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On top of everything else going on with the royals right now, Meghan Markle is currently the subject of bullying allegations by palace aides—which she's strongly denied. And now her childhood sweetheart Joshua Silverstein is speaking up in her defense.
To catch you up real quick, back in early March, The Times published a report in which palace aides alleged that one of Meghan Markle’s former advisers filed a bullying complaint against her while she was living at Kensington Palace. The timing of it all raised eyebrows considering the story went live just days before Meghan and Prince Harry's interview with Oprah.
Meghan's rep shut down the claims, saying in part, “The Duchess is saddened by this latest attack on her character, particularly as someone who has been the target of bullying herself and is deeply committed to supporting those who have experienced pain and trauma."
Meanwhile, Buckingham Palace released a statement saying that HR would be looking into the issue:
“We are clearly very concerned about allegations in The Times following claims made by former staff of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Accordingly our HR team will look into the circumstances outlined in the article. Members of staff involved at the time, including those who have left the Household, will be invited to participate to see if lessons can be learned.
The Royal Household has had a Dignity at Work police in place for a number of years and does not and will not tolerate bullying or harassment in the workplace.”
Meghan's friends have since rallied around her, while many fans have called out the royals for hypocrisy (like...where is their HR investigation into Prince Andrew?). Which brings us back to the duchess's ex-boyfriend.
Speaking to Us Weekly, Joshua said he couldn't “personally see [Meghan]” bullying royal staffers, explaining, “I see her doing whatever it is she feels like she should do in order to be happy and coexist within a system that has probably not been very welcoming to who she is and where she comes from."
He added, "When you find women of color—particularly Black women—standing up for themselves and speaking out and speaking against what they feel [is] disrespect or oppression, oftentimes whiteness tends to classify that in negative ways because they don’t want that to happen. It’s almost like people are expected to know their place and whenever they don’t fall in line with that, then people say it’s a problem.”
“She’s probably having to make hard decisions and uncomfortable ones for the sake of just being able to smile the next day," he continued. "That’s what life is about—making tough decisions so that you can live the life that allows you to thrive as the person you want to thrive as. As long as she’s happy and he’s happy, that’s all that matters.”
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