The Princess of Wales “Doesn’t Even Recognize This Person Harry’s Become”

Once close, Kate feels betrayed by her brother-in-law’s actions as of late.

Kate Middleton and Prince Harry
(Image credit: Getty)

Once upon a time—and not so long ago, at that—Prince Harry and Kate Middleton were not only in-laws, but more like brother and sister. Beyond that, the two were friends, going as far back as the beginnings of Kate’s relationship with Harry’s brother Prince William, which began in the early 2000s.

In his memoir, Spare—released on January 10—Harry takes aim at Kate on a couple of occasions, one in particular surrounding a text message exchange between Kate and Harry’s wife Meghan Markle over Princess Charlotte’s bridesmaid’s dress at Harry and Meghan’s 2018 wedding. (And then there’s the lip gloss anecdote, and the costume, and the “baby brain”…) Naturally, being sideswiped in your brother-in-law’s memoir probably doesn’t feel very good, and, according to OK, “Kate doesn’t even recognize this person Harry’s become,” an insider says.

The outlet reports that Kate blames Meghan for Harry’s changed demeanor. “He’s betrayed his own family and broken confidences by speaking out,” the source says.

Though the royal family is never-complaining-never-explaining its way through this recent drama, behind closed doors they apparently call Harry’s actions “backstabbing” and, the insider says, “they think the world of Kate and are on her side,” adding that they are “sick to their stomachs over the whole situation.”

For his part, Harry says he could have written two books with the amount of material he had (and not just about Kate, obviously—lest we forget that the lion’s share of criticism went William’s way, with King Charles, Queen Consort Camilla, and others also getting their turn in the tome). The Duke of Sussex says he purposely left out many more damaging stories because his family would never forgive him if he included them. Even so, a different source says Harry has already crossed the line with what did make it in the memoir.

“The lines of communication are totally over now,” the source says. “Harry has said he doesn’t foresee him and Meghan ever returning to live full-time in the U.K.—and he shouldn’t expect a welcome mat from Kate and William if that ever changes.”

Rachel Burchfield
Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor

Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.