Opinion: Why couldn’t things have gone differently for Meghan Markle?

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1 January 1970

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Rosemary wonders why things couldn’t have played out differently for Meghan Markle.

I don’t know what you see when you look at Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, but I see a good-looking woman with an increasingly hurt expression, as if life is treating her rough when she might have expected silk sheets and endless diamonds.

She’s also elegant. Apart from the hideous green frock coat thing she wore once – and which is endlessly reproduced though she looks awful in it – she hasn’t put a foot wrong clothes-wise. And that includes standing endlessly in spiky high heels.

You may think that’s not hard, and you do it easily, but I wonder if you could when you were pregnant?

I gave up wearing high heels forever in my first pregnancy. That was a serious sacrifice, because I owned two especially nice pairs of French spiky-heeled shoes that made me inches taller and therefore, I thought, thinner. Meghan probably thinks they make her look thinner, too, but pregnant women in high heels tend to look like an olive with a toothpick poked through it. Unappetising.

Now that she’s hated by seemingly every male jock in the world, I wonder what drives their disdain. It looks like pure misogyny – they don’t even know the woman – but surely it’s not that simple. Only it is. And it’s even worse because she’s pregnant, and they started picking on her last time she was pregnant, too.

Your pregnancies may have passed like a dream followed by five minutes’ inconvenience. Liar. Pregnancy is a time of feeling vulnerable and prone to tears. It’s a hormone rampage. And in her famous interview with Oprah, Meghan looked to be on the verge of tears a lot.

Only a bully puts the boot in when a woman is pregnant, even when she’s become a duchess who’s nabbed one of the Queen’s grandsons. They don’t bang on half as much about his uncle Andrew – the one who was buddies with awful Jeffrey Epstein, and who couldn’t have had sex with a young girl Epstein provided because he doesn’t sweat. That was his amusing explanation in another awful royal TV interview, but we’ve forgotten. Slagging Meghan is more fun. She’s so awful – we all agree – and anyway he’s real royal, not a brown-skinned upstart. No, it’s worse: she’s Californian. You might as well say she’s a witch.

Only a bully puts the boot in when a woman is pregnant, even when she’s become a duchess who’s nabbed one of the Queen’s grandsons

The latest media outburst insists it was a lie when she told Oprah she and Harry had a private exchange of vows with the Archbishop of Canterbury three days before their proper wedding. That’s to deliberately put a slant on what they said, manufacturing fake confusion.

How about an alternative story about Meghan. What if she really did fall in love with Harry, and thought marrying royalty was probably a bit like being an American celebrity, as in being photographed in your glamorous Los Angeles sitting room with elaborate flower arrangements and an adorable dog, small child or parrot?

Think of the lovely celebrity Gwyneth Paltrow and her range of life enhancers, like the scented candle labelled “My Vagina” – which incidentally exploded in one English woman’s house when she lit it. All Paltrow has to do is think of eccentric ideas and market them. People laugh and she makes money.

What if Meghan’s brown skin and readiness to do good work had been embraced by the media? And what if her hold-the-front-page allegation of racist language tipped the royal household into adopting a long-overdue diversity policy for its employees, which it conveniently claimed to have started to work on before she spoke out?

What if she’d been protected from manufactured malice and helped to feel safe, which the Oprah interview suggested she doesn’t at all? And what if the media had room for two saints, Catherine and Meghan, to fawn over, instead of just the one, perfect as Catherine is?

Would the Earth spin off its axis? Really?

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