Meghan Markle Is Dealing With the Worst Side of Fame: Family Betrayal
Her life seemed perfect. Until her family started talking to the press.
Meghan Markle is literally living the life of a princess — she was a successful actress turned Prince Harry’s fiancée, who is gorgeous and charitable and seems genuinely like a lovely person to be around.
With fame comes adulation, money, in this case love —but the dark side of getting everything you’ve ever wanted can mean your family will shockingly betray you.
Meghan’s parents, Tom Markle and Doria Ragland, divorced when she was just six-years-old, and although she was their only child, Meghan also has two siblings from her dad’s previous marriage, Samantha and Tom.
Meghan’s half-sister, Samantha Grant, responded to a tweet about Prince Harry saying his love spending Christmas with his family in London was like the “family she never had.”
“Actually she has a large family who were always there with her and for her. Our household was very normal and when dad and Doria divorced, we all made it so it was like she had two houses. No one was estranged, she was just too busy. Read my book complete with facts and photos.”
She’d previously bashed her sister in the press, saying, “Hollywood has changed her. I think her ambition is to become a princess … The truth would kill her relationship with Prince Harry.”
Samantha is writing a tell-all about her sister, even though the two have been estranged since 2008. The title? The Diary of Princess Pushy’s Sister, which she says is not all about Meghan, despite what the title and her self-promotion suggests.
Meghan’s half-brother, Thomas Markle Jr., 51, recently yapped to the Daily Mail about his “princess sister,” and although it wasn’t horrible, should he really be talking about her in the press?
“She was always the family’s princess but now she’s going to be a real princess and I couldn’t be more proud,” he said, adding, “I’d go to her school productions … When you saw Meg on stage, even as a kid, it was clear she was going to be a star. She came alive.”
Psychologist Bruce Berman tells Personal Space that besides money, jealousy is often at play when family members throw away a close relationship and publicly speak ill of a loved one.
“I would be inclined to think along the lines of…there’s probably some envy there…and talking is one way to deal with it,” Berman says.
“When someone is envious of someone’s power or success they might want to do things to hurt the person so they don’t have to feel inadequate themselves. I’d imagine something like that is going on.”
Berman says that despite the betrayal, it’s still family and therefore could repairable if one party is willing to say sorry and the other is open to forgiving. It also cannot happen again.
Meghan’s not the first celebrity hurt by a loved one — in a 2015 GQ cover story, Ryan Reynolds says he was shocked to discover that one of his “closest friends,” someone he “grew up with,” was shopping around a private photo of him, Blake Lively, and their newborn daughter, James. He calls the experience “one of those devastating things to find out” and likened the betrayal to “a death.”
In terms of family drama, who knows betrayal better than Lindsay Lohan, whose own parents practically have reporters on speed dial?
Jennifer Aniston didn’t speak to her mother Nancy Dow for years following her release of From Mother and Daughter to Friends: A Memoir, all about her tense relationship with Jennifer.
In a 2011 Vogue interview, Rihanna revealed that her father once sold childhood photos of her to a tabloid, although she forgave him.
“You hear the horror stories about people going behind people’s backs and doing strange things, but you always think, not my family. My father would never do that to me,” she said.