The 2 Reasons Harry and William May Never Reconcile Now, Insiders Say
While Harry told Oprah that "time heals all things," sources say the relationship may not be mendable.
The handful of cryptic clips released by CBS prior to Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan's interview with Oprah Winfrey on Sunday night focused mainly on the duchess, but the duke was also surprisingly candid about his personal struggles trying to protect his family and the way it affected his relationships with the royals. In addition to his explosive comments about his father, Prince Charles (who cut Harry off financially and stopped speaking to him after the couple left for Canada), Harry surprised royal watchers when he said that, despite all that has happened, he still holds out hope he can reconcile with his brother, Prince William, one day. But according to royal insiders, it seems "highly unlikely the brothers will find their way back to each other." Read on to find out the two main reasons why, and for more revelations from the tell-all, check out The One Royal Harry Remains Close to Despite All the Drama.
Tensions between William and Harry have been linked to Meghan's arrival.
William and Harry's rift began with Meghan's arrival at Kensington Palace where she lived in Nottingham Cottage with Harry in the months before their wedding in May 2018. There were numerous reports that Harry was deeply offended by William asking if he was moving too fast with his then-girlfriend and allegedly questioning her suitability for royal life. In Oct. 2019, Harry told ITV's Tom Bradby that he and William were "on different paths at the moment," but added that he "loves his brother dearly."
Things seemed to deteriorate from there, and by the time Harry and Meghan's exit agreement was finalized, what was left of Harry and William's bond had been shattered. For months afterward, there was radio silence between the brothers, except for brief calls about Prince Charles when he was diagnosed with COVID early last year. "For a time, there appeared to be no way back, then the door opened a bit," the royal insider told Best Life. And for more on Harry and William's tensions, check out Diana Would Have Healed William and Harry's Rift, Says Royal Biographer.
Harry told Oprah that he hopes "time heals all things."
When Oprah asked Harry about the current status of his relationship with his brother, the prince said, "The relationship is 'space' at the moment." He then revisited his original remarks to Bradby about the tension between them, saying, "As I've said before, I love William to bits. He's my brother, we've been to h*** together. But we're on different paths." Then, Harry added, "Time heals all things, hopefully."
But insiders were quick to dash those hopes due to the stunning disclosures made by Harry and Meghan in the Oprah interview that will, in all likelihood, put even more distance between the brothers for a few reasons. Our royal source added: "Now, in the wake of everything that Harry and Meghan revealed in their interview with Oprah, it seems highly unlikely there is any way the brothers will find their way back to each other anytime soon." And for more revelations from the interview, check out Meghan Markle Said This Is Her One Regret About Royal Life.
Meghan revealed that it was Kate who made her cry before her wedding, not the other way around.
Meghan's description in the interview of what really happened with Duchess Catherine in the days leading up to her wedding is sure to anger William and embarrass Kate. Meghan revealed the truth about the persistent rumors that there was an argument over the bridesmaids' dresses and she had made Kate cry, saying it was the "polar opposite" of what actually occurred. "I don't say that to be disparaging to anyone, because it was a really hard week of the wedding," the duchess said. She explained that Kate "was upset about something, but she owned it, and she apologized" and brought Meghan flowers afterwards. Meghan continued, "She did what I would do if I knew that I hurt someone, right, to just take accountability for it."
Meghan added that it was "shocking" that the "reverse of that would be out in the world." The duchess told Oprah the way the episode was handled (or rather not handled by the Palace) and the media's perpetuation of the untrue story was a "turning point" because, "Everyone in the institution knew [the version of events in the press] didn't happen," and she hoped Kate "would have wanted that to be corrected."
William is as protective of Kate as Harry is of Meghan, explained an insider. "To see Kate embarrassed in such a public way and for Meghan to characterize that particular encounter as a 'turning point' could anger William, who was already deeply concerned about the interview," the insider said. "This is not the way for the couples to reconcile." And for more royals news delivered right to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
Harry didn't rule out William as the person who raised the question about Archie's skin color.
Another disturbing reason why Harry may not be able to mend fences with William in the immediate future has to do with the shocking disclosure that there had been a conversation between the prince and unnamed members of the family about the color of his yet-to-be-born son's skin color.
When Oprah asked about incident, Harry said, "That conversation, I am never going to share. At the time, it was awkward. I was a bit shocked." He declined to offer any further details, saying, "I'm not comfortable with sharing that." On Monday, Oprah told CBS that Harry had said the royal in question was not Queen Elizabeth or Prince Philip, prompting a frenzied guessing game in the media as to just who made the horrifying remarks.
"Harry could have ruled out William and Charles as potentially being the royals who raised such a shocking question," said the insider. "But he didn't. As much as Harry and Meghan did say in the interview, they also raised a lot of unanswered questions and William is right in the middle of it. That has got to make for a lot of uncomfortable conversations in the future—not exactly firm ground for any kind of reconciliation." And for more on what the royals are struggling with now, check out Prince Harry Is Preparing to Rush to Prince Philip's Side, Say Insiders.
Diane Clehane is a New York-based journalist and author of Imagining Diana and Diana: The Secrets of Her Style.