Why Prince Harry and Meghan Markle don't hold hands any more

Sarah Carty
Senior Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer

We’ve been swooning over Prince Harry and Meghan Markle ever since they showed up at the Invictus Games together for their very first outing in September 2017, lovingly locking hands like the adorable lovebirds they are.

However, ever since they tied the knot back in May, we’ve seen far less photos of them being affectionate around each other – and there’s even a video of Prince Harry appearing to swipe away his new wife’s hand when she tried to grab his at an event last week.

According to royal expert William Hanson, the reason they’ve stopped holding hands has nothing to do with their relationship but more to do with their new roles as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

“Prince Harry has probably felt less of a need to hold Meghan’s hand as she seems to be much more confident and secure in her new role, and so needs less emotional and physical support from her now-husband,” William Hanson told the Daily Mail.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry seem to have stopped holding hands since they got married. Photo: Getty Images

“Public displays of affection, such a hand holding, may be accepted in private situations and in social spheres, but when out in public Harry and Meghan are on official business and so it is not considered professional behaviour.”

Indeed, it seems common practice for Prince William and Kate Middleton to stand at a slight distance from each other at official engagements.

According to a body language expert, the pair are following in the footsteps of Prince William’s grandmother, the Queen.

“It is very clear that William and Kate are emotionally close, however, they do not seem to feel the need to prove their love – particularly when on official state business,” expert Robin Kermode told the Daily Mail.

However, due to Prince William being second in line to the throne and Prince Harry being sixth, it was thought he and his wife would act more relaxed in public.

The couple used to love locking fingers while out-and-about. Photo: Getty Images
Their first outing together even saw them holding hands for the entire event. Photo: Getty Images
We very rarely see Prince William and Kate Middleton holding hands. Photo: Getty Images

Before the wedding, Meghan was pictured engaging in behavior that you would rarely see Kate Middleton doing.

Back in February, Meghan hugged a charity worker when they parted ways, which caused a stir as members of the royal family are not supposed to be touched ‘in a manner that goes beyond a formal handshake’.

Kate rarely extends a hug to any member of the public and when LeBron James wrapped his arm around her in 2014, she was visibly uncomfortable.

Likewise, during their engagement photos, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle gazed adoringly at each other while Prince William and Kate Middleton nervously posed for photos in the Buckingham Palace drawing room.

royal etiquette expert Myka Meier previously told People that there is ‘no actual etiquette or royal protocol that says the couple must refrain from PDA’.

However, talking about Will and Kate, she added: ‘The couple are likely to show very little PDA, if any, to remain professional during their designated roles’.

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