Posts Tagged "Kate Middleton"


From Nazi uniforms to topless photos, the Royal Family’s biggest scandals – National

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The Royal Family has made headlines for decades, long before the fast pace of the internet.

While some of their biggest controversies happened decades ago, others — like Prince Andrew’s sex assault allegations — are more recent.

In no particular order, here are some of the biggest scandals the Royal Family has faced in recent history.

King Edward gives up the throne

One of the biggest moments in recent British royal history, King Edward VIII abdicated the throne in 1936 so he could marry his lover, American socialite Wallis Simpson.

READ MORE: The best royal fashion moments of 2019

Simpson had previously been married and divorced, which put their relationship under scrutiny. The Church of England, which Edward was the head as king, did not allow divorcees to remarry if their ex-spouse was still alive. (These rules only changed in 2002.)

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In order for Edward to wed Simpson, he had to step down from his role as king. His brother, George VI, took on the title.

Princess Margaret’s relationship with Peter Townsend

Queen Elizabeth‘s younger sister was romantically linked to Captain Peter Townsend, who was married when they first met.

Townsend was Princess Margaret’s father’s equerry and was close to the Royal Family. In 1952, Townsend divorced his wife and asked Princess Margaret’s hand in marriage.

Royal Family issues statement on release of Prince Philip from hospital

Royal Family issues statement on release of Prince Philip from hospital

In 1953 at the Queen’s Coronation Day, the princess was caught picking off a piece of fluff from Townsend’s jacket, which fueled rumours that the two were romantically involved.

Since Townsend was divorced, if Princess Margaret was to marry him, she would have been stripped of her royal title as parliament and the Church of England would not consent to her marriage. She decided not to wed Townsend and married photographer Antony Armstrong Jones in 1960 instead, whom she later divorced.

Prince Harry wears a Nazi costume

In 2005, the second son of Prince Charles sported a Nazi uniform to a costume party. Prince Harry apologized for his behaviour after a British tabloid printed a photograph of him drinking and smoking in the outfit.

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READ MORE: Why Meghan Markle always carries her purse in her hands and other royal protocol

In a statement at the time, the then 20-year-old prince said: “I am very sorry if I caused any offense or embarrassment to anyone. It was a poor choice of costume and I apologize.”

Prince Andrew’s sexual assault allegations

Prince Andrew spent much of 2019 in the headlines.

An American woman named Virginia Roberts Giuffre says she was forced to have sex with Prince Andrew multiple times when she was just 17 years old.

Giuffre says she was sex trafficked by convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who died by suicide in August 2019. She alleges Epstein forced her to have sex with the prince in 2001 at the home of British socialite and friend of Prince Andrew’s Ghislaine Maxwell.

Prince Andrew denies these allegations.

Prince Andrew retreats from public life amid Epstein saga

Prince Andrew retreats from public life amid Epstein saga

Prince Andrew stepped down from royal duties in November 2019 just days after he spoke with the BBC about his friendship with Epstein.

“It has become clear to me over the last few days that the circumstances relating to my former association with Jeffrey Epstein [have] become a major disruption to my family’s work and the valuable work going on in the many organizations and charities that I am proud to support,” the 59-year-old said in a statement.

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Princess Diana and Prince Charles’ affairs and subsequent divorce

Queen Elizabeth’s eldest son married Princess Diana in 1981.

Princess Diana and Prince Charles had their two sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, in 1982 and 1984, respectively.

READ MORE: What was it like to have Queen Elizabeth II as a mom?

Prince Charles reportedly started an affair with Camilla Parker Bowles, whom he dated before his marriage, around 1986, according to reports. Princess Diana reportedly had affairs, too, most notably with her bodyguard Barry Mannakee in 1985, and military man James Hewitt the following year.

In 1992, an intimate phone call between Prince Charles and Parker Bowles was leaked to the press, later known as “Camillagate.” Tabloids published transcripts of the deeply personal conversation, causing great embarrassment to the family.

