The Duchess of Sussex was smeared and abused about so many different things in the press and within the palaces, it was sometimes difficult to make a good-faith criticism of anything to do with Meghan. One of the very few areas where I thought Meghan could perhaps make some improvements was her spending on royal-event clothes, much of which was financed by Prince Charles. Again, it’s not that Meghan was the only royal woman spending too much on clothes (Kate says hello), it’s that Meghan was dropping huge amounts on bespoke designer clothes… just like Kate. It was the one area where they were shockingly similar. This issue was picked up on by Royals At War, the new shady royal book by Dylan Howard and Andy Tillett. They also have stories about how Kate once told Harry to go slow with Meghan, because of course. Some highlights:

The Cambridges were concerned about Harry’s lavish spending post-wedding: He reportedly forked out more than £6,000 within months for acupuncture ‘as part of a health drive’ and enjoyed a ‘babymoon’ with the Duchess of Sussex at Heckfield Place, a luxury spa in Hampshire – the three-night stay is said to have cost up to £33,000.

Harry was looking for a mommy, apparently: The authors suggest Prince Harry was drawn to his future wife’s ‘confidence, commitment, drive and ambition’ because ‘subconsciously he was seeking a figure to replace the mother so cruelly torn from him at a vulnerable age’.

Kate urged Harry to take things slowly. ‘She gently reminded him that he was dating someone with a completely different life, past, and career and it would take time, care and attention for them to integrate,’ the authors write. But the concerns resulted in Prince Harry becoming convinced that the Royal family and even Palace aides were against him and his new partner.

The courtiers were gaslighting Harry: After a meeting of senior Royals that the mother-of-one attended, one well-placed aide remarked: ‘All their IQs put together would not equal hers.’ Another source explained: ‘It’s my opinion that Harry feels he couldn’t protect his mother, so he’s going all out to protect his wife. He is so sensitive he often sees criticism or negativity where there isn’t any.’ As Howard and Tillett conclude: ‘The rifts that eventually opened up in the Royal family after Meghan arrived could have been avoided if Harry was able to empathise and take his brother’s concerns in the spirit they were intended.’

How Meghan spent a reported £478,920 on maternity clothes. ‘The fact that Meghan splashed so much cash rang alarm bells with the traditionally conservative Queen Elizabeth,’ said the authors. ‘Growing up in the war left the monarch with a built-in sense of frugality and economy, despite being one of the richest women in the world.’

[From The Daily Mail]

There’s also something about the private planes, because of course there is. What’s telling is that this book – like so many – is just slinging the same old mud and making the same coded (and even racist dog-whistle) arguments, and that they can’t honestly distinguish a legitimate complaint (Meghan spent too much money, just like Kate) from a royal-approved talking point, which is that “everybody loved and accepted Meghan, and Harry was just being too sensitive!” It’s the difference between offering constructive criticism and participating in yet another gaslighting campaign against two people who were being severely battered by the press and palaces. And of course Kate told Harry to slow down. Kate and William truly did not want Harry to ever find a wife. I don’t even believe it was particular to Meghan, actually. I think Kate and William would have been horrible to ANY woman Harry wanted to marry.

Photos courtesy of WENN, Avalon Red and Backgrid.

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