Meghan Markle has celebrated her birthday in a very different way this year. Firstly, the new Duchess had to forego celebrations on her actual birthday, August 4, to attend a wedding where her husband Prince Harry, 33, was the best man.
And now, the new royal will have to return a lot of the birthday gifts she’s received.
The 37-year-old royal would no doubt have returned to London from Surrey, where the wedding of Charlie can Straubenzee and Daisy Jenks was held, to a pile of gifts waiting for her. Sadly, she won’t be able to keep them, as it’s against royal protocol to receive gifts or freebies from businesses or people they do not personally know.
According to official royal guidelines, “The fundamental principle governing the acceptance of gifts by Members of The Royal Family is that no gifts, including hospitality or services, should be accepted which would, or might appear to, place the Member of The Royal Family under any obligation to the donor.”
That means, gifts from individuals not known personally “should be refused where there are concerns about the propriety or motives of the donor or the gift itself.”
According to Hello! magazine, the only gifts that can be accepted are flowers, foodstuff and other consumable items (within reasonable quantities), copies of books presented by the author (provided the subject matter is not controversial) and other items of small monetary value costing less than £150 (NZD $290).
Similarly, Meghan and Harry had to return a reported $13 million worth of wedding gifts after their May nuptials for the very same reason.
If returning birthday gifts wasn’t already disappointing, even Meghan’s closets friends have had to edit their birthday messages for the Duchess.
Meghan’s best friend, stylist Jessica Mulroney took to Instagram to leave a sweet tribute to Meghan for her birthday, but deleted it shortly after.
The post featured a black-and-white photo of the duo in matching white summer dresses with the caption “my favourite birthday girl.”
Eagle-eyed fans were quick to snap a screenshot of the post before Meghan’s unofficial maid of honour took it down.
Things have definitely changed a lot for Meghan since marrying into the royal family. But hey, some would argue that its a small price to pay for marrying a prince.