The 39-year-old, whose mother is Black and father is white, said she had been naive before she married into the family in 2018, but that she ended up having suicidal thoughts and considering self harm after pleading for help but getting none.
She added that her son Archie, now aged one, had been denied the title of prince because there were concerns within the royal family about how dark his skin might be.
“They didn’t want him to be a prince,” Meghan said in an interview with Oprah Winfrey aired on CBS late on Sunday.
She said there had been “conversations about how dark his skin might be when he’s born.”
Meghan declined to say who had aired such concerns, as did Harry, who said his family had cut them off financially and that his father Prince Charles, heir to the British throne, had let him down and refused to take his calls at one point.
Buckingham Palace has yet to comment publicly on the interview, which aired in the early hours of Monday morning in Britain.
Meghan cast the British royal family as uncaring and mendacious, and accused Kate – the wife of her husband’s brother Prince William – of making her cry before her wedding.
While the family including Prince Charles came in for open criticism, neither Harry nor Meghan attacked Queen Elizabeth directly.
Still, Meghan said she had been silenced by “the Firm” – which Elizabeth heads – and that her pleas for help while in distress at racist reporting and her predicament had fallen on deaf ears.
“I just didn’t want to be alive any more. And that was a very clear and real and frightening constant thought. And I remember how he (Harry) just cradled me,” Meghan said, wiping away tears.