Meghan Markle has to be careful with what she says, warns royal expert

Watch the full interview with biographer Duncan Larcombe and royal correspondent Victoria Murphy on episode seven of Yahoo UK’s show ‘The Royal Box, which is available to stream here from Friday 7 September. 

Prior to embarking on royal life, Meghan Markle was an actress and keen activist. She was a fearless feminist, criticised Donald Trump, and addressed issues including gender inequality publicly.

But, like the rest of the royal family, the 37-year-old is now discouraged from commenting on political topics.

Royal biographer Duncan Larcombe says the Duchess is likely finding it hard to to navigate the switch from celebrity to royal. 

“We have seen Meghan come to terms with the difference between being a Hollywood star on the red carpet to being a royal on the red carpet,” Larcombe tells Yahoo UK during episode seven of ‘The Royal Box’.

Aspiring stars are often encouraged to increase their profile through social media, and this is something Meghan appeared to doing well: her Instagram boasted over 1 million followers before it was deleted in January 2018.

“[Actresses] need to be seen and they need to be heard. Royals just need to be seen,” Larcombe says. “Meghan has had to chew the top of her lip off.”

Victoria Murphy, a royal correspondent, agrees, saying that as an actress, Meghan “pushed herself forward to have a voice.”

“Now, being in this position where any tiny thing she says is ceased on, even when she’s not trying to amplify it, I think it’s completely the opposite to what she’s used to.”

The Duchess of Sussex during her royal tour of Ireland with Prince Harry. [Photo: Getty]

On one occasion, the Duchess appeared to slip up.

During a working visit to Ireland with Prince Harry, Meghan was reported to have expressed pro-choice sympathies regarding the Irish referendum to legalise abortion.

“That’s bad territory for a royal,” Larcombe says. “Royals are not there to express an opinion. The royal family only survives because it sits on the fence. It’s not elected, they’re there by an accident of birth.

“We like the royal family, we like that we have the royal family,” he says. “But as soon as they start expressing opinions that divide the nation, that’s when they’re finished.”

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