There’s a narcissist in every fairytale
Harry and Meghan’s new self-funded docu-series is about to drop on Netflix, and I’m ready for it. There are two kinds of people in this world — those who want to keep power in place and those who find power reprehensible and wish to do something about it.
For full disclosure, I’ve always been a royal watcher, and I came by it because my mom admired Queen Elizabeth. When I say this, I want to be clear; my mom, a traditionally Christian-minded woman, has probably never read a tabloid in her life. Her curiosity about the royal family seemed to be based on the fact that she was a young girl who witnessed Queen Elizabeth come of age.
At the time, it was a big deal for a young woman to assume the throne of England. After all, the world had almost forgotten Victoria, and at that point, people were used to stodgy, older men sitting on the throne. Just a few years before, a young, fresh-faced Elizabeth would never even have been considered to become Queen — until her Uncle Edward abdicated, then her father became King. When he died, Elizabeth was next in line.
To have a young female face on the money was exciting. And over here, across the pond, young girls saw Elizabeth’s story as a fairy tale come true, much like my generation once thought Diana’s story was a fairytale come true. Of course, our fantasies about Diana’s fairytale lasted for a brief moment — unlike Elizabeth’s seventy-year reign.
So decades later, we’ve come to a new generation of royals in a new century. And a new, mostly woke generation of world citizens who realize the monarchy is merely an old-fashioned figurehead that has stolen jewels, countries, and labor through colonialism. Many people around the world today are over wanting a monarchy. I’m not saying England shouldn’t have one, but times have changed. Information is readily available to reveal the past sins of the monarchy, and it isn’t always pretty. As a matter of fact, it resembles a fairy tale. And the thing about fairy tales is that somebody has to lose for someone else to be on top.
To be fair (if one can call a monarchy fair), Queen Elizabeth has had her charming ways. I’m glad she enjoyed a jam sandwich every frickin day of her pampered life — even though many poor children under British rule wished they had jam on the table. I also think her commercial with Paddington Bear was cute — but you know what I think might have been even cuter? Queen Elizabeth smiling with her namesake great-granddaughter. That would have been one for the papers. “Queen Adores (Bi-Racial) Great Granddaughter Who Shares Her Name.”
Now, if I were Queen, I’d do many things differently, and embracing one’s great-grandchild would speak to a life of relationships more than a stuffed toy bear. Do you think little Lilibet would like her own Paddington bear? I bet not.
There was a very short margin of time between Lilibet’s birth and Elizabeth’s death, and guess what? They were in the same room, at the same time, but the public saw no pictures. And the rumor is that Harry and Meghan were told not to take one. I guess only those who were in the room know what happened there. Maybe their docu-series will give us the rest of the story.
There’s one thing most of us can be sure of — if Diana were alive and in a room with her namesake, she would most certainly have had a picture taken. It seems a no-brainer. Which is a better legacy? An image with a stuffed bear or her own flesh and blood?
And speaking of flesh and blood. I saw a CBS news discussion about Harry and Meghan’s anticipated docu-series where a reporter questioned why they would even want to tell their story. One asked why they wouldn’t try to reconcile with the family. I guess it depends if the family members treat them with respect. Most savvy survivors of family narcissistic abuse will tell you that it doesn’t work to reconcile as long as someone is mistreating a person. And according to Harry’s words in the promo, he felt his family was not safe. Reconciliation could be a disaster if your family isn’t safe and your flesh and blood won’t protect you.
It’s been a mixed bag of fairytales for the House of Windsor. Queen Elizabeth experienced a positive (for her) fairy tale, which she refused to relinquish until death.
Diana had a Cinderella story, where her Prince Charming married her, then treated her horribly. As soon as she got free and found love, she died tragically.
Charles has had a sad fairy tale. Unable to marry the woman he wanted, he used a young girl and then discarded her. He has waited most of his life to take on the role he trained for. Many people were relieved when Elizabeth kept the throne for all those years, and some dreaded the thought of Charles (oh, oops, KING Charles) on the throne.
So the monarchy has given us some history lessons.
1 Not all fairy tales end well
2 Not all Princes are charming
3 Not all Queens adore their progeny
If you’re getting weirdly dark, Snow-White vibes, welcome to the crowd. Of course, in this case, this baby girl’s whiteness might be in question — which only makes the plot even more nefarious.
And so we have an unfortunate tale where a beautiful and beloved Cinderella was lied to, cheated on, and possibly murdered. Then we have her little sprout of a child, the unnecessary Prince (AKA the Spare), who suffers the loss of his beloved Mother to grow up into a handsome Prince. He’s worked hard for his country and smiled through his pain. He’s no longer on the shortlist to be King, and his brother has already produced several new spares. So his “spareness” has moved on down the ladder.
There is only one thing this extra Prince wants in life — true love. He marries for love, and he starts a family in love. But that’s where his fairy tale ends — or does it? Perhaps the best life lies outside the kingdom, and only true love revealed this to him. I guess only time will tell us the truth.
Meanwhile, the world is waiting to hear what Prince Harry has to say — at least those who are still royal watchers.
What do you think? Is narcissism at play here or is this docu-series the result of narcissistic control?
Cherilyn Christen Clough broke the rules when she started writing about her family’s secrets. Some claim she sold her soul to the devil, but she prefers to think of it as gaining freedom. You can read about her strange childhood in Chasing Eden A Memoir.