Many of us grew up on fairy tales that conclude with the commoner heroine marrying her prince and living happily ever after.
Perhaps the story ends there because no one wants to see the princess spend the rest of her life in a fishbowl, forced to endure a constant barrage of lies and speculation, all the while prohibited from fighting back by the strictures of royal decorum.
Of course, anyone who’s curious about the pains and frustrations of such an existence need only look at the life of Meghan Markle.
When she first married Prince Harry, Meghan seemed to have it all.
Sadly, in the year that followed, she experienced firsthand just how much vitriol the sight of a mixed-race royal brings out in many Britons — some of whom, shockingly, are members of the press.
Obviously, Meghan has been black her whole life, and she dealt with racism in its many vile forms before she became a royal.
But could anything have prepared her for hit pieces about how she ruined Harry’s life by marrying him and giving him a child?
Is there any way she could have braced herself for the pearl-clutching that would ensue when some stodgy traditionalist declared that she failed to curtsy properly?
The other royals may have done their best to caution Meg about the hard times ahead, but as they’ve never experienced such abuse themselves, they were ill-equipped to do so.
For the most part, Meghan has endured this abuse with admirable restraint.
But as much as the Windsors might stress the importance of a stiff-upper-lip, Meghan is only human, and she became noticeably emotional during a recent interview for an upcoming documentary about her travels in Africa:
“Any woman, especially when they’re pregnant, you’re really vulnerable, and so that was made really challenging. And then when you have a newborn, you know,” she says gesturing to her interviewer.
“And especially as a woman, it’s a lot… So you add this on top of just trying to be a new mom or trying to be a newlywed,” the Duchess of Sussex continues.
“It’s um…yeah. I guess, also thank you for asking because not many people have asked if I’m okay, but it’s a very real thing to be going through behind the scenes.”
Asked if she’s “not really okay” and whether she’s struggled in recent months, Meghan says, “Yes.”
It’s uncommon for any public figure to speak so candidly about the pressures of motherhood and life in the public.
For someone as visible as Meghan to do it is incredibly courageous.
Hopefully, the British tabloid press will keep this in mind next time they decide to dogpile her for repeating an outfit.