When Meghan Markle and Prince Harry stepped down from their roles as senior members of the royal family, they did so seeking freedom and a better life.
But they also hoped the move might improve their relationship with Harry's family.
Needless to say, that has not been the case.
In fact, Meghan and Harry seem to be drifting further and further from their old lives in London, and that trend was accelerated massively by the events of the past week.
Insiders say claims made in a new book will make it impossible for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to have any meaningful affiliation with the royal family in the years to come.
Keep scrolling for the revelations that apparently have the Queen and company so outraged that they're willing to cut ties with Harry and Meghan for good:
Royals In Exile
These days, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are living a new life in Los Angeles. And it seems that any hopes the couple may have had of returning to their royal duties in a limited capacity have been dashed by a new book.
A Scandalous Read
Royal journalists Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand have penned a new book about the couple entitled Finding Freedom, and the rest of the royal family is reportedly stunned by the revelations contained therein.
The Royal Seal of Approval
Scobie and Durand were granted unprecedented access while conducting their research, and sources say they wrote the book with Harry and Meghan's blessing.
A Target on Her Back
According to the book, Meghan endured near-constant bullying and harassment during her short time as a senior member of the royal family.
Worse Than We Realized
The royals and their associates reportedly dubbed Meghan "Duchess Different" and went to great lengths to make it clear that she was not welcome in London.
"It was open season on Meghan, with many looking for anything and everything to criticise," the authors write.
Scobie and Durand say that there's an irony in the royals' shabby treatment of Meghan, in that she's far more down-to-earth and friendly than the majority of Buckingam Palace's most famous bigwigs.
The Laid-Back Duchess
“That’s what people have a problem with. She’s the easiest person in the world to work with. Certain people just don’t like the fact she stands out," they claim.
Tale as Old as Time
As for why Meghan was judged so harshly upon her arrival in the UK, the authors say the answer is sadly and abundantly clear.
Victim of Prejudice
"Meghan felt as though some of the commentary and tabloid stories were more than a culture clash; they were sexist and prejudiced," Scobie and Durand write.
A Painful Double Standard
Meghan felt that a white man would earn praise for exhibiting the same behavior for which she was derided.
"If a man got up before dawn to work, he was applauded for his work ethic. If a woman did it, she was deemed difficult or “a bitch,'" the authors write.
"The double standard was exacerbated when it came to successful women of colour, often labelled demanding or aggressive," they continue.
Bigotry Across the Pond
"Racism takes a different form in the UK from in America, but there is no mistaking its existence and how ingrained it is," Scobie and Durand explain.
"A major theme of racism in the UK centres on the question of who is authentically 'British,'" the authors continue. "It can come through in subtle acts of bias, micro-aggressions such as ... the newspaper headline 'Memo to Meghan: we Brits prefer true royalty to fashion royalty.'"
"While the columnist was criticising Meghan for her Vogue editorials, there was another way to read it, which is that to be British meant to be born and bred in the UK — and be white," Scobie and Durand write.
No Help From Kate
At first, it seems Meghan was hopeful that she would receive support from Kate Middleton, who also heads the experience of marrying into the world's most famous family, but that turned out not to be the case.
On Her Own
According to the authors, Kate “did little to bridge the divide” between Meghan and the rest of the royals, and she appeared to have no interest in helping Meghan fit in.
From Different Worlds
“The truth was Meghan and Kate just didn’t know each other that well," the authors note. "Though it was not necessarily her responsibility, Kate did little to bridge the divide. She was fiercely loyal to her husband and his family."
The Royal Cold Shoulder
While many reports of the "dueling duchesses" were exaggerated by tabloids, Omid and Durand confim that Kate and Meghan were never close. They note that Will and Kate never once visited Meghan and Harry at their Frogmore Cottage home.
Now, anonymous sources are telling the Daily Mail that the royals are furious about the revelations found within Finding Freedom, and they're taking steps to ensure that Harry and Meghan will never again enjoy insider status as full-fledged royals.
The Final Straw
According to the Mail, by coorperating with Scobie and Durand, Harry and Meghan have "torpedoed any chance of the Queen and senior royals helping them create a new position."
"The door will always be open to them as much-loved members of the family," says one insider, identified only as "a royal household source."
On the Outs
"But it's hard to see how they can now salvage the new role they wanted as 'hybrid' royals, running commercial careers alongside royal duties from the US," the source adds.
A Bridge Too Far
Another insider confirms that a line has been crossed, saying, "The review period has not yet been discussed but it doesn't seem as if there is any way of going back now. Some very private family matters have now been aired in public, seemingly with their blessing. That will be hurtful."
A New World
But it seems unlikely that Harry and Meghan are regretting their decision to step away from royal life. While life in the States reportedly has not been as private as they had hoped, the couple has succeeded in their goal of moving their son far, far away from the UK tabloid press.