The Real Reason Kate Middleton’s Approval of Meghan Markle Was So Important to Prince Harry

In order for Prince Harry to marry Meghan Markle, Queen Elizabeth had to give her written consent. While her support was obviously important, it was Kate Middleton’s approval that Harry was particularly looking for. Luckily, every royal family member seems to have more than willingly welcomed the new Duchess of Sussex into the family — with Middleton at the top of the list.

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, and Kate Middleton

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, and Kate Middleton | Chris Jackson/WPA Pool/Getty Images

Why Harry wanted Middleton’s approval

Middleton has always played an important role in Harry’s life, so he clearly takes her opinions seriously. “Harry and Kate are very close, she’s been like a mentor to him and he wanted her seal of approval,” a source told royal expert Katie Nicholl. “Kate is different to Meghan in many ways, but she has made great strides to help Meghan settle in.”

Harry’s been close with Middleton for quite some time. After all, before she became the Duchess of Cambridge in 2011, she’d already been dating his brother, Prince William, since 2003.

According to a 2017 Newsweek feature on Harry, Middleton has “helped fill” the gap that was left after his mother, Princess Diana, died in a tragic car accident in 1997. “When she and William got engaged, Harry called her the big sister he never had,” the piece revealed. “He often pops into their apartment at Kensington Palace, where she cooks him a meal — roast chicken is reportedly a particular favorite.”

How Middleton and Markle met

The first time Middleton and Markle met each other was reportedly in November 2016. This was four months after Harry began dating Markle, so they had time to prove just how serious they were about each other. According to Harper’s Bazaar, “When Meghan went to see Harry again in January, she reportedly gifted Kate with a journal ahead of her 35th birthday.”

In March 2017, Harry even brought Markle along for a lunch with William and Middleton in Norfolk. “It was the first time they all sat down and had lunch together, and Meghan and Kate were able to properly get to know each other,” an insider told Us Weekly.

Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle

Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle | Clive Mason/Getty Images

They’ve since formed a close friendship

Middleton and Markle seem to have formed a close friendship, so it’s safe to say the Duchess of Cambridge approves. When Harry and Markle announced their engagement in November 2017, Middleton expressed her excitement.

“William and I are absolutely thrilled,” she told reporters. “It’s such exciting news. It’s a really happy time for any couple and we wish them all the best and hope they enjoy this happy moment.”

During their engagement interview, Markle couldn’t even help but rave about Middleton, who she said has been “absolutely amazing.”

Middleton has become a mentor for Markle

Not only does Harry look up to middleton, but now Markle does, too. Even before she officially became a duchess, Markle had been receiving tons of guidance from Middleton as a royal mentor. A source told Entertainment Tonight while Markle and Harry were still engaged, “[Middleton] has also been advising [Markle] about royal fashion, what protocol is expected, and how she may have to adapt in the future.”

“She has provided Meghan with names of some of the favorite U.K. go-to designers on everything from dresses, coats, and the all-important British hat.” they added. By the looks of Markle’s fabulous wardrobe and etiquette so far, Middleton could be to thank for her seemingly effortless transition into royalty.