“It’s disappointing to the royals that this drama has reared its ugly head again, but they were at least braced for it and there’s a sense of relief that it could have been a good deal worse,” a source exclusively reveals in the new issue of Us Weekly.
The Firm were prepared for the streaming docuseries (which debuted in two parts on December 8 and Thursday, December 15), but their words still affect King Charles III and other members of the family.
“Some of Meghan and Harry’s snipes and criticisms still sting quite heavily, especially as it’s all being played out for the whole world to see and dissect in such embarrassing detail,” the insider adds.
The doc includes Meghan, 41, claiming that she was told not to invite her niece to the wedding amid drama with her extended family and recalling the racist rhetoric that surfaced in the U.K. media after the couple’s engagement. Meanwhile, Harry, 38, alleged that the royal family was willing to “lie to protect” Prince William and planted negative stories about his wife in the press.
Harry’s relatives are “distancing themselves from it all as much as they can” in the aftermath of the Netflix series, the insider explains, adding that the royals are “fully focused instead on carrying out their duty and enjoying Christmas.”
The source continues: “There’s no desire to enter an unseemly war of words with the Sussexes, although it’s fair to say relations between both sides are tetchy and frosty at the moment to say the least.”
After assuming the throne in September in the wake of Queen Elizabeth II‘s death, Charles, 74, wants the family to be united — but the royals are anxiously waiting for the Duke of Sussex to release his autobiography, Spare. The January tome is expected to drop even more bombshells about the iconic family.
“King Charles’ greatest hope is that relations will improve between all parties over time, but for the moment they need to see how the rest of these episodes play out and what Harry has to say in his memoir,” the source says. “There’s a consensus that time and space is what’s needed at the moment, and Meghan and Harry have a long road ahead of them if they want to unburn their bridges.”
For more on Harry and Meghan’s relationship with the royal family, watch the video above and pick up the latest issue of Us Weekly, on newsstands now.