From the moment that Prince William and Kate Middleton announced they were expecting a baby back in December 2012, the topic of their parenting has been a heated discussion. Kate more so than William has gotten quite a lot of negative comments over the years about her parenting, and given the response to Kate’s interactions with Prince George and Princess Charlotte at Pippa’s wedding, I want to take the time to think about this question: Should we stop commenting on Kate’s parenting?
It is my opinion that any topic a public person puts into the public sphere is acceptable for discussion, especially when the topic is used for the public person’s own personal gain through PR. For example: Emma Watson put her opinions on feminism into the public sphere and has used that topic as part of her brand and image, therefore it is acceptable to discuss Emma Watson’s opinions on feminism and use of feminism as PR.
William and Kate not only put their parenting in the public sphere by commenting on it publicly but use it to generate positive PR and as an excuse for their low work numbers. Therefore, in my opinion, William and Kate’s parenting should be acceptable for discussion. However, there is a line of acceptability which tends to get crossed 1) because of negative bias, and 2) when discussing hot topics such as parenting.
I think it is perfectly acceptable to discuss instances of PR hypocrisy on all topics and to call out the hypocrisy when we see it; it is one of the reasons I started this blog. Because William and Kate use their parenting as PR, I think it is acceptable to discuss and call out instances of PR hypocrisy on the topic of their parenting – when William and Kate’s actions contradict the PR image they’ve built (especially, and most importantly, when it comes to their work schedule).
When attempting to discuss and call out William and Kate’s hypocrisy (on any topic really, but especially on the topic of their parenting), the line of acceptability gets crossed due to negative bias. We are so quick to think negatively of William and Kate and quick with the desire to call out their hypocrisy, that we jump to conclusions and dispense with logic. We say things we don’t necessarily mean and wouldn’t say about anyone else, and we accuse William and Kate of things we wouldn’t accuse anyone else of. I know I am guilty of this – I know I’ve done this in the past, and will probably do this in the future without intending to.
Half the time when the “Kate can’t win” line comes out, I disagree with it and think it’s a cop-out excuse for Kate’s poor performance or work ethic. The other half of the time, I agree and think in certain situations, due to negative bias, Kate really can’t win no matter which option she takes. Take for example Kate’s interaction with George at Pippa’s wedding: If Kate had let George throw a tantrum and not done anything, she would have been called a terrible mom for letting him throw a tantrum in public and been accused of not spending enough time with her kids to know how to handle their tantrums; when Kate did say something to George when he was crying (or whatever actually happened in that moment), Kate gets called a terrible mom for embarrassing her child in public by scolding him; if Kate took George inside to talk to him, then she would have been called a terrible mom for leaving the other kids, or for showing George favoritism, or for causing a problem for the other guests trying to leave the church, or what have you.
People have a negative opinion of Kate so they tend to think the worst of her or put the blame for a situation on her without considering any other option (and yes, I have done this, too). Let’s again look at the situation at Pippa’s wedding, and take an alternate reading: George is throwing a tantrum for whatever selfish reason and Kate is doing her job as a parent and parenting her child. We only saw a brief moment of that interaction, in still photos, from a distance, we don’t know what happened, but because of our own negative bias we assume that interaction reflects negatively on Kate.
The topic of Kate’s favoritism toward Charlotte also came up quite a bit, because Kate was holding Charlotte’s hand and interacting with her more than the other children. An alternate reading: Charlotte is more likely to run off than any of the other kids, so Kate did her job as a parent and kept a hand and an eye on Charlotte to make sure she didn’t run off. Princess Madeleine does the same thing with Princess Leonore – except for one brief moment at Alexander’s Christening, Madeleine has never held Nicolas in public outside of his own Christening – yet no one calls favoritism there. That’s because Madeleine doesn’t have the negative bias that Kate does.
Another reason that the line of acceptability gets crossed when discussing William and Kate’s parenting is because parenting is a hot topic that people disagree on and get into flame wars about. “Mommy Wars” is a thing, and “mommy shaming” is a thing, where people not only defend their opinions vehemently but will attack others for having a differing opinion.
People disagree on breast feeding, being a stay at home mom versus a working mom, having a nanny, and everything else, and they have strong opinions on these subjects and react emotionally when discussing them. People also have differing opinions on what a “normal childhood” is, and when celebrities or royals talk about wanting to give their kids a “normal childhood” it often rings false for a lot of people who are listening to them. Because of the passion and intense emotions surrounding the topic of parenting and the differing ideas of what a “normal childhood” are, I think that gets put on William and Kate without them actually doing anything wrong – where they do something we wouldn’t or handle a situation differently than we would and we attack them for it (I am sure I am guilty of this).
Another issue with the “Mommy Wars” is the misogyny of it: “Mommy Wars” is a thing; “Daddy Wars” is not. And that is reflective in the comments about William and Kate’s parenting. Most of the comments about William and Kate’s parenting are directed at Kate. Now, that may be partially due to the fact that Kate is more popular and gets written about and discussed more (not only on here but in general), but it may be partially due to the misogyny not only in our culture at large but especially in and around the topic of parenting. William certainly does get some negative criticism (especially on here) but Kate is the one getting the most of it (especially in other places).
I don’t want to put a moratorium on the topic of William and Kate’s parenting, and I do think discussion of William and Kate’s PR about parenting and how it relates to their work is relevant, but I do think there is a line of acceptability that we all need not to cross.
Where is that line of acceptability? That’s always a tough question when it comes to a subjective topic, because different people will have different opinions on where that line is. Some will think that any negative discussion about a topic is crossing that line, while others will think there is no line and all negative comments are acceptable. In the world at large, I think there is a line at comments that spread hatred, comments that advocate for or incite violence, comments that are personal attacks and are meant to demean others.
I understand that William and Kate put the topic of their parenting out there themselves and use it for PR, and I understand the desire to question their PR and call them out for their hypocrisy. I think it is acceptable to discuss what William and Kate put out there publicly, what they use for PR, and whether or not their actions are hypocritical, but I think attacking them for parenting differently than we would and assuming the worst from a few still photos because of our own negative bias is crossing the line of acceptability.
Because William and Kate are taxpayer-funded public figures: Discussion of William and Kate’s comments about their kids is acceptable. Discussion of William and Kate’s parenting as it relates to their work ethic and/or excuses not to work is acceptable. Discussion of William and Kate’s parenting as it relates to their PR is acceptable. But: Personal attacks are not acceptable. Attacking William and Kate for parenting differently than others is not acceptable.
Overall, what I will advocate is that we collectively (and I am including myself in this) recognize our own negative bias, be more understanding of the fact that different people parent differently, and recognize the fact that we don’t have a full picture or full knowledge of William and Kate’s lives and that some things aren’t always what they appear.
298 thoughts on “Should we stop commenting on Kate’s parenting?”
Well written, KMR. I have no opinion on her parenting. I would not like my photo taken when I’m telling off my kids and I can understand and empathise with her control freak ways wanting the kids to behave in front of the cameras. After a few years of being a parent one learns humility regarding parenting abilities. There are lots of reasons why a 3 year old cries and that may have had something to do with Kate and it may not, I don’t really care and I’m not sure why it became front page news. However, it seems to me that Kate is not authentic and in absence of her speaking, we are trying to read her body language. This includes her behaviour around her children. Also, I think there is suspicion that William’s comments about being a hands on dad are an excuse to avoid work – so anytime he appears to be that hands on dad, there is interest.
We’ve never seen William being a hands-on parent, so I think that has a lot to do with it. Unless it’s a staged photo, he’s either totally absent or he’s off in the background while the children are with Kate. His interactions with the children at the party in Canada were stiff and awkward, like the childless uncle who’s trying to figure out exactly what you do with these little squirmy creatures.
For that matter, so is waity the useless lazy as entileted middleton. Her hands on is for photo op PR.
Willnot cannot carol middleton USE the middleton children for parenting in PR tonot perform duties while wasting all taxpayers Duchy millions and staements – every time, to pretend to they are parents when we all know mum nanny Maria is the parent to these two entiled lazy uninformed, waste and to prompt carol the meddlesome MIL.
Does this really meet the comment criteria?
I would hope not. :/
I saw some INSANE comments over the last few threads about Kate and her parenting – it was kind of embarrassing how over-the-top spiteful they were. In general I’m finding that the need of some people (and sometimes the blog author) to read bad intentions into Kate’s actions is really off-putting. Try to stay balanced, people. Otherwise our legitimate criticism is lost in the fumes of sour grapes. I suspect that Kate is actually a wonderful mother.
I wonder how good of a parent Kate is, or can be, considering she herself requires her mother to help her manage her day to day life. We know from her own words how much she values being taken care of. What impact does that have on her interactions with her own kids? I don’t know. Also, she’s shown again and again how much she struggles to find other people interesting. Her own family members have mentioned it. Does that trickle down to her relationship with her kids? I don’t know. I agree that her public interactions with her children, both pics and videos, come off as inauthentic, though I don’t blame her for wanting to be perceived as a good parent.
Yes. She looks awkward with them, like a babysitter who still doesn’t really know the kids. You only see that “spontaneous” comfortable mom in their posed photos. It gives a completely different visual to contrast their words. Just like everything else they say and do. Nothing matches.
How do you know how much help she requires from her mother?
Christine huge plus one
I don’t have much to say about their parenting style. But the Norland Nanny outfit absolutely bothers me. Maria wearing this 1950’s atrocity in front of the world is terrible. I completely understand Norland Nannies must wear it at times, but it’s high time Will and Kate step in.
Maria looks like a 3rd class citizen wearing this horrible uniform to royal and non-royal functions. It’s so humiliating to see in pictures. What if a person of color was wearing it? Imagine the outrage. I sort of feel as if people think it’s okay because she’s white and because the school may require it at certain times.
Honestly, Maria’s brown outfit bothers me more than anything regarding their parenting style. Horrendous.
Actually, there us no rule that governs the norland uniform after graduation. Their own website says they aren’t required to wear the uniform unless specifically requested to do so by their employers.
Therefore every time you see Nanny Maria in that norland uniform, know that she was specifically asked to wear it by William and Kate.
It’s strange that all of a sudden nanny maria is being asked to wear her uniform because the last time any nanny for the royal family wore a uniform was turn of the century when it was normal for ALL staff to wear uniform.
Norland nannies are not new to the royal family, but they haven’t been required to wear their uniform. They have been a discreet presence in the background, at best smartly dressed.
Nanny maria has accompanied them on tour, been present at public engagements whilst on tour (NZ/AUS she was in the room as George had his very public play date), in the presence of the Queen both privately and publicly. And she was never in uniform.
This recent uniform thing started with Charlotte and *Kate’s love of Downton Abbey that has also found expression in her presenting herself visually in a 1930s/40s silhouette.
*she very publicly visited the set for hours during her pregnancy with Charlotte. Prior to this, her professed favourite tv show was TOWIE and that showed in her self presentation of big hair and cartoon-like awful make up.
Charlotte’s christening was a 1930s/40s cosplay tableau complete with a uniformed servant.
Pippa’s wedding was clearly a similar situation with the style of Kate’s dress, the 1930s/40s vintage cars, and a uniformed servant.
I don’t think William and Kate give any consideration to what a visually uniformed servant says about them or implications of it. Yet continue to insist they are ‘normal’. I think they only care about the tableau they are presenting visually, and not a thought about the subliminal messaging.
It’s the same kind of thoughtlessness that had them hang the negro page painting in their drawing room and only remove the plaque when a VIP black couple came to visit.
The Norland Lineage is a point of pride for those nannies. It is a very exclusive school, very distinguished. I would imagine some of the nannies might want to occasionally wear the uniform to formal events, again, as a point of pride. Let’s not exclude the possibility that Kate had nothing to do with that choice.
I’m not downplaying how prestigious this nanny school is or how coveted the graduates are or even the pride they take in their work.
I’m saying that they aren’t required to wear their uniforms unless their employers ask them to. It says as much on their own website.
And when Nanny Maria first joined the household, she never wore the uniform even when she was accompanying WK to events with the Queen OR when she attended George’s first official public engagement.
The entire world wanted to have a good look at him and they did, with nanny maria in the room in smart clothing NOT her uniform.
The previous nanny, also norland trained, attended public events including George’s christening in smart clothing and not the uniform. Perhaps people didn’t realise she was the nanny even though she’s in the pictures.
This recent need to signpost the nanny by making her wear the uniform is a recent development on the part of WK and happened after Charlotte was born.
Without a doubt, the families that insist their norland nannies wear the uniforms are oligarchs and or new money people and we laugh at them for being so insecure in their newfound wealth they need to scream it from the roof tops.
We do not know who made the choice – Kate or Maria. Evidence, from your perspective, might point in the direction of Kate. But it may have been Maria. We just do not know.
Notice that i include William in this decision therefore my criticism is both William AND Kate.
Based on what we know about William and his coterie of yes men/ staff, i doubt any suggestion to nanny maria would be turned down.
To me it’s really simple. As Herazeus said, they present choreographed tableaux which also give no doubt as to their rarefied status. The nanny is part of that tableau and hence the uniform- to highlight that she is a servant. Downton Abbey Mark II.
Willy never lets us forget he’s a prince, and neither does Kate. Meanwhile, Maria is used with little regard except for her PR usefulness.
The uniform is a status symbol for Maria. She most likely either chose to wear it or was happy to wear it for the wedding. It says that she’s a step above every other caregiver there- she is special and “better” than the average nanny or any other hired help.
That “uniform” is a huge honor, not an average uniform. It signifies that she’s highly educated and deserves respect- she not just “hired help”
I can’t think of anything equivalent and I’m not familiar enough with the military traditions to draw comparisons to anything like dress blues, but I want to stress that this is much more than a uniform that she’s forced to wear.
If it’s a status symbol then why doesn’t she wear it all the time? I doubt she has much choice about when she wears it. The Cambs haphazardly choose to have her costumed at certain times (their little tableaux) to announce *their* status-they don’t care about hers as they are tone deaf.
Franscesca: my knowledge of Norland nannies isn’t just academic. I have a few friends who employ them.
It is not a requirement or dress uniform unless employers specifically requests it.
Further, i live in a neighbourhood full of people who are more likely to hire a norland nanny than a standard nanny. Without fail, the only families that insist they parade about in their uniforms are Oligarchs and new money.
