Body Language Expert Analyzes Meghan And Harry's Viral UN Interaction - Exclusive

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle recently made headlines as they traveled from their secluded life in California to the Big Apple. Joining representatives of the United Nations, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex commemorated Nelson Mandela Day, an occasion that holds significant meaning for the prince (via People). Harry began visiting Africa when he was just 13 years old and quickly developed a deep connection to the continent and its people. As many know, Harry and Meghan hold the country of Botswana very close to their hearts, additionally, even getting engaged there (via The Sun). 

In his speech addressing the U.N., Harry reflected on when his mother, Princess Diana, met Mandela in the 1990s. He shared that he keeps the photo of the pair together "on my wall and in my heart every day."

However, the moment that should have been particularly special was instantly overshadowed by an awkward exchange between the couple. In a video posted to Twitter, Harry and Meghan were seen oddly holding hands, engaging in peculiar body language and even resulting in Harry pulling his hand away from Meghan's. Fans had a lot to say about the subject, with one fan even saying, "He removed his hand. She grabs his arm from underneath then more his hand to her leg. She IS Strong-arming him!!! I never quite saw it happen like this!!! Graphic!!!"

Even more commentators on Twitter had a lot to say about the exchange, so we asked a body language expert to weigh in on the moment.

There may be trouble between Meghan and Harry

Body language expert Mark Bowden, the co-founder of TRUTHPLANE® and member of The Behavior Panel, broke down the eyebrow-raising interaction between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle for The List, focusing in on Harry's subtle hand gestures and overall uneasiness. 

Bowden began his commentary by focusing in on two specific movements on Harry's part. First and foremost, Harry was observed to be moving a ring placed on his finger, which Bowden recognized as a "family gesture of status" that his father, grandfather, and great uncle were also known for. The prince was then seen creating "a steeple with his fingers," an additional "status display," with Bowden expressing that such movements could signal the prince's sense of "unease" in the moment. 

"Meghan soothes his forearm by stroking and simultaneously covers her own forearm for comfort. Both may be locked into a pattern of discomfort right now," Bowden told us of the moment in question. 

The TRUTHPLANE co-founder went on to observe Harry's mouth, as its movement showed a contempt and an attempt to "cover" his sense of discomfort. 

"Does that mean he has contempt for the relationship right now? Possibly," Bowden told us, "and if that is the case it does not predict a positive long term outcome. But the potential contempt may be for another external or internal situation that he is having to accept."