Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are making big changes in 2020!
On Wednesday, the pair announced that they intended “to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family” and plan to balance their life “between the United Kingdom and North America.”
In a statement on Instagram, Meghan and Harry said, “After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution. We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment. We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honour our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages.”
“This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity,” the couple elaborated. “We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties. Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support.”
Buckingham Palace released a statement after the surprise news, saying, "Discussions with The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are at an early stage. We understand their desire to take a different approach, but these are complicated issues that will take time to work through."
The announcement came just after Harry and Meghan separated themselves from the Royal Foundation, which is now solely run by Prince William and Kate Middleton.
Rumors of a rift between Harry and William have been swirling for some time. Harry recently addressed the rumors in the ITV documentary “Harry & Meghan: An African Journey,” saying, “Part of this role and part of this job, this family, being under the pressure that it’s under, inevitably stuff happens. But look, we’re brothers, we’ll always be brothers. We’re certainly on different paths at the moment, but I’ll always be there for him and as I know he’ll always be there for me.”
Hours before the surprising announcement, Harry’s pal Tom Bradby also commented on the brothers’ strained relationship, telling “Good Morning Britain’s” Piers Morgan, “There are lots of people who would love there to be — including, I think, the brothers themselves — love them to be closer again. And with any luck, that will happen. But with families, we all know stuff happens, things are said.”
When Morgan noted that a public family dispute is difficult, Tom added, “And also a family dispute within a family firm. You are working in a big family firm, everyone has their wishes and desires and ambitions, and if they have to be balanced up... it’s very hard.”
Meghan, Harry and their son Archie did not spend Christmas with the royals, but opted to spend the holidays in Canada.