It's no secret that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are in a period of transition in their lives, but it was still a bit shocking to hear on Monday that Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's royal Instagram account has shared its final post.
In early January, Markle and Harry first revealed their decision to leave royal life, explaining that they would no longer live on public funds or operate in a royal capacity. Since then, they've said the will focus on raising their 10-month-old son Archie, their philanthropic efforts, and professional lives. And the decision to suspend their Sussex Royal Instagram account is likely another part of the move out of the royal sphere.
"As we can all feel, the world at this moment seems extraordinarily fragile. Yet we are confident that every human being has the potential and opportunity to make a difference — as seen now across the globe, in our families, our communities and those on the front line — together we can lift each other up to realize the fullness of that promise," the post announcing the news begins, referring to the growing coronavirus pandemic.
"What’s most important right now is the health and wellbeing of everyone across the globe and finding solutions for the many issues that have presented themselves as a result of this pandemic," the post continues, adding that Harry and Markle are working to find their own path and how [they] can "best contribute" to efforts in this difficult time.
"While you may not see us here, the work continues," the post concludes. "Thank you to this community — for the support, the inspiration and the shared commitment to the good in the world. We look forward to reconnecting with you soon. You’ve been great! Until then, please take good care of yourselves, and of one another."
Also on Monday, a spokesperson for the couple told royal correspondent Omid Scobie that Markle and Harry "will spend the next few months focusing on their family and continuing to do what they can, safely, and privately to support and work with their pre-existing charitable commitments while developing their future non-profit organisation."
The royal protocol surrounding official Instagram accounts allows for little wiggle room. As explained by Reader's Digest, the royals may be perceived as celebrities, but they are meant to be working in all public appearances. Therefore, royal social media is essentially a professional platform and only certain royals are permitted to have their own social media accounts. And now that Markle and Harry will no longer be working in a royal capacity, it seems like a natural move to close down the account that served them in their official duties.
Posts leading up to the goodbye included graphics such as the World Health Organization's recommendations on how to slow the spread of COVID-19, a post in recognition of British Mother's Day, and an encouragement to their followers to monitor their own mental health and well-being while practicing social distancing.
Only time will tell if the couple will establish another Instagram account, continue their active online presence, and, of course, if they'll share more of those adorable baby Archie photos.
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