Let it be remembered: Meghan Markle always recognized the power of a woman using her voice. As the world recovers from the Duchess of Sussex’s revelatory interview with Oprah Winfrey on March 7, there feels like no better time to revisit powerful comments she made during one of her first royal events with Prince Harry, Kate Middleton, and Prince William in 2018 at the Royal Foundation Forum.
Just a few months before the royal wedding, Meghan used her platform as the future Duchess of Sussex to encourage people to listen to women. Little did we know, years later, she would need to trust those instincts in a new way. “I hear a lot of people speaking about girls’ empowerment and women’s empowerment — you will hear people saying they are helping women find their voices,” she said three years ago. “I fundamentally disagree with that because women don’t need to find their voices, they need to be empowered to use it and people need to be urged to listen.”
This desire to find and use one’s voice is strikingly similar to sentiments Meghan expressed in her Oprah interview. Although she entered the royal family with high hopes she admitted to feeling “silenced” without protection from the malicious British press. Meghan’s friends and family weren’t allowed to comment when rumors spread about her. She was told to “lay low” by the institution.
She compared her experience as a member of the royal family to the story of Ariel from The Little Mermaid. “Oh my God she falls in love with the prince and because of that she loses her voice,” she recalled. “But in the end she gets her voice back.” Clearly, Meghan too was able to reclaim her voice and her story by stepping away from palace life. Oprah asked at the end of their chat, “So your story with the prince does have a happy ending?” Meghan replied, “It does. Greater than any fairytale you’ve ever read.”