The first thing to know about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry is that there are no photos of them together.
This is Smart Millennial Dating Strategy #1.
It’s a tricky standard to set — you must do so early, and with clearly stated expectations. For example, “Dating me means taking lots of pictures together that I will tag you in,” or, “I hate that.” Or, “Just because we are sleeping together does not mean I want to be tagged on your scenic IG photo slideshow the first time we step out for a hike, but I don’t mind the occasional @, especially if it could lead to more followers.”
I, for one, have a six-months-of-dating-at-minimum policy when it comes to posting a photo of a new suitor to Instagram, and a three-months-minimum when it comes to Stories. I’m extremely lax about friending and following, although I’m rethinking that after a friend of mine told me that the girl she’s hooking up with refuses to be Facebook friends. I loved that. It eliminates complications.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry clearly had this conversation and must have a one-of-us-in-costume agreement when they go out in public. They are keeping their shit on the way-down-low because they know the press loves to meddle. For celebrities and royals, press (hehe, woopsie) is the equivalent of that friend who opens her big mouth and tells the guy you like that you have a crush on him which freaks him out, even though it was established that you two liked another because you two held hands and such. If anyone watched Summer House then you know EXACTLY the kind of drama I’m talking about. Not that I think Prince Harry is a Carl.
Of course, there’s always a loophole when only one party is eager to post a couple’s photo and would, at the very least, like to let the world outside of Facebook know that he/she is no longer single…
Smart Millennial Dating Strategy #2
Be cryptic! Post this and let everyone do the talking/thinking/assuming for you. This is only a good solution for those who don’t mind quickly becoming the center of attention and conversation, because this will spark debate. Steer clear of anything potentially relationship-suggestive if you’re a highly private person.
Smart Millennial Dating Strategy #3
Iron out titles early on. Ambiguity is almost always at the center of miscommunication. When prompted in a social situation, will you call one another girlfriend, boyfriend, partner, person? A friend of my friend refers to his wife as ex-fiancé. That is funny and clear. If Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were to get married, they already know their titles.
Harry’s is His Royal Highness Prince Henry of Wales. Yes, Henry.
Meghan would technically become a princess by marriage. Officially, she would be Her Royal Highness Princess Henry of Wales (with the Henry and everything) but would not actually be referred to as a princess. That is because you can’t become royal by marriage, just blood.
According to royal expert Imogen Lloyd Webber (all of this by way of The Sun), upon marriage, Harry would be bestowed a Dukedom. Webber thinks the two would take Sussex, making them Duke and Duchess of Sussex if they did take the plunge. And yes, people will ask.
Because people are nosy! Speaking of…
Smart Millennial Dating Strategy #4
Have your backstory set in stone before you have to make one up on-the-fly in front of your grandma.
Smart Millennial Dating Strategy #5
Make whatever living arrangements you want, but speak about it in nebulous terms so you don’t have to deal with a whole slew of outside opinions. Someone’s always going to say living together before marriage is a bad idea, someone’s always going to say you’d be naive not to, someone’s going to bring up a whole series of cautionary tales…so avoid giving a straight answer and then, that way, you can field unsolicited commentary with more flexibility.
For example, sources told The Sun that the actress has “virtually moved in” with Harry at his cottage in Kensington Palace. See? Virtually moved in? What does that even mean?
Who knows. For now, god bless these crazy kids.
Photos by Desiree Navarro/WireImage and Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty Images.