Princess Diana and Prince Charles split in 1992.

Trudeau meets with Prince Charles during NATO trip in U.K.

Trudeau meets with Prince Charles during NATO trip in U.K.

In 1994, Prince Charles admitted he cheated on Princess Diana in a TV documentary. The following year, Princess Diana infamously told the BBC that there were “three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded.”

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Princess Diana died after being injured in a car accident in Paris in 1997.

Prince Charles and Parker Bowles married in 2005.

Prince Harry spends a day in rehab

After reportedly admitting to experimenting with cannabis and alcohol, a then 16-year-old Prince Harry was sent to drug rehabilitation clinic for a day by his father.

Per reports, Prince Charles arranged for his teen son to visit Featherstone Lodge, a detox centre for people dealing with drug addiction, in south London. The visit was not reportedly for treatment, but instead an attempt to show Prince Harry the dangers of drugs.

Kate Middleton’s topless photos

While vacationing in France, paparazzi took photos of a topless Duchess of Cambridge suntanning in 2012.

READ MORE: Who pays for the Royal Family’s lavish lifestyle?

French, Italian and Irish outlets published the photographs, and the Royal Family swiftly took legal action for what they called a “grotesque” breach of privacy.

In 2017, a judge ordered French magazine Closer to pay 100,000 euros in damages for publishing the photos. Two staff members were fined an additional 90,000 euros to pay to Kate Middleton and Prince William.

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Prince Harry naked in Las Vegas

Photos of a naked Prince Harry surfaced in 2012 after a “wild” trip to Las Vegas. Prince Harry, who was then 27, was photographed playing a reported game of “strip billiards” with friends in his VIP suite.

Meghan Markle, Prince Harry celebrate Christmas in Canada

Meghan Markle, Prince Harry celebrate Christmas in Canada

TMZ published the nude shots, as did British tabloid The Sun.

Sarah Ferguson’s bribery scandal

Sarah Ferguson, the ex-wife of Prince Andrew, was caught demanding money from an undercover journalist posing as a businessman in exchange for access to the prince.

Now-defunct tabloid News of the World secretly filmed Ferguson in 2010 promising access to Prince Andrew after the payment was sent to her bank account. Ferguson and Prince Andrew divorced in 1996.

READ MORE: From babies to scandal, the Royal Family’s biggest moments of 2019

“That opens up everything you would ever wish for. I can open any door you want, and I will for you,” she told the undercover reporter. “Look after me and he’ll look after you … you’ll get it back tenfold.”

Ferguson, the mother of Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie, publicly apologized after the news broke.

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“I very deeply regret the situation and the embarrassment caused,” she said.

“It is true that my financial situation is under stress, however, that is no excuse for a serious lapse in judgment and I am very sorry that this has happened.”

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© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Prince Harry, Meghan Markle won’t spend Christmas with Royal Family – National

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It’s official: the Duke and Duchess of Sussex won’t be celebrating Christmas with the Queen this year.

A spokesperson for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle confirmed to CNN that the royal couple will spend the holidays with Markle’s mother, Doria Ragland, instead.

The decision is a break from tradition as the Queen typically hosts Christmas at the Sandringham estate every year. The monarch is joined by other members of the Royal Family, and everyone attends a Christmas Day service at Sandringham Church.

READ MORE: Who pays for the Royal Family’s lavish lifestyle?

For the last two years, Markle and Prince Harry have joined the Queen at her country estate.

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As reported by CNN, the spokesperson said the couple’s decision “is in line with precedent set previously by other members of the Royal Family and has the support of Her Majesty The Queen.”

The spokesperson would not confirm where Prince Harry and Markle would spend the holiday season, citing privacy reasons. This means they could spend time with Ragland in the U.S. or the U.K.

Markle’s mom is currently based in L.A.

READ MORE: Queen will no longer wear real fur: Buckingham Palace

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are not the first royal couple to spend Christmas without the Queen.

In 2016, Prince William and Kate Middleton spent the holidays with Middleton’s family. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge brought along their young children, George and Charlotte.

