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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Celebrate New Pregnancy After a Difficult Journey

On February 14, 2021, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry, age 36, and Meghan Markle, age 39, announced they are expecting the birth of their second child. The couple welcomed their son, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, in May 2019 and are, according to an official spokesperson, overjoyed for him to become a big brother.

March 22, 2021
Nora Tomer

On February 14, 2021, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry, age 36, and Meghan Markle, age 39, announced they are expecting the birth of their second child. The couple welcomed their son, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, in May 2019 and are, according to an official spokesperson, overjoyed for him to become a big brother. The announcement comes in the wake of a multitude of busy months for the couple, particularly for Markle who spoke candidly about her fertility struggles this past November. 

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are shown from the waist up walking arm in arm on Christmas day 2017. Markle wears a beige overcoat with a brown hat while Harry wears a grey overcoat, white dress shirt, and blue tie. Kate Middleton stands to Markle's left.
Megan Markle and Prince Harry were married in 2018 before removing themselves from royal life in 2020.

Eventful Months

The Duke and Duchess are no strangers to the limelight, having been in and out of the news frequently since stepping away from the royal family in 2020. The pair, along with baby Archie, moved to Montecito, California and have strived to become financially independent, as well as work on the development of their non-profit, Archewell. Only recently did it become official that the couple are released from all of their previous royal duties on a permanent basis and have been stripped of many of their titles and honors. 

However, outside of any royal announcements, Markle alone has made headlines. On February 11th, it was announced that the Duchess won her long battle in court against the UK-based Associated Newspapers Limited after the publication of private documents between the Duchess and her estranged father.  

More notable, perhaps, is Markle’s recent essay in which she spoke out about her previous pregnancy, which tragically ended in miscarriage. In her article, Markle addresses the silence surrounding this traumatic yet common experience. 

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are shown from the waist up while holding hands and walking down the street.  They are both smiling and looking away from the camera in a candid shot.
In her New York Times article, Markle mentioned how Prince Harry supported her throughout her hospital stay.

Markle's Fertility Journey

In July 2020, Markle experienced a miscarriage. In a New York Times piece about the event, she wrote, “I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child, that I was losing my second.” At the time, Markle was 38 years old. Women over the age of 35 in advanced maternal pregnancies are more likely to undergo a miscarriage or other complications, such as:

  • Premature delivery
  • Low birth weight
  • Higher chance of C-section
  • High blood pressure, potentially leading to preeclampsia
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Difficult labor

Even conception has the potential to be difficult for women over 35. During her first pregnancy, Markle was already 37, leading to speculation that she may have used IVF. But, this has never been confirmed for her previous or current pregnancy. However, the number of women becoming pregnant at or above age 35 has been steadily increasing over the years. Many women have cited the advantages of having greater financial stability and better resources to support a child by waiting to become pregnant. Still, it is important to note that expectant mothers of any age can experience a miscarriage considering the fact that 10-20% of all known pregnancies result in miscarriage.

As Markle recovered in the hospital, she considered the heavy and silent burden that a miscarriage can be. “Losing a child means carrying an almost unbearable grief, experienced by many but talked about by few… Yet despite the staggering commonality of this pain, the conversation remains taboo, riddled with (unwarranted) shame, and perpetuating a cycle of solitary mourning,” she said. This commentary echoes the thoughts of other celebrities, such as Chrissy Teigen who also shared her hardship with miscarriage this past fall

Both women faced considerable backlash from the public and the press, criticizing them for sharing stories some viewed as too intimate. Others rushed to their defense, including actress Jameela Jamil, a friend of Markle’s, who tweeted, “When you criticize Meghan for discussing miscarriage, because it’s “too personal” for her to share, you’re enabling the culture of silence around the issue that keeps so many people in a state of shame/guilt/loneliness/misinformation. People NEED to know they aren’t alone in this.”

The Duchess went on to write about how 2020 was a year of suffering for many, mentioning the impact of COVID-19 as well as the murders of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd. Throughout these events, Markle noted, it is essential to ask yourself the simple question, “Are you OK?” Markle, having been asked this question herself by a South African reporter following the birth of her first child, has experienced the benefits of this question firsthand. 

Many women have spoken out following Markle’s essay, thanking her for addressing this underrepresented issue. 

Meghan Markle stands alone at a podium with a microphone. She is wearing a navy blue gown and has her hair down. She smiles at an unseen crowd.
Markle’s willingness to discuss such a difficult experience has made her an icon for people facing similar tribulations worldwide.

Blue or Pink?

Following her emotional essay, it is safe to assume that both Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are over the moon when it comes to their upcoming bundle of joy. While there have been no official announcements regarding a due date or the baby’s gender, that hasn’t stopped fans from speculating. 

Tabloids and royal fanatics alike noted that Markle was recently spotted wearing a $1500 pink sapphire cocktail ring. Could this be a subtle signal that a baby girl is on the way? Who knows! One way or another, it is clear that this baby will be celebrated by the couple as well as their friends and family.

The Duke and Duchess’s experience shows that even after the difficulty of a miscarriage, there is light just around the corner. Hopefully, more news about Archie’s little sibling is soon to follow and we can look forward to a birth announcement in the near future. 

If you or a loved one are struggling with miscarriage, consider consulting your doctor as well mental health professionals. They will be able to provide you with the expertise and resources needed to begin your recovery journey. And, just like the Duchess suggests, remember to check in within yourself and keep asking, “Are you OK?”

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