Women Who Marry Into the Royal Family "Treated Like Throwaways," Claims This Royal Expert
One expert claims the family fails to protect its own.
Princess Diana, Camilla Parker Bowles, Sarah Ferguson, Kate Middleton, and Meghan Markle all have one major thing in common: They married into one of the most powerful families in the world. However, while landing a Prince might seem like something out of a Disney movie or a fairy tale, marrying a member of the Royal family doesn't necessarily come with a happily ever after ending. And, according to one royal expert, adding the title of Princess to your name doesn't mean you will be treated like a Queen – in fact, it could have the opposite effect.
On the 25th anniversary of Princess Diana's death, one royal expert maintains that the beloved late Princess of Wales was one of the first women who married into The Firm and was treated horribly thereafter. From the day she married Prince Charles in 1981 and for the next 16 years of her short life she was treated terribly, she says.
She also points out that the women who followed in her footsteps also suffered a similar existence. "Welcomed into the royal family with open arms, the newcomer would come to be treated as a throwaway if she ever stepped out of line," writes Laura Hampson for The Independent.
"By her own admission, Diana spent her time as a royal feeling like an outsider – despite being a friend of the family who'd been orbiting the royals since birth. Before her death 25 years ago this week [just to note why we're talking about her], she said that the monarchy never prepared her for what was to come, regardless that she was just 20 when she and Charles were engaged. This outsider status grew exponentially after the pair separated in 1992 – it seemed, for all intents and purposes, like it was Diana versus The Firm. In her notorious interview with Martin Bashir in 1995, Diana claimed that the royal family saw her as a 'threat of some kind,'" Hampson writes.
She continues to point out that "others have followed a similar path," including Prince Andrew's former wife Fergie, who last year described herself as "the most persecuted woman in royal history" after splitting from the father of her children in 1992 and Meghan Markle, who revealed to Oprah Winfrey last year her mental health suffered from living in the public eye. "Look, I was really ashamed to say it at the time and ashamed to have to admit it to Harry especially, because I know how much loss he has suffered, but I knew that if I didn't say it, then I would do it," the Duchess of Sussex told Oprah Winfrey. "I just didn't want to be alive anymore."
"Unless you are born royal, it seems that The Firm is unwilling to truly help or prepare any outsider that marries into it," writes Hampson. "I seemed to be on the front of a newspaper every single day, which is an isolating experience, and the higher the media put you, place you, is the bigger the drop," Diana said during an interview. "I was very daunted because as far as I was concerned I was a fat, chubby, 20-year-old, and I couldn't understand the level of interest… no one sat me down with a piece of paper and said: 'This is what is expected of you.'"
"So why then, two decades on, have things not changed among the Royal Family? Why were these women marrying into the fold not warned about what was to come?" she pointed out. "The royal family has broken people before," one of Meghan's wedding dress makers, Chloe Savage, told Insider in an interview. "Kate had plenty of time to adapt and adjust to it. They gave her time, whereas Meghan sort of dived in headfirst." She added: "It virtually broke Diana. It broke Sarah Ferguson. It has broken people before. I know it's looser now than it used to be, but even then, I don't think [Meghan] was prepared for the things she could and couldn't do, say, and wear."
She continued to explain that despite Harry's efforts to help Meghan adjust to life in the Royal Family, she wasn't prepared. " Despite Harry's efforts, and Meghan's prior dalliance with celebrity when she was an actor, there's not much that can prepare you for joining the royal family. Yet, for outsiders like Diana, Sarah and Meghan, this shouldn't matter. It should be up to the institution to protect its own. What a pity, then, that they don't seem interested."