In a bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey that aired on CBS on March 7, Meghan Markle revealed that life within the royal family had been so isolating she had contemplated suicide.
Said Meghan of her suicidal thoughts, "I knew that if I didn't say it, that I would do it – and I just didn't want to be alive anymore."
Faced much scrutiny and bias as a woman of colour
At one point, Meghan, whose mother is black and father is white, said there had been several "concerns and conversations about how dark (Archie's) skin might be when he was born" within the royal family.
Prince Harry confirmed these conversations – but added that he would never share details about them.
According to CNN, Meghan admitted that while she had been welcomed into the royal family, there had been "nearly no guidance or support", resulting in her having to Google protocols late into the night as she trained behind the scenes, wanting to make them proud.
Allegedly, the royal institution had also not only "failed to protect her against malicious claims", but lied to protect others as well.
Said Meghan, "My mom and my friends (were) calling me crying saying, 'Meg, they're not protecting you.'"
Struggling under the intense pressure and scrutiny, Meghan added that when she had asked if she could be checked into an institution or seek professional help, she was told she couldn't, leaving her to grapple with feeling trapped and on the verge of despair.
Relying on Princess Diana's inheritance
The couple, who married in 2018, stepped down from their royal duties in 2020, starting a new life in the United States together with their son, Archie.
They are also expecting a baby girl.
Harry clarified that he'd left due to a lack of understanding, adding that he'd been concerned about history repeating itself, namely how Princess Diana had died in a car crash in Paris in 1997 while being pursued by paparazzi.
With the royal family cutting him off financially after the couple's decision, Harry recalled being "desperate" and exhausting all the avenues they could ask for help, but receiving none.
They ended up relying on what Princess Diana had left for Harry initially, said Harry:
"I've got all my mum left me. And without that, we would not have been able to do this. She saw it coming and I certainly felt her presence throughout this whole process. I think she would feel very angry with how this has panned out, and very sad. But ultimately, all she'd ever want is for us to be happy."
He also admitted that while he had not blindsided the queen about his decision as he had "too much respect for her", his relationship with his father, Prince Charles, had gotten strained following the couple's departure.
Charles had stopped taking his calls, but has apparently since started talking to Harry again.
The relationship between him and his brother, Prince William, is experiencing some "space" at the moment, although Harry said he still "loves his brother to bits".
Allegations of bullying against Meghan were reported in The Times, a daily newspaper in the U.K., leading up to the couple's appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show.
Buckingham Palace, which has not commented so far on the interview, has said it would investigate the claims, adding it was "very concerned."
According to Reuters, Meghan has explained that she was not being paid for the interview.
If you or someone you know are in mental distress, here are some hotlines you can call to seek help, advice, or just have a listening ear:
SOS 24-hour Hotline: 1800-221-4444
Singapore Association for Mental Health: 1800-283-7019
Institute of Mental Health: 6389-2222 (24 hours)
Tinkle Friend: 1800-274-4788 (for primary school-aged children)
Top image via Getty Images