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Dear Harry, I hope you find your “village”

For someone who is not a royalist, I have been following the Royal family more than I would care to admit. Harry in particular. I recall vividly how way before Megxit, he was considered the “playboy prince” by tabloids, and was often seen on the pages of the Closer and Heat magazines that I hoarded at the time. Far more than his brother William who I guess was always on his “heir behaviour”. I also remember the news coverage of the swastika costume, and quite a few other salacious headlines attached to him. I guess I was intrigued.

I have also followed the brouhaha that Megxit gave rise to. In fact, can we talk about Megxit? About why it was her name that had to be in it? Or how some are so desperate to infantilise Harry and make him out to be an unintelligent weakling while characterising Meghan as the bullying control freak trying to abuse her husband and isolate him from his family? Forgetting that the issues may have been exacerbated when she came on the scene, but they preceded her. Harry’s documented history of depression precedes Meghan! Maybe we should talk about the misogyny therein and why it is that in such cases, there always has to be a Jezebel?

So many have been bothered by a royal airing out his dirty laundry because it goes against their rose-tinted perception of the”prim and proper” monarchy. Clearly, Prince Andrew’s royal sexcapades told them nothing. Many have stated that all of this should have been handled behind closed doors. Can we acknowledge how we got here in the first place? Why are people ignoring that he allegedly tried to do this privately? He allegedly asked for his family to support and protect him by putting out statements to clear up and refute the bad press which he claims are falshoods, and they refused. Instead, he claims they fueled it all. Did they not care because it was far easier to throw Harry and Meghan under the bus than it was to hold themselves accountable for anything? Or did they simply underestimate him, assuming it wouldn’t go this far?

For years many were angered by the swastika costume and rightfully so too. Now we know according to Harry, who was allegedly behind the idea, yet it was Harry who took all the heat. Maybe the family doesn’t care and they believe his feelings are inconsequential because he is the “spare” and not their heir. Whilst Harry maintains he wants to belong to a family and not just an institution, it appears preserving the institution is paramount over and above everything else. That would be a bitter pill for anyone to swallow, talk less of someone who believes he has been scrutinised and vilified by the media his entire life, at the expense of his family.

There is an African proverb that states: “The child who is not embraced by the village will burn it down to feel its warmth.” Not only did “the village” fail to embrace him, they neglected to build a fence around him to protect him, leaving him vulnerable and exposed. When you are in a vulnerable position, you become an easy target for exploitation. I just hope that in his desperate quest for “warmth”, he doesn’t find himself severely burnt.

Though many are saying enough already and are quick to pathologise him by weaponising his open disclosures of depression and mental health issues, I find that Africans and other groups of people who have been racialised as ‘ethnic minorities’ are more likely to empathise with him. It is not just because Meghan is mixed race. Perhaps it is also because more than most, we know what it feels like for the preservation of the institutional monarchy (a legacy of Britain’s imperialist domination and a symbol of its desire for supremacy), to override and erode our humanity and render us disposable.

I hope he finds healing. We always think we have time and it is often said that “time heals”. The older I get, the more I realise that healing is intentional. It is a choice. And it doesn’t always mean reconciliation. Sometimes the choice is self-preservation. Because there can be no reconciliation without truth, transparency, and accountability. I hope he finds the parts of himself that he feels he lost in all of this. I hope he finds joy. I hope he finds peace. I hope he finds good people. I hope he finds wise people. I hope he finds emotionally intelligent and empathetic people. I hope he finds his “village”.

blue and brown welcome to the beach signage

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