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Sarah Ferguson on her "rivalry" with Princess Diana

Sarah Ferguson and Princess Diana in 1983
February 13, 2019 - 15:45 / Administrator User

Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York has opened up about her relationship with Lady Diana and has called for more kindness online, reflecting on the dangers of social media. 

Sarah Ferguson was married to Prince Charles' (70) brother, Prince Andrew (58), for ten years and was often seen at Princess Diana's (†36) side. 

Lady Diana and Sarah Ferguson: Friends or Rivals? 

In an interview with Harper's Bazaar in 2007, Sarah Ferguson opened up about her turbulent friendship with the late Lady Diana. "I really miss Diana. I loved her so much. Diana was one of the quickest wits I knew; nobody made me laugh like her. But because we were like siblings—actually, we were fourth cousins and our mothers, who went to school together, were also best friends—we rowed".

Fergie Princess Diana
Fergie, Princess Diana and Prince Harry in 1992

Even though Diana's died more than two decades ago, Sarah Ferguson is often reminded just how badly the British public treated Princess Diana. In an essay that the she recently wrote in support of the Hello campaign #HelloToKindess, a campaign to raise awareness that it "isn't acceptable to post racist, sexist or threatening abuse on social platforms" and nor is acceptable to constantly pit women against each other", Sarah wrote the following:

"I’m on Twitter and Instagram, and I’m grateful for the fact that they allow me to communicate directly with people who are interested, promote my charitable causes and let people read my own words rather than someone else’s slant on them".

Fergie also reflected on the perils of these platforms, adding:

"I rarely if ever go ‘below the line’ on social media or news websites and read people’s comments. I know that a lot say nice things, but there’s a large minority who seem to think that all the normal rules of society don’t apply to the internet".

"Take a look at any website, and you’ll see extraordinarily abusive comments aimed not only at people in the public eye but also other internet users. Bullying, sniping, bitching, even the most appalling sexism, racism and homophobia are commonplace – it seems that online, anything goes".

Duchess Meghan and Duchess Catherine cyber bullying online
Duchess Meghan and Duchess Catherine arrive to attend a Christmas Day church service

Sarah Ferguson Wants to Change the Way We Use Social Media 

Over the last few months, Kate and Meghan have constantly been compared, judged and have repeatedly been victims of cyber bullying.  

As Fergie writes, “women, in particular, are constantly pitted against and compared with each other in a way that reminds me of how people tried to portray Diana and me all the time as rivals, which is something neither of us ever really felt".

Sarah Ferguson's essay calls for more kindness: "I believe that it’s time to take a stand...it’s not acceptable to post abuse or threats on social media or news sites".