Prince Harry’s Close Friend Defends the New Father From Dad Shamers

“The world thinks they know everything about this man.”
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profile picture of Stephanie Grassullo
Associate Editor
May 28, 2019
prince harry plays in charity polo match, shortly after baby archie is born
Image: Elisabetta A. Villa / Getty Images

People can be so fickle. One minute they’re praising Prince Harry for how he effortlessly stepped into fatherhood, and the next they’re sharpening their pitchforks. Not even a month into being a dad, and he’s already facing criticism among fans.

Last week, the new father headed to Rome for the 2019 Sentebale ISPS Handa Polo Cup, a fundraising event to support people affected by HIV in southern Africa. Co-founded by the Duke of Sussex in 2006, Sentebale works to address the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people affected by HIV, providing them with the tools and education to lead healthy and productive lives. Although it was a pre-planned royal appearance for a cause close to his heart, we’re sure it was bittersweet leaving Meghan Markle and baby Archie, even if it was only for a quick trip. And jeez, people wasted no time adding salt to the wound.

Luckily, long-time friend and professional polo player Ignacio Figueras has Prince Harry’s back. During an interview with Figueras, a journalist remarked, "not many fathers go abroad within two weeks of the birth, any word on that from the mother?” The polo player politely shut the interviewer down, saying, "That’s an assumption that you’re making. I am a father of four and sometimes duty calls. This is 24 hours away from the house, I think he’s doing just fine,” he stated. “He’s a wonderful father. I’m very impressed and he’s here for an amazing cause.”

Figueras later took to Instagram to drive his point home, offering nothing but praise for the philanthropist and new dad.

“The world thinks they know everything about this man,” he writes. “I have been fortunate enough to spend enough time over the years to learn and understand the man he really is—a kind, generous, compassionate person who is constantly thinking about how to make the world a better place, whether that is helping kids in Africa, talking openly about mental health, encouraging children or talking about climate change and the things that we all human beings need to change for the next generations. I see him do that over and over again and it is truly inspiring. I am honored to be your friend and let’s keep fighting because if we all fight together, love always wins.”

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