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Here's How Friends Say Kate Is Handling the Meghan Feud Drama

The Duchess wants no part of the controversy.

Kate Middleton wants no part of the drama surrounding the rumors that continue to swirl about the tension between her and Meghan Markle and the supposed rift between Prince William and Prince Harry. "Catherine has never had a moment's controversy in the media about her relationship with anyone in the royal family until now," one palace source, who has known Kate for many years, told me. "She wants to steer clear of all of it. Catherine is much too busy with her own life as a mother to three children, plus her royal patronages, to worry about all the supposed drama."

But, acknowledged another source, "The relationship between the four royals has definitely cooled. It's really about something that has changed between the brothers. Catherine and Meghan do get on, but they're never going to be close. And, with the upcoming move, there will be even more distance between them."

Kate, who turned 37 on January 9th, celebrated her birthday without a lot of fanfare in London celebrating at home with her children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and eight-month-old Prince Louis. "The children made cards for their mum and surprised her with a special breakfast," said my source. That morning, William, who once worked as a rescue pilot, visited the Royal London Hospital to mark the 30th anniversary of London's Air Ambulance.

The Cambridges did have a chance to celebrate Kate's birthday the weekend before with their closest friends including couples Tom and Davina Barber (he is a cousin on Princess Diana's side of the family) and Tom and Harriet Sutton. Also on the guest list: William's long time friends Thomas van Straubenzee and James Meade (both are among Princess Charlotte's godparents) and James' wife Laura.

The group gathered at William and Kate's country home, Anmer Hall, for a shooting party on Saturday and attended church together at Sandringham with Queen Elizabeth on Sunday.

Noticeably absent were the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Harry and Meghan did not "skip" Kate's birthday celebration, as has been previously reported—they weren't invited. "Catherine chose to celebrate her birthday with her close friends, William, and the children," a royal source told me. "At this point, William and Kate and Meghan and Harry are only together for family occasions and official engagements at the Queen's request. The 'Fab Four' is a media creation."

"Catherine and Meghan could not be more different," observed the palace insider. "Last weekend, Meghan had lunch in Notting Hill with the new deputy press secretary [Christian Jones, who, incidentally, will work for all four royals] dressed like a Hollywood star in ripped jeans and dark glasses knowing full well the photographers would be on the lookout. Catherine is very private about her life and intentionally stays out of the spotlight unless she's got an official engagement. She prefers to live life away from the cameras whereas Meghan seems to welcome them." And for a behind-the-scenes look at the drama, see Who Is Really Behind the Kate and Meghan Feud Rumors.

Diane Clehane is a New York-based journalist and author of Imagining Diana and Diana: The Secrets of Her Style.

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