There’s been speculation that Markle and Prince Harry may be planning a move to the U.S., which has been fuelled by rumours that the couple isn’t close with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Meghan Markle opens up about the stress of being in the spotlight as a new mom

Meghan Markle opens up about the stress of being in the spotlight as a new mom

In a recently released documentary, Harry & Meghan: An African Journey, Prince Harry addressed his relationship with his big brother.

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“Inevitably, stuff happens, but we’re brothers. We’ll always be brothers,” the 35-year-old said.

“We’re certainly on different paths at the moment. I’ll always be there for him, and as I know, he’ll always be there for me. We don’t see each other as much as we used to because we’re so busy, but I love him dearly.”

READ MORE: Prince William concerned about Prince Harry after TV interview

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex formally parted ways from the charity foundation they shared with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in June, just months after they created their own household.

The couple has also been vocal about the pressures of living in the spotlight as members of the Royal Family and have even taken legal action against British tabloids.

It is unclear if they plan to spend more time in the U.S., where Markle was raised, in the near future.

— With a file from Global News’ Meaghan Wray 

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© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Kate Middleton, Prince William’s plane diverted during electrical storm in Pakistan – National

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Prince William and Kate Middleton‘s plane was forced to emergency land after hitting a lightning storm during their Pakistan tour.

The royal couple were on their way to Islamabad on their jet, the RAF Voyager, which was also carrying members of media.

Royal reporter Simon Perry tweeted about the experience.

“Phew. Landed! But in Lahore. A terrifying electrical storm hit as we tried to land at Islamabad,” he wrote.

READ MORE: Princess Charlotte joins Prince George, Kate Middleton and Prince William for first day of school

“Lightning seemed to be crashing around the right wing. Despite the best efforts of the pilot of William and Kate’s RAF Voyager plane we couldn’t couldn’t land there.”

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According to Press Association reporter Emma Louise Bowden, the pilot attempted to land twice but was forced to turn back to Lahore.

Bowden shared a dark video of the plane reportedly carrying the duke and duchess.

Emily Andrews, royal reporter for The Sun, said that William checked in on media after, joking that the bad flying was because he was behind the steering wheel, Vanity Fair reports.

The parents of three are on Day 4 of their royal tour of Pakistan.

Their day was jam-packed with engagements reminiscent of the late Princess Diana’s visit in the 1990s.

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READ MORE: Prince Harry gets choked up remembering early days of Meghan Markle’s pregnancy

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge stopped by the Badshahi Mosque before heading to Shaukat Khanum Memorial Cancer Hospital.

There, the duchess had a tea party on one little girl’s bed and they celebrated another child’s birthday by singing Happy Birthday.

Before their airplane scare, they even played a game of cricket.

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© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Princess Charlotte joins Prince George, Kate Middleton and Prince William for first day of school – National

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It’s back-to-school time again, even for the British royal children.

This year was especially sweet as Princess Charlotte joined big brother Prince George at Thomas’s Battersea for the first time.

With parents Prince William and Kate Middleton, the royal quad made an exciting appearance at the school Thursday morning.

READ MORE: Kate Middleton shows off newly designed garden with Prince William and kids [photos]

The Cambridge siblings wore matching uniforms, with George donning the traditional navy blue short and blue-and-red cardigan, while Charlotte paired her own identical sweater with a navy skirt.

In video footage of the quad approaching the lower school’s headmaster, Helen Haslem, the Duke of Cambridge can be heard saying, “First day, very excited,” as a cheeky Charlotte, 4, grins and fiddles with her ponytail beside her mother.

Just as George did in 2017 on his own first day, Charlotte adorably shook hands with Haslem.

Princess Charlotte shook hands with the lower school’s headmaster, Helen Haslem.

Aaron Chown/CP

For the occasion, the Duchess of Cambridge sported a floral pink Michael Kors dress and a glowing tan while shaking hands with the headmaster.

