest in the royals will know, Markle has been speaking to the press about...well, just about everything. Initially he talked about how he'd be in the royal wedding, then he was disappointed he couldn't go partially for health reasons, then he shared details of the conversations he'd had with her. Repeatedly. Now, Meghan's cut off contact entirely, which, given his track record, is probably totally justified. And he's been talking to the press about that too.

Apparently the Queen hasn't loved this ongoing drama from Meghan's dad, so she wanted to handle it in a somewhat more proactive way. Per Vanity Fair:

“She was very concerned that it [the Markle situation] was spiraling out of control, which it was,” says one observer. “Buckingham Palace wanted to be able to do something and be proactive and make the situation go away. It was a direction from the Queen, so her courtiers were under strict instructions to sort it out. But Kensington Palace was not singing from the same hymn sheet, and that was because the message was coming from Meghan. She didn’t want to engage and thought that she could handle it on her own.”

Not totally sure what "make the situation go away" means, but it doesn't sound great. There's a couple of interpretations here—if the report is true, either Meghan is showing a bit of tolerance for her father by just letting him do whatever he does, and taking the high road in contrast to direct action. Or, she feels she knows the situation better since it's her dad, and she may worry that direct action might make things worse. Let's not even discuss how her half-sister writing the tell-all book might react.

It's likely a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't situation. But, up until the point when Meghan might no longer be able to keep silent, she's doing her best to just overlook her dad's behavior.

Earlier this week, we got news that Meghan (and the royal family) are just hoping to "ride out" this negative wave of publicity until the focus turns to something more positive...perhaps to that royal baby that we'll be seeing soon.

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Katherine J. Igoe

Katherine’s a Boston-based contributor at Marie Claire who covers fashion, culture, and lifestyle—from “Clueless” to Everlane to news about Lizzo. She’s been a freelancer for 11 years and has had roles with Cosmopolitan and Bustle, with bylines in Parents, Seventeen, and elsewhere. It’s “I go to dinner,” not “Her huge ego,” but she responds to both.