- Prince Harry desires a family instead of being a part of an institution.
- King Charles cannot fulfill his wish for a family.
- The relationship between Prince Harry and King Charles has been distant, which has worsened in recent months.
- King Charles’ role as a king has created a greater barrier for Prince Harry to have the father he desires.
- There are underlying structural problems within “the firm” that continue to cause a divide between Prince Harry and King Charles.
Queen Elizabeth II was the longest-reigning monarch in British history. However, she was simply a “Granny” to Prince Harry. In a 2012 interview with CBS News, Harry described the Queen as a down-to-earth and involved grandmother
Not only did Queen Elizabeth take a keen interest in her children and grandchildren’s lives, but Harry also revealed that they shared a unique and close bond that allowed them to discuss topics that she couldn’t with anyone else. Even with the protocol that came with her position, such as bowing in greeting, it never got in the way of their special relationship.
However, the same cannot be said for Harry’s relationship with his father, King Charles III, which is a different story altogether.
King Charles’ journey towards ascending the British throne has caused a rift between him and his once-close son, Prince Harry. Their once harmonious relationship has hit the rocks and their differences seem to be growing as the days go by.
Prince Harry has become increasingly critical of the monarchy’s shortcomings in recent years, while Charles is now faced with the daunting task of leading the monarchy’s new era amidst growing tensions.
As the face of the royal family’s “business model,” Charles has become the target of Harry’s disapproval, further widening the gap between the two. With each passing day, it seems less likely that they will reconcile, leaving all wondering what this means for the future of the royal family.
Prince Harry’s Memoir ‘Spare’ Reveals Strained Relationship with Father
In his book ‘Spare,’ Harry opened up about his distant relationship with his father. Unfortunately, since his departure from royal life, that distance between them has only grown wider.
Prince Harry sheds light on the emotional distance he felt from his father. According to Harry, Charles struggled to express his feelings and failed to comfort him when he needed it most, like when Harry’s mother, Princess Diana, passed away in a tragic car accident.
Instead of a warm embrace, Harry received letters from his dad and never felt fully appreciated. To make matters worse, Charles made some less-than-funny jokes about not being Harry’s real father amidst rumors of Diana’s affair with her riding instructor, James Hewitt. But Harry sets the record straight and defends his mother’s honor, stating that she didn’t meet Hewitt until after he was born.
According to Harry, as he and his wife Meghan Markle began distancing themselves from their royal duties in 2020, Charles stopped taking his calls, leaving him feeling isolated and abandoned.
Things came to a head when Harry returned to the UK for Prince Philip’s funeral in 2021 and found himself in a heated confrontation with his father and brother, William. Harry reveals in his book “Spare” that he just wants his family back, not the royal institution that has caused so much pain and division.
However, the obstacles to repairing their relationship are immense. As the future king, Charles is bound by duty to uphold the monarchy, even if it means sacrificing his relationship with his own son.
Harry, on the other hand, has criticized the institution for prioritizing appearances and protocol over genuine care and family values. For him, the coronation represents everything he finds damaging about the monarchy.
Charles’ Relationship with UK Tabloids Deepened Royal Family’s Divide
The rift within the British royal family deepened as a result of Prince Charles’ close relationship with UK tabloids. According to Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s 2021 interview with Oprah Winfrey, the family’s institutional relationship with “bigoted” UK tabloids played a significant role in driving them out of royal life. Despite having started their relationship with Charles on good terms, Harry and Meghan’s Netflix docuseries, “Harry & Meghan,” which premiered in December 2022, reveals how negative press coverage of Meghan caused a rift between the couple and the royal family.
Stories in the UK tabloids that branded Meghan as “difficult” and “annoying” began to shape negative perceptions of her within the royal family, while Kate Middleton received positive coverage for similar actions.
Harry wrote in “Spare” that palace staffers regularly traded negative stories about some family members to protect others from unflattering coverage in the press, and Charles’ staff would leak unfavorable stories about his sons to secure good press about him and Camilla.
Despite Harry and Meghan’s efforts to represent the Commonwealth outside of the UK, Charles’ palace staff allegedly planted negative stories about Meghan and leaked private conversations to the press, derailing their talks with the palace.
Harry said that “to see this institutional gaslighting that happens” was “extraordinary,” and that “no one from my family ever said anything” in public support of their struggles.
Harry and Meghan pursued legal action against UK tabloids, which Charles and Camilla have long been friendly with, creating a further division within the family.