Meghan Markle Was "Set Up" for "Suffering" as Part of the Royal Family, Actress Denée Benton Says

Being a person of color in that environment can't have been easy.

meghan markle beauty
(Image credit: Max Mumby/Getty)

Meghan Markle had a truly terrible time while serving as a senior royal, and has even admitted to feeling suicidal in that role.

As we know, much of the difficulty she encountered was due to instances of racism, with factors like the discussion of Archie's skin color before he was born and the abusive treatment she received at the hands of the tabloids coming into play.

For actress Denée Benton, of The Gilded Age, the Duchess of Sussex was "set up" to face difficulties like these. Speaking to Tatler, Benton weighed in on the situation as she sees it.

"It’s such a layered conversation, obviously," she said.

"Being the first and only [person of color], you’re really set up for an incredible amount of abuse—the system isn’t set up to support you.

"And I think that [because of] the lineage of the really profoundly devastating effects of colonization as it relates to the monarchy, you can’t necessarily just pop a Black person in."

We saw great criticism of the Royal Family's historical ties to colonization earlier this year, when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited the Caribbean and were met with protests from locals. It's clear that there is still a huge amount of work to do there with regards to racism and inequality.

"It requires a lot of reckoning," Benton said of Markle's situation within the Firm more specifically.

"Unless you’re ready to do that work, then the person who’s put in that position ends up suffering more than the changes they are able to make.

"It’s [going to take] much more than one person coming in to trigger all of that change. It doesn’t really work.

"They just get eaten alive or make the choice to protect themselves and [in the latter case], I’m like, power to you, sis!"

Iris Goldsztajn
Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of British Vogue, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Refinery29 and SELF. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.