Over the last month, it's become clearer and clearer the extent to which media attention has affected Meghan Markle and her new family. In a heartbreaking interview with ITV during Harry & Meghan: An African Journey, we learnt of the emotional toll it has taken. The interview soon went viral, encouraging women in UK public office to come forward and stood up for Markle. Yesterday (Oct. 30), the Duchess of Sussex has called to thank the MPs who wrote an open letter sharing their sympathies, support, and understanding for what she’s been through since the royal wedding in May 2018.
In an interview outside of the House of Commons, Labour MP for Halifax Holly Lynch revealed that her day started with a very surprising phone call. She said:
“I got a phone call from Buckingham Palace asking if I was available to speak to the Duchess of Sussex. She was calling to thank myself and other women MPs for standing with her, sending the open letter to say we, as women in public office absolutely understand what she’s going through.”
On Oct. 29, an open letter, which was led by Lynch and signed by more than 70 female MPs, was published. It in, the female MPs wrote, “As women MPs of all political persuasions, we wanted to express our solidarity with you in taking a stand against the often distasteful and misleading nature of the stories printed in a number of our national newspapers concerning you, your character and your family. On occasions, stories and headlines have represented an invasion of your privacy and have sought to cast aspersions about your character, without any good reason as far as we can see.”
“Even more concerning still, we are calling out what can only be described as outdated, colonial undertones to some of these stories. As women Members of Parliament from all backgrounds, we stand with you in saying it cannot be allowed to go unchallenged.”
During their phone call, Lynch revealed, the two spoke about the negative and unfair media attention women in the public eye receive. However, in the interview, the politician also said, “As a fairly new mum myself the challenges of being in the public eye, managing childcare, and managing public responsibilities can all be a challenge and we did discuss that.” She said she, and other MPs have been concerned about the narratives of the stories that have been printed about the Duchess of Sussex.
In the interview with ITV that went viral, Markle admitted that her friends warned her against marrying Prince Harry because of the British tabloids and that, as a new mother, it’s been “a real challenge.”