A nanny is very easy to spot in the family groups without the uniform.
If Maria is wearing her uniform to stand out from other servants then that is a very poor assessment of her character because that is someone who will instill grandiose qualities in the children.
And in the case of WK, Maria didn’t start wearing her uniform until after Charlotte was born. And it says everything i need to know about them if even Charles, a man who lives as a rich Edwardian gentleman, never insisted his nannies parade about in their norland uniforms. WK are behaving like the Middletons and their signet rings.
Are we really going to pretend that the Nanny “uniform” is the same as a military uniform? Because it’s not. A military uniform confirms service to the country whereas a Nanny uniform confirms that she isn’t part of the family. It’s like watching an episode of the Help when she wears this. Wearing the uniform for school functions is different because they are all wearing it , but wearing it in public is classist and there is no reason to justify wearing it. And how can we tell if a Maria is proud and wants to wear? We can’t. She barely wears it unless it’s time for a Middelton show (misspelling intentional).
Maria wears it when asked because it is her Job and she isn’t looking to get fired.
Thank you – ‘for whiny i am a prince the regular – waity and carol middletons – ‘servant’ is the key to their climbing pretense status.
Thank you KMR for this Post.
It rubs me the wrong way too. It takes away from the “hands on/normal parenting” they like to say they are. I agree that Maria only wears that to certain events. It reeks of elitism.
Exactly my thoughts. I do not see Kate as a wonderful mother at all. I don’t see Kate as a horrible mother. What irks me is their insistence on being touted as hands on parents and then making sure that we all know that they have a Uniformed Nanny. That is a contradiction as far as I’m concerned. For the love of God, just shut up about what kind of parents you are, that to me places the kids in a PR prop genre. Just stop setting yourselves up for the criticism, I can understand it because when you are all over the place saying ‘we’re hands on’ and then trying to go all ‘normal’ and complaining about how hard parenting is, it is absolutely going to set people off. You are ***not*** a normal family, and furthermore you only want to be seen that way when it’s convenient for you, I’m speaking to Bill and Cathy, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Normal families can’t jet off on a whim, normal families don’t have money to spend on whatever, normal families don’t get a gazillion dollar pacifier as a baby gift. No one is buying that hogwash, and seriously I don’t think that there would be a great interest in waity’s and Will’s parenting if **they** weren’t throwing it out there for whatever reason, and that uniformed nanny bit is just plain showing off.
They want to be normal? Really? So when Kate gets back from her arduous job does she find a sink full of dishes to be washed, a full washing machine to be unloaded, meal to be cooked, dog to be walked, bills to be paid??? I have a full time job and three kids, I’m at at 5 am and rarely sit down before 9pm. That is the NORMAL. I’m not unusual at all, life is hectic and I have little help. These two really don’t understand normal, don’t understand hard work. Being a perfect parent is almost impossible, we just all do the best we can, learn from mistakes, enjoy the highs and get through the lows.
I’ve had a full time nanny – not a Norland – and in itself having a nanny is not easy.
My issue is with the word “normal” itself. Because for W&K, having staff clean their house is “normal”, having a nanny is “normal”, because they are basing their idea of “normal” off of their rich friends. For people in lower economic classes, they have a different idea of what “normal” means. I dislike when royals use the word “normal”, and that goes for Albert and Charlene and Victoria and Daniel as well, not just William and Kate.
Yes KMR I agree with you totally and Birdy’s above mentioned comment as well-I really do not believe that Will and Kate -Especially Will have a clue of what is truly normal.The nanny thing seems to be noticed more when they are with Kate’s family and I also don’t think either of them are “normal “enough to know how to be the truest of hands on parents.Perhaps you’ll be blogging or already have blogged about William on cover of GQ-I read some of what he has said about wanting his children to have such normal lives but this man has zero -Really zero idea of this normal life for which he is searching It is somewhat sad.What I get of all things put out there by both William and Kate and their desires for normalcy is to be independently wealthy and answer for their actions and show up when it suits them-in the lime light at times and given perfect seclusion as well.When Marie Antoinette said “let them eat cake”She never said let them have their cake and eat it too!Sorry my response is sort of all over the place here -and one last thing- what photo is it where Kate seems to be scolding George am I the only person who has missed this ?Ok tangent over
“What irks me is their insistence on being touted as hands on parents and then making sure that we all know that they have a Uniformed Nanny. That is a contradiction as far as I’m concerned.”
Just because someone has a nanny doesn’t make them not an involved, hands on parent.
“I don’t think that there would be a great interest in waity’s and Will’s parenting if **they** weren’t throwing it out there for whatever reason, and that uniformed nanny bit is just plain showing off.”
I disagree. I think there would be interest no matter what they said. And if they said nothing about it, people would still come up with negative things to say about it because “they must hate their kids because they never talk about them” or “what horrible things are they trying to hide by never mentioning their kids”.
Regular people who have nannies also have real jobs that take them away from the house. Will and Kate don’t have that. So to pretend they are super involved when they have plenty of free time and staff cleaning the house and cooking for them and still needing one and likely two nannies… not hands -on at all.
Regular people who have nannies can be hands on because when they get home from work they take over caring from the kids. Will and Kate don’t ever do that.
We have no idea how much time William and Kate spend with their kids. It is not at all accurate to say that just because they have a nanny or two that they are not involved parents. It is also not at all accurate to say that they are involved parents just because they say so. Because we just don’t have enough evidence for either conclusion.
I can see them being hands-on parents while having a nanny. We have to remember – if they didn’t have a full-time nanny, then lol would they get a babysitter every time they do an engagement? If they can afford it, why not have the comfort and stability of being able to have someone available full-time to care for the children as needed – someone who the children trust and are comfortable with because it’s the same person all the time, and someone they can trust to leave the children with esp for longer tours. If they chose to have a nanny or someone just on call for duties, they probably wouldn’t be able to get someone as qualified as Maria, since people that well-trained want the stability and salary of a full-time nanny position, not just a semi-regular babysitting gig.
Don’t get me wrong – I have a LOT of issues with them saying they have a normal family life. A nanny allows a lot of comforts – like when Kate chooses to take George to a museum, she doesn’t have to worry about who will be watching Charlotte or vice versa, like most mothers would. It makes life much easier on Kate because she doesn’t have to worry about finding a babysitter when she’s working or whatever. But I just think hands-on and normal are, or at least can be, two different things.
Maggie – Mineapolis: You make very good points. Except they do not apply to Kate because the nanny accompanies her everywhere. When she’s papped out and about with either child, Nanny Maria is part of her entourage.
The only anecdotal gossip were nanny Maria is not accompanying the children is when Carole is taking them out.
When Kate takes them out, from swimming lessons to petting zoo farms to museums etc, nanny maria is also with them.
@Herazeus – There aren’t very many candid shots of Kate in recent years, but a quick google search returned several shots of Kate and George without a nanny.
In australia: http://68.media.tumblr.com/859c357ce2e5936281eaea5a866673e2/tumblr_n4edq4lOEj1rfi4ydo2_1280.jpg
No idea where this is!
Some park – I suppose the nanny could be off camera somewhere in this one, though: http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-NwX7SOo9c5w/VZVQnclm5aI/AAAAAAAAQ_0/9hYFd6vnOBU/s1600/Screen%2BShot%2B2015-07-02%2Bat%2B9.52.20%2BAM.png
Herazeus – you make a good point about Kate sometimes having the nanny come along even when Kate herself is with her children.
But what frustrates me about Kate’s (and William’s) parenting is not that she’s not hands-on. Taking the nanny on vacation or on excursions does indicate she isn’t planning to spend every single moment of a certain outing or vacation with the kids. But I don’t think that alone makes a mother not hands-on, just as I wouldn’t say a full-time working mother is not a hands-on parent simply because she has to leave her children at daycare during working hours. HOWEVER, while the inclusion of the nanny on outings/vacations and what it means in terms of planning to have significant times without the kids around doesn’t make Kate not hands-on in my mind, it does, for me, make Kate a hypocrite and workshy when she says she can’t even spare an hour to honor the Irish Guard on St. Patrick’s Day. I think she can be hands-on without constantly being the only caretaker for her children, but then she needs to recognize the hypocrisy in being willing to take time without the kids (which imo is healthy for all moms even if most can’t do it much) to do her own life stuff, but not to fulfill her duty as a royal and future Queen Consort. THAT’s my thing – not so much about her needing to spend almost every moment of the day with her kids in order to be a hands-on parent, and more about the Cambridges’ self-serving manner in which they very selectively choose when they simply cannot imagine spending even 2 hours away from the children once every 2 weeks, and when they are much more okay about doing it.
Also – tbh, atm the I can only rmbr two times Kate has been papped with the kids while bringing the nanny along. One time was while pregnant with Charlotte and taking George to swim – but c’mon, it’s hard enough to move around with much coordination or quickness in water (in terms of walking in it, etc.) while at normal weight (at least for me), so can you imagine how difficult it must be to be able to quickly follow around a 2 year old boy learning how to swim when less than a week from your due date? Huge luxury for Kate that the nanny is available to help out like that for sure. But imo that doesn’t mean not hands-on. I was kind of impressed she was driving and even getting in a pool at 9 months pregnant haha (and yes I know most woman work until their due date, etc. – I can’t just imagine carrying an 8 lb human being inside of you and still seeking out physical activity like swimming :P).
The other time I can rmbr is the Mustique trip, also while pregnant with Charlotte. That one bothered me at the time, but not because they took the nanny so much as why. At least I imagine the reason being that Mustique has a LOT of activities that a 1.5 year old boy cannot participate in. In fact, it seems like a majority of the things to do there require being an adult, or at least someone old enough to drink, not fall off boats, etc.. So of course they needed a nanny! Otherwise, one or both of them would have to miss out on most of the Mustique experience lol. So my thing is – why not pick a more child-friendly vacation? My family traveled a lot on vacation when I was younger, and the thing that I remember the most is just how horrified they were at even the possibility of doing any major thing on a trip without me being able to join them. They prioritized family time over all else, and although I do think it’s healthy for parents to take time to themselves and get a break from the kids and my parents probably were a little too focused on making it all about me, I also think that there are many possible vacation spots that have a better mix of adult things and 1.5 year old child things. So that bugged me.
But when else has Kate been seen with the nanny and the kids?
Just to add a thought.
Maria and the other nanny could be specifically tasked to one of the children in case a situation arose with a break-in attack on KP or AH. W&K have to look through a lens ala Lindberg. If that’s the situation, I can understand why two.
I agree with those up thread about the selectivity of Maria wearing/not wearing her uniform. I think it’s a sign of elitism. Maria probably doesn’t care but it undermines W&M’s “just like us.” I’ve only seen two uniformed nannies in my life and both worked for extremely (and snotty) wealthy . I’ve known several families rich and middle class who never asked for their nanny to wear a uniform. They treated her like a valued, mutually respected part of the family.
Lobbit: Australian pictures: that was a pap stroll in govt house. There is video to match. Kate did not wander away from the building. She was at all times near a big window.
She also didn’t complain about those pictures and video despite their being a clear invasion of privacy were it not for the fact that they were a set up.
Paps later said she was outside for a very short space of time.
Kensington pics: firstly, tjose pictures are before Maria was hired. Nanny Jessie was in charge at that point.
Secondly, the dates they were taken which were early december pretty much proved that the pram was empty because it would have been too small to hold a baby the size of George who was pretty big by his christening 3 months earlier. This was another set up for pap stroll purposes. I remember it vividly because many people on hater AND sugar blogs couldn’t work out why she was pretending to be pushing a pram through Kensington Gardens that was patently too small for a 5-6 mth old and a big baby like George specifically.
The last set of pictures were also a set up, this time at a petting zoo type farm in Buckleburry. Maria was cropped out of most of the pictures, but there is one picture that you can see her walking with Kate and George.
These pictures were also thought to be a pap set up because they were very close and Tanna claimed the camera looked like an iphone. RPOs wouldn’t have let anyone get that close to them. These were exclusive to an australian magazine as i recall.
It’s interesting how often Carole and or Kate used to set up these pap strolls in the early days. And always exclusive to the same publications. Her pregnancy with George too. William eventually threatened to sue any UK media that printed them, so they showed up in overseas media. Yet the specific examples you’ve posted were didn’t provoke any complaints. A sure sign that thry were set up.
Maggie – Mineapollis: i do not have any issues with nannies. Hired by Kate or anyone. I was raised by nannies and i still loved my parents who remained involved despite my ever present nannies. If i have kids, i’ll probably dial up the nanny agency before the kids have been born!!
Nannies on vacation? Pretty normal. Nannies to be in charge of the children whilst you get on with whatever you need to do? Pretty normal. Infact, i do not subscribe to the notion that parents have to be around their kids all the time in order to be good parents or even hands on. Even if they are SAHPs.
Where i object to Kate’s nannies is the pretence that she doesn’t have them or that she’s doing all the work even if there is a nanny, nightnurse / maternity nurse, Carole.
Mind you, we’ve gone from full on denial of nannies despite pictorial evidence to uniformed nanny.
I am alittle surprised at nanny accompanying her everywhere when she is with the kids, but she’s not the first royal to do this. The saintly diana had nannies accompany her at all outings with the boys, so Kate is merely following what has gone on before.
I find it ironic that in trying to recreate a normal middleclass family structure, they are actually recreating William’s royal childhood rather than Kate’s childhood sans warring parents.
I guess in essence i agree with you. We do not object to the nanny, but the PR narrative that pretends nanny doesn’t exist and or Kate does all the work.
Honestly, @Herazeus, I resepct your knowledge of all things royal, but your reponse is the very thing I struggle with on KMR. You have decided – with no supporting evidence whatsoever – that Kate strolled through Kensignton Gardens with an EMPTY pram. You have decided – depsite evidence to the contrary – that Kate could not have possibly EVER ventured out (ever) with her child sans nanny. And that’s fine – speculate at will. But let us acknowledge facts as well, which, in this case, do not support your suppositions.
The picture of Kate in Kensington Garden that I posted was taken on Dec 4, 2013 (google “kate middleton and george, kensinton garden, popsuger” to see the original image with time stamp). George would have been just over 4 months old at this point. You say that George would have been too big for the pram his mother is pushing – which must mean that there is no baby in the pram at all. But that’s just not true. The pram in question is a Silver Cross overnight pram. Released in 2012, it is obscenely expensive (classic Kate) and it accomodates infants up to a year old. So George would have fit quite comfortably in it – and there is absolutely no reason to believe that he wasn’t resting comfortably in it in that photo.
