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As the mourning period for Queen Elizabeth comes to an end, conversations around whether New Zealand should become a republic have begun. Video / NZ Herald
It can be difficult for newcomers to fit in with the royal family – and only those who are as “tough as nails will survive”, a cousin of King Charles has claimed.
In a new interview with the New York Post, Charles’ third cousin Christina Oxenberg has claimed that Meghan Markle in particular is going through a “hellish kind of hazing”.
A descendant of Serbian royalty added, “If she can just hang in there, someone else will come along who can take the heat. Nobody gets a pass.”
Apparently not even Kate Middleton, she said, recalling what was once whispered behind the new Princess of Wales’ back.
The royal family thought it was funny that the British press labelled her “Kate Middle Class”, Oxenberg said.
“They meant no disrespect; after all, she is the future queen of England.”
She also recalled Koo Stark, the American actress and photographer who dated Prince Andrew in the early 1980s – until the Queen put an end to the relationship “for a very flimsy reason”.
“There’s a good example of how you can suffer as a royal for no good reason,” Oxenberg said.
“They were soulmates, and he was prevented from marrying his soulmate. Had he married her, things would be different today.”
Princess Michael of Kent, formerly Marie Christine von Reibnitz, a Czech-German baroness, also received her share of “hazing”, she added.
“She was treated the same way Meghan [has been] treated — with this mocking and lack of respect.
“We always used to mock her because she kept referring to the royals as ‘delicious cousins.’ It [the hazing] was all done out of habit and not full of hatred and violent plotting. I was a witness.”
But the royals’ treatment of Meghan has been brutal, according to Oxenberg.
“They are tough, they are tough on foreigners,” she said. “It’s not about your skin colour, it’s about being a foreigner.”
She called Meghan’s treatment by the press and by some members of the royal family “treasonous”.
“She is Harry’s choice of wife,” Oxenberg said. “By their own metrics they have called it a class system. They came up with that system, [by which] you have to respect Harry’s choice.”
Oxenberg, 59, is a writer and fashion designer and the younger sister of actress Catherine Oxenberg.