Fergie Shades Queen Elizabeth, Says She’s Now Free From “Mental Shackles”

The Duchess of York said she felt liberated to be "the real Sarah” after the queen’s passing.

Looking back, Sarah “Fergie” Ferguson feels like “the luckiest girl” to have spent so much one-on-one time with Queen Elizabeth during her reign. However, the Duchess of York admits she’s never felt more herself than in the six months following the monarch’s death.

Fergie opened up to ET about finding her voice and pursuing her dream career amidst the Queen’s death — a loss that left her “liberated.”

“I am growing much more in my own voice now,” she said. “I think also the queen dying has sort of liberated me a bit. My sense of purpose has always been, for 62 years, 63 years, to be very loyal and to uphold Her Majesty’s values.”

Since her wedding to Prince Andrew in 1986, Fergie has felt like a daughter to Queen Elizabeth. In many instances, she says the Queen “was more of a mother to me than my own mother,” even following her divorce from Andrew in 1996.

With that close bond, however, came great expectations and pressure, explains Fergie.

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“I would be very ignorant if I did not study every time I was with Her Majesty, just ask questions… [I would ask] ‘How do you manage with a new prime minister? How do you manage to filter chaos as well as you do?'” the Duchess recalled.

Simultaneously, Fergie was enamored by Her Majesty’s powerful presence. Their relationship was often a double-edged sword. “I also thought how lucky I was ’cause every single moment I was with Her Majesty I felt such an honor,” she added.

Her love for Queen Elizabeth aside, Fergie confessed she’d be lying if she ignored the flood of relief she felt after her ex-mother-in-law’s death.

“Now she’s not there anymore, I feel as though maybe I can be free to be Sarah. I feel as though I’m liberated from my own mental shackles,” she explained.

Through her self-discovery, Fergie said she’s found the “confidence” to live a more fulfilling life.

“I don’t think I’ve shown anybody the real Sarah that you’re seeing today. I’m very authentic today,” she told the outlet, noting that for most her life she’s felt “quite invisible”

Her career as a published author has played a big role in her self-healing journey. Realizing she was more than “just the duchess” was also pinnacle moment for her. Fergie explained, “I’m very lucky to be here mentally.”

“I’m a strong redhead, and it’s OK to be strong, it’s OK to be very colorful and feisty,” she quipped. “I think I’ve been through many mental issues. [I’ve had] quite the journey… I’ve become more savvy.”

Fergie’s new novel, A Most Intriguing Lady, hits stands today.

Emily Weaver
Emily is a NYC-based freelance entertainment and lifestyle writer — though, she’ll never pass up the opportunity to talk about women’s health and sports (she thrives during the Olympics). Read more
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