Your comments about the Australia images of Kate and George are inaccurate. It’s been awhile, so perhaps the details are a bit hazy, but the fact is that Kensington Palace DID in fact whine about press intrusion when the pictures of Kate and George on the grounds of Government House, Canberra, emerged (See the story for yourself – google “UK Express, Kate and George Government House”). Select European media outlets ran the images, but UK media outlets deferred to the Cambridges and did not publish them – even while skewering them for complaining.
And TBQH, I don’t think it matters how long George and Kate were out and about – or which nanny was in service at the time or how many photo ops Kate and Carole may have orchestrated in the past and present. None of these issues are relevant to my point, which is that, contrary to your comments, Kate has, in fact, been seen on more than one occasion alone with her children.
Frankly, no matter how awful or opportunistic or inattentive one might believe Kate to be, the notion that she has NEVER, EVER been alone with her babies outdoors is somewhat incredible to me – as in very, very unlikely.
***Forgive me for not citing my sources with links. I didn’t want my reply to get stuck in moderation. I am happy to provide links in the morning. For now, I’m heading to bed. Also forgive me if I sound adversarial. I am not accusing you of dishonesty – I just think that negative biases here sometimes run so deep that they render verifiable fact irrelevant. It annoys me.
Lobbit: i did not come to these conclusions by myself, and there was conclusive proof. Video and all.
Further, the exclusive set ups were something of a pattern and to specific magazines that are known to make such deals.
Further, if i make a definitive statement, i base it on video and where possible as early a video as possible because those tend to be closer to raw footage rather than pictures because photos can be deceiving especially in the Kate public narrative.
My comments may come across as negative bias because alot of what we are being shown is a PR set up and i rail against PR set ups of all celebrities. Call it professional interest because that used to be my career.
And because i care about the PR of these set ups, i pay attention to that aspect of their presentation. I do not automatically jump to conclusions without looking at these things. Most of the time, apart from historical information, my comments tend to centre on PR presentation or fashion.
Do i care whether Kate uses a nanny? No, i do not. What i care about is the setup whereby she pretends not to have one when she does. That goes into the PR narrative of her being the perfect mother that she has been trying to sell since the birth of her first child.
Does Kate have to present as the perfect mother? No. And no one is asking her to be. Yet she persists in this image presentation to extent that images are manipulated to exclude the nanny.
That’s a narrative alot of celebrities also try to pull off and i call them out just as i call out Kate.
I agree with Lobbit. Herazeus, let’s say the pictures are staged every single time when it’s just Kate and a kid. Why doesn’t that still prove she is capable of taking care of the kids without the nanny (even if, yes, she also certainly does avail herself of the nanny’s services)? Heck, if she wasn’t capable of watching her kids by herself, why would she ever go out of her way to make sure she is photographed in public without the nanny given that if she messed up as a mom bc she can’t do it well, then photographers would be there to document it bc she called them.
Polo is another good example – yes, KP invited the photographers, but she’s gone through two polo games watching George by herself, and with multiple photographers there, it would have come out if she couldn’t take care of him properly at those games.
Also don’t get why it matters if someone else was the nanny instead of Maria for one of the pictures. She still had a nanny but was out with the kid by herself.
You say there is definitive pictorial evidence only going one way – your way – which I’m confused about given that so far only lobbit has provided pictorial evidence. I’ll ask again, what pictures exist of Kate with her kids and the nanny while in private other than George swimming and Mustique? I didn’t know one of the farm pictures showed the nanny – could you please possibly post a link to that?
Also, while I don’t deny that Kate has set up pictures with paps before, and the royal family in general is not immune to doing things like that often as well, but I did a quick google image search of “kate middleton prince george paparazzi” and it took me like 10 minutes to find these other pictures of her and the kid(s) without the nanny….it would be a very remarkable coincidence if these all ended up staged, esp since some are cell phone pics from random passerby. Also just want to make it clear that I’m not saying that the lack of a nanny in these picture means for certain she was not present at those moments – I’m only giving these examples because you brought up always being seen with the nanny and pictorial evidence first.
With George, August 2014 in the KP park:
W/ both kids May 2016 also in KP public area:
Sometime last year at the horse races:
October 2015 with George at a museum:
Shopping last year w/ George:
Bucklebury farm with George (can’t rmbr the date)
Oh and just because this came up during my google search, thought I’d include it because it’s a picture of Maria soon after she was hired (sooo around February/March of 2014), pushing George around in the pram that you say he was too big for several months before that. Is she pretending to push him too?
I doubt that Nanny Maria chose to wear her uniform. It shrieks This is our nanny and she’s inferior to us. Imagine people thinking that she was a guest at the wedding! I was disgusted and commented on it at the time. I imagine her love for the children keeps her with them rather than enjoying being put in her place by W&K.
Should we also ask the servers who handed out food and drinks to dress as they like?
Rose: There is a requirement for waiters to dress to a uniform which doesn’t exist for nannies.
To pretend the two situations are the same is to insult RoseUK and our collective intelligence.
Both are being paid to do a job. What’s the difference? There is no requirement for servers to dress a certain way, it’s completely up to their employer.
That’s the snob common carol waity middleton – showing the kids mum Nanny Maria is ‘justthe (beloved) Nanny!
No reason Maria could not wear casual – as The Firm/BP allowed her to wear in AZ at george first public trip and ‘play date’. Nanny Maria was appropriately attired – NOT in her graduate uniform, she wears proudly. No reason at non aristo private wedding, of a family she is trusted with the most precious -considering the rest are common middletons/matthews. – Maria not be allowed to wear regular clothes. All carol Middleton climbing using tax funds to pretend she is the 2d wife/mother of ‘ I am a prince’ kids.
That’s an interesting point; QE has uniformed staff who pay her (rightly so),deference at official palaces, events, and Middleton family wants to emulate in their own “palace familia.”
Could be true. Could be too that Carole wanted and W/K passed on and getting heat for. Always hard to know how much those two really think about anything –not saying they don’t but they automatically get credited for brains from attending St. Andrews.
As public people I think anything is up for consumption but I do see a level of vitriol that isn’t necessary, and I know I’ve contributed to it a bit as a lot of what they do and say bothers me regarding their children. Such as the way they speak about George, and how bad he is; and how they use them as excuses to prop themselves up, like they are pawns; or how disconnected they seem to be from them. I do not doubt they love their kids but I do not think they are nearly so involved as they constantly parrot. I think it’s up for criticism because they bring it up a lot, saying they can’t work because only bad parents work, basically, and all that other garbage they do that is infuriating.
I think it’s fine to comment on and negatively criticize their comments and actions, but we don’t need to be rude while doing it. That just makes us look bad.
Yes, and we only know what hey choose to share. Or what we do see. Personally I do not think they come across well, and not because I don’t think they don’t love their kids; but I think they’re selfish and use them as pawns and excuses not to work, and the favoritism bugs me as everyone obviously has seen in my comments. I do not think it makes them terrible parents or anything, but I don’t think it reflects well upon them nor does it jive with that happy perfect family image they wish to portray to the world.
But it’s like – a lot of the things William has gone and done, mostly, jetted off on holiday during Charlotte’s first Easter, just a total disregard for family time and being a parent, but I guess I see both of them as stunted emotionally for various reasons. And I admit it must be hard in the public eye when you want to show yourselves and your kids in a certain way to get them to cooperate and to control them is difficult. I wish they’d relax a bit. But I am also cynical enough to see things like the pictures of the kiddos and W&K and think, meh, PR. Or the comments of they can’t work because they are full time parents, despite having hordes of staff and jetting off on vacations without the kids or bringing nannies, when the purpose of having the staff there is so they CAN work. That’s my personal frustration with using the kids as PR pawns, and I get all royals do it to an extent but not like this to avoid things. There’s a line I know they want to balance and it’s got to be hard–but I don’t think they do it well at all, it’s give and take, not take take take and hide… I hope that makes sense. 🙂
I do not think they are bad parents, but I do think commenting on them in the context of being parents is okay as long as people aren’t too vitriolic about it? I’ve seen some crazy stuff, not so much here, but elsewhere. I always try to preface my criticisms as I see them with reminding people I do know, they do love their kids, of course they do, and I do think in their own way they are doing what they see is right. William hates the media, so of course he will blame them and teach his kids to be wary of them; but it’s not beneficial for those adorable kids to hide them away behind walls which he says specifically he wishes not to do.
I have a young child myself and I know how rough it is. I can be a bit of a control freak with him at events but as he’s gotten older I’ve told myself to relax. If he misbehaves, well, we can sort it out later, though he is mostly a well behaved child and has been in weddings, etcetera without much incident, but you DO want them to look and act heir best as it IS a reflection upon you. I think a lot of that is on Kate, more than William, seeing as that family seems so image conscious.
I also think perhaps we take out our own frustrations regarding whatever is going on in our lives and use this and complaining about them as an outlet? I feel sensitive about the kids because I just don’t like seeing the blatant favoritism of C over G, and the things they’ve said about G, because I see it in real life and it just makes me so sad. Not that they don’t love their kids or anything.
Gosh, that was long-winded, sorry!! I do agree that the crazy makes everyone here look bad but I think most people are probably just fed up with W&K’s stuff and it boils over into parenting. I watch videos of things like this, and by that make an opinion instead of a moment in time in a photo, or I try to!
I love this post. I think it’s also important to remember that we don’t know the personalities of George or Charlotte all that well. So it’s hard to know how to feel about the parenting of Kate or William. And tbh, while I have many issues with their workload, I do really get the feeling that the Cambridges, or at least Kate, do know their children and care for them. I don’t deny that they have a nanny that does help raise the children, but I really do think Kate tries to be a good mother. Now that may trade off unnecessarily with her ability to be a good member of the BRF (and I think it does), but you’re so right, KMR, that perhaps the frustration with that is spilling over to how we think of Kate’s abilities as a mother.
Also George is almost two years older than Charlotte. I’m not a parent but just from babysitting I can say that OF COURSE he should be reprimanded more than Charlotte any time they do the same “bad” thing at this age. An almost four year old is actually somewhat capable of knowing not to stamp on someone’s dress, whereas a just-turned two year old really would not know much better. Or even if that is not the case usually, perhaps Kate thinks/knows it is with her children.
Anyways, their status as public figures gives us a right to question their work ethic. But perhaps as KMR has said, we really should consider whether our critixisms about other parts of their life are as deserved.
I don’t think having a nanny means the parents are not involved or not good parents. People can have a nanny and still be involved, good parents.
I think it’s perfectly fair to criticize W&K’s work ethic and quality of work, and to criticize when they use their kids as an excuse not to work. But nothing gives us the right to be rude to them as people.
I agree with you, Maggie. I think Kate is a pretty involved mother; don’t know that, but I think she probably is. Heaven knows she’s got the time off the job to devote to them!
And I agree with KMR too. I think that we get so set in our opinions some times we refuse to let go of them even in the face of contrary information. And by “we” I mean everyone, not just here.
KMR, I applaud your comments.
Bravo. Well said.
My gosh. No snap shot captures the entire realm of the work of parenting. How could we possibly know what is really going on? And even if we did…quit judging and worry about your own responsibilities.
Yes, parenting is a hot topic, for everyone.Especially if you are a parent,you are vulnerable.
We should never forget, no matter how someone parents his/her child/ren, love is the key.Kate and William love their children and Kate clearly wants her children to be good persons as adults and this is a honorable task. There are too many people out there who don’t think about the effect of their children.They don’t educate them or teach them morals and create monsters as adults(there are enough out there who don’t understand morals or love as adults).
Therefore, I don’t worry about Kate’s children and I think we can discuss if a photo looks horrible(the GQ-one) but I, personaly trust K and W in their parenting. If George and Charlotte will not get along with royal life one day because they were isolated, it’s K and W’s fault of course.But as any loving parent, they will surely feel bad about it without us saying it.
I am not a parent. I am an aunt and I can say that I would rather worry on how my nieces are being brought up and having a childhood. It is up to them as adults to be responsible. Kate seems to want to control the George and Charlotte. I don’t think Kate realises that you can’t and kids are not dolls.
Especially if they really become public figures as the RF and title they hold allows ( and nothing changes). Waity carol tne middletons in their position is not the way, the respect Di raise her children – the awareness of what the RF responsibilities are – and what G and c will play as adults.
I think what I always just felt sad about all these is that G&C doesn’t seem known at all to the royal side of the family especially if you see the Wessexes and the Phillips together.
Well written! Thank you for this post – now I have something to ponder this fine Tuesday morning. I am generally very cynical/negative about the Cambridges, but being a parent to a 4 year old and 1 year old has made me come to K+W’s defense sometimes. A weird feeling.
Also, something I noticed when I watch the Swedish weddings/christenings and then go to blogs or RD and see what people have decided based on photos – it is INCREDIBLY easy to manipulate or make wrong judgements based on photographs versus watching the whole video or being there and seeing it in person. Now, I’m very, very cautious forming an opinion because of that.
“it is INCREDIBLY easy to manipulate or make wrong judgements based on photographs versus watching the whole video or being there and seeing it in person.”
Absolutely. What could seem wonderful in a photo could seem terrible in video, and what could seem terrible in video could seem wonderful in person. And the same goes for the public version of situations/people and the private version.
Agree KMR. A picture shows only a minimal part of the situation. How many times I saw pictures of Kate where she looked totally uninterested and bored but when I saw the videos she was interacting and looked amused. We don’t know what really hapenned for Kate say something to George and make him cry. He is like any other boy at his age and Kate was doing her job as a mother. What makes me suspicious is because she and William always spoke negatively about George and for this reason many people see them (specialy Kate) as bad parents. But of course we don’t know how they are as parents at home.
Yes, and don’t forget that the photos chosen for publication are usually a few out of dozens that were taken, and editors chose photos to match the story they want to tell. They run a photo of Diana with her head down and a pained expression, and the headline says “Di regrets divorce” when she may have stepped on a rock, had a bit of indigestion, or been distressed at the photographers chasing her. It is hard to keep our objectivity when confronted with a manufactured narrative.
