When Prince Harry returned to the UK to attend the funeral of his grandfather, Prince Philip, questions were raised about just when he was planning to return to his wife, Meghan Markle, and son Archie, and whether he would plan to stay in the UK for the birthday of his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth. And because Harry was seen speaking to his older brother, Prince William, there was the hope that whatever rift that might have emerged between the brothers had begun to heal.

But if there was any hope that Harry might stay in the UK to mark his grandmother’s birthday, those were dashed when outlets on both sides of the Atlantic reported that Harry had returned to California to be with his pregnant wife and their son (via The Telegraph). Even though he had just completed a 10-day quarantine in the UK at their old home in Frogmore Cottage, he is expected to start another one in Montecito (via the Daily Mail).

Critics called out Prince Harry for leaving his grandmother

Prince Harry’s early departure divided the Internet, with some calling him out for leaving his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, to celebrate her birthday on her own, while others said he was right to focus on his pregnant wife. “Instead of all the noise about Harry trying to have ‘get togethers/meetings’ with his father and brother, ya think after he trashed the family on Oprah while grandpa lay dying, that he couldn’t have stayed a little longer to make amends with granny. Foolish, weak little man,” one user fumed on Twitter. Another tweeted, “The hypocrite returns home not bothering with his grandma’s birthday … Oh, and 17 mpg for a Cadillac Escalade. Save the planet and environment Harry? Yeah, right!!” 

A third Twitter user wrote, “Well there’s not much for him to stick around for is there. He’s trashed his family on tv and then blabbed about who said what to whom …. why would you want to pass anything other than minor pleasantries if you think it’s going to be all over the US press days if not hours later.”

Others didn't fault Prince Harry for leaving

But for every critic, there was a supporter. “Looking [for] another reason to have a go at him. Have you not hounded him enough? He has also just buried his grandfather so you would think you would have some respect and leave him alone to grieve but your agenda against him and meghan always shines through. What happened to #bekind?” tweeted one. Another tweeted, “She [the Queen is] spending it without any family. Don’t gaslight him as if he left his grandma all alone. William is down the road and won’t even be with her. Just stop.” A third Twitter supporter wrote,  “I have so much love & respect for Prince Harry & Meghan. Look forward to when Harry is back home in US with Meghan & Archie. And the work of Archewell will continue as we wait for baby girl to join their family.”

At least Prince Harry did not return to California empty-handed. After his grandfather’s funeral, he managed to spend some time with his father, Prince Charles, and brother, Prince William. A royal insider told the Daily Mail that “It was important to Charles and William that they were both there together [for the meeting]. It means nothing spoken about can be misconstrued in the future.” The source further explained, “The Queen has made it clear to senior advisers that she is united with Charles and William, and was disappointed with aspects of Harry and Meghan’s interview.”

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