‘Finding Freedom’, by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand, reports that Harry took offence when William offered him some advice about Meghan in the early days of their relationship. Meghan and William had only met a “handful of times” when he came to Harry to express his reservations. He reportedly told Harry three years ago: “Don’t feel like you need to rush this. Take as much time as you need to get to know this girl.”
It was the phrase “this girl” that annoyed Harry so much, because he felt it was snobbish, which was “anathema to his approach to the world”.
A source told the authors: “Harry was p****d off. P****d off that his brother would ask such a thing.
“Some felt it was an overreaction. But then this totally sums them up as people ‒ William, the calm and rational one, and Harry, who can’t help but take things far too personally.”
However, another friend insisted that: “Harry could see through William’s words. He was being a snob.”
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This is when the rift between the brothers started to grow.
However, William’s words eerily mirror Princess Anne’s comments about Diana and Sarah Ferguson, affectionately known as Fergie.
Diana and Fergie burst onto the scene in the Eighties and took the world by storm, but Anne was not a big fan.
She reportedly used to call them “those girls” in a rather scathing way behind their backs.
It is perhaps reasonable therefore to interpret William’s words as snobbish, given how closely they resemble Anne’s deliberate snub.
On the other hand, William and Harry have always been close and it is also possible that he was merely looking out for his brother ‒ the Duke of Cambridge had not met Meghan many times and just wanted the best for Harry.
One source told the ‘Finding Freedom’ authors: “After all, these are two brothers who have spent their whole lives with people trying to take advantage of them.
“They’ve both developed a radar to detect that type of person, but as William didn’t know a whole lot about Meghan, he just wanted to make sure Harry wasn’t blindsided by lust.”
Therefore, in a more charitable interpretation of William’s actions, he was just trying to make sure that Meghan, who he did not know, had the right intentions.
However, Harry felt like he no longer needed looking after and that there was a fine line between caring and condescending.
William was concerned that Harry had seemed to isolate himself from many of their old friends, although one source said: “Perhaps he just didn’t want to accept that Harry had grown up and become his own man.”
That said, in addition to being an older brother to Harry, William is also the future King and it is therefore his job to assess the risk of any newcomers into the Firm.
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What’s more, William will have plenty of advisers and staff, some of whom were “whispering words of alarm” about Meghan into his ear.
William reportedly told an aide that he was “hurt” that Harry took his comment the wrong way.
One family friend said: “Harry has a heart of gold, but he is incredibly sensitive.”