Such a great post, KMR.
W+K are held to a higher standard because they demand to be treated as special. The entire concept of royalty revolves around a particular family being inherently superior to all others. They are also increasingly a commodity needing to be ‘sold’ for privilege to continue. So, an unrelenting PR juggernaut elevates them as possessors of superior attributes – wonderful hands-on parents, a hero, caring, beautiful, hard-working, etc – which even a casual observer would dismiss as fluff and nonsense. It’s an impossible fantasy for ‘royal’ W+K to meet and even sillier for ‘ordinary’ people to accept.
As figures dependent on their hereditary status alone for elevation, W+K’s behaviour and actions will be assessed against the various PR narratives they chose to establish and now perpetuate. As public commodities they will be judged as providing value, or not. Should it be otherwise? Aren’t we all held to account in our own lives?
They don’t need to be insulted, though. It’s one thing to say, “Kate can go on vacation without her kids, but can’t work more royal duties because she can’t leave her kids?” and a whole other to say, “Kate is stupid and a terrible mom because scolded her child.”
I’m not advocating anyone be insulted; I didn’t say that. However, if a person claims ‘X’ about themselves through their PR, then it’s fair that they be assessed by that very claim.
The example given shows a huge gap between A and B. The first is based on questioning claims about quality parenting vs actual behaviour; the second is without foundation.
Excellent point Jen. A is valid discussion, B is for the most part ignored here (rightly so).
+1 on both of your very cogent arguments. What’s being pointed out is the glaring disparity between the cynical pursuit of PR perfection and what we witness in reality. Things that make you go, huh? It’s like trying to bend reality and there are people eager to help them do so for that fairy tale sheen.
The fact is that one can extrapolate probabilities from their overt behaviours and over the years one can build up a profile of their characters. Sure it’s gossip, but opinions need not be made out of pixie dust.
There is nothing wrong with pointing out disparities between their PR and their actions. What I am advocating with this article is that we need to pull back our overt rudeness and insults because that is not relevant to pointing out disparities between their PR and their actions and only serves to make us look bad.
“if a person claims ‘X’ about themselves through their PR, then it’s fair that they be assessed by that very claim.”
I agree, and I am adding that we should not be rude while giving criticism.
Hear hear KMR!
Thanks for this post KMR.
I have said it several times: we are biased with those we like, but above all with those we do not like.
Sometimes it is necessary to stop and think a little about the way things are going and about what we say, above all, because we do not have the complete image of who these people are in reality, outside public exposure.
I confess that sometimes it makes me sad to notice that some people NEVER have anything positive to say about the Cambridges. And notice that I’m not the biggest fan of the couple either, especially William, but I get a lot of admiration for certain comments in a world where absolutely everyone has a need to give their opinion on everything.
Finally do not blame yourself for having, at a certain time, acted in a similar way. We’ve all done it. Rejoice that you have thought and reflected on this and you are willing to be more attentive to these little things. We are human, we are influenced by several things and at the end of the day, the most important, is to be calm and sure with what we think and about who we are.
Congrats for the courage to write it!!!
Thank you! Great comment!
Thanks a lot for this post, KMR! It’s really well written and brings up some interesting points.
For sure parenting is a hot topic and basically all have something to say about it but I think we should remember that we don’t know Kate and William (or any other royal), all we get is pictures and short videos. Those might give you an idea about their parenting, but you could also be completely wrong. Pictures don’t always tell the full truth!
And even if we criticise something, there’s no need to be like “she’s the worst mother”, “horrible parenting”.
“And even if we criticise something, there’s no need to be like “she’s the worst mother”, “horrible parenting”.”
Exactly. We don’t need to be rude with our criticisms.
It’s very hard to evaluate the quality of parenting without intimate knowledge, and even then people have different reactions to family life, think of Charles and his siblings’ views on their parents. And we should remember that good parents can produce children who are bad adults. And vice versa. No one has been able to write the blueprint to perfect parenting.
However, the use of children as PR props is troubling. And the doubletalk about privacy and normalcy is off-putting. We might dream of life within the palace walls, and they might dream about life outside them, but we should all be concentrating on finding the way to being useful and happy in our real lives.
Well said, Fifi! 🙂
Well said. Great comment.
I struggle with how I feel about the kids being used as pr props. If Kate and William chose instead to never take them on tours or release pictures, wouldn’t we also complain?
I see them using them as props when they excuse away not working or not doing things they should be doing because of the children, when then they’re caught rushing off on holidays without them. If they were genuinely there taking care of their kids, without a huge staff to support them, I wouldn’t judge since we’d know they’d actually be parenting almost like us normal people do.
I agree with everything you have said KMR. Parenting is a difficult task and cannot be easy in the public eye. I am all for thoughtful criticism.
If you look at the comments on Royal Dish about Princess Mary and her parenting that is literally the lowest of the low. I do think it’s extremely tacky to insult someone’s parenting from a computer screen and you don’t know them. I remember how much criticisms Katie Holmes got for how she dressed her own daughter. Part of it is sexism and women being vicious towards one another on a very personal level. Its definitely a no go for me and that line has certainly been crossed several times on this site. People are going to try to defend themselves but I still think it’s incredibly tacky.
Katie Holmes was rightly criticised for how she dressed her daughter because that is part of the belief system of the cult she escaped. One of the central tenets of that cult is that children are adults in mini bodies. Their thoughts and actions are considered adults and they are treated as adults. No room is given for them to be children because the cult doesn’t believe in the notion of children. They are adults in thought, word and deed except that they are in tiny bodies which will grow in time. Children can’t wear clothing for children. They are allowed to wear adult clothing because they are adults. Katie, whilst in the cult, dressed her child in mini adult clothing including high heels. She kept her up long past bedtimes children of her age – papped pictures of little Suri at dinner with her parents in restaurants late at night. All part of the life.
When Katie escaped the cult, she started dressing her child like the little kid she was and by all accounts the child looks happier and less stressed out. Leah Remini is currently presenting a series on the cult because she escaped from it too. Katie was very clear that her escape was fuelled by her mother’s instinct to give her daughter a normal life, to not be sucked further into the cult and to give her normal childhood. She appears to have delivered on that intention.
That cult is seriously messed up and i commend Katie for escaping it. To read more about how messed up it is, read the blog ‘ the underground bunker’ by Tony Ortega who has dedicated his life to collecting and investifating this cult. Or read the book ‘Going Clear’ by Lawrence wright. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=noDEBbqxkF0
ETA: Going Clear was made into a documentary of the same name. It’s heartbreaking.
Leah Remeny’s show is eye opening and heartbreaking too. Somewhere in the show someone said that the many of the original cult members have left, and the cult now consists mostly of their kids that were raised in the cult and don’t know any other life.
I think both sides tend to do hyperbole on Kate’s parenting. I have kids similar ages to hers, so I tend to cut her some slack on the parenting we see (not on her using them as an excuse for everything). Much of the media uses clips from Pippa’s wedding and the like to show that she is “SuperMom” for handling so many children “effortlessly.” But I think people who don’t like them go too far in the other direction to express their disdain for all things Will and Kate.
I have not seen the video of what happened at Pippa’s wedding. I will have to go back and watch it. I think it is fair to comment if it is out in public. They have a nanny who clearly adores them but she is not their parent. Kate spoke negatively of George after or before a church service didn’t she. This shows a complete lack of breeding (can’t think of any other word to describe it). William clearly loves his kids and so does Kate I would have thought. However it is familial love towards the children. The fact that Kate and William place adult expectations on very young children and need Carol to parent them is worrying. Carol should not be in the forefront now. Also the children are rolled out as pr props because they are trying to placate the media. If there is no media interest there is no monarchy. Something William should know about.
I also think Harry knew how to handle the children at William and Kate’s wedding. Kate handled the pageboys and girls in the way she knew how. People from that judged what was happening. I can’t wait for Harry and Meghan to have a child. Then we can see how Harry handles the parenting compared to William who seems to be absent most of the time.
Did Kate actually interact with any kids other than her own though ? I know there was the super obvious shush photo she posed for, but none of the kids were actually looking at her when she did that in full camera view. And then she only seemed to hover around Charlotte so they could be in photos together and at the end when she interacted with George. There are no photos showing her speak or handle the other kids. The whole child wrangler this was PR nonsense. She didn’t wrangle any child but her own and only in camera range, because we later saw Maria take over.
“The fact that Kate and William place adult expectations on very young children and need Carol to parent them is worrying.”
Do they, though? We are not in William and Kate’s brains or their home. We really don’t know what kind of expectations they place on their kids or who is doing the majority of the parenting.
Agreed KMR. In fact, I’d say it is the opposite. Remember the Queen reprimanding William for bending down on the balcony to talk to George? And Kate kneeling to talk to him when they first arrived in Canada? I feel the Queen and Charles/Diana would have prioritized waving to the crowds/greeting dignitaries and so would have expected their children to make it through those events without constant comfort/attention. Whereas those two events (and when William picked up George when bringing him to the hospital to visit his new sister) showed to me that William and Kate first focus on their young children and keeping them comfortable, even above acknowledging crowds wanting to see them or talking to waiting dignitaries greeting them on tour. If they had had adult expectations for their kids, I think they wouldn’t worry as much about if they are completely happy and satisfied at all times when appearing in public, if that makes sense.
It makes complete sense. And the funny thing is, in those situations you mentioned, William and Kate were negatively criticized for attending to their kids and not teaching their kids how to behave like adults in those situations. So William and Kate are criticized for placing adult expectations on their kids, but then are criticized for not placing adult expectations on their kids?
The Balcony situation was not about the kids. The Balcony is about respecting the military not leisure time for the kids. If they are too young to cope with that level of attention, don’t bring them on the balcony.
That Balcony incident was a visual demonstration of William’s stance that he can not work because he has to be with his kids.
Same with Kate on the tarmac in Canada where she turned away from the greeting party to ateend to Charlotte who looked perfectly fine rather than maintain conversation with the greeting party. That was very rude.
People wonder at how Estelle of Sweden manages to do well at public events and acknowledge the adults in the room despite her very tender age, and that’s down to VD emphasising adult interactions when they bring her to meet adults. They don’t ignore the adults in the room to tend to the kids for entire encounter or act like Estelle is somehow too fragile without their particular attention at the exclusion of every adult in the room.
WK are in the wrong in these situations because apparently they can’t chew and walk simultaneaously when their kids are with them in a work situation.
Since they keep invoking Diana, how about carrying George during the balcony such that he feels secure, and William can continue to talk to him whilst also honouring the military.
Ditto Kate carrying Charlotte when meeting dignitaries needs to balance the two activities.
Whether or not W&K did the right thing is those situations is not the point at all. The point is our own hypocrisy because the same people who claim W&K put adult expectations on their kids and therefore are bad parents, are also the people who claim W&K are bad parents for talking to their kids on the balcony at Trooping and on the tarmac in Canada. In certain situations and with certain topics, W&K can’t win because of our own negative bias toward them.
There have been times where we have complained about certain things with regard to Kate’s work, and then she will do those things, and people will still say that she sucks, that it’s not enough. They can’t say one nice thing about Kate even when she gives us what we’ve been asking for.
KMR – yeah to a certain extent it’s a real lose-lose for them (although I don’t spend much time feeling bad for them because of it lol). They def faced criticism then (and again now lol) for choosing to prioritize paying attention to their children in those instances, but if they hadn’t and George had started sobbing during the tour arrival, then Kate would probably have been accused of being a cold-hearted mother who ignores her children when they need her or a bad mother for having a “whiny” child and what not. And while I do think that kids can be taught not to throw a fit just because they were “ignored” by their parents while the adults talk for a few minutes, I also think that it’s harder for that training to hold true after a long flight (even on a private plane), and with a bunch of strangers and cameras in the mix upon arrival. And since we don’t know George’s personality, it’s impossible to know if perhaps he’s just very sensitive and shy and the Cambridges know this and so know they must pay careful attention to stem the tide of any likely crying. That’s not any more likely than Kate just shirking her royal duties and pampering her son too much, but it’s not any less likely either, based on what we know.
KMR what you’re writing might apply to some people, but I don’t see it referring to what Herazeus just wrote. She’s pointing out what was going on on the balcony and why William’s behavior was unacceptable for his role. Why KM’s behavior in another instance was unacceptable for the role. And the difference in the way in which Victoria and Daniel are with Estelle when she is brought along for an engagement.
+ 1 Herazeus
+ 1 notasugarhere
William disrespected the pilots of the flyover during his “hands on dad” PR moment on the balcony. If the kids aren’t old enough to behave, don’t take them on the balcony. I don’t think that’s having ‘adult expectations’ of them; it is knowing your kid well-enough to know they aren’t going to pay attention. It took HM publicly calling him to task to get him to straighten up. That doesn’t make HM a bad grandparent or bad great-grandparent; it makes her a monarch who understands the job better than her grandson ever will.
As I said above to Herazeus, whether or not W&K took the correct action in those moments is not the point at all. The point is no matter which action they took it would have been criticized because we’re sitting here saying W&K put too much expectations on their kids and are therefore bad parents, but then when they are trying to talk to their kids they are still bad parents.
Kate ignoring Charlotte’s displeasure on the balcony received negative criticism for not caring about her kid, but Kate talking to George on the tarmac received negative criticism for coddling her kid.
If Kate receives negative criticism for both options, then what are we expecting her to do to be deemed a good parent? Not bring the kids out at all until they are much older? But then we’ve already greatly criticized W&K for not bringing their kids out to more engagements, and not releasing more photos than they already do. So… how do they win praise from us? At what point have they done what we’ve deemed the correct action? What is the correct action, since that goalpost seems to constantly be changing depending on the situation?
KMR, that doesn’t track to me. Some might criticize them for X, others would criticize them for Y. Unless you’re saying that every poster on here does both all the time, it doesn’t make sense to me. Herazeus explicated the difference in behaviors and how, to her, two royal couples are approaching the issue differently. To me, her explanations on things are some of the best posts on here. I wouldn’t put her on either end of the extreme, but someone who has watched royals for a very long time and has a great understanding of what have come before and goes on now.
Agreed. Sometimes small children are not ready for such occasions.
I feel that W+K are too caught up in the photo op moments with their kids. The children are not often seen but when they are it appears posed for a purpose of defining them as a model family. That’s not to say W+K are poor parents, not at all, but the couple has a history of making claims that turn out to be untrue. It’s logical, then, to have doubts about their being hands-on parents.
