Family Fortunes

Meghan Markle’s Royally Embarrassing Family

Marrying into the royal family is always tricky, and much depends on the restraint and tact of the new members. Which is bad news for Meghan Markle.

As Kate Middleton knows all too well thanks to her party-loving, coke-sniffing Uncle Gary, for any commoner marrying into the royal fold, facing down the legacy of embarrassing family members coming out of the woodwork is a rite of passage.

And with rumors intensifying that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are secretly engaged following their tea date with the queen, the couple is having to contend with numerous family members seeking to cash in on their connection to Meghan.

Meghan’s paternal half-sister, Samantha, has claimed to be writing a book entitled The Diary of Princess Pushy’s Sister, which is said to address her apparently fraught relationship with Meghan.

Wheelchair-bound Samantha, 52, has branded her famous sister a “self-obsessed” social climber, claimed Meghan targeted Harry, and also alleged that Meghan stopped speaking to her after she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2008.

Samantha said of her sister: “The royal family would be appalled by what she’s done to her own family.”

However now Samantha’s mother—Meghan and Samantha have the same dad (Thomas) but different mothers—has come to Meghan’s defense, telling the Daily Mail this weekend: “Samantha has been estranged from her family for some time. Everything she said about Meghan is a lie. When you are not a happy person, you want to drag everyone down with you.”

Meghan’s half-brother, Tom Jr., was arrested this year for allegedly brandishing a gun at his girlfriend in a drunken rage. The charges were later dropped. He sought to excuse himself by telling the media that Prince Harry had made mistakes and been forgiven, and he should too.

In the early days of Meghan’s romance with Harry, Tom Jr. erroneously claimed their father had flown to meet the prince, with a source telling the Mail: “When the two older kids started talking to the press, Tom was appalled. He’s never expected any financial help from Meghan. All he’s ever wanted is her happiness. The negative publicity was very hurtful to him. Tom isn’t close to his older kids. He dotes on Meghan.”

Contrary to some reports, it is believed that Harry has yet to meet Meghan’s dad.

Meghan’s first husband has also been apparently planning to cash in on his ex-wife’s new associations with the royals.

Trevor Engelson is producing a comedy about a man who has to share the custody of his child with the British royal family after the main character’s ex-wife marries a British prince.

While the lead characters are reportedly not based on either Markle or Engelson, who had no children, Deadline reported the idea for the program came following a conversation that Engelson had with another producer.

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They had spoken about what it would be like if Engelson and Markle had children, and he had to share custody with the British royal family.

Fox eventually bought the comedy, and has reportedly made a “big commitment” to a pilot episode.

Meanwhile, a new report in the Sun over the weekend claimed the couple “just can’t bear to be apart at the moment,” amid increasing indications that advance preparations are being quietly made for a summer wedding.

Harry (33) is planning a trip to see Meghan (36) in Toronto this month, a royal source told the Sun newspaper.

The prince will fly to North America for a speaking engagement at the inaugural Obama Foundation Summit in Chicago.

However, a spokesperson for Kensington Palace said the prince would be flying directly to and from London for the summit. 

Senior members of Britain’s royal family are understood to have been asked to shortlist a series of suitable weekends for next year—a sign that an engagement could be on the way, according to the Mail on Sunday’s Robert Jonson.

Last week, Harry and Meghan met his grandmother, Britain’s Queen Elizabeth, for afternoon tea at Buckingham Palace.