Meghan Markle Determined Archie, Lilibet Overcome 'Royals in Exile' Status

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry will want children Archie and Lilibet to "achieve a great deal in adult life despite the huge difficulties of being the children of royals in exile," according to a new royal biography.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex "are the royal couple who gradually fade out of the public's consciousness," but they "will focus all their energies on the next generation," a friend of the couple told new book Gilded Youth, published by Biteback Publishing on February 28.

Archie Mountbatten-Windsor is three years old and was born in Britain in 2019, while Lilibet Mountbatten-Windsor is one and she was born in California in 2021.

Prince Harry, Meghan at NAACP Awards
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are seen at the NAACP Awards in February 2022, while their daughter Lilibet is pictured at her first birthday at Frogmore Cottage, Windsor, in June 2022. The couple are determined their children will have a bright future, according to a new royal book. Earl Gibson III/NAACP and Misan Harriman

The comments come at a time when the couple have endured a major swing against them in U.S. public opinion following the release of Harry's book Spare.

Author Tom Quinn quotes an old friend, described as having visited the Sussexes at their Montecito home: "Meghan and to a lesser extent Harry will focus all their energies on the next generation—their lives are now fixed.

"They are the royal couple who gradually fade out of the public's consciousness, but Meghan will send both children to the best schools money can buy and she will be determined that they achieve a great deal in adult life despite the huge difficulties of being the children of royals in exile."

Gilded Youth argues that "outside the royal family" Harry and Meghan "are mere shadows, creatures of ever-decreasing relevance."

However, the book suggests their achievements may live on through the success of their children.

A former adviser told Quinn that Meghan wants her children to have: "American freedom to do and say what you like and go where you like" in a way that would not have been possible in the institution of Monarchy.

Royal Protocol

The aide said: "Meghan hated being controlled by royal protocol—the fact, for
example, that at Kensington Palace royals have to announce in advance when they are leaving the palace and where they are going.

"This is partly for security but partly also to avoid a situation where a senior royal is upstaged by a more junior royal leaving just when the more important person leaves.

"To an outsider like Meghan, this just looked silly, but to the palace it is absolutely
essential. I think Charles agreed with Meghan on many points—he thought much of the protocol was silly, but it is hard to change.

"William has bought into it, which is why George and Louis and Charlotte are so conventional and look like something out of the 1950s. Meghan wants something different from this for her children—she wants American freedom to do and say what you like and go where you like."

The comments have echoes of Meghan's account to Oprah Winfrey in March 2021, when she said her introduction to royal life was the last time she saw her passport, driving license and keys.

The duchess was also famously asked whether she was "silent" or "silenced" and replied: "The latter."

A friend of Harry's, "from his clubbing days," told the author: "[Meghan] will be great when her children are very young because she will show them an example of someone who goes out and tries to grab the world by the scruff of the neck—she has such a level of certainty about herself and the "world that Archie and Lilibet will feel safe—very safe, perhaps too safe. We know she has been very hands-on with the children.

"But she could end up dominating their every move when they are older. She is a very dominating not to say domineering character and it will be hard to keep that out of her parenting."

Quinn also gave his own take on Harry and Meghan's future: "Perhaps Meghan and Harry should remember that royal exiles often become bitter and twisted as time wears away at their glitter.

"Like Harry's great-uncle Edward VIII, Harry will no doubt think he and Meghan will always be important, but he may discover—as Edward and Mrs Simpson discovered long ago—that outside the royal family, they are mere shadows, creatures of ever-decreasing relevance.

"It is even perhaps possible that some time in the future Harry, Meghan and their children will long for the newspapers to write about them again.

"For, as Oscar Wilde might have said, there is only one thing worse than the newspapers saying unkind things about you, and that is them saying nothing at all about you."

Jack Royston is the chief royal correspondent at Newsweek, based in London. You can find him on Twitter at @jack_royston and read his stories on Newsweek's The Royals Facebook page.

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