It adds up to a couple creating a particular image that is simply not the reality, and so seeds doubt about further claims. Someone above used the word ‘inauthentic’ and that pretty much sums it up.
I disagree KMR, what you say is hypocrisy or a lose-lose in these scenarios, are what many of us would say are symptoms to a chronic problem. The need to feed the hands on parents narrative.
Whether you think they are truly hands on parents or not what is true is that they both seem incapable of doing their job when the the kids are out.
I’ve given kate props when I thought she’s looked nice, passed the number of speeches given (although substance still lacking) or even eaten the tomato that fell on the ground.
But these are addressing the superficial wounds when a pt is in multi-system organ failure. Until they (and media) address the crux of their problem-not working, I’ll continuity be critical and I sometimes have issues giving kudos to the small, when much larger not being addressed
It’s almost June, how many days have they “worked”?
Herazeus and notasugarhere – you’re kind of proving KMR’s point lol. And I don’t necessarily disagree – I think “normal” kids aren’t constantly put before other expected social interactions by their parents (i.e. I think children must also be taught that sometimes they have to wait their turn and cannot always be shown attention above all else), and I esp think that on the balcony when George didn’t seem scared and William appeared to just be pointing out planes to him that it was disrespectful in terms of the point of being on the balcony in the first place. But I was responding to a comment about how Kate and William put adult expectations on their children, and was simply using those examples to show why I disagree with that, not to say that their choices in their situations were necessarily the right ones.
I don’t see that we are. KMR seems to be stating that everyone on here does one thing, when it is clear to me that isn’t true.
+ 1 notasugarhere
I think that is where it gets murky and trying not to be overly critical of their parenting. It is hard not to judge. I mean all we see is the video or photos. As long as the kids are happy and healthy.
I think that Kate’s comment she about George’s behavior are very endearing. As a fellow parent I can totally relate to worryingly about how a child will behave at an important event. I think this can be seen as a sign that she is hands on, as she feels responsible for their behavior.
I also do not see evidence of them needing Carol to parent them. I see a lovely relationship from which all parties benefit. I know my son thrives at Grandma’s house, and is privy to experiences he wouldn’t have at home. There’s nothing wrong with that.
No. Being in the public eye and cynically using your kids for PR, as accessories, makes you very fair game, especially on a gossip blog. Rude comments happen on other sites, while here very rarely. The rudest comments I have read are from people usually parachuting in and self-righteously slagging other commenters for their less than sweet opinions and trying to muzzle discourse.
Serious question Maven, is calling Kate “definitely one of the worst mother’s in the world” fair because Kate’s on the public eye? I’m really curious as to your thought on this. This line was posted here on KMR re: Pippa’s wedding btw.
I ignore comments like that, Queen Lauri, because they’re not based on any sort of reasoning and certainly not on statistical fact (just like I ignore the saccharine ones). Nor are they going to affect the subject of that comment. You could say, they’re not worth commenting on. 🙂
I understand ignoring comments like that Maven, I try to gloss over those myself. I was wondering though if, in your opinion, anyone is “fair game” for those kinds of comments? I’m not trying to be disrespectful to you but your words about being the in the public eye and being fair game has me wondering what exactly you meant by that.
I was responding to the subject line of KMR’s post. I gave my reasons why I thought the Cambs were fair game.
Not sure what you mean by others in the public eye. Like, the world? Like, which comments, the rude ones? As a general rule I ignore rude, baseless comments about public personages but rarely ignore baseless comments directly or indirectly slagging/schooling my fellow commenters or this site.
I also keep in mind it’s all gossip.
Did you read the full article or just the headline? Because in the full article, I made a case for why I think rude, insulting comments happen, I stated that I do not think they are acceptable, and am asking the commenters here not to make them.
It is fine to comment on what William and Kate put out there publicly, but we don’t have to be rude and insulting while doing it.
Just because you choose to ignore rude, nasty comments doesn’t make those comments acceptable. One can choose to ignore online comments threatening rape and murder toward others, that doesn’t make those comments acceptable.
You are positing a false equivalency KMR. Unfair. If this is such an issue then why not just make up some guidelines, After all, it is your blog.
This site has never been overrun with rude comments as some others are. The thoughtful comments outweigh most everything, with various opinions, even opposing opinions.
ETA: I admit I stopped reading after several paragraphs.
Clearly the rudeness disturbs you and some others so put it in the guidelines. I also admit I don’t read most of the comments on parenting. I have already stated my position on commenting several times, reasonably, I think.
Uh I’m sorry but equating ignoring threats of violence (rape murder) is tots different than ignoring comments about Kate’s attire, parenting skills, and public statements. Whether pro/con.
If you’re wanting a more pc/fluffy critical blog that’s your prerogative but you’ll need to set guidelines on what you consider rude. Okay to say kate looks terrible in outfit becuase people could consider that rude in itself or only say the outfit is terrible? Yet some outfits could look better on a different body type, so is that rude saying you like the outfit but not on kate?
How about the inane things kate says to people? I think she comes off as ignorant and have said so, some people would view me saying that as rude as well…
People have literally commented on websites where those types of comments happen that women who receive those types of comments about rape and murder should just ignore them, or that they are being sensitive by being insulted by them. So I think when the discussion is about ignoring insulting comments rather than telling the people who make those comments to stop making them, then it is relevant to bring up other types of comments people think people should just ignore. With respect to ourselves, yeah we should just ignore comments like that. With respect to human decency, people shouldn’t make those comments.
When people are actively insulting other people, I think that crosses the line of human decency regardless of the subject. All I am asking with this article is for people to not actively insult others and to realize that our opinions on certain situations may be clouded by negative bias.
Just because someone’s actions are worse than one’s doesn’t make one’s actions acceptable. Other bloggers have said way worse things about Kate than I have, that doesn’t make me calling Kate a moron acceptable. People rape and kill women and girls for no other reason than they are female, that doesn’t make casual sexism acceptable. Random commenters coming in and insulting us for insulting Kate doesn’t make our insults of Kate acceptable.
Perhaps you need to revise your rules of engagement KMR and decide on what words are rude and, therefore, verboten.
The question might be, “If the poster said this about a man, would it still be a problem”?
Sometimes things are related to sexism, other times they aren’t. If Victoria had married a lazy man who had never worked, lived off his parents for his entire twenties, and took 6 years to not even get to a basic level of proficiency at the royal job? People might call him “moron” too. Ex. if the issue is the way in which things are written about any gender, revise the rules to ask that people not use language that could be construed as an insult.
I agree! I stopped commenting on this site due to the vacillation. I became somewhat confused at to what words will be pleasing to the blog owner, and how I can avoid being pulled onto the rug with the ‘chiding’ that emanated from my comments. IMO, this type of action is unwarranted and humiliating to the poster concerned, as we are all entitled to our opinions, conjecture etc., taking away our freedom of speech is a bit too much. And, since the “don’ts”are more than the “dos”I would suggest that a list of the ‘right words’ be provided so that everyone can fall into line and be totally circumspect.
Seeing as you mentioned who makes rude comments, the reason I do not comment here very much, if at all, is because of comments you made to me and about me, Maven.
Delete if you like, KMR, but I did not want to let that one go.
The one thing I will comment on is I agree with Maven regarding the sugars being rude. I don’t comment as much anymore because I am tired of their rude comments to other posters such as telling people ‘their comment is stupid’ or they are a ‘judgmental a*****e’. And yet they are allowed to keep coming back and making snide comments at those of us who don’t dare to worship Kate. The sugars keep commenting more and more on here (though not always rude, there are a few on this thread) and its exhausting. I stopped reading other Kate sites due to them and on some posts it feels like they are trying to take over this site.
I didn’t read any of the Pippa comments, so I don’t know what happened regarding the parenting thing. But I honestly think that if anyone is attacking another poster for their opinions and not just conversing with them in a civil manner than they should be blocked from commenting. That may be the only way to stop the rude insults at other posters. I also notice on bigger posts, such as ones that trend on bing-like Pippa’s wedding, we get an influx of sugars and Kate-haters commenting on here. That also causes a lot of issues since they instigate.
+1 I’m seeing the same trend.
I saw a pretty rude comment at the top of the thread, one that rambled on about lazy waity entitled… I don’t think posts like that are the norm here, but they certainly do happen. Using words like those instead of citing situations just comes across as hateful.
Thanks for writing this, KMR. I was really appalled by a lot of the comments on the Pippa wedding post re: Kate’s parenting. There was a level of vitriol and assumed negative intent that was unjustifiable given how little we know about any of these people. I fully agree with you that what they intentionally put out to the world is fair game as far as criticism (i.e comments made to the press etc.), but I’d argue that just because they’ve made a public appearance somewhere with their kids (official royal duties or not), that still doesn’t make minute criticisms of their parenting styles okay. Parenting is an evolving thing and they can’t necessarily control what their kids will do in public, so as far as the PR game goes, they’re definitely at a disadvantage at events. It’s difficult to control the narrative when you don’t know what your toddlers are going to do and in turn, how you’ll have to respond.
I hope that makes sense haha. In any case, thanks again KMR! I hope this post leads to fairer discussion and criticism in the comment section.
ETA: confirmation bias is a very real thing that everyone, no matter how clever you think you are, falls victim to at some point or another. People get annoyed when commenters say things like “people see what they want to see”, but it’s true. That’s precisely what confirmation bias is. People will read what will confirm their bias (negative or positive bias), which I think is a huge contributing factor to the over the top criticism of Kate’s parenting.
I agree with you, Joanna. Let the parent who has never regretted a wrong parenting reaction or decision cast the first stone.
I agree with your comment.
Parenting is an evolving thing, and people make mistakes and learn from them and change things up all the time.
I agree that everyone can fall into confirmation bias, on both sides (positive and negative), and that it is one of the main reasons people comment negatively about Kate’s parenting.
Joanna Wallace: +1
Joanna Wallace: Also, +1 and great post, KMR.
I thought people went over the top in reactions to Kate’s interactions with George and Charlotte. I read several articles and watched a few clips of video to try to get a better picture of what actually went on, and I just didn’t see what all of the hoopla was about to lead people to comment so negatively on Kate as a parent. George maybe had a small tantrum like any kid his age at that type of event, and Charlotte needed to be held onto because she’s apt to wander off. The headlines I read even seemed like the press found it endearing that a future king is getting a “royal telling off” by his mom – kind of like the “celebrities are just like us” stories. We know they aren’t, but a mom wrangling her kids at a wedding is something lots of people can relate to. I keep thinking of that sweet picture of Kate holding George in Australia (I think) where he kind of snuggled up on her shoulder and grabbed her hair and just seemed like a happy, loved baby. No matter what I think of Kate’s work ethic, I don’t think she’s a bad mother. I do think she works hard to come off as the perfect wife and mother, and I wish she would relax on that a little. Show more of her own personality, but that’s a discussion thread for another post! 😉 I remember William getting a swat on the rear from his mother at some school event for acting up and the press had pictures of him crying as they walked off the field. Same with Harry sticking his tongue out at the press while riding in a car and Diana scolding him at the time. It’s funny when it’s somebody else’s kid and it’s more noteworthy when that kid is an heir to the throne. These moments happen as a parent and most of us are lucky enough to not have them broadcast to the world. The discussion guidelines you suggest, KMR, regarding what to discuss in the way of parenting seem very fair.
Yes, exactly! Parenting is hard work and doing it under constant scrutiny by the public will inevitably lead to some less than ideal photos or videos, especially in this day and age.
Here’s the thing. I don’t judge people by what they feed their kids or whether they play outside or how much their kids watch tv. That’s every parent’s right and unless harming the kids totally their prerogative. I of course have my opinions but unless your my sister, I gernerally keep my mouth shut.
I do judge how people reference their kids, use them to get out of work/engagements and how they discipline or don’t.
William and Kate get judged because this is a blog about Kate and how they use their kids as crutches, passes for bad press and what have you.
As for kate discipling George in public. I have no problem with a parent calling their kids on for bad behavior and actually applaud it. My issues stem from them always saying how naughty George is and then disciplining him in front of everyone’s prying eyes. She could have taken him inside and then reprimanded him. I know KMR referenced kids getting disciplined in the grocery store but I think this is slightly different. Some things the world shouldn’t see and I think this is one.
The reason i call bs on so much of their parenting is because of the constant pr push of how great and hands on they are, yet everything we’ve seen contradicts that narrative. If they were actually honest and said we have 2 nannies and Carole, I’d be less quick to say anything. Most people in that socioeconomic bracket have help. Do I think it’s weird when an essentially stay at home mom has a nanny? Yep, but hey each their own and I applaud anyone saying they need help for whatever reason. I’m not naturally comfortable around kids so if I were to have them (I’m not) I would tots get one
So to me it’s more of calling them out than actually judging
I am not advocating that we stop commenting on William and Kate’s parenting altogether. What I am advocating is that we stop being rude in our comments, and recognize that we have a negative bias toward them, and that people parent differently (and I would say how they discipline their kids falls into that).
As I said in my article “if Kate took George inside to talk to him, then she would have been called a terrible mom for leaving the other kids, or for showing George favoritism, or for causing a problem for the other guests trying to leave the church, or what have you.” Or Kate would have still been called a stupid, terrible mother for embarrassing her kid because she pulled George aside.
I’m sorry they have been using George and Charlotte as PR from day one. They have driven this narrative that they want to be “normal”. If they acted like Princess Victoria and Daniel with there kids always teaching and loving we would all be in awww of them. But they do it to them self. Over acting with there kids
in public, like look at us were amazing parents.
But that doesn’t give people the right to be rude, insulting things about them. There is a way to give criticism without being insulting.
I suspect you’re in a battle that won’t be won, KMR, but for what it’s worth I agree with you totally.
Me too. Some people aren’t liking the idea of having to think of better ways to express how they feel without being insulting and totally far fetched with the speculating.This blog has been host to many great debates, discussions, and tons of information on all sorts of subjects. I know things change but I personally didn’t like the way things were going. I’m glad you brought this up KMR. Critical as in holding accountable not critical as in eviscerating.
Bluhare and Ray: Me too.
