Britain’s royal family has a long history of hazing newcomers – especially women who date family members – and only those who are “tough as nails” tend to survive, a cousin of King Charles III has said in an exclusive interview The New York Post.
“I say to Meghan Markle, ‘What you’re going through is hellish hazing,'” said Kristina Oksenberg, a descendant of the Serbian royal family who counts King Charles III as a third cousin.
“If she can just hang in there, someone else will come along who can take the heat. No one gets a pass.”
Including, she added, Kate Middleton.
59-year-old Oxenberg is a writer and fashion designer, the younger sister of actress Catherine Oxenberg. Their mother is Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia, who, according to Oxenberg, was once very close to Charles.
Oxenberg, who has lived among British royalty for most of her life, recalled the snobbery that was once whispered behind the new Princess of Wales’s back.
When Prince William, now heir to the throne, was dating Middleton before their marriage in 2011, the royal family thought it was quite funny that the British press called her “middle-class Kate,” Oxenberg said.
In accordance with ExpressCamilla — now Queen Consort — allegedly referred to Middleton’s parents, Carole and Michael, as Meet the Fockers.
“They thought it was all very funny – Kate Middle Class, Sarah Ferguson and Coo Stark,” Oxenberg said. “They meant no disrespect; after all, she is the future Queen of England.’
Stark, an American actress and photographer, dated Prince Andrew for 18 months in the early 1980s before his mother, Queen Elizabeth, ended the relationship. Although she initially liked Stark, who bought Andrew his first pair of blue jeansthe monarch quickly intervened as soon as the British press revealed the actress’ appearance in erotic porn films, making her an unlikely match for the prince.
“It was a very shaky reason,” Oxenberg said Message. “There is a good example of how you can suffer as a member of the royal family for no good reason.”
“They were both really in love,” she added of Andrew and Stark. “They were soul mates and he was not allowed to marry his soul mate. If he had married her, things would have been different today.”
Andrew, who was married to Sarah Ferguson from 1986 to 1996, was embroiled in a friendship with convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein — and in March, the prince settled with sexual assault accuser Virginia Roberts Giuffre, paying her $12 million after she told her forced to sleep with him three times when she was 17 years old.
Oxenberg herself admitted that she was a former confidant of British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, who will appeal the 20-year sentence after her conviction for helping to secure young women and girls for Epstein.
Other royals who received their share of hazing, Oxenberg said, included Princess Michael of Kent, née Marie Christina von Reibnitz, a baroness of Czech-German descent.
When Prince Michael of Kent, Queen Elizabeth II’s first cousin, married von Reibnitz in 1978, British royals were more than happy to make things difficult for her, Oxenberg told The Post.
“She was treated the same way Meghan was – with ridicule and disrespect,” she said. “We always made fun of her because she kept calling the royals ‘yummy cousins’. All this (hazing) was done out of habit, not filled with hatred and violent conspiracies. I was a witness.”
At the time, Oxenberg was 16 years old and about to through her own adversity with his mother, Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia, cousin of King Charles III. While still married to Howard Oxenberg, a dress maker from New York, Princess Elizabeth became engaged to actor Richard Burton while he was between marriages to Elizabeth Taylor. (Burton and the princess never married.)
According to Oxenberg, with Meghan, who married Prince Harry in 2018, the hazing was especially brutal. “They are cruel, cruel to foreigners,” she said. “It’s not about skin color, it’s about being a foreigner.”
However, she described the treatment of Meghan by both the British press, which scrutinizes her every move, especially during Queen Elizabeth’s funeral on Monday, and some members of the royal family, as “betrayal”.
“She is Harry’s chosen wife,” Oxenberg said. “By their metrics, they called it a class system. They’ve come up with a system (whereby) you have to respect Harry’s choice.”
This story originally appeared on Page six and republished here with permission.
Originally published as Cousin of King Charles calls royal family’s treatment of Meghan Markle ‘treasonous’