Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle reveals she suffered a miscarriage

'I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child, that I was losing my second'

Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

The Duchess of Sussex revealed that she suffered a miscarriage this year.

Writing of her "unbearable grief" in The New York Times, Meghan describes how she "felt a short, sharp cramp" on a July morning while she was caring for her son Archie.

The duchess, 39, said she went to hospital with Prince Harry and watched his "heart break" as the news was delivered.

She describes how tragedy struck on a “morning that began as ordinarily as any other day" in the company of her son.

"After changing his diaper, I felt a sharp cramp. I dropped to the floor with him in my arms, humming a lullaby to keep us both calm, the cheerful tune a stark contrast to my sense that something was not right," she said.

"I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child, that I was losing my second.

"Hours later, I lay in a hospital bed, holding my husband's hand. I felt the clamminess of his palm and kissed his knuckles, wet from both our tears. Staring at the cold white walls, my eyes glazed over. I tried to imagine how we'd heal."

The duchess said she was sharing her story to help break the silence around an all-too-common tragedy.

She said conversations around miscarriages remained a "taboo, riddled with (unwarranted) shame, and perpetuating a cycle of solitary mourning".

She urged people to commit to asking each other "Are you OK?" over Thanksgiving in the US.

The intimate details shared in the article are strikingly at odds with the usual policy of senior members of the British royal family, who reveal almost nothing about their personal lives.

FILE - Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex arrive at the annual Endeavour Fund Awards in London on March 5, 2020. The Duchess of Sussex has revealed that she had a miscarriage in July. Meghan described the experience in an opinion piece in the New York Times on Wednesday. She wrote: "I knew, as I clutched my firstborn child, that I was losing my second." The former Meghan Markle and husband Prince Harry have a son, Archie, born in 2019. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, File)

However, Zara Tindall, Princess Anne's daughter, has previously spoken about suffering two miscarriages. Sophie, Countess of Wessex, lost a baby in 2001.

Among the other European royals to suffer a miscarriage is Queen Sonja of Norway who revealed in a 2016 documentary she lost her first child in 1970.

The duke and duchess stepped back from royal duties and moved to California this year.

They have been trying to forge a new role for themselves outside the constraints of life in Britain's strictly codified royal family and the accompanying media attention.

The couple formally resigned from royal duties in April but had lived in Canada in the months prior.

They moved to the US at the end of March as the coronavirus pandemic began to take hold.

Since quitting as senior working royals, the duo signed an exclusive deal with streaming giant Netflix for an undisclosed fee earlier this year.

The duchess is also involved in an ongoing legal dispute with British newspaper publisher Associated Newspapers for invasion of privacy and copyright infringement.

The trial was scheduled to start early next year, but the judge presiding over the case granted a nine-month delay.

The duchess's lawyers sought the adjournment on "a confidential ground".