Ronald Reagan’s daughter Patti Davis warns Prince Harry ahead of book release: ‘Shut up’

Patti Davis, actress and youngest daughter of the late President Reagan, gave prince harry some sage but unsolicited advice ahead of the release of his memoir, “Spare.”

In an opinion piece written for the New York Times, Davis, 70, warned the Duke of Sussex to be judicious in his outspokenness.

“My justification for writing a book that I now wish I hadn’t written…was very similar to what I understand to be Harry’s reasoning. I wanted to tell the truth, I wanted to set the record straight. Naively, I thought if I put my own feelings and my own truth for the world to read, my family might also come to understand me better,” he wrote.

Davis’s book on the reagan family, “Family Secrets” was published in 1993.


Patti Davis offered Prince Harry some advice ahead of the release of his new memoir “Spare.”
(Taylor Hill/David Crotty)

“During the early stages of my father’s Alzheimer’s, when he was still having moments of lucidity, I apologized to him for writing an autobiography many years earlier that opened the doors to our troubled family life,” Davis admitted. “He already spoke less at that moment, but his eyes told me that he understood.”

Davis saw a parallel between his decision-making and that of Prince Harry, who was estranged.

“I thought of that moment when I read that Prince Harry, in his new memoir, wrote about his father, King Charles, standing between his fighting sons and saying, ‘Please, boys, don’t make my later years a misery.’ Time is somewhat unpredictable… I had the gift of time with my father, which allowed me to apologize, despite the fact that an illness was between us and clouded our communication. The words of King Charles reveal to a man that he is aware of his mortality and that he would like his offspring to be aware of it as well.”

Patti Davis, left, was the only child of Nancy and Ronald Reagan.

Patti Davis, left, was the only child of Nancy and Ronald Reagan.


Davis drew attention to how there are multiple versions of the truth, and since stories in Prince Harry’s book have been teased ahead of their January 10 availability date, he believes the king and prince william they are also entitled to their own version.

“People generally don’t respond well to public shaming and exposure. And in the years that followed, I learned something about the truth: it’s much more complicated than it seems when we’re young. There is no one truth, our truth: the other people who inhabit our history also have their truths,” he wrote.

Prince Harry has alleged that his older brother attacked him in his book.

Prince Harry has alleged that his older brother attacked him in his book.
(Aaron Chown)

In the last days, a part of Harry’s book recounting a physical altercation with William was shared with the public.

“Prince William has, I’m sure, his own version of the physical fight that Harry has described,” Davis said. “To really understand the dynamic between the brothers, to expand the story and make it more complete, one must also consider William’s truth. Harry has written that, after William hit him, William told Harry to hit him back. , which he refused to do. But in writing about the fight, he has done exactly that.”

In retrospect, Davis believes that he should never have exposed his family’s innermost secrets.

“Years ago, someone asked me what I would say to my younger self if I could. Without hesitation, I replied, ‘That’s easy. I would have said, ‘Shut up.'” Not forever. But until he could take a step back and look at things through a broader lens. Until I understood that words have consequences and last a long time. Harry has called William not only his ‘beloved brother’ but his ‘arch-nemesis’. He chose words that hurt deeply, that leave a scar; Perhaps if he had taken the time to be quiet, to reflect on the enduring power of his words, he would have chosen differently.”

Patti Davis wishes she had chosen to “keep quiet” when it comes to revealing family issues.
(Irfan Khan/Los Angeles Times)


“Silence gives you space, gives you distance, and allows you to see your experiences more fully, without the temptation to even the score. At some point in the next few years, Harry may look back like I did and wish he couldn’t.” say what he said. has said. I’ve learned something else about the truth: not all truths have to be told to everyone. People are always going to be curious about famous families and often the stories of those families they can resonate with others, give them insight into their own situations, even transcend time as fame flits on the edges of eternity. But not everything needs to be shared, a truth that silence can teach. Harry seems to have operated with the said that “silence is not an option. I respectfully suggest that it be,” he concluded.

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