Duchess of Sussex 'is struggling to cope and not answering my calls' says father

Thomas Markle has said his daughter Meghan is struggling to cope with the burdens of royalty, and refuses to take his calls.

He said he is worried the Duchess of Sussex is hiding the pressure of her new life behind a “pained” smile as she adjusts to her “prim” duties as wife of the fifth-in-line to the Throne.

But he revealed she has not been in touch since a phone call after the Royal Wedding while he was recovering from the heart operation which caused him to miss her big day.

He told the Sun on Sunday: “My thing about my daughter right now is that I think she is terrified.

“I see it in her eyes, I see it in her face and I see it in her smile. I’ve seen her smile for years. I know her smile. I don’t like the one I’m seeing now.”

Thomas Markle, pictured here on Good Morning Britain in June, said his daughter had stopped taking his calls - Credit: REUTERS/REUTERS
Thomas Markle, pictured here on Good Morning Britain in June, said his daughter had stopped taking his callsCredit: REUTERS/REUTERS

He said that while her expression might be due to a “bad couple of days” it worried him, and led him to conclude she was under “too much pressure”.

Adding that he could “die soon”, he said he wishes they would reconcile so he could tell her how proud he was - but she no longer answers her phone to him and staff at Kensington Palace will not return his texts.

Mr Markle said: “I had a heart attack, doesn’t anybody care? I could actually die soon. Does she want this to be the last thing we’ve said to each other?”

He said they pair had never gone so long without speaking, and that he wanted to clear the air and tell her how proud he is.

Speaking from his seaside home in Rosarito in Mexico, the retired lighting director, 73, also offered an apology, saying: “If I had one message for her it would be that I’m sorry for anything that went wrong. I’d like to put our differences behind us and get together. I miss you very much.”

Watch: Meet the Markles

In early May Thomas Markle caused headlines around the world when it emerged he had colluded with a photographer to sell staged ‘paparazzi’ shots of his wedding preparations.

After the scandal broke, Meghan is understood to have forgiven her father and his invitation to the Windsor ceremony was not withdrawn.

But he developed chest pains on the day he was due to be driven to the airport and went instead to Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center, ten miles over the US border,  where surgeons installed stents to open his clogged arteries.

Meghan's father watched the ceremony from his hospital bed - Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA
Meghan's father watched the ceremony from his hospital bedCredit: Dominic Lipinski/PA

After watching the Prince of Wales walk his daughter down the aisle on television from his California hospital bed, he texted Meghan to tell her she looked beautiful.

They discussed the wedding and he wished the couple a happy honeymoon.

“That was the last call,” he told the newspaper.

"The phone number I had been calling Meghan on is no longer picking up, and I don’t have an address for her.

"I can send something to the palace, but there is no guarantee it would get to her.

“I sent a text to my palace contact saying I would like to reach my daughter and got no reply.”

Markle, who was reported paid £7,500 for a tell-all June interview with Good Morning Britain, said he wanted a father-daughter relationship, adding: “I took care of my mother the last five years of her life.

"My daughter said to me she would take care of me in my declining years. I’m not talking about money — I’m talking about taking care of me.”

On Saturday the Duchess of Sussex drew admiring glances at Wimbledon when she watched the ladies; singles final from the Royal Box with her sister-in-law, the Duchess of Cambridge.

Related Video: Meghan Markle Gives Letter to Inspired Fan