Meghan Markle's close friend says the royal family was aware of Meghan's mental health struggle 10 months ago

Meghan Markle's close friend says the royal family was aware of Meghan's mental health struggle

"I know that the family and staff knew."

Janina Gavankar has been close friends with Meghan Markle for 17 years.

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She often shared snaps of the pair on Instagram before Meghan became a member of the royal family.

On Wednesday she told This Morning hosts Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby that she watched the interview with Meghan as it aired for the first time, and that she was aware of the struggles Meghan faced as a senior member of the Royal Family.

Speaking on ITV's This Morning, she said: "After reading this short statement that came out from Buckingham Palace today, I thought two things. One side, I thought I am so thankful that they are finally acknowledging the experience. But on the other side, I know that the family and staff were well aware of the extent of it.

"And though their recollections may vary, ours don't, because we lived through it with them."

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She said that there are "many emails and texts" that support Meghan's version of events.

Janina said that the Sussexes are now in a new era.

She said: "I am very excited that this is really a new era. Things are different. They can tell the truth. We can tell the truth.

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"We can finally validate them and say everything they said is true."

When asked by Schofield if they are happier now, Janina said: "I think they are feeling free."

"The truth really does set you free," she concluded.