Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Displayed Their "Alienation" at the Queen's Funeral, Expert Claims

Sadly, it's not gotten better since.

King Charles III, Camilla, Queen Consort, Princess Anne, Princess Royal, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during the State Funeral of Queen Elizabeth II
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The last time both Prince Harry and Meghan Markle spent time with the Royal Family was for the late Queen's funeral in 2022 and the events surrounding it.

While of course the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were welcomed for mourning Harry's grandmother, the royal couple was still held at an obvious distance from the rest of the family—which was highly visible when they were photographed going down some stairs at Buckingham Palace shortly following the Queen's passing.

"Walking down the palace staircase the sense of alienation is obvious as Charles walks ahead, apparently oblivious of his younger son and his wife behind him. There is no sense of family huddling or even communication although the non-verbal messages look powerful," body language expert Judi James told the Mirror.

"Harry might have been showing his solo bonding to his wife here by holding her hand but the emotional mirroring is with his father. Charles looks solitary and his head is bowed in what looks like grief. Harry's head is tilted away from Meghan and his facial expression with the steepled brows suggests he is silently sharing that grief with his father."

For James, there was another powerful way that the King showed his affection for his youngest son during the funeral service itself.

"Harry and Meghan were seated directly behind Charles and Camilla," she observed.

"For any leader in history the vulnerable position in terms of potential attack is the back, which is why we describe the people closest to us as 'having my back.' This would have been a position of trust in terms of Charles's emotions towards his son, despite comments and claims that had already been made.

"It would have allowed Harry to see his father's vulnerability caused by grief first-hand and close-up and perhaps have been an olive branch in their relationship."

While shared grief could have created a potential opportunity for the Sussexes to make up with the rest of the royals, James believes that the subsequent release of their Netflix docuseries followed by Harry's memoir Spare made that possibility a lot more remote.

These days, Harry and Charles seem to have a shot at reconciliation, but Harry and his brother Prince William are far from it.

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 InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Bustle and Shape. 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.