Has Thomas Markle Sr. Become the Royal Family’s Biggest Headache?

It’s no secret Meghan Markle’s family has been a constant source of drama since she and Prince Harry first made their relationship public. And while estranged half-sister Samantha Grant usually steals most of the headlines, Markle’s father, Thomas Markle Sr., has increasingly become a fly in the ointment.

That fly has reportedly now become a serious concern to Kensington Palace.

According to the Daily Mirror, royal family aids have held at least three emergency meetings to discuss how to handle Thomas Markle Sr. and his growing need to speak ill of the Duchess of Sussex to the British press. The royal family has mostly ignored negative comments which have come from Markle’s estranged family. (Plus, Markle herself has kept mum on the subject.) But Markle Sr.’s recent outburst is so severe Queen Elizabeth may even get involved, the Mirror says.

Meghan Markle and Queen Elizabeth

Meghan Markle and Queen Elizabeth | Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty Images

What exactly did Thomas Markle Sr. say?

Markle Sr. came undone in a recent Sunday interview with the Mail. In the lengthy account, Markle Sr. claims his daughter cut him off after staged paparazzi pictures of him surfaced ahead of the royal wedding. (Markle’s spotlight-hungry sister, Samantha Grant, later claimed the staged pictures were her idea.) The duchess’s father goes on to accuse her of forgetting where she came from and that she “became the woman that she is today thanks to everything I did for her.” He adds “perhaps it would be easier for Meghan if I died. Everybody would be filled with sympathy for her.”

Perhaps the most inflammatory piece of the interview occurred when he mentioned Prince Harry’s late mother. “(The royal family) have Meghan treating her father in a way that Harry’s mother, Princess Diana, would have loathed. That’s not what Diana stood for,” he says.

What will the royal family do?

A source tells the Daily Mirror there are three options the royal family are considering for dealing with Markle Sr.’s incessant need to bash his daughter in the press. “Meghan could contact her father straight away and appeal to him directly to ask him to stop hurting her,” the source says, “but right now she’s decided to cut him off. There is a possibility an ­intermediary could meet with him and appeal to him to stop making such hurtful ­statements.” The last option is to reportedly cut Markle Sr. off permanently. But with his need to talk to the press becoming more severe, it appears likely the royal family may not walk away quietly.

Britain's Prince Harry (R) and his fiancee US actress Meghan Markle, arrive to attend a reception with delegates from the Commonwealth Youth Forum

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry | Yui Mok/AFP/Getty Images

How is Markle herself handling all of this?

The same source tells the Daily Mirror Meghan Markle is “deeply hurt by what is happening and everything is being done behind the scenes to make sure her welfare is at the top of the agenda.” Royal family members, namely sister-in-law Kate Middleton, have reportedly made a huge effort to support Markle while her father and half-siblings have aimed to embarrass her. After the interview Markle Sr. gave in the Mail, speculation has begun swirling that Queen Elizabeth may step in on the duchess’s behalf — although it isn’t readily clear what exactly the queen will do in that situation. Stay tuned …

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