“How are you? Did you have a nice summer?” she can be heard asking.

Kensington Palace shared an adorable photo of the sibling duo on the steps of their home just before leaving for school.

“The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to share a photograph of Prince George and Princess Charlotte at Kensington Palace this morning,” they wrote on Twitter. “The photo was taken shortly before Their Royal Highnesses left for Thomas’s Battersea.”

There’s no doubt Charlotte is thrilled to be starting a new school year after a summer of vacationing at the family’s country home of Anmer Hall in Norfolk, where they go every summer season.

She’s set to learn subjects like French, computing, art, music, drama and ballet, just as her brother did when he started at the London school for kids ages four to 14.

READ MORE: Royal Family celebrates Prince Louis’ 1st birthday with adorable new photos

This time was a little different, however, as Duchess Kate was able to tag along. Last year, the then-five-year-old Prince George was only joined by dad Prince William.

The future Queen Consort wasn’t able to be there on George’s first day, as she was suffering from severe morning sickness while pregnant with Prince Louis, 1.

Princess Charlotte, the Cambridges’ only daughter, has been attending Willcocks Nursery in Kensington since January 2018 and will start off with half days at her new school.

Though the family’s last name is technically Mountbatten-Windsor — a combination of the Queen and Prince Philip‘s surnames — the princess will be known as Charlotte Cambridge at school, just as her brother is known as George Cambridge.

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© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Prince George hits the tennis court with pro Roger Federer – National

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Prince George may only be five years old, but he’s already working on his tennis swing — and learning from the best.

Swiss professional tennis player Roger Federer said he gave the young royal a private lesson recently when he visited Bucklebury Manor, the home of Kate Middleton’s parents.

Speaking to reporters at Wimbledon, 37-year-old Federer said that “cute” Prince George is already making progress, ATP Tour reported. Federer is reportedly the child’s favourite tennis star.

Prince George departs from Hamburg airport on the last day of their official visit to Poland and Germany on July 21, 2017.


READ MORE: Kate Middleton shows off newly designed garden with Prince William and kids

“At that stage, it’s all about just touching the ball; it’s already good. Same with my boys,” Federer said to the press.

“I think I have a little advantage that I actually spent some time with him. I’m the only player he’s ever met. Then you have a little head start in who your favourite player is.”

The Duchess of Cambridge attended Wimbledon earlier this week to watch Federer play and take in a match between British player Harriet Dart and American Christina McHale.

Swiss Roger Federer celebrates after winning the tennis ATP final against Belgium David Goffin in Halle, Germany, Sunday, June 23, 2019.


While attending Wimbledon in 2018, Price William told tennis star Novak Djokovic that he’s trying to encourage his children to get into sports and get a “tennis racket in their hand — and a football.”

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are not the only royals who love tennis.

READ MORE: Kate Middleton’s brother, James, opens up about ‘crippling depression’

Meghan Markle attended Wimbledon to watch her friend Serena Williams play against 18-year-old Kaja Juvan on Thursday.

Williams and her husband Alexis Ohanian are friends of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and attended their wedding in 2018.

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© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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The people who make money tracking Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle’s wardrobe

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From Meghan the Duchess of Sussex’s recent maternity clothing to Kate the Duchess of Cambridge’s love of L.K. Bennett wedges, the women continue to be trendsetters when it comes to their fashion choices. So much so that bloggers have made careers out of tracking who and what they wear.

Susan E. Kelley founded the website What Kate Wore in 2011, when Britain’s Prince William got engaged to marry Kate Middleton.

“I had another blog, and anytime I wrote about Kate, there was this huge boost in readership. And so I talked about it with my husband. I said, ‘You know, do you think people would really be interested in reading about what Kate Middleton wears?’”

READ MORE: Royal baby christening: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry won’t announce Archie’s godparents

The site really took off when the royal couple took a tour of Canada and the United States a few months after their wedding.

