Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, gave her second interview in recent months to friend Bryony Gordon for The Daily Telegraph during her visit to Luminary Bakery's second branch, which opened this week in London.
The duchess spoke with, and comforted, several of the women working at the bakery, and Gordon shared her words. The bakery helps empower women who have escaped abusive relationships and dangerous situations, or are disadvantaged in other ways, by offering them training and employment.
One of the women, Giselle, shared her story with Meghan, who asked, “When was the first moment you thought, ‘This is going to change me, on the inside? When you realised that this was not just about learning to bake, that there was another element to it?’”
“It was the moment when the girls around me told me that it was okay for me to be hurt,” Giselle replied. “That it was okay for me to show them that I was hurt, and that I was struggling.”
The duchess expanded on the idea of sharing one’s hurt, and becoming vulnerable when the topic of "instant fixes" came up at the bakery. “We get into this habit of wanting things done immediately nowadays,” Meghan said. “There’s a culture of instant gratification, of the instant fix. But we aren’t mechanical objects that need to be fixed. You’re a wounded creature that needs to be healed, and that takes time.”
It's an unusual step for a royal to be talking directly to the press, and giving a one-on-one interview, even if it is off-the-cuff at an event, could be seen as a breach of royal protocol. The reason Meghan broke protocol this time was likely due to her passion for the Luminary Bakery, which the duchess featured in the September British Vogue issue she guest-edited.
Gordon shared a sweet story about how she and the duchess have developed a friendship after meeting over a year ago, writing, “I first met Meghan Markle 18 months ago, shortly before she married Prince Harry. We went for lunch at a restaurant in London, sitting in a corner where she went unnoticed and undisturbed. She ate monkfish, offering me some when I expressed my food envy, and we discussed some of our shared passions: mental health, running, yoga.”
Both Meghan and her husband, Prince Harry, participated in the documentary Harry & Meghan: An African Journey, which aired on ABC in October, in which she confessed the stress of royal life was challenging.
“Any woman, especially when they’re pregnant, you’re really vulnerable, and so that was made really challenging,” Meghan said. “And then when you have a newborn, you know. And especially as a woman, it’s a lot.”
Prince William and Kate Middleton, however, have a strict rule to never give one-on-one interviews, the Queen has never given one and Prince Charles has only done so on rare occasions, according to The Daily Beast.