For a couple of royal ladies, there’s certainly not a lot of proper etiquette going on! Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle are at odds and it’s all thanks to one woman — Queen Elizabeth. The 92-year-old monarch has been very open about her love for Meghan and it’s driving Kate crazy.

"Kate feels left out," a source told In Touch magazine of the American-born Suits star's close relationship with Elizabeth. Kate, who entered the family a commoner like Meghan, "spent years working on her image as 'the perfect royal,' and Meghan is stealing her thunder." Now a war is brewing between the duchesses, both 36. "They’re barely on speaking terms," the source explained. "The popularity contest has caused a lot of friction at the palace."

Kate feels betrayed by the woman she thought would become her closest friend and ally in the palace — especially because Kate's the one who eased Meghan into royal life before her spectacular May 19 wedding to Prince Harry at Windsor Castle.

"Meghan learned everything from Kate. But since the wedding, Kate feels like Meghan has barely made any effort with her and is more interested in impressing the queen," the source said. "In all fairness, Meghan has been busy. But Kate feels like she’s put a lot of effort into their friendship and hasn’t gotten much in return." So Kate’s stopped being so helpful.

"She’s a nice person and doesn’t want to see Meghan fall flat on her face, but at the same time she’s cut back on giving her advice," the source said, noting that the duchess likely knew that Meghan would be criticized for wearing an off-the-shoulder dress at the Trooping the Colour ceremony.

meghan markle shoulders getty images

"She could have saved Meghan from embarrassment," says the source. "But she didn’t say anything." Here’s hoping that the pair is willing to put aside their differences — especially before Meghan gets pregnant. If Kate is already jealous of the attention Meghan has received, a global royal baby watch will only intensify the drama.

For more exclusive celebrity news, be sure to pick up the latest issue of In Touch, on newsstands now.

it cover