To say there’s been drama in the royal family since Meghan Markle entered the picture would be a massive understatement, but to blame Meghan for that drama would also be a big mistake. In fact, Meghan’s early days integrating into the royal fam went really, really well. Case-in-point: Her first meeting with the late monarch, Queen Elizabeth.
Meg’s first face-to-face meeting with the Queen only lasted about 20 minutes, but by all accounts the impromptu hangout went incredibly well and the Queen was a huge fan of Meghan’s from the start. According to royal author/insider (he was “close friends” with Prince Philip, according to The Mirror), Gyles Brandreth, the Queen actually offered Meghan the option to continue working as an actress even after officially joining The Firm, but Meghan reportedly turned her down, saying she wanted to put the needs of the Commonwealth first.
“She did everything she could to make her future granddaughter-in-law feel welcome,” Brandreth wrote of the Queen’s attitude during her first meeting with Meghan in his book Elizabeth: An intimate Portrait (per The Mirror). “She was concerned for her future happiness. At their first meeting, the Queen said to Meghan: ‘You can carry on being an actress if you like—that’s your profession, after all.'”
According to Brandreth, though, Meghan declined the offer, essentially promising the Queen that she was ready for that #WorkingRoyalLife and saying she wanted to do what was best for the whole Commonwealth.
“But Meghan was ready for royal duty and, of course, the Queen was delighted by that. She was particularly delighted by the enthusiasm Meghan showed for the Commonwealth and the commitment she made to the Queen to do ‘whatever you think we should be doing for the Commonwealth,'” he wrote. “She promised the Queen that when it came to the Commonwealth she wouldn’t let Her Majesty down. The Queen liked Meghan and told lots of people so.”
Obviously, this was a promise that Meghan wasn’t ultimately able to keep and, in early 2020, she and Prince Harry decided to put the safety and mental/emotional well-being of their family first and step back from royal duties.
Ofc, when Meghan made said alleged promise, she would understandably never had imagined the downward spiral her mental health was going to take as a result of royal life, which is a good reminder to everyone that, while keeping promises is great and important in a lot of scenarios, promises sometimes have to be broken—like if circumstances change and keeping them becomes toxic, for example.