Meghan And Harry's Social Media Silence On Kate Middleton's Birthday Has Fans Seeing Red

Kate Middleton turned the big 4-0 in January 2022, celebrating with her family and close friends at Anmer Hall in Norfolk, the home she shares with her husband, Prince William, and their three children (via The Times UK). She also marked the milestone birthday with a stunning photo shoot at London's Kew Gardens with renowned photographer Paolo Roversi in November 2021. "At first the Duchess was apprehensive," Roversi told Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera, per People. "Every day she is machine-gunned by photographers but not used to posing; knowing my photos with the models she was a bit fearful in facing a real session, which then required about four hours of work. But once she started it would be very easy, I reassured her. And so it was. Kate, who also studied art in Florence, is very fond of photography."

On her actual birthday, well wishes poured in from fans, friends, and family members, including Queen Elizabeth, Prince Charles, and his wife, Camilla (via People). Kate was no doubt touched by all of attention, and even took over the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's social media accounts to let everyone know it was appreciated. "Thank you for all of your very kind birthday wishes, and to Paolo and the National Portrait Gallery for these three special portraits," she wrote on Twitter and Instagram.

However, royal watchers were quick to notice there were two family members who didn't commemorate Kate's big birthday: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle didn't publicly send birthday wishes to Kate Middleton

While Kate Middleton had plenty of well wishes on her 40th birthday, royal watchers noticed that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle — who now live in California — didn't mark the occasion with a social media message. "Who knows what the Montecito Massive will do," royal expert Charles Rae told Entertainment Daily. "But as they are thousands of miles away it is likely they will wish her happy birthday via Zoom."

Some royal fans weren't buying it, though. "The famous 'Zoom call' i.e. never happened," wrote one on Twitter, while another added, "Sure they did." Some fans wondered how Harry could let the day pass without some public acknowledgement. "She's your sister-in-law. I thought Harry loved Catherine like a 'sister,'" wrote one fan on Twitter (via Express).

Whether or not Kate actually heard from Harry and Meghan is unknown, but she surely had a great time celebrating with family and close friends. Prince William is reportedly planning a romantic getaway for just the two of them later in January 2022, while the couple's three children surprised their mom with "a big 4-0 multicolored sponge and marshmallow cake with 40 candles to blow out," as well as some "handcrafted gifts" (via StyleCaster).

Kate Middleton's strained relationship with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

It's no secret that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have had quite a rocky relationship with the royal family following their exit in January 2020 and tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey in March 2021 (via People). In their interview with Winfrey, it was even revealed that it was Kate Middleton who made Meghan cry before her wedding to Harry in 2018, despite the press saying it was the other way around (via Harper's Bazaar). 

The two brothers, Harry and Prince William, have also had a very strained relationship since the interview. A source close to the royal family has said that Kate feels "really, really upset about it all" (via Elle). However, the same source also revealed that while "everything with Harry and Meghan has been hugely stressful ... it's pulled [her and William] closer together." While Middleton may not be directly involved with a lot of the drama, "seeing her husband so distraught was tough."

This could be why the couple didn't publicly wish her a happy birthday.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have ditched social media in recent years

While Prince Harry and Meghan Markle didn't post on Instagram or Twitter to wish Kate Middleton a "happy birthday," it was reported by Us Weekly that there was a "very private" video call. In the call to Kate, both Harry and Meghan "wished her a happy birthday," according to royal expert Christopher Andersen. 

This seems more fitting for the couple who have stopped using social media in recent years due to all the negativity surrounding it, according to Elle. Most updates provided by Harry and Meghan are now posted on their non-profit Archewell's website, like when the couple announced the birth of their daughter Lilibet "Lili" Diana Mountbatten-Windsor in June 2021 (via Archewell). Since it would be rare for the two to post on social media, this is most likely the reason for their decision to give a more private birthday wish than a public once.

While a dedicated Insta post is always nice to receive a personal phone call means a lot as well.