Despite glimpses of hope for reconciliation within the Royal Family, it seems the rift between Prince Harry and Prince William remains, casting a shadow over the prospect of a harmonious brotherly bond this Christmas.
While the festive season is usually a time that brings families together and although Prince Harry has made some headway with his family after a call to King Charles for his birthday, William reportedly doesn’t “see a way out of the rift that has opened between them”.
In a chat with The Sun, Royal expert Jennie Bond spilled the tea on the chilly relationship between the royal brothers, making it clear that a patch-up isn’t in the cards anytime soon.
“Christmas is all about family. Being together, laughing together, sharing gifts and love,” Bond explained.
“Sometimes it’s the only time in a year that whole families can get together for a proper catch up, so Harry’s absence from the celebrations at Sandringham will be painfully obvious.
“Little Archie and Lilibet should be running around with their many cousins, pulling crackers, opening presents and understanding their place in the family, connecting with their relatives even though their lives are thousands of miles away. But that’s not going to happen.
“I don’t think William will be shedding a tear over this. Deep down, I’m sure he still loves Harry, but I don’t think he can see a way out of the rift that has opened between them.”
Bond revealed that William remains “hurt” and “too angry” to extend forgiveness to his younger brother due to what he perceives as a betrayal of the family. This stems from Harry’s damning statements about the Royal Family which were featured in his memoir Spare and a series of explosive interviews.
“It was Harry who said in an interview that he would always love his brother even though they were on different paths, but there has been no similar declaration from William,” she said.
“I think he is still deeply hurt by Harry and Meghan’s attacks, particularly on Catherine. That is a no go area as far as William is concerned and he is understandably very protective of his wife, who was once regarded by Harry as ‘the sister he never had’.
“There are very few people that any member of the royal family can trust, but they always hope that they can trust one another. It’s the tightest of closed circles.
“But Harry has driven a coach and horses through that sibling trust. He has revealed William’s private thoughts and conversations – or at least Harry’s version of them – and that will be extremely hard to forgive, and impossible to forget.”
The ongoing tension between Harry and the Royal Family stems largely from the bombshell interview Harry and Meghan gave to Oprah Winfrey in March 2021. In the interview, the Sussexes made shocking allegations of racism within the Royal Family and accused some members of not offering support during their struggles. These revelations shook the Monarchy to its core and had a profound impact on relations within the family.
They added further fuel to the fire with a Netflix documentary where they laid bare their grievances which included being unable to contend with relentless media scrutiny and the lack of support from other members of the royal camp.
Although there have been brief moments of public unity at official events, the rift remains largely unresolved.