Here’s the Real Reason Why Meghan & Harry Didn’t Attend Obama’s Birthday Party This Year

It seems like everyone and their mother attended the former President’s 60th birthday bash…except for the Sussexes! Now, there are already few theories as to why Meghan Markle and Prince Harry weren’t at Barack Obama’s birthday celebration—but we’ll let you decide which makes the most sense.

In case you missed it: Obama had a huge birthday bash at his Martha’s Vineyard estate over the August 6 weekend, and everyone from the likes of John Legend, Gayle King, Jay-Z and Beyoncé were in attendance. According to reports, anywhere between 200 to 400 guests showed up to the event (and as per a staff member who spoke to The Daily Mail, that’s allegedly after cutting down on the guestlist). The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, however, weren’t among the Obamas’ illustrious partygoers. And according to one royal expert, Meghan and Harry’s absence may be because they were never on the invite list to begin with.

“Despite the Obamas not attending the Sussexes’ wedding that year, it was thought that the newly California-based couple would be shoo-ins at Obama’s 60th, as prominent ‘progressives’ and new-found members of the US metropolitan liberal elite,” royal reporter Camilla Tominey shared with The Daily Mail. According to Tominey, the Sussexes may have “jeopardized their once special relationship” as friends after sources suggest the royal couple made attempts to “ape everything the Obamas have done” following their royal exit in 2020.

While it’s unclear what the Sussexes are copycatting, exactly, Tominey claims that this isn’t even the only possible reason as to why they weren’t invited. Apparently, a source revealed that the Obamas “didn’t like Harry attacking his family” during his and Meghan’s interview with Oprah in March. The insider said, “They value family and certainly aren’t the type of people who would want their children talking to the press.” For what it’s worth, Michelle Obama did comment on the whole royal family feud following Meghan and Harry’s tell-all, telling Access Hollywood that she hoped the Sussexes and the royal family could find “forgiveness” at some point. “My hope is that, when I think about what they’re going through, I think about the importance of family and I just pray that there is forgiveness and there is clarity and love and resolve at some point in time,” she said. “Because there’s nothing more important than family.”

Still, there’s another theory that has nothing to do with being snubbed, and that’s the possibility that Meghan and Harry simply couldn’t make the event in the first place. According to Page Six, the Duke and Duchess of Sussexes were “not planning to attend” Obama’s party, given the fact that the former President and Meghan actually share a birthday on August 4. At the time, The New York Post’s outlet suggested that Harry already had separate plans for celebrating his wife’s 40th birthday, which may just make the most practical—and least shady—sense of all.

Finding Freedom

Image: Courtesy of Dey Street Books.

For more about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, read Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand’s New York Times bestseller, Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan and the Making of a Modern Royal Family. The book tells all on the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s relationship—from their wedding and how they met, to the birth of their first son, Archie. Finding Freedom also dives into the “true story” of why Harry and Meghan left the royals at the end of 2019 and moved to the United States amid their drama with their family. Consisting of interviews and accounts with Harry and Meghan’s closest confidants, Finding Freedom is a must-read for any royal follower.

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