Can Meghan Markle Live? A ‘Megxit’ Explainer

The Valley-born duchess and her husband Harry are stepping back from the British royal family and it sure has people worked up

It’s been five days since the world according to tabloids stopped turning. On January 8, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry (just Harry) announced they would step down as senior members of the British royal family. In these past five days, we’ve learned some things (like that Piers Morgan has a lot of opinions regarding Markle), but there is still a lot to unpack.

The people around me keep talking about Megxit. What is that?

Megxit is a name coined by The Sun about the time—one week ago—that Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, and her husband Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, said they would step down as “senior” royals.

It’s a play on Brexit, aka Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union, aka a thing that will impact very many more lives than Markle and Harry’s withdrawal from the royal family.

Can royal people just do that?

Not sure. In their announcement, they said they were going to be “financially independent,” meaning they won’t take any money from taxpayers, yet they will continue to support the queen. The couple will split their time between the UK and North America.

Is the queen pissed?

Possibly. It’s been reported that the queen didn’t know this was coming.

“We understand their desire to take a different approach, but these are complicated issues that will take time to work through,” the queen’s statement reads.

Monarchies are weird, but people seem to think this is weirder. 

It’s been a long time coming. First, Markle and Harry moved out of Kensington Palace and established their own Instagram account as part of setting up their own court. The couple also sued several British tabloids in 2019 for their coverage of Markle, who has been open about her struggles with the onslaught of attention.

“When I first met my now-husband, my friends were really happy because I was so happy, but my British friends said to me, ‘I’m sure he’s great, but you shouldn’t don’t do because the British tabloids will destroy your life,’” she said in an interview.


What else are they up to?

Prince Harry and Markle applied for a copyright stamp, including the “Sussex Royal” name and their joint charity, the Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. The applied in June and it was approved in December, just weeks before they made their announcement.

I heard something about Piers Morgan. What does he have to do with all this?

Oh, god. He tweeted this: “The Queen must FIRE Their Royal Hustlers: Deluded Meghan and Harry should be stripped of their titles before this pair of grasping, selfish, scheming Kardashian-wannabes bring down the Monarchy.”

Morgan and Markle were also apparently “friends” until she “ghosted” him after she met Prince Harry. This led Morgan to calling Markle a “slight social climber.”

Oh, wow.

Yeah, and Morgan isn’t the only one with an opinion. President Donald Trump has one too.

“I think it’s sad,” Trump said during a Fox News interview. “[Queen Elizabeth II] is a great woman. She’s never made a mistake…She’s had, like, a flawless time.”

Will Markle go back to acting? She was on that show Suits.

Not sure. There was a time when Princess Grace of Monaco tried to be an actress after becoming royalty, but people weren’t into it.

“The return to acting did not set well with the public,” Princess Grace said at the time. “They thought it was not in keeping with my place as a princess.”

So it’s unclear if Markle will return to on-screen acting, but several outlets are reporting that she’s inked a deal to do voice-over work for Disney. As for Harry, it was reported last April that he’d be producing Oprah’s mental-health series on Apple TV+. It’s set to air this year.

Where will they live?

Sources say they have their eyes on Canada. They like Los Angeles, but not while Trump is in charge.

Are there any other royals who are part time?

Yes. Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie, daughters of Prince Andrew (who’s got his own scandal brewing) and his ex-wife Sarah “Fergie” Ferguson, work outside of royal duties. Princess Beatrice has worked in finance and consulting and Princess Eugenie is a director of an art gallery.

What’s next?

The queen has apparently called a family meeting today. According to reports, “the queen will be joined by Harry; his father, Charles, Prince of Wales; and his older brother, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge. Meghan, who is currently in Canada, is expected to join the meeting by phone,” NPR writes.

“The goal of the meeting is to agree on next steps for the couple. It follows days of discussions at Buckingham Palace and consultations between palace officials and members of the British and Canadian governments about the couple’s options.”

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