The Royal Rules and Traditions Meghan Markle Has Broken During Her Pregnancy

Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, is nearing the end of her first pregnancy. She and Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex, are expecting Baby Sussex to arrive in late April. Keep reading to see which royal rules and traditions Markle’s broken during her pregnancy.

Having a baby shower

Traditionally, members of the royal family don’t have high profile baby showers. If they do, they are low key affairs away from prying eyes. Baby showers in general are more of an American tradition.

But Markle had a baby shower with her friends last month in New York City complete with a harpist, flower arrangements, and baby-themed cookies.

Her celebrity friends showed up, including tennis player Serena Williams, actress Abigail Spencer, makeup artist Daniel Martin who was responsible for Markle’s wedding day beauty look, and more.

Traveling overseas

Obviously Markle had to travel by plane to attend her baby shower in New York City. This is another rule she broke because pregnant women in the royal family aren’t supposed to travel. She’s also traveled during a royal tour in Oct. 2018 with Prince Harry after they announced Markle was expecting.

Markle’s outfits

There are very specific fashion rules royals must follow on official outings. Markle recently broke one of them by wearing a Reiss dress that fell above the knee.

British singer Annie Lennox, British model Adwoa Aboah, former Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, British journalist Anne McElvoy, Camfed Regional Director Zimbabwe's Angeline Murimirwa and British campaigner Chrisann Jarrett
Annie Lennox, Adwoa Aboah, Julia Gillard, Meghan Markle, Anne McElvoy, Angeline Murimirwa, Chrisann Jarrett | Daniel Leal-Olivas – WPA Pool/Getty Images

Per royal protocol, dresses and skirts are supposed to be at or below the knee. Markle stuck to the rule of having her shoulders covered by wearing a blazer with the black-and-white printed dress. And they are also always supposed to wear pantyhose which Markle often doesn’t wear.

Her birth plan

There are a number of reported birth plans Markle may follow. The first involves breaking the royal tradition started by Princess Diana of giving birth in the Lindo Wing of St. Mary’s Hospital in London. Markle may deliver Baby Sussex outside of London, closer to her and Prince Harry’s home in Windsor, Frogmore Cottage. If they go this route, The Princess Margaret Hospital is a six-minute drive from the castle.

Another one of Markle’s potential birth plans is to have a home birth. Markle’s already hired a doula to help her during her pregnancy and after. The doula has visited her home on multiple occasions.

Lindo Wing photo call

If Markle and Prince Harry choose to go have their baby outside of London at St. Mary’s Hospital or at home, there will be no picture of them standing on the steps of the Lindo Wing with their new baby.

Princess Diana broke with the royal tradition of giving birth at home by delivering both Prince William and Prince Harry in the Lindo Wing. She and Prince Charles followed both births with the now customary photo of the parents with their new baby. As did Kate Middleton and Prince William following the births of their three children.

Prince William, Kate Middleton, and Prince Louis
Prince William, Kate Middleton, and Prince Louis | Samir Hussein/WireImage

That means Markle and Prince Harry would skip the photo session people literally sit in front of their TVs and wait for after a royal birth. They’re a private couple who like to do things their own way so their approach to their first baby’s birth may surprise royal watchers.