“She’s changing outfits multiple times a day, and people loved it. There was this enormous interest in it, and it exploded on Twitter and on Facebook and it kind of rolled on from there,” Kelley said during an interview at her home in Okemos, Michigan, near Lansing.

Christine Ross of Lovettsville, Virginia, is co-editor of a website that follows the Duchess of Sussex’s style, called Meghan’s Mirror. The site actually launched before Meghan started dating Prince Harry, because Ross’ co-editor, Amanda Dishaw of Toronto, was a fan of Markle’s TV series Suits.

WATCH: Wedding fashion in the Royal family

Once Harry and Meghan were spotted together in public, the actress’ profile went up. And so did visits to their site.

“When Meghan was seen at the Invictus Games with Prince Harry in Toronto, it just exploded, and all of a sudden it was like, ‘OK, this is serious. This is real. This is happening,’” said Ross.

“People were so interested in what she wore and the charities that she worked with and the messages that she was sending, and the site just really took off from there.”

So, how exactly do these bloggers figure out who the duchesses are wearing?

READ MORE: Kate Middleton makes rare public speech to raise awareness on addiction

Kelley says for official engagements, the Palace provides a minimal amount of information about the clothing worn.

“Kensington Palace will tell reporters at the scene the primary designer she’s wearing,” said Kelley, adding that the Palace doesn’t reveal who made Kate’s accessories.

But it also comes down to a study in repetition.

“Kate has designers that she goes to again and again,” Kelley said.

For Meghan’s Mirror, Ross says she and her team have studied fashion and will examine the Duchess of Sussex’s wardrobe down to the tiniest of details to get it right.

“Every time there’s a new picture of Meghan, whether it’s a paparazzi photo or an official event, there’s a mad rush to our computers, and we really just start Googling,” she said. “It comes down to a really unique knowledge of the brands that she loves. Meghan tends to stick to the same designers over and over again, and we sit down and analyze things like stitching or buttons. … We’ve become very good at (it) as we’ve learned more about her style.”

READ MORE: Meghan Markle, Prince Harry announce first royal tour ‘as family’

Ross says Meghan’s Mirror considers itself an ultimate resource for fashion info on Meghan, including an archive of anything she’s worn in public.

“We’ve worked really hard to curate our archives where you can find exactly what she’s worn and all the details about it, and you can also get mirror Meg styles at a fraction of the cost. So every time she steps out, we really work hard to add everything she’s wearing, from the earrings to the shoes to the jacket, all on to our archive so our readers can go on there, click and shop those styles.”

They also sell Meghan’s Mirror-inspired items, including jewelry on

What Kate Wore also links to clothing Kelley calls “repliKates,” shoppable items similar to something the Duchess of Cambridge has worn.

Tracking the duchesses can be time consuming, especially with the time difference from the U.S. and London. “There are a lot of very early mornings for me,” Kelley said. “But the real crunch comes when they go on tour, because multiple tours have been in time zones that were 12, 14, 16-hour time differences. I just know I’m not going to see my husband. We’ll pass each other in the hallway.”

All in all, it’s still fun work.

“We have readers in places where I never thought people would be interested,” Kelley said. “There’s like 200 countries who have read the blog.”

She’s also launched sister sites What Meghan Wore and What Kate’s Kids Wore .

— Rancilio reported from New York. Rudy Estrada in Washington, D.C., contributed.

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Kate Middleton’s brother, James, opens up about ‘crippling depression’ – National

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The younger brother of Kate Middleton is opening up about his personal struggles with mental health.

James Middleton, 32, recently told Tatler magazine that after his sister married Prince William in 2011, he was thrust into the limelight and struggled with fame. His battles with anxiety and depression — which he described as crippling — heightened, and he eventually “shut” out his family.

“Suddenly, and very publicly, I was being judged about whether I was a success or a failure,” he told the outlet in an article published on Monday.

“That does put pressure on you. Because in my mind, I’m doing this irrespective of my family and events that have happened.”

