Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s infamous interview with Oprah Winfry gave us new insight into their relationship and showed how their roles have changed, says body language expert Judi James.
When Prince Harry got down on one knee and asked Meghan Markle to be his royal bride, he knew he had a lot to teach her.
Becoming his wife also meant becoming the Duchess of Sussex and marrying into one of the most famous families in the world.
Before their wedding and in the early months of their marriage, he stood by her side to guide her through official engagements, charity outings and private meetings with the Queen and the rest of The Firm.
But according to body language expert Judi James, a subtle wave of Meghan Markle’s hand proved that Harry’s role as guide and protector is now over and “the tide has changed” in their relationship.
In their infamous interview with Oprah Winfrey, the couple sat side by side on lawn chairs as they detailed their version of life within the royal family.
Meghan has made accusations of racism and said the Duchess of Cambridge made her cry, while Harry said his brother Prince William was “set up” and claimed his father Charles cut him off financially.
And Judi told the Mirror their hand gestures showed that while Meghan seemed confident, Harry was not and needed his wife’s support.
She explains: “I think when Meghan came to the UK, Harry really saw himself as an overprotective husband who knew all hell was going to go to waste in terms of press interest and from the public, and was desperate to protect her – even though she came across as a very confident woman.
“But I think the tide completely changed watching the Oprah Winfrey clip.
“Now she seems to have brought a much more vulnerable Harry back to the States with her and she seems to be playing more of a rescuer and protector role with him.
“This hand gesture that you can see, he has his hand on the chair and she has placed her hand on it.
“It’s almost a maternal-looking gesture, it’s nice that it’s used to reassure himself and let him feed off his confidence.
“Obviously she’s friends with Oprah, she’s used to being in front of the cameras, she’s an actress, but for Harry it’s a whole new world he’s being judged on and being asked to play.
“And the clip feels like he’s going to rip his soul out on camera and talk to us about everything.”
According to Judi, Meghan sits with a pit-bearing gesture that shows she’s confident.
She explains: “Meghan is just sitting there looking very demure, very regal, I would say, very elegant.
“She has the reverse V-gap under her armpit, which shows confidence.
“When we feel like we’re being bombarded with tough questions or feel uncomfortable, women in particular tend to self-demean, we stick our arms out.
“But with Meghan, she has this super self-controlled, confident image that’s going on here.”
However, Judi thinks Harry’s body language tells a very different story, saying it suggests he needs his wife’s support.
She said: “Harry, on the other hand, is much less sure of himself.
“He’s sitting diagonally and he looks a lot clumsier.”
Pointing out that Harry’s hand was on his crotch, Judi added: “He’s doing a masculine pose, he’s got his hand between his legs. It’s called the fig leave pose, it’s a gesture very self-protective.”
She points out how different his body language is from when he was interviewed by James Corden.
“Here he looks a lot more guarded and a lot more uncomfortable and really needs that clasp he gets from Meghan.”