I’m not disagreeing with that. You’re asking us to think twice before we post anything, and not to use language that is insulting or sexist about either each other or the topics of discussion. That’s why I find the edit option helpful (not every site has that). You can re-read your post in a larger format and go, “Oh, nope, not saying it that way. Time to re-write”
I also wanted to add regarding Madeleine and Leonore. leonore is pretty high energy and it may be that Madeleine is the more adept at handling her energy, at least publicly. We do see all 4 of them out and about tho. Which is nice.
Of course that’s pure speculation but when my niece was going through her naughty 3s it was easier for my sister to deal with some things because my BIL would get upset at her not listening and my sister had the more patience to deal with it.
Different parents have different skill sets.
But why is Madeleine given the benefit of the doubt about it and Kate is assumed to be showing favoritism? Why is the same benefit of the doubt given to William and Kate – that Kate is better at handling Charlotte, so she does, and William is better at handling George, so he does?
I think because Madeleine has never said anything really about her children except saying how spirited and exhausting Leonore can be. She also is spotted out with her children quite a lot, and is not afraid to admit they have and use help; but I think Madeleine is in a different category than W&K. She is not on the public time and her children don’t really need to be seen in public, nor does she seem very obsessive about her public image as a mum and therefore seems quite confident in herself. We see her, and Chris, interact with their kids in paparazzi photos which we don’t see with W&K–ever.
W&K don’t speak kindly about George for the most part, which ruffles my feathers, while Charlotte is ‘an angel from heaven’.
The comments that Will and Kate make about their kids are the problem. George always seems to be criticized when they talk about him and Charlotte is not. So when they are in public and Charlotte is coddled and George scolded, it adds to the narrative they set up themselves that there is favouritism. Perhaps they don’t realize it, but then again this is the family where William doesn’t want George to grow up behind palace walls and literally poses him in a photo with barbed wire covered palace walls.
Ha! Love that last sentence.
Anyone remember the animosity the previous King George’s had for their heirs. These news “stories” and comments in this thread always make me think that William is continuing a long tradition with his son…
1) Madeleine has never made disparaging remarks about either of the kids. And actually has said nice things about Lenore’s high energy. Where as both William and Kate have referred to George as the naughty child& Charlotte the good one until Kate finally broke away and said Charlotte was more so.
2) I’ve never seen Madeleine push one child out her way to make way for her and the other
3) even in the GQ article William talked about George having a normal life. No comment about Charlotte? He didn’t say both my kids?
4) I’ve seen Daniel out at sporting events with Estelle. Doesn’t make me think he favors her over Oscar. Or that Victoria doesn’t enjoy her. It makes me think he’s having quality father daughter time. If I see William and Kate doing things like that, I would give them props. I wanted William to bring George to Harry’s polo match saying Charlotte would be too young to enjoy such a thing. Maybe they do these things “privately” but until they do them publicly, I go by what they say and what interactions i”ve seen. So it’s not that they aren’t given the benefit of the doubt. What they’ve said and how they’ve acted publicly tells me it’s not that one is more adept at handling high energy kid. Kate actually looks awkward most of the time with them in general
Maybe because when we were first privy to Leonore’s antics, she was still an only child? And, it is apparent from all the photo ops of the two children now, each one is given the same amount of attention, or so it seems.
I agree that none of us know what goes on behind closed doors at the Cambridge home. I also think that when one reads body language, one can see clearly that Kate seems to have an easier time with her daughter than her son. imo, that is. This does not mean she does not love both of them. Nor, does it make her a bad mother.
I’m getting tired of this thread. Tired of people assuming to know just what Kate or William is like personally. So, I have to ask myself, why am I choosing to reply here. To be honest, I think it’s an addiction.
Good day and evening, all.
Thanks KMR for such an awesome and thought provoking post!!! I will admit to finding some of the comments re: Kate’s parenting at Pippa’s wedding to be so distressing that I quit reading the comments all together. Now anyone who’s posted here for some time knows that I’m no fan of Kate, her work ethic, her fashion sense or her horrible posture but I just can’t slam her for how she’s parenting her children, I might not agree with it but that’s not her problem that’s mine. Of course, W&K have used their children as excuses why they can’t do this or do that and that topic can and should be discussed, W&K are “paid” to represent Queen and Country not to be stay-at-home parents.
Thanks KMR for talking about negative bias. I’ll be the first to admit that my perception of W&K, how they do their “work”, how they talk, how they engage with others, etc is extremely colored by my disappointment in them as royals. I’ll admit that I criticize them for things that I let slide for other royals royals, who by the way, that I admire or respect. Is my negative bias fair, is it mature of me? No, not really. I have noticed that when I’m having a stressful day or feeling a bit out of sorts, I tend to be much more critical and nitpicky about the smallest detail. In fact, I’ve gone back and re-read some comments I’ve made and have been horrified at how venomous my words were, about someone I don’t even know. To that end, I’m going to try (aren’t we always trying?) to keep my comments more fashion and “work”related and less about Kate as a person.
So one more time, Thanks KMR!!! Thanks for bringing a tough topic to light and for being a voice of reason, I really appreciate it!!
+1. Great comment, Lauri. Completely agree.
Very well said, Lauri. I think your comment comes closest to my thoughts on this.
Thanks, KMR, for encouraging the type of balanced and thoughtful criticism that has kept me reading and commenting on this site for years. I know I can expect credit where credit is due and meaningful reflection on biases. I’ve tried to be more aware of my negative preconceptions and confirmation bias with regard to Kate over the past few years and to try to judge William by the same standards. It isn’t always easy, since when I started following them, it was in the pre-Jigsaw days; back then, William was maybe making flaky decisions about how to spend his free time and who to spend it with, but he was actually doing meaningful things while Kate was not. By the time it became apparent that the two of them were cut from the same cloth, Kate had many more years of negativity to undo in my mind than William did, so criticizing her for everything came more naturally. That’s especially true when the media gets involved.
Honestly, I think the two of them are unexceptional (*not* normal, though) in pretty much every way, and the media’s decision to try to hold them up as miracle workers or the paragon of virtue in every area always rubs me the wrong way. As far as I can tell, they’re unexceptional in their work ethic, in their character, in their choice of apparel, and most likely in their parenting. They’re neither fostering an environment where their kids will be the next Fritzl family nor the next Mother Teresa/Gandhi. They’re just being paid handsomely from the public purse to be largely stay-at-home parents, which is not the purpose of those funds.
This is getting to be a lengthy comment. All of that is to say that I think you’re right on the nose, KMR, to say that civil criticism of their parenting should be welcome here. As long as they continue to use their status as parents to draw from taxpayer benefits and provide little in return, it’s fair game. Yet we have a responsibility as commenters to be reasonable in our discourse. Lord knows the world needs more civility in this day and age.
I disagree somewhat!
She and whiny I am a prince – are raising public figures (fingers cross that will change) – and representative of the British Monarchy, BRF – GB UK C W – they are the property of using taxpayers funds is the ultimate reason – and as such their unbringing/life is our/the Bristish people buainess .
sorry not able to edit.
I am a bit confused on how Kate and William uses their kids as PR KMR?
Completely off topic but CP’s Frederick and Mary are visiting Victoria and Daniel in Sweden, will you be covering this visit??? Please, pretty please!!!
I don’t know about you Queen Lauri but I’m hoping for a white tie dinner with long dresses, and bling, lots and lots of bling!
And tiaras too 😉
Me too Cathy!!! Although the day time looks have been great, nothing says Royal Visit like tiaras.
I’ve seen comments that write how she holds zero love for George and it never sat right with me. How can a mother not love her child, and how can we assume something as drastic as that?
I agree with what you wrote (concerning reading Kate’s interactions with her children in more than one manner and the PR thing) and I’m really glad you brought up this topic. Sometimes the parenting assessments are far-fetched.
Because there was such a limited number of photos/videos from Pippa’s wedding, I feel like the press had to essentially make up vignettes in order to grab at a headline. It’s unfortunate that Kate was the top target because she and the children got the most “face time”. I don’t think any of us can actually comment intelligently about her parenting, nor should we. We are not under pressure to make up headlines, and there is simply not enough information on which to base much of an opinion. I do have to comment on one line – “People have a negative opinion of Kate”…People on this particular blog may be critical of Kate, but I don’t see the majority of royal watchers as having a negative opinion of Kate.
With this article, I am speaking directly to the people who read and comment on this blog, so I think it’s fair to say that “People have a negative opinion of Kate” because the people reading this article have a negative opinion of Kate.
I read the blog daily and I don’t have a negative opinion of Kate. I don’t like some of her fashion choices but that doesn’t make me dislike her. And I don’t get into analyzing some single comment she made at an event, taken out of context by the press and blown out of proportion! I also realize that all of us know very little about her daily life, what she does at home etc so I have no opinion about what I don’t know! As for her parenting abilities, none of us have to deal with constantly being watched, photographed and analyzed while trying to raise two young children.
Marion Cole: +1
Then I apologize. I should have said “the people who have a negative opinion of Kate”. I will remember that for next time.
The negative is from a marry in commoner who partied, clubing, terible enabling and breakdown of whiny bill upbringing – in her waity decade to disrespect the BRF POW – her lack of duites role and status as a marry in RF member for six years – who ignore the people who fund her and her family entitled lazy lifestyle with no returns to GB UK and the monarchy.
One thing I’d like to add (apologies if someone has mentioned this above – I’ve read most of the comments but probably missed some) is that I don’t get the comments about Kate preferring Charlotte to George, because it seems like almost every time the Cambridges have appeared as a family in public (the children’s party esp), both parents have spent more time fussing over George and trying to keep him happy compared to their interactions with Charlotte. And I’m not trying to say I think they play favorites by spoiling George more. Perhaps they just know that George has a personality that needs constant reassurement, whereas they feel comfortable leaving Charlotte to her own devices a bit because she’s more easygoing. That certainly would back up (albeit the little of) what we’ve seen of Charlotte in public – she seems very calm, confident, and self-assured, while George seems much more uncertain and nervous. And sure, we can speculate that perhaps parenting has something to do with it (happens with a lot of first-borns because parents are naturally more nervous and clingy themselves with their first child just because it’s their first time as parents). And it’s certainly fair to speculate that maybe George would be/seem less nervous in public if they exposed him to public appearances more, but parenting is hard and it’s also possible that Kate and William truly believe George’s personality means he would only grow more nervous if forced to appear in public more.
Moral of the story: aside from things that basically 90% of people would agree to be emotional and/or physical abuse, it is very hard to ever be able to say with certainty if a certain parenting decision (for anyone) is right or wrong. And I don’t think it’s fair to use a few, individual instances with very little context to characterize someone as a bad mother entirely. Good mothers can make poor choices. Same reason I also laugh when I see headlines about how William and Kate are *clearly* amazing parents just because they bent down to speak to their children twice in public.
And I’m not saying they just deserve the benefit of the doubt, and given imo that they use parenting as an excuse to avoid royal work, it’s probably not completely unfair to question their parenting a bit. But as KMR so aptly pointed out, can’t we hold these public figures accountable without being rude? Esp when it’s about something as personal and individualized as parenting?
William and Kate constantly talk down about George and praise Charlotte. If you were to ask just about any seasoned KMR reader about the kids, they’d say George is naughty, naughty, naughty and Charlotte is an angel sent from heaven. That’s something that WK established themselves and has been reinforced by their public interactions with their children.
At the Commonwealth service last year (or some other church service I can’t remember,), at the reception afterwards, Kate literally said George is a very lovely little boy and that Charlotte is feisty and may need her brother to keep her in line.
Tbh, I just think it’s hard to compare because first, they have talked much more about George than Charlotte in general, and second, honestly I think William just says what he thinks the public wants/expects to hear, which is the usual sexist “daughter is wonderful/lovely, boy is naughty.” That’s really the feeling I get more than anything, so I take what he says with a grain of salt. Also I sometimes get the feeling that they previously have talked up how George is “naughty” because that’s their usual excuse for not bringing him to the Christmas service, or on engagements, and also tours. Instead of having to say to someone from the general public face to face that they want to hide their children away, they can just say George wouldn’t behave well if he attended whatever event.
Anyways, I don’t think calling George things like “naughty” is necessarily “talking down” about him. They never seem mad about it – they’re just describing his personality. If someone called their 20 year old son naughty or bad, then yeah, I’d think of that as an insult. But at (almost) four? I interpret that to just mean that he’s maybe boisterous and loud, as many children his age tend to be. It’s not like they’ve tried to say that he has serious behavioral problems or something.
And I think public interactions have reinforced that they think George needs more attention than Charlotte. He may just be a little more high-strung. She does seem quite easygoing. I honestly don’t get it – until the wedding, had we ever before seen either of them scold George (or Charlotte) in public? It’s entirely possible it’s happened and I missed it or forgot. I’m honestly curious how their interactions with George reinforce that. Esp since even at the wedding, there were times when Kate was not completely in charge of George/entirely near him, but she didn’t seem to let go of Charlotte’s hand even once.
Oops one last thing lol – and I’m steeling myself for what is sure to be a lot of criticism for saying this – but I think there’s some sexism to this (even though William gets criticism here too). Women are held to impossible standards for a lot of things – their bodies, their fashion, etc. – but the thing they are held to an impossible standard for the most is motherhood – both in terms of being judged if they choose not to have children or if they choose to work and put the kids in daycare etc., but also in terms of each and every single decision they make. And a lot of it historically stems from being a strategy to keep women at home – the more expectations on them for being perfect mothers at all times, the easier it is to basically coerce them into staying home. I’m not at all saying that’s why Kate stays home (in fact I personally don’t think it has anything to do with it although obvi it’s impossible to really know) – I’m just saying that we’ve all been normalized from a young age to participate in pressuring women to be perfect mothers, and even if that’s not the intent of the criticism of Kate as a mother by posters here, that doesn’t change the fact that it still has some sexist connotations. Esp when the language used to comment on her parenting is rude and/or extreme.
Hi Maggie! I so agree, the level of “perfection” women are held to, especially by other women, is insane. I know I’ve been guilty of that, expecting some level of perfection from those women who I admire, as if their being human with all the flaws and quirks that go along with that makes them less. Thanks for pointing this out, it certainly gives us some food for thought ☺️
It seem waity carol the middletons are all banking everything on george – they want george to act like a young king rather than a child. This is what upset waity patience, to control george who is seen as middletons right of passage, so to speak…charlotte is as a middleton- regular.
