Meghan Markle Was Reportedly "On the Brink" Just Before the Sussexes' Decision to Step Back from Royal Life

"Harry knew he needed to take swift action..."

Meghan Markle
(Image credit: Clive Mason)
  • Earlier this week, in a surprising move, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle (opens in new tab) announced their decision to step back from their roles as working royals.
  • According to the Daily Mail (opens in new tab), Harry may have rushed the announcement out of concern for Meghan, who was reportedly "on the brink" of a "meltdown" in the days leading up to news breaking. 
  • Courtiers say Meghan chose to return to Canada ahead of Harry to avoid dealing with the fallout of the decision firsthand.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle (opens in new tab) shocked everyone earlier this week when they announced their decision to step back from their roles as working royals.

If the news seemed to come out of the blue, that might be because it was, reportedly, released ahead of schedule. According to the Daily MailHarry may have dropped (opens in new tab) the news early at least in part out of concern for Meghan's mental and emotional wellbeing.

A second source also told The Sun on Sunday (opens in new tab) that Meghan's state of mind played a big role in the timing of the decision.

"The statement was rushed out and part of the reason for that is that Harry knew he needed to take swift action," the source said. "Meghan has not settled in the UK and he knows that and wants her to be happy."

Per the Daily Mail (opens in new tab):

"Prince Harry fast-tracked plans for both himself and Meghan Markle to quit as senior members of the royal family as he was worried she would have a 'meltdown' if she remained in the UK, it has been claimed.

"The Duke of Sussex is said to have been growing increasingly concerned about his wife's wellbeing, with life at Buckingham Palace leaving her 'on the brink,' according to the Sun on Sunday."

The Daily Mail also cites courtiers who say Meghan opted to return to Canada (opens in new tab) early, rather than deal with the fallout from the decision in person. Harry is set to attend a summit with the Queen, Prince Charles, and Prince William (opens in new tab) on Monday to discuss the implications of the announcement.

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.