keeping up with the royals

What Really Went Down Between Meghan Markle and Her Dad

Meghan Markle.
Meghan Markle. Photo: Yui Mok/Getty Images

For much of the past year, Meghan Markle has had to deal with her father, Thomas Markle Sr., creating drama for her in the press. Of course, there was the back-and-forth with TMZ over whether he’d attend her royal wedding to Prince Harry (after he was caught staging paparazzi photos), which followed several interviews in which he sold out his daughter, tried to pick fights with Queen Elizabeth, and complained repeatedly that Meghan isn’t speaking to him. But now, thanks to an effort from Meghan’s friends to set the record straight, we finally know what really went down between the two.

People’s latest cover package features interviews with five of Meghan’s (anonymous) closest friends, including longtime confidants and former co-stars. Given that this package comes after months of relentless rumors about Meghan in the British press, and reports that the duchess of Sussex has been annoyed that she hasn’t been allowed to stand up for herself, it seems her loyal and otherwise tight-lipped friends may have been given her (and/or Kensington Palace’s) approval to finally share her truth.

Speaking with People, the friends address the issue of Thomas Markle Sr. and his incessant complaints that Meghan won’t return his calls or hasn’t reached out to him. “He knows how to get in touch with her. Her telephone number hasn’t changed,” a longtime friend told People. “He’s never called; he’s never texted. It’s super painful, because Meg was always so dutiful. I think she will always feel genuinely devastated by what he’s done.”

The friend explains that amid the pre-wedding TMZ drama, after it was also revealed that Thomas had suffered a heart attack, Meghan and Harry were “so focused” on getting him to London. “At no point was there talk of ‘Now that we know he lied, he’s in trouble.’ Tom wouldn’t take her calls, wouldn’t take Harry’s calls.”

The friend goes on to explain that even the night before the wedding, she kept texting and calling her dad. After the wedding, she wrote him a letter. “She was like, ‘Dad, I’m so heartbroken. I love you. I have one father. Please stop victimizing me through the media so we can repair our relationship.” In turn, he wrote her a long letter … asking for a photo op. “And she feels like, ‘That’s the opposite of what I’m saying,’” the friend said.

We can only hope Thomas will take in these words and stop violating his daughter’s privacy … but we wouldn’t be surprised if he gives another interview after this report.

What Really Went Down Between Meghan Markle and Her Dad