Chelsy Davy saw royal life as 'goldfish bowl' says expert
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Harry celebrated his third wedding anniversary with his wife Meghan Markle last month, and their second child — a girl — is expected to be born over the summer. The Duke of Sussex’s relationship with the former actress was described as a “whirlwind” as he proposed to her after just 15 months of dating. It’s a sharp contrast to the drawn-out, on-again-off-again romance he had with Chelsy Davy throughout his twenties.
There was widespread speculation that, after dating for seven years, she would one day become his wife — but unearthed reports claim that Chelsy said something quite different to her close friends, according to royal correspondent Katie Nicholl.
She accompanied Harry as his “plus one” to the wedding of Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge back in 2011.
It was said to be a sign she was giving their relationship yet another chance, while Harry allegedly told his friends he wanted to make it work.
But, Ms Nicholl reported Chelsy told friends: “There’s no way we are getting married. It’s not a life for me.”
A friend also told the correspondent: “Chelsy and Harry are back together and it was very significant that she was his plus one for the day.
“Harry adores Chelsy and really wants things to work.
“He has brought up marriage in the past — usually when he’s drunk — but Chelsy’s the one to quickly play it all down.
“She has watched what Kate has gone through and how much she has had to sacrifice and says it’s not for her.”
Chelsy wanted to prioritise her freedom and start her career after training as a solicitor.
Still, she sat on the top table with Harry at Kate and William’s wedding, and they reportedly spent all night dancing together until leaving together at 3am.
Another source told the Daily Mail: “They were very much an item but who knows what will happen now. They have a very turbulent relationship.”
They added that Chelsy struggled to cope with the “attention” that comes with dating a prince.
The couple had broken up a few times before, in 2007 — after Harry missed her 22nd birthday to go to a rugby match in Paris — and then in 2009, due to worries about how much they would be able to see each other.
Harry was training with the Army Air Corps at the time as a helicopter pilot, while she was studying law at Leeds University.
Writing in The Telegraph in 2009, commentator Andrew Pierce added: “The Prince was also spending more of his free time partying with his Army friends, to the irritation of Miss Davy.”
One source told Mr Pierce: “They are two young people who have gone their separate ways for good.
“The relationship had run its course.
“It is entirely amicable and they hope to remain friends.
“Prince Harry still feels protective of Chelsy and hopes that the media gives her some privacy.”
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However, they were evidently still drawn together as they seemed to be a couple once again in 2011.
Harry also spoke with great fondness about Chelsy in 2005, during an interview to honour his 21st birthday.
He said: “I would love to tell everyone how amazing she is.”
However, he added: “But, you know, that is my private life and once I start talking about that, then I’ve left my own self open.”
He also noted that he could see “how upset” Chelsy gets when she was faced with the media glare, in an early indication that she was already wary of the publicity surrounding Harry.
He added: “My girlfriend is somebody who’s very special to me, and yes, she’s gone through some very hard times.”
Chelsy and Harry did remain amicable in the years after their breakup, and she was even seen attending his nuptials in 2018.
There were reports that they had a tearful phone call in the run-up to the wedding, where they supposedly said a final goodbye to one another.
Chelsy had finally addressed the media glare she endured when dating Harry two years before, when she told The Times: “Yes, it was tough. It was so full-on: crazy scary and uncomfortable.
“I found it very difficult when it was bad. I couldn’t cope. I was young, I was trying to be a normal kid and it was horrible.”
Harry himself has since said to YouTube pranksters in a leaked phone call that “marrying a prince is not all it’s made out to be”.
The Duke of Sussex has spoken out against royal life in recent interviews, and said that being part of the monarchy left him feeling “trapped”, and feeling as though he were a zoo exhibit.
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