READ MORE: Meghan Markle, Prince Harry split from joint charity with Prince William, Kate Middleton

Middleton, who was 23 years old when Kate married the Duke of Cambridge, said he struggled with dyslexia at school. As he became more famous, his personalized gift business, Boomf, became under public scrutiny and he questioned his career abilities.

The entrepreneur said being famous wasn’t the reason he developed depression, and explained that he felt guilty for even struggling when he had so much.

“[Depression] is what keeps you in bed, while anxiety makes you feel guilty for being there,” he said.

“I thought, ‘What do I have to be depressed about?’ I’ve been so lucky with my upbringing, I had all the things I wanted. It’s not that I wanted more, but there was something that wasn’t always there… And the more I ignored it, the more it was taking over.”

WATCH BELOW: How cooking helps ease symptoms of anxiety and depression

As his mental health worsened, Middleton said his family grew concerned but he didn’t want them “anywhere near” him. Middleton is the youngest child behind Kate and Pippa Middleton.

“I shut myself off, I didn’t communicate with my family at all,” he said. “But there’s only so long you can hold your breath.”

Prince William’s brother-in-law finally got help in 2017 when he called his doctor, unable to go to work. His doctor referred him to a specialist and he began intensive therapy.

This isn’t the first time Middleton has opened up about his mental health issues.

READ MORE: Prince William, Kate Middleton royal convoy hits, injures 83-year-old woman

In January, Middleton wrote an essay in the Daily Mail about his depression which he called a “cancer of the mind.” He also discussed his Attention Deficient Disorder (ADD), which he was diagnosed with in 2018.

He said that his depression, at times, was so debilitating he could hardly complete daily tasks.

“I barely functioned, stopped talking to my friends, went through the motions of living and working but achieved nothing at all,” he wrote.

“I came very close to shutting my company down. And still my heart was thudding as if it was straining to leap out of my body.”

WATCH BELOW: Lifelong skills to overcome & manage anxiety

Middleton said that depression can be hard to understand in people who seemingly have so much, and live luxurious lives.

“I know I’m richly blessed and live a privileged life. But it did not make me immune to depression,” he wrote. “It is tricky to describe the condition. It is not merely sadness. It is an illness, a cancer of the mind.”

He said he was inspired to speak out after seeking treatment and realizing he has a platform to help others. Middleton credits cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) and his dogs for helping him get through his hard time.

“The stigma attached to mental illness is lessening,” he wrote.

“If I could leave you with just one thought, it would be this: ‘It’s OK not to be OK.’ That is the mantra that gave me the strength to speak out. Having done so here, it feels as if a great weight has been lifted.”

If you or someone you know is in crisis and needs help, resources are available. In case of an emergency, please call 911 for immediate help.

The Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention, Depression Hurts and Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868 all offer ways of getting help if you, or someone you know, may be suffering from mental health issues.

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© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Meghan Markle, Prince Harry split from joint charity with Prince William, Kate Middleton – National

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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have formally parted ways from the charity foundation they shared with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

The Royal Foundation announced on Thursday that Meghan Markle and Prince Harry will form their own charity organization, and Prince William and Kate Middleton will stay on as the foundation’s leads.

“These changes are designed to best complement the work and responsibilities of Their Royal Highnesses as they prepare for their future roles, and to better align their charitable activity with their new households,” the foundation said in a statement.

READ MORE: Prince Harry, Meghan share new photo of baby Archie for Father’s Day

Even though they’re parting ways, the foundation said that both couples will “continue to work together on projects in the future, including on The Foundation’s mental health programme, Heads Together.”

“The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are incredibly proud of what they have achieved together through The Royal Foundation,” the foundation said.

“They are especially proud to have established a charity that has had, and will continue to have, significant long-lasting impact, changing lives for the better.”

WATCH BELOW: Meghan Markle debuts new ring

The Royal Foundation was created by Prince Harry and Prince William in 2009. Middleton joined the foundation after marrying into the Royal Family, as did Markle.

The charity champions for causes including mental health, environmental conservation, youth and social empowerment.

