In what was by far the most explosive revelation in the CBS interview, Markle said that there were “concerns” inside the Palace about how dark her son Archie’s skin would be when he was born. Markle said it was all tied to her learning that Archie wouldn’t receive an official title or the security detail that comes with being a member of the Royal Family.
“All around this same time, we have in tandem the conversation of he won’t be given security, he’s not going to be given a title and also concerns and conversations as how dark his skin might be when he’s born,” Markle said, leaving Oprah visibly stunned.
“That was relayed to me from Harry, that was from conversations that family had with him. It was really hard to see those as compartmentalized conversations,” she added. When asked about the conversation about Archie’s skin tone later in the interview, Harry said he’s “never going to share” details of what took place. Markle also refused to reveal who the conversation involved, but did say it would be quite damaging if she did. (Oprah clarified after the interview that Harry “wanted to make sure that I knew, and if I had an opportunity to share it, that it was not his grandmother, nor his grandfather that were part of those conversations.”)
Markle also revealed that things got so bad during her time in the UK, that she at times felt suicidal. “Look, I was really ashamed to have to say it at the time and ashamed to have to admit it to Harry especially, because I know how much loss he’s suffered,” she said. “But I knew that if I didn’t say that I would do it … and I just didn’t—I just didn’t want to be alive anymore. And that was a very clear and real and frightening constant thought.”
She explained that despite her pleas for help, the Palace largely ignored her. “I remember how [Harry] just cradled me. I went to the institution,” Markle said. “And I said that I needed to go somewhere to get help. And I said that I’d never felt this way before. I need to go somewhere. And I was told that I couldn’t, because it wouldn’t be good for the institution.”
The New York Times reports that the two-hour interview brought in an impressive 17.1 million viewers on Sunday. Additionally, the number of viewers continued to climb as the show continued, Nielsen reports, from 16.9 million in the first hour to a peak of 17.3 million in the second. While these are undoubtedly huge numbers, the interview failed to reach the 22 million who viewed another much-talked about interview with Stormy Daniels in 2018. Despite that, it’s clear there was significant anticipation surrounding the interview, which has since dominated discussion on social media.
As you might expect, Twitter was ablaze throughout the interview, especially after Markle discussed the fear about Archie’s skin color. Check out some of the reactions below.