There was racism regarding the former actress’ mixed-race background. There was prejudice surrounding her previous divorce. Of particular concern to the Brits, there is the fact she is American (heaven forbid).
The backlash was so swift and jarring, the Prince himself was forced to issue a statement defending his lover and plead with the media to let her be.
But – as journalist Anna Byrne at the Herald Sun has pointed out – the turmoil Meghan, 36, faced wanes in comparison to the ordeal suffered by Mette-Marit, the Crown Princess of Norway.
Certainly, the Norwegian Monarchy is not as powerful as the British Monarchy.
Its duties are ceremonial as opposed to ruling, The Washington Post reports, but there is still a hereditary line to the throne and Mette-Marit is married to the country’s future king, Haakon Magnus, Crown Prince of Norway.
She wasn’t the public’s number-one choice, as Byrne describes in a recent Instagram post:
“As an ex-waitress and single mother with involvement in Oslo’s drug circles, the princess bride was a hard sell to the Norwegian public in the lead-up to her wedding to Prince Haakon.”
“Mette-Marit was even forced to endure a press conference where she tearfully apologised for her past.”
Mette-Marit met the prince at a garden party at a music festival and, when they announced their engagement in December, 2000, the prince said they’d been dating for a year.
A Hello Magazine profile at the time said Mette-Marit many people were “questioning the prince’s choice of partner”.
“Suddenly Mette-Marit, who was known to have moved in circles where drugs were readily available, and who had a three-year-old son, Marius, by a man convicted of drug possession, found her past under fierce scrutiny.
“And while nearly half of all Norwegian children are born out of wedlock and unmarried cohabitation is rapidly becoming the norm, many questioned the crown prince’s choice of partner.”
Meghan Markle had to go to ‘kidnapping training’ and we need to talk about it. Post continues below.
Though she went on to attain her master’s degree and have two additional children with Haakon Magnus, the shadow of Mette-Marit’s past, that unfairly dark stain, will not quite leave her.
For example, in 2012, People reported on the success of her higher education but put it down to the Princess playing “catch up”.
“Mette-Marit Tjessem Høiby had little higher education when she met and later married Norway’s Crown Prince Haakon. The former waitress and single mother from Kristiansand has been catching up ever since.”
Isn’t it time we left our soon-to-be-royals alone?