Megxit: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle step down as senior royals

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Erica Schindler

On Jan. 8, 2020, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced that they would be stepping down as senior members of the Royal Family. The announcement came in an Instagram post in which they explained that they would work to become financially independent and continue to fully support the Queen, who is Harry’s grandmother.
The post also stated that the family would begin splitting their time between the United Kingdom and North America. The Duke and Duchess hope that the public will support this unprecedented decision.
“This geographical balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity,” said the post.
Queen Elizabeth II has agreed to allow the couple to become more independent. According to NBC News, the Queen reluctantly agreed to this but “would have preferred” that they remain “full-time working Members of the Royal Family”. Despite this, the Queen does fully support the couple’s choice.
Going forward, Harry and Meghan, as well as their son Archie, will enter a transition period where they will live in both the U.K. and Canada. They will also stop receiving public funds and will give up their royal titles. Many other details remain unclear, as the family still has a lot of details to work out.
The announcement comes after both Harry and Meghan publicly expressed their distress over the media’s role in their lives as well as their differences from the other members of their family. The couple has had to deal with persistent British paparazzi, which is new to Meghan.
The pressure from the media is particularly impactful for Harry, whose mother, Princess Diana died in a car accident when she was fleeing the paparazzi in 1997. Harry was 12 at the time.