King Charles III is said to be "bewildered" and "betrayed" by the behavior of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, and is reportedly struggling to understand why they are still criticizing the Royal Family. Harry's upcoming tell-all memoir Spare is set to be published on January 10—and the monarchy is bracing itself.
"If you look back in royal history, the times the royals speak for themselves become the definitive account," says royal expert Elizabeth Holmes. "For Harry to write his own book, it's going to be forever." Here's why Charles feels betrayed, according to insiders.
King Charles is Still Allegedly Learning on the Job
According to royal insiders, King Charles is taking criticism from Harry and Meghan far more personally than his later mother did. "I don't think it threw her [the Queen] as much as it has thrown at Charles, and understandably so, because this is his son and the daughter-in-law who [have] said some pretty hurtful things," says royal expert Christopher Andersen, author of The King: The Life of Charles III. According to Andersen, the Queen was "used to handling" their behavior, while Charles is still learning how best to handle it.
Alleged Strained Ties
Insiders say Charles was taken aback by comments Meghan made in a recent magazine interview for The Cut about his relationship with Harry. "Harry said to me, 'I lost my dad in this process.' It doesn't have to be the same for them as it was for me, but that's his decision," she told the magazine.
Although Meghan tried to clarify her comments after the interview was published by saying she was talking about herself and not Harry, the damage was done.
Allegedly Defending His Son
Charles made a point of including Harry and Meghan in his first speech as head of the Royal Family. "I want also to express my love for Harry and Meghan as they continue to build their lives overseas," he said.
According to royal sources, Charles is already worried about how Harry's upcoming memoir Spare will impact the monarchy. "The rift between the two camps is now thought to be so deep rooted that any attempt at appeasement would have been considered futile," the Telegraph says.
Alleged Royal Rift
Insiders say Harry was aware the book might not be received well, but wanted to finally share "his truth." "You can't kind of always live your life trying to make your family or your siblings happy," the source says about Harry's decision to write the memoir. "You have to choose your own happiness." "This book could spell the end for any relationship Harry wants to have with his family, it's desperately sad," another source says.
Charles Is "Bewildered"
Charles is said to be especially confused by Harry and Meghan's behavior as he previously enjoyed a warm relationship with his daughter-in-law, even walking her down the aisle. "I think – as far as Charles is concerned, specifically – you know, he feels betrayed," Andersen says. "I mean, he really was very fond of her. And I think he's somewhat bewildered."