In an interview with BBC Radio while promoting her book "Gutsy Women," Clinton expressed sympathy for the American actress-turned-royal who married Prince Harry in May 2018.
"I have a great deal of feeling towards her and about her because it's one thing to be told what it's going to be like when you step onto the biggest stage with the brightest spotlight, joining the royal family, becoming the president or first lady of his family in our country, and yet it's still really hard to imagine," Clinton said. "It takes some getting used to -- to have your every move scrutinized and analyzed, and frankly, things made up about, and I really wish her and her husband the very best because they are struggling to have a life of meaning and integrity on their own terms."
When asked if she thought "gender and race" were a factor, Clinton quickly responded, "Yes!"
"I don't think there's any doubt of it. Even if you go back and look at social media from the time the engagement was announced, race was clearly an element," Clinton explained. "To think that some of your -- we would call it mainstream media, actually allowed that to be printed in their pages or amplified, was heartbreaking and wrong."
Clinton continued, "People don't choose who they fall in love with. They fall in love and she is an amazing young woman. She has an incredible life story. She has stood up for herself. She made her own way in the world. And then, she falls in love, and he falls in love with her, and everybody should be celebrating that, because it is a true love story. You can just look at them and see that."
The former first lady went on, "I feel, as a mother, I just want to put my arms around her... I want to hug her. I want to tell her to hang in there. Don't let those bad guys get you down. Keep going. Do what you think is right."
Clinton also advised the duchess to use "humor" and "deflection" with the media.