The decision to split charitable efforts comes after Markle and Prince Harry created their own household in March, breaking away from Prince William and Middleton’s headquarters.

READ MORE: Prince or earl? What royal title will Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s son have?

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s primary residence is Frogmore Cottage, and have an office at Buckingham Palace. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have their office at Kensington Palace.

The couples were most recently seen together earlier this month to celebrate the Queen’s birthday at the annual Trooping the Colour parade.

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Kate Middleton makes rare public speech to raise awareness on addiction – National

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Kate Middleton recently spoke out about addiction awareness during a rare public speech.

On Wednesday, the Duchess of Cambridge spoke during an annual gala dinner for Addiction Awareness Week at the Phillips Gallery in London. Dressed in an off-the-shoulder dress by Barbara Casasola, Kate Middleton addressed the crowd, focusing on early intervention.

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, attends the first annual gala dinner in recognition of Addiction Awareness Week. Photo: Getty Images

“In the last few years, I have been focusing on the importance of prevention. How can we all really support the earliest years of life, build foundations and help avoid adversity later on in life?” she said, according to

“I’ve seen over and over again that, sadly, the root cause can so often be traced right back to the very earliest years of someone’s life.”

Middleton added that for some, it is not easy to access help.

“Sadly, for many who are suffering with addiction, they just don’t receive the help they need early enough,” she continued.

“They’ve already reached crisis point before they find the support they need.”

Focus on mental health

The Duchess went solo to the event and was joined by Graham Beech, chief executive of Action on Addiction. She is a patron for the U.K.-based charity, which is focused on helping those living with drug and alcohol addiction.

In 2018, the Duchess opened a new treatment centre for the charity in Wickford, Essex, that was aimed at addiction recovery, Hello magazine reported.

During the year, Middleton also joined a roundtable conversation with staff, health-care professionals and other experts before attending a reception.

READ MORE: PHOTOS — Kate Middleton shows off newly designed garden with Prince William and kids

The recovery centre, which partnered with the University of Bath, helped train addiction counsellors. During that year, she told graduates: “It’s such a positive story for you all.”

And the Duchess is no stranger to mental-health-focused charities. The 37-year-old has several charity interests under her belt, including a large focus on children’s mental health.

“The Duchess of Cambridge is a committed champion of issues related to children’s mental health and emotional well-being. Her Royal Highness has worked to bring wider public attention to the fact that issues facing children today such as addiction, poverty, abuse, neglect, loss and illness of family members can have a long-lasting and traumatic impact if left unsupported,” the official British Royal Family site notes.

“Moreover, academic research has shown conclusively that early childhood trauma will affect mental health long into adulthood, with significant costs to individuals, their families, society and the economy.”

A week of events

Middleton’s solo gala dinner was just days after the Duchess and her family celebrated Queen Elizabeth II‘s ceremonial birthday.

The Duchess was joined by Prince William, their children, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

READ MORE: Prince Louis wears Prince Harry’s childhood outfit during Queen’s birthday

Prior to her speech, Middleton and Prince William made a visit to Deepdale Hall Farm, a sheep farm in northwest England on Tuesday.

The two spoke to local farmers, tried sheep shearing and went to visit fans at a market.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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The feminist significance of Meghan Markle’s post-birth dress – National

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In the early hours of May 6, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry welcomed their firstborn baby son, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor.

Two days later, the proud parents appeared at Windsor Castle with Archie in tow, proudly introducing the sleeping baby to the world.

The Duchess of Sussex wore a white, belted, sleeveless trench coat dress by U.K. designer Grace Wales Bonner, and royal expert Victoria Arbiter says the 37-year-old was making an explicit statement with her attire.

READ MORE: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry reveal their son’s unique name

“(Markle) wasn’t nervous about showing what a post-natal body looks like,” Arbiter told Global News.

“It’s empowering when we see figures like Meghan and Kate not scared to show what a woman’s body looks like after she’s given birth.”

