Prince Harry made a rare move back in November 2016 when he issued a statement asking the media and members of the public to respect the privacy of his then-girlfriend Meghan Markle In a lengthy, heartfelt post, Harry acknowledged that there was “significant curiosity about his private life” but appealed to fair-minded people to respect Meghan’s privacy after it was revealed that the former actress was his girlfriend.
He also said he was “worried” and “deeply disappointed” that he had not been able to “protect” Meghan from the “abuse and harassment” and the “sexism and racism” she was subjected to by “social media trolls and web article comments”. While it was unusual for Harry to issue such a public statement about his personal life at the time, it has now been claimed that he did so over fears that Meghan would end their relationship, according to The Times.
Harry has seen previous high-profile relationships end because of the press attention that came with dating a member of the royal family. His former girlfriend, Chelsy Davy, revealed in 2017 that she was unable to “cope” with being in the spotlight alongside Harry. “It was so full-on: crazy and scary and uncomfortable,” she told The Times. “I found it very difficult when it was bad. I couldn’t cope.”
Harry’s statement, written by Jason Knauf, his communications secretary, said in part: “Prince Harry is worried about Ms. Markle’s safety and is deeply disappointed that he has not been able to protect her. It is not right that a few months into a relationship with him that Ms. Markle should be subjected to such a storm “He knows commentators will say this is ‘the price she has to pay’ and that ‘this is all part of the game’. He strongly disagrees. This is not a game – it is her life and his.
“He has asked for this statement to be issued in the hopes that those in the press who have been driving this story can pause and reflect before any further damage is done. He knows that it is unusual to issue a statement like this, but hopes that fair-minded people will understand why he has felt it necessary to speak publicly.”