Meghan Markle has given an interview to the right-wing, Brexit-loving, fiercely traditional British newspaper The Daily Telegraph, in which she talks about the importance of vulnerability and speaks a great deal of therapy language that is unlikely to endear her to that newspaper’s natural readership.
In her interview with The Telegraph, which counts Nigel Farage and Boris Johnson among its star contributors and has been one of Donald Trump’s few broadsheet U.K. cheerleaders, Meghan allows reporter Bryony Gordon to transcribe her thoughts while she pays a visit to a charity bakery which offers help to disadvantaged women.
It’s worth noting that doing such a piece is a major breach of royal protocol: Prince William and Kate Middleton have a strict rule to never give one-on-one newspaper interviews, the Queen has never give one and Prince Charles has only done so on rare occasions.
The encounter took place at the Luminary Bakery, a bakery that aims to empower disadvantaged women through training and employment opportunities in the baking world.
Gordon describes how one of the women she meets, a victim of child exploitation, has recently had a business card printed as she prepares to set up her own catering company thanks to the support of Luminary Bakery, which Meghan featured in her guest-edited issue of Vogue.
In scenes unlikely to warm the heart of The Telegraph’s core readership, often caricatured as retired army officers in the English shires, Meghan tells the group of women: “One of the things I have realised since being here is that people have an expectation when I’m coming somewhere, so I’m like, let’s just be really relaxed, keep everyone nice and chilled, because at the end of the day we’re all just women. We all have a story to tell, and I feel honoured that I am getting to hear yours.”
Having listened to the harrowing story of one of the women, Giselle, Meghan asks her: “When was the first moment you thought, “This is going to change me, on the inside? When you realised that this was not just about learning to bake, that there was another element to it?””
“It was the moment when the girls around me told me that it was OK for me to be hurt,” says Giselle. “That it was ok for me to show them that I was hurt, and that I was struggling.”
“They gave you permission, right?” asks Meghan.
Giselle, we are assured, “nods her head vigorously, smiling,” in response to this suggestion.
One wonders what the readers of The Telegraph, the spiritual home of the Stiff Upper Lip she so reviles, must be making of it all. After all in just the last few weeks they have been treated to several long pieces on what a spoilt brat Meghan is, how her and Harry really need to pull their socks up and decide if they want to be real royals and how Meghan is putting Harry in a terribly awkward spot by forcing him to put his relationship with her before his solemn duty to the nation.
Undeterred, Meghan ploughs on, moving on to a discussion of the importance of vulnerability saying; “I was talking about this with someone the other day. We get into this habit of wanting things done immediately nowadays. There’s a culture of instant gratification, of the instant fix. But we aren’t mechanical objects that need to be fixed. You’re a wounded creature that needs to be healed, and that takes time. And that’s what I love about this place. It gives you the support to heal.”
There’s clearly plenty more of these holistic affirmations that wouldn’t look out of a place on the Sussex Royal Instagram account. Meghan says at one stage: “I find that when you strip all the layers away, as people, and especially as women, we can find deep connection with each other, and a shared understanding,”.
Gordon herself can’t resist dropping in a few details about the depth of her relationship with Meghan; you see, it turns out they have met before!
Gordon gloats: “I first met Meghan Markle eighteen months ago, shortly before she married Prince Harry. We went for lunch at a restaurant in London, sitting in a corner where she went unnoticed and undisturbed. She ate monkfish, offering me some when I expressed my food envy, and we discussed some of our shared passions: mental health, running, yoga.”
Yes, that’s right folks—Meghan shared her food with Bryony!
“We kept in touch,” says Gordon airily, adding it was Meghan who persuaded Harry to do his famous mental health podcast with her.
Little surprise, perhaps, that the British tabloids have found little to feast on in this interview, with The Mirror reduced to trumpeting the fact that Meghan has “revealed” that Archie will be watching the final of the Rugby World Cup on Saturday morning in an England babygro.
“Go England!” says, Meghan, unaware, perhaps, that this side of the pond, the correct terminology is “Come On England!”
Really, this will never do.