Harry and Meghan: An Africa Journey, a documentary by British journalist Tom Bradby, aired last night in the U.K. and showed a side of Meghan Markle that the public has never seen before.
The hurt in her eyes was visible as the Duchess of Sussex talked about the struggles she’s had in dealing with the intense (and sometimes cruel) coverage she’s received by a certain sector of the British press, something a friend tried to warn her about as she started dating Prince Harry.
“It’s hard,” she said. “I don’t think anybody could understand that, but in all fairness, I had no idea—which probably sounds difficult to understand here—but when I first met my now husband, my friends were really happy because I was so happy, but my British friend said to me, ‘I’m sure he’s great, but you shouldn’t do it, because the British tabloids will destroy your life.’ And I very naively…we’re American, we don’t have that there, ‘What are you talking about? That doesn’t make any sense. I’m not in tabloids!’ I didn't get it. So yeah, it’s been complicated.”
Even as an actor, Markle was not someone who regularly appeared in gossip columns, and it’s true that the American tabloid press is very different from that in the U.K. Of course, we all know she didn’t let that warning turn her off from a relationship with Harry—but it’s come at a price. And it seems she’s no longer willing to bear it all in silence.
“I have said for a long time to H, that’s what I call him, ‘It’s not enough to just survive something. That’s not the point of life. You have got to thrive. You have got to feel happy,’” Markle continued.
Meghan added, “I really tried to adopt this British sensibility of a ‘stiff upper lip.’ I really tried, but I think that what that does internally is probably really damaging—and the biggest thing I know is that I never thought this would be easy, but I thought it would be fair, and that’s the part that’s really hard to reconcile. I don’t know, just take each day as it comes.”
“When people are saying things that are just untrue, and they’re being told they’re untrue but they’re allowed to still say them, I don’t know anybody in the world that would feel like that’s OK, and that’s different than just scrutiny. That’s…what would you call that? That’s a different beast. That’s really just a different beast,” she also said, per Entertainment Tonight.
While fans around the world are showing their support with the #WeLoveYouMeghan hashtag, the duchess said in the film, “The good thing is I’ve got my baby and I’ve got my husband, and they’re the best.”
Originally Appeared on Glamour