I’ve said it on here before and I’ll say again: why does Kate need a full time nanny and if reports are to be believed, a night nurse as well, if she is such a hands-on mother? It’s not like Kate has a job and works crazy hours at her job that a full
Time nanny would be needed? And George is already going to a part time nursery too and Charlotte will probably attend nursery soon. The fact that she needs her highly trained nanny around, even though she presents herself as a hands on mother tells me (I don’t claim to be right) that she barely knows anything about parenting except for reprimanding her kids when they aren’t behaving like perfect angels or hovering over Charlotte. I’m not saying that she isn’t around for her kids but that she isn’t around as often as WK would like the public to believe. I for one don’t buy her earth mother mucking about in the countryside schtick.
Calling out their manufactured schtick is fair if it proves to be untrue. And their schtick on many occasions over the years has been untrue. It’s done entirely to present themselves to the public as relatable and normal, whereas their reality is one of rarefied luxury.
What’s clear over 6 years is that the couple has done/does little work. They use ‘hands-on parenting’ as a reason for not working more, as if an hour here and there away from home would damage their children. Working at EAAA was William’s excuse not to transition to full-time royal work, yet it transpires he was not often there. Remember Kate’s many proclamations to ‘fill her diary’, yet nothing of the kind eventuated. And what about fobbing off the Paralympics to prepare for their Malaysian trip only to later be exposed as liars who had taken off on holiday to France. A very expensive failure to launch is a better description of W+K, given past performance on the public record.
“…a very expensive failure to launch…”
This is a perfect illustration. Thank you, Jen!
Having a full-time nanny is not the same as using a nanny full-time. It could be. But it doesn’t have to. There’s no way for us to know. Either way.
A full-time nanny can be used to make life easier, like (and I mentioned this above in a diff post so apologies for being repetitive) having the luxury of knowing if you want to take one child to the park but the other child is too young then you have a nanny ready to watch the other kid. Or that when you’re cooking dinner, instead of having to keep an eye on your kid and make sure they don’t start playing with your knives, you can have the nanny do it. Or that when you do have to do some work or preparation for an engagement, instead of sticking your kid in front of the tv or in a playpen, you know you have a nanny who can engage them then. I think that makes you lucky and rich, but not necessarily less hands-on. I dunno, I also don’t think it’s fair to say mothers who work full-time and have to put their kids in daycare during the day aren’t hands-on. They might be less hands-on than stay at home moms, but I wouldn’t say they are necessarily NOT hands-on.
Also what are William and Kate supposed to do? Seriously, it’s not like they can just call the neighbor’s kid to come babysit when they do have to go work. There are safety and security concerns with their children, and of course everyone would like the best caretaker for their children, and the best ones are rarely available part-time just for random babysitting. They have to have a full-time nanny, and honestly, it’s better/easier for any child whose parents can afford it because when an alternate caretaker is consistent and knows the children well, life is easier for everyone.
Now it’s entirely possible the children spend much more time with the nanny than they do with Kate and/or William. But the hiring of a full-time nanny alone is not enough, imo, to guarantee that.
Having a live in nanny gives you a choice whether or not you want to be a hands on mother ALL of the time. Most hands on mothers don’t get that choice, even when they’re sick or tired after work or busy. It’s 100% of the time, often with little support these days as grandparents are older or sometimes still working too! So Kate can frolic all she wants in the garden and when it comes to the cranky part of the day, she can take herself off for a bath. I’m sure she’s a good mother, but she’s not a burnt out mother that’s for sure.
lisa – I don’t disagree at all. Like I said, I think a full-time nanny is a huge luxury that makes life much easier and simpler for mothers. But that is still not mutually exclusive with being hands-on as a mother. Yes, Kate has the choice to be hands-on as she wants, which no doubt is an immense privilege, as I mentioned – but my only point was that simply having that choice doesn’t necessarily mean she isn’t generally hands-on as a mother. And having a nanny does not even necessarily mean that she takes baths “during the cranky part of the day.” It’s entirely possible that she does. It’s also entirely possible that the nanny mostly just watches the children when Kate is preparing for or at engagements, and also maybe when Kate is spending time with one child and so the nanny is with the other, etc. But none of that makes someone not a hands-on mother. It just makes them very privileged. Again, entirely possible the nanny does all the “hard work.” But having a nanny doesn’t automatically mean that, esp for people in the Cambridges’ position where they can’t really just rely on a neighborhood babysitter as needed for engagements, and really have no way of avoiding having a full-time nanny imo.
And again, I don’t think being a “hands-on mother” requires working as little as Kate does. In fact I find that notion preposterous and very insulting to the billions of working mothers around the world. But that’s also a different issue from whether or not Kate is a hands-on mother, esp based on the fact that they have a nanny.
Yes I was agreeing with you, lol, I thought afterwards what I wrote sounds like a rebuttal, when in fact I agreed. Who knows it’s all conjecture… I’d love a nanny because I’ve put the kids to bed and have time to work on my laptop they are coming out one by one with many varied final requests….
Haha, what’s funny, lisa, is that after I wrote my response to your response, I paused for a second because all of a sudden I was like “wait was lisa actually disagreeing with me?” 😛
Also I don’t have kids, but sometimes at the end of a long day of school/studying, if I sit down to relax on my laptop for a bit and my cat comes and starts wanting food from me, sometimes THAT can make me temporarily disgruntled haha, so I can only imagine what it’s like as a mother of actual human beings.
+1 thank you for such a reasonable response and for pointing out that like every other parenting situation, there are nuances here that we simply do not understand and will probably never get the full picture on.
On the France ski trip, someone who saw them reported three nannies with their group. W&K’s kids were the only ones on the trip. That means the full-time live-in nanny plus two backups, on-call or on-site. Plus Carole.
It is worth discussing when the image they use to get out of work (hands-on parents, working parents are evil) falls apart through observation of their behavior. Ex. Why did William go skiing the same weekend as the hen weekend? That meant both parents were away from the kids at the same time. Why not stagger the breaks?
This site and it’s copious comments have become far too tiring for me. Talk about minutia: The back and forth – what’s an acceptable form of criticism versus what is an offensive and off limits type of criticism. Must everything be dissected until there is no longer room for any freedom of speech? Good Bye. Cancelling out.
I think it’s unfortunate, and a little ironic, that you are criticizing some of ours’ choice to discuss this detail in issue, in the name of free speech lol. I don’t think KMR has said she will definitely never again post anything “hateful” towards the Cambridges as parents. KMR brought it up as an issue that maybe we should consider. Also funny to me because while I mostly am not a big fan at all of Kate’s first half decade as a royal, or her life in her twenties, I DO think that your phrase “Must everything be dissected” and the reference to minutia could be applied very much to most blogs, and the accompanying comments, about Kate. Not trying to present this as criticism – I’m certainly very guilty of this and think it’s an inevitable result of the internet and the 24 hour news cycle. But I think it’s unfair to act so defensive about readers’ comments being “so dissected” while at least most of us dissect a lot of details about Kate’s appearances and such – although maybe you don’t do that, in which case I apologize for saying its hypocritical. And of course Kate is a public figure and so I don’t feel bad for her for having her actions dissected like they are since she privileges quite a bit from the attention, but posting on the internet imo means opening yourself up to some level of public critique as well, because these are public forums. But alas, obviously it’s a personal decision to stop reading a blog – just some thoughts I had based on your reasons. This comment will probably just confirm your decision for you and I’m sorry about that.
Seriously? We dissect every little minute detail of Kate’s clothes, and speech, and body language, and parenting, and makeup, and literally everything else about her. But when I ask people to not be jerks when giving criticism, when I ask people to do a little introspection, that’s the dissection you take umbrage at? Not people calling Kate a stupid, terrible mom because of a couple of photos?
Wow, I guess the thought of a little introspection is a bit too uncomfortable for some.
We see less than 10% of Kate’s interaction with her kids and from that people think they can form an opinion on her parenting? Judging others parenting is a bit too far IMO.
I appreciate this post. I am a long-time reader/lurker. I think the posts on this blog are fairly even-handed and fair in its criticisms. I too think that W&K are lazy and don’t do nearly enough to earn their keep. And I think Kate dresses like a dead grandma (although I actually mostly liked her pre-marital style…not sure why she decided that getting married meant she had to dress like an old lady). And as a modern career woman, I side-eyed her for sitting around and waiting for a guy instead of doing something productive.
However…a lot of the comments on the blog tend toward hateful and over-the-top. Deciding she is a terrible mother because she scolded her kid (which, frankly, bravo because I am tired of entitled millennials at work who weren’t scolded at all) or because she appears in a few photographs as paying more attention to one than the other? I have two nephews, one 5 and one 18 months, both of whom I adore equally…but if you were to photograph me outside with them, I would definitely be minding the smaller one far more, because unlike his older brother, the younger one has not outgrown his desire to kill himself by trying to run in front of things, fall off of things, or sticking his hand where it does not belong. It is just a little unfair to make judgments about things one cannot possibly know based on a couple of pictures. I would hate to think what people would think of me based on a few 1-second snapshots out of the entirety of my life.
I am perfectly fine with judging things that we objectively know at which she is not doing well. We can count the number of engagements and compare them to the other royals. We can look at the cost of her clothes and how terribly matronly a lot of them look. But, as was suggested by the blog, going way over the top with assumptions and vitriol undermines the perfectly valid criticisms that are discussed here.
Honestly, I should have learned my lesson about reading comments from Yahoo and CNN and stuff.
I’ll admit that I have a very negative opinion of Kate as a public figure and a mostly negative opinion of what little we know of her private and pre-royal life. I didn’t start out that way, but somewhere between the engagement and her pregnancy with George my opinion plummeted, and it has continuted to fall since.
I’ll also admit–and this is a bit hard for me–that I am downright reluctant to give Kate any credit for something well done or even a small step in the right direction. So even if I’m not guilty of rudeness–and I hope I’m not–I am guilty of omission.
So as a step to correct that, I will actually praise Kate for disciplining George in public after Pippa’s wedding. Who knows what little George did, but good for Kate to correct him then and there. I was one of those who criticized her and William for not stopping George’s attack on the balloon pillar at the Canadian children’s party, so I should have defended her action on the wedding blog post, but I chose not to. So I will do so now here. And will try in the future to give her credit when it’s due.
Hi Lizzie,. I too find myself reluctant to give Kate praise for things she gets right so I understand how you feel. I guess it’s human nature to not want to see the bad in those we admire and like or on the flip side, to see the good in someone we don’t respect. But I think just being aware of that nature inside us all is half the battle toward correcting it.
Its also unfair to expect to set the bar low (to lying on the floor), just to have something nice (most about her clothes), of a 30 something who had 16 years (10 to chase royal life) to do better learn – as HM GB the people representative considering the many staff – millions of tax funds handed to the four each year, and multiple palaces/homes funded.
I do admit Dottie, that I feel rather silly at times when I congratulate Kate for standing up straight and not clutching her nether regions like it holds the nuclear codes.
Yes, please stop commenting on Kate and William’s parenting style. it’s wrong. No one really knows how they parent and photographs taken out of context mean absolutely nothing. Furthermore you are involving their children and they are too young for that. A lot has been said about Kate’ parenting style at her sister’s wedding. However, not one single person knows what she said or even the real reason for the apparent scolding. To say she favours one child over the other is absolute fiction. Again, the public knows next to nothing about Kate and William’s relationship with either child.
I follow this blog for a while now and this is the first time a feel I have to post a comment. I actually really don’t have an opinion on The Duchess of Cambridge (in Europe it is the polite thing to address a person with the correct titles, names and prefixes). But by reading this blog I got shocked many times by the vile, nasty and harsh comments left here.Sometimes this blog reads like a book of hatred. You can form an opinion about someones actions, especially if that person is a public, tax funded person and his/her actions jeopardise the state and/or the people they represent. However, I find it quite astonishing to see how people think they can peek behind the curtains of other people’s homes and private lives, crawl into their heads and know exactly what the other person thinks and how he/she feels. To draw self- fabricated conclusions without knowing even half the truth, without the slightest evidence, in just a blink of an eye. To discuss a way of life no one here is really familiar with, and therefore we don’t understand completely. The truth is we “are sure” the Middletons are social climbing people, even without ever meeting them.Without even talking to someone who does know them. We “know” William and Kate are not hands-on parents because we see the “evidence” of this “knowledge” in every tiny detail of the still pictures and 1 minute video’s we find on the internet. I try to understand why people are doing this. Why they spend so many hours criticising somebody they never met and probably will never meet. The only thing I “know” is that when we give a negative association to somebody’s actions/choices/words/appearance…it is, in fact, all about…ourself. We project our own repressed emotions, feelings and issues on others in order to feel more secure and confident about ourselves. When we are criticising somebody else’s mothering skills, in fact we are telling a lot about our own insecurities about motherhood, our issues in the relationship we have with our own mother. Maybe we had a parent that was harsh and cruel to us and that’s what we see when Kate tells her son off (which, I think is not only her right but even more her duty as a mother). So dear people; next time you feel irritated about what you read and hear in the media about someone you don’t know, try to aks yourself the question; “Why do I feel so bothered by this? What does it tell me about myself?”. And to be honest; I think The Duchess of Cambridge is not perfect. But that doesn’t automatically mean she is an overal bad, lazy, indifferent person. I believe she does the best she can in overly traditional and very restricted circumstances. If any of you would have the slightest understanding of life within an aristocratic family you would know that no member of that family can do as they please without the consent and probably even the specific request from the Head of The Family (in this case Her Majesty The Queen). Have any of you actually thought about the possibility that Catherine and William are not even allowed to work more in the public eye even if they wanted to in order not to upstage/surpass Prince Charles? That in families like that a strict hierarchy is to be obeyed at all times? Although it is true she chose this life, it doesn’t mean it is easy, even not after all these years. Princess Diana was born in much more aristocratic surroundings, knew and spend time with the Royal Family from a very young age and never adapted to their way of living. Why do you think Princes and Princesses of the Royal Blood hardly find husbands and wives within their own aristocratic circles? Because people who are familiar with that way of life know all the more reasons not to take it on. So maybe it is time we give her some credit.
