As Meghan Markle prepares to marry Prince Harry and take on the role of Duchess of Sussex in May, there is one woman who has been in similar shoes that can help guide her along the way: Kate Middleton.
Middleton, Markle’s future sister-in-law and wife to Prince William, has been helping Markle learn what it takes to be a Duchess, People reports. “I’m sure Kate will do all she can to help Meghan,” a source in Middleton’s hometown of Bucklebury told the publication. “She had audiences with Queen Elizabeth quite often and was taught to behave like a future Queen.”
While Markle and Middleton haven’t made a lot of public appearances together, except for the inaugural Royal Foundation Forum in London last week, it seems that the two have created a new friendship that is sure to last. Here's everything we know about their friendship so far.
They met before Meghan was engaged
Even before her official engagement, Markle and Middleton met each other in January 2017, when Prince Harry introduced her to his family. Vanity Fair reports that Markle met Prince William, Kate and their daughter Charlotte for Middleton's birthday. The former actress reportedly gifted Middleton a dream journal to commemorate her 35th birthday.
Their first lunch together took place last spring
In March 2017, Harry brought Meghan to Norfolk to spend the day with William and Kate, according to Us Weekly. “It was the first time they all sat down and had lunch together, and Meghan and Kate were able to properly get to know each other,” said an insider close to Markle.
Meghan talked about Kate in her first interview after her engagement.
On November 27, 2017, Markle and Harry sat down for their first televised interview together as an engaged couple. They briefly talked about meeting with Prince William and Middleton various times earlier in the year, with Markle adding that the Duchess has “been absolutely amazing.”
The following day, Middleton talked to reporters on her way to an event in London saying, “William and I are absolutely thrilled” about the engagement.
They spent the holidays together
In December 2017, US Weekly revealed that Prince Harry and Markle were invited to stay with Prince William and Kate at their Anmer Hall home in Norfolk, England, during the holidays, and that the couples would be traveling back and forth together to various events. Markle also reportedly stayed home with the Duchess on Boxing Day due to her pregnancy.
On Christmas Day, the two couples were spotted together attending church service with the Queen. It was the first time ever that the two couples were photographed together. Middleton and Markle were spotted walking down together with each of the princes on their other side.
They see each other quite often
US Weekly reported on February 21 that Kate and Markle have met with each other many times since, thanks to them living just a short walk away. The two reportedly often meet for tea where they each share advice to one another. According to US Weekly, Markle has shared some healthy eating tips with the Duchess to help her during her pregnancy. The site also reports that the pair has "firmly established a wonderful friendship," according to source close to the Duchess of Cambridge.
They will work together more after the wedding
Last Wednesday, Middleton and Markle both spoke at the Royal Foundation Forum where they talked about their roles in the program and what they hope it will grow into in the future. Markle will officially be joining the program as a patron once she is married to the prince in May.
Susan Constantine, a human behavioural expert, analysed Middleton and Markle's body language during their interactions at the forum and explained to GoodHousekeeping.com that it's "obvious that [Markle] looks up to Kate." Expert Patti Wood noted that a particular moment in which Markle looked over at Kate "indicates that Meghan doesn't only have a relationship with Harry, but also with Kate and William."
Indeed, Us Weekly reports that the Suits star commends the duchess' ability to balance philanthropy and motherhood. “She really admires how Kate has carved out her own space when it comes to humanitarian work alongside being an amazing mother,” an insider close to Meghan told the site.
Via Harper's Bazaar US