Arbiter believes that Markle made a conscious decision to show off her remaining baby bump in defiance of societal expectations.

“So many people are under the impression that we just (return to) being as thin as a supermodel” after giving birth, said Arbiter.

READ MORE: The royal baby’s name is Archie — here’s what it means

“It’s very much in keeping with Meghan. She’s proud to show who she is. There were no airs and graces, there was no pretence, there was no Hollywood. She was just real and authentic.”

Amanda Briggs-Goode, head of the department for fashion, textiles and knitwear at Nottingham Trent University, agrees.

“I noted one of (Markle’s) buttons wasn’t done up. That’s confident, and (it) says ‘take it or leave it, this is a post-partum body,’” she said.

The belt on Markle’s dress served to further accentuate her still-round belly.

According to Briggs-Goode, fashion is a form of social exchange that communicates immediately who we are and what matters to us.

In picking this dress, the Duchess of Sussex was saying “authenticity and honesty are important to her identity,” said Briggs-Goode.

WATCH: Meghan Markle, Prince Harry reveal unique name of royal baby boy

As for the colour, white is timeless. Arbiter thinks Markle chose it with the history books in mind.

“These photographs are so significant… they will live on for centuries,” Arbiter said.

“By choosing to wear white, I think it was an effort to keep things very neutral, classy and sophisticated with something that will stand the test of time.”

Briggs-Goode echoes this sentiment — the colour white makes for a good photo.

“I think it was orchestrated and designed to ensure that (the Duke and Duchess would) glow in this vividly coloured environment,” she said, referring to the traditional decor of Windsor Castle.

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“It creates a contrast, and white is strongly associated with birth and goodness.”

Choosing to wear a design by Bonner was also a thoughtful decision by the Duchess, according to Arbiter.

“For a photo this significant, the designer would’ve been chosen purposefully… From what I’ve read, her ethos is very in keeping with Meghan’s,” she said.

According to Business of Fashion, Bonner has a similar background to the Duchess. She’s a London native with a Jamaican father and an English mother.

Jamaica is also one of the Commonwealth nations, which makes this a nice nod to the countries around the world that have been sending the Duchess well wishes in anticipation of the baby’s arrival.

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Introducing Archie to the world

Newborn babies in the Royal Family are always presented to the public a few days after being born. However, it’s a tradition that is often criticized by mothers and the larger public alike.

“It would be very difficult,” Arbiter said of what it must be like for a new mom to face public scrutiny mere hours or days after giving birth.

And yet, it rarely seems that way.

For each of her children, a beautiful and seemingly rested Duchess of Cambridge posed for cameras as she exited the hospital less than 12 hours after giving birth.

In fact, Middleton looked so elegant after delivering Princess Charlotte that a Russian conspiracy theory emerged suggesting that the Duchess had not given birth when the palace said she did. Instead, the baby was born days before.

Pro-Kremlin newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda printed the claims.

READ MORE: How did Kate Middleton look so good after giving birth to Princess Charlotte?

Markle waited two days to make her first appearance with Archie, allowing herself a bit more time to rest and prepare.

Arbiter predicts that should the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have more kids, they will follow the same schedule.

“They were able to get to the hospital and back without being seen, which was amazing,” said Arbiter. “I think this will probably be how they proceed in the future.”

If it was difficult to confront the public so quickly, the Duke and Duchess didn’t make that obvious.

Arbiter says this is likely because the parents were genuinely excited to introduce Archie to the world.

“They want to thank the public today (for) the good wishes. The way they do that is by sharing the family photos,” said Arbiter.

These are public figures, and this is a historically significant moment… It kind of comes with the territory.”

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The Duchess of Sussex was beaming with pride when she and her husband introduced Archie for the first time.

“It’s magic,” Markle said of becoming a mom. “I have the two best guys in the world so I am really happy.”

Markle said her son has “the sweetest temperament.”

“He’s really calm… he’s just been the dream so it’s been a special couple of days,” she said.

— With files from Laura Hensley and Patricia Kozicka

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© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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