You are absolutley right,Tanja.I asked myself long ago(when I was upset with something) why does I feel this way? The answer was often the own insecurity.So, when we are aware of the reason of negative thinking and are true to ourselves, it will stop and we will become much calmer.
So, why do we follow Kate’s life? Why is it so interesting to us? I don’t really care about her clothes.My fascination is how she handles this life,as a clearly not over-confident woman.
She fullfills the dreams many people have and many don’t have the courage to try(or the means, by the way). That is interesting for me.And her mother,Carole.She started it all.
@Lovely Blossom: I can totally understand that you are fascinated with a person that embodies everything the Duchess does (fame, wealth, royalty,…) and that you can draw inspiration from the way she handles this extraordinary life she lives. I follow the many blogs and websites that are dedicated to her for professional reasons/research. We don’t always have to agree with what she does or like all her clothes, or even celebrate her life choices. But I think it is fascinating to see that some people truly write about her like they know her, understand her and have a true knowledge about her royal life. Where, let’s be honest, few people really do. Great for you that you are a self-reflecting person. Self reflecting empowers people and can only contribute to a more unified, peaceful and loving world.
So nice to read your sane comments, Tanya. You have been missed and I hope life is good for you and your family. How’s the not so new home/job?
How are you and your little girl?
William and Kate could easily double if not triple their number and still not have to worry about not outworking Charles and Camilla!
People want to justify their lack of work ethic just like they want to justify Harry not doing more by saying he can’t outwork William. There is no such written or unwritten rule saying that. They’re just lazy Anne routinely has more numbers in the books than Charles, obviously no problem there
Yes, it’s not an easy life so you are going to either get people who want the title and money but if you’re lucky find someone who loves you despite all that. Kate and William had the most goodwill bestowed upon them at the start of their wedding. People wanted to love them and think highly of them. This situation is their own making-by not working and lying about not being able to do things, that’s how we’ve come to this situation. Not because we are petty individuals, it’s because we want them to work and not look bored or act begrudgingly about it. During the waiting years kate could have started volunteering and taking allocution lessons to help her become a better speaker. She did f all instead and wanted a posher accent tinstead of learning how to be be better at public speaking in general. That was what was important to her.
@ Tanja. I disagree. If you do not enjoy, or are uncomfortable with, the level of discourse on this site, instead of critiquing the views of others, why not simply visit another site?
I do not find the critiques of Kate to be cruel or insulting. That is your opinion. And you are welcome to it. As I am welcome to mine.
But I do not think it is for you to dismiss and demean the way in which other people choose to spend their time. In the interests of projection, why have you spent your time thinking and disliking the way other people choose to spend there’s?
People have hobbies and interests that do not intersect with my own. Some enjoy Star trek (trekkies), some are avid football fans, some used to follow the Grateful Dead. Their interests, not mine. But, though they differ from my own, they are welcome to them. Even if I do not understand them.
Simply because you do not understand something, does not mean it has no value. It may indeed be meaningless and worthless -to you. But that will only be your opinion.
I do not think it is for you to denigrate the interests of others. Especially when doing so violates the civility you claim you seek in those critiquing Kate.
@Elaine.Exactly my point. If you do not like a person, if you do not like anything they do or even wear, why not simply chose something you like, gives you pleasure, joy and happiness? And is it not the main goal of this site to demean the way in which other people (Catherine and William) spend their time and life? Since this is exactly what is going on on this blog on a day-to-day base.Does the fact that they are rich, famous people gives us more rights to bash on them? And often in not so friendly or respectful ways. And you are also exactly right that it is not for anybody to denigrate another persons interests, parenting skills, family life, life choices, appearance…etc. So why do we feel free to do it with so much enthusiasm if it concerns the Duchess or her family?
No, plenty of people compliment Kate and Will at various times. It’s a shame this is where a particular point will lead.
Tanja, we are not having discussions about private citizens. The lifestyle they have is provided by the taxpayers, not by their personal earnings. We are discussing people who are handed a ridiculous lifestyle in exchange for serving their country. That is the rub. These two are not serving their country, and do no where near the level of work they should. They are government employees, public, over-paid ones at that. They are representatives of a nation (many nations actually), and their on-the-job performance should be discussed.
Perhaps these discussions do give people joy and happiness? There are plenty of interesting, knowledgeable people on here who share all kinds of information and perspectives that differ from my own. Why should we refrain from enjoying that, merely because you’ve decided to come here and attempt to shame people for having an opinion that differs from your own?
they give me happiness!
@Tanja, I am basically going to agree with what both Nota and Sunny have said.
You’re categorization of William and Kate as merely ‘rich’ and ‘famous’ is a misunderstanding of who and what they are. Or are supposed to be.
They are, most decidedly, not celebrities. Their wealth comes from taxpayers as does their privilege. They are government figures, religious figures if you will. William will be Head of state. And Head of the Church. He will see government papers and be expected to meet with the Prime Minster once a week.
Do celebrities do this? Should they? Would you like to have Kim Kardashian confer with the Prime Minister? Would you like to have her be the Head of your State Church? Or pay for her eye make-up and hair extensions?
William and Kate are public figures. And should be discussed and subject to the utmost scrutiny as befits any public/governmental figure. This is our only recourse to corruption.
And I did not say that ‘appearances’ and ‘parenting’ should neither be discussed nor critiqued. My point was that your post appeared to denigrate the commenters here.
I do not equate the internet commenters with members of the UK government, or members of unelected ruling family, the Windsors.
Because they are not. So they (the commenters) will neither receive nor deserve the same level of scrutiny as William and Kate will.
Those who have long followed/appreciated/believe in /stood against the idea/understand/have had as part of their national identity, heritage and history (be it through Commonwealth or as British Citizen) the institution of monarchy care, not necessarily about William and Kate through the lense of individuals but as figureheads of the institution they represent. Like the Pope, royals do not have the luxury of being an everyday Joe or plain Jane, yes they are human but they take on the role of something more, above human, institution. Duty is called for in the case of the latter, and if people want to choose the former it calls for abdication, the Duke of Windsor marrying the woman he wanted, what as a human in a democratic and free society should be able to do he could not be whilst being the crown.
This is not celebrity, it’s institution.
William and Kate seem to want the benefits without the duty, which would be fine if duty wasn’t one of the pillars of monarchy. They are not socialites, they are not celebrities: For Queen and country, if as a monarch you can’t be bothered why should the ‘country’.
“And is it not the main goal of this site to demean the way in which other people (Catherine and William) spend their time and life?”
If that is really how you view this blog and those who comment here, then why do you read it? You are criticizing others for criticizing Kate and William-which is hypocrisy. I honestly don’t understand why people like you or the spectator or ecelos or some others read this site if you think it is only here to demean Will and Kate. If you really believe this site is so bad, why come here? Honest question. If you really truly think that about this site and continue to read it, I feel like that says more about you than us. There are plenty of times KMR and it’s reader give Kate praise-just not for every little thing she does. If you want a site like that there are plenty out there. This site looks at Kate without the rose colored glasses which means there will be good times and bad (from the sound of the Pippa post, it was out of hand). But for the most part, people come here because they do like Kate (not adore or have her on a pedestal, but like) and want to follow her and the royals life. It is a more well balanced blog without the extreme haters or worshipers.
I read this site because KMR has been making an effort to be fair, and I have enjoyed that. I do not think this site it is only here to demean Will and Kate, and have not expressed an opinion to indicate same. I do comment occasionally when I either feel strongly about something Kate did or did not do, or when I feel strongly about a comment made by other reader. I try to phrase my comments mildly.
Hope this helps. Thanks.
Thank you Ecelos for responding. I was including those who agreed with Tanja which is why I included your name. I appreciate the thoughtful response and apologize for putting you in that group. Thanks
“And is it not the main goal of this site to demean the way in which other people (Catherine and William) spend their time and life?”
At no point, Overit, have I expressed this sentiment in any comment I have posted.
However, I wholeheartedly support KMR when she writes,
“recognize our own negative bias, be more understanding of the fact that different people parent differently, and recognize the fact that we don’t have a full picture or full knowledge of William and Kate’s lives and that some things aren’t always what they appear.”
Thanks, Tanja. Much appreciated.
The Cambridges are public servants, and thus of course should be held accountable for their work and expeditures. Nonetheless, civility, decorum and compassion must prevail.
@Ecelos. You’re assuming it hasn’t. I respectfully disagree.
I have made no statement whether civility, decorum and compassion have or have not prevailed. I suggested that they should.
No, not everyone who criticizes Kate is a jealous harpy, frothing in green-eyed rage over a keyboard. I can’t speak for others but I volunteer upteen hours a month to help various causes in my area and feel disappointed that Kate has instant recognition that could get things really rolling for serious problems but she seems like a ghostly apparition rather than a substantial person. She’s very hesitant and has little to say or add, but she wasn’t going after Will and the position that comes with him. She could have moved on when they broke up, but she continued to be public and available. She may really love him and I hope so, but Kate inspires negativity in people because she is taxpayer-funded public figure that contributes little. It’s up to the British what they do in the next ten-plus years. And Kate may hit a grove. We’ll see.
Tanja and Ecelos: +1
You are right. We can’t crawl into their heads and we don’t know the shoes that they walk in. While they are public figures and it is ok to speculate about motivations, that is different from knowing what motivates them. When we judge it is mainly a reflection of ourselves. Also, we should all be a little bit kinder and give people the benefit of the doubt more often than we do.
We can objectively say that William and Kate have not worked as much as we would have expected. However we do not know for certain the reason(s) why. We can say that Kate doesn’t speak that much and critique her when she does talk, but we can’t know why she keeps quiet or what leads to her to say the things she says or speak the way she speaks. We can even call out behaviors that remind us of social climbers, but the truth is that no one knows what has motivated the Middletons or what the family dynamic is really like.
Those are good thoughts to keep in mind when reading about or discussing the public behavior of the Duke and Duchess.
A very thoughtful post, KMR . Thanks for opening up a good discussion.
As a relatively new mother, I think it’s very easy to fall victim to what other people think I should do with my child. I also know that I often jump to snap judgements about Kate. In the recent thread concerning the way she “handled,” or mis-handled her kids during Pippa’s wedding, I tried to point out that each child is different and we actually don’t know Kate, or George, or Charlotte, so it’s not fair to make rush judgements.
However, as others have said here, the Cambridges hold themselves to a high parenting standard. At least, they tout that they are hands-on parents. So, people find it easier to comment and some of those comments lean toward the negative.
To be honest, time and time again it is mentioned by many that Kate “shoved,” George out of the way in Canada when the family was leaving. Many assumed she did that to make for a better photo op of her with Charlotte. When I saw that video, I did not see a shove. I honestly saw a mom moving one child so that she had room for herself and her daughter. It was only one second and people rushed to judgement. Later in that same video, what I did see was Kate receiving flowers from a young boy, thanking him, and a few second later discarding them — actually waving them so that an aide could get them — right in front of the boy. Now, that deserved criticism. Rude, careless, thoughtless!
I think Kate receives a good deal of negative comments here. Many are deserved. If we don’t like her fashion taste, we often post over the top comments and don’t stop to say, “well her taste is not my taste.” I’m guilty of that.
I also think that mothers are often criticized more than dads. To be fair, many, many people pointedly asied why William was not helping with the kids at Pippa’s wedding. So, that is a positive sign that men are not getting away wish such behavior so easily these days.
I could go on and on, but i have to get to work. It’s another rainy, cool day here and moods are gloomy, too. Not in toddler land, though. My daughter is all smiles and full of her usual energy. that, in itself, makes life sunnier all around.
Once again, not much sleep last night, so if my thoughts are not too clearly stated, mega apologies.
Jenny, as you say, the Cambridge’s tout themselves as hands-on parents. It’s a narrative of their own making. They’d be best just to get on with parenting the best way they can, nannies and all, and stop using their children as a PR vehicle.
With regard to parenting, the Cambridge’s chose to construct a fantasized costumed tableau of English family life c.1950. It was at their insistence they always be home for their children, precluding royal duties whenever it suited. Declaring they had no nannies quickly fell apart. My overall take on the Cambridge’s is that they come across as inauthentic, an opinion based entirely on their performances to date.
Vivian, below in comments, provides an excellent response as to why the Cambridge’s need to be held to account.
Very thought-provoking post. I admit that I have been put off by most of the commentary about Kate’s parenting and the mental state of her children. The over-the-top and baseless accusations of unfit parenting make me very uncomfortable.
I agree that we need to be careful not to rush to extreme conclusions. The general refusal of commenters here to make leaps like that has long distinguished this blog from some of its peers.
I agree. Speculating that her children are unhappy or anxious is very disturbing to me.
It does seem that KMR and others here are uncomfortable about comments concerning the Cambridge’s parenting as if this is not an issue for public consideration. It is back to the issue of when they should be entitled to ordinary human privacy. But because of the nature of the monarchy in which for strictly hereditary reasons, they are supported in unspeakable luxury by ordinary working people, they are answerable in many more areas of their lives than ordinary private individuals. Noone would comment on a private parent scolding her child for misbehaving at a wedding–even if she seemed a bit rough on the child to some, it would be seen as her prerogative. But these children will grow up to live in a goldfish bowl and be expected to publicly represent and symbolize the UK in all they do. They are being raised, educated and coddled at public expense as were their forebears. This gives people the right to feel a stake in the children—to have opinions about how they are educated and disciplined in light of their presumed future role. No one knows for sure how the adult Cambridges spend much of their time, although with the amount of staff they have they could easily raise two children AND learn languages and diplomatic skills, study briefing books, write letters and attend meetings and do way more of the routine ribbon cuttings that English people seem to like having a royal for. They have time to be much more conscientious than they are. People feel that they are not getting their money’s worth, that they are not being well represented, and that raising the children is being used as an excuse to do very little when their “subjects” do all of it simultaneously, and more. Kate obviously spends time working out, shopping, getting beauty treatments and visiting with her family. A big part of parenting is setting an example for your children—in this case that should include working more and better at being responsible, productive grownups. Children model themselves on their parents—they pick up all kinds of behaviors, attitudes, habits and norms. If the parents do as little as possible, are unable to prioritize, or to value productivity and organize their time and take on responsibilities with a good attitude, then the children will grow up to be lazy, helpless, entitled and anxious—overwhelmed at the least pressure and resentful. Part of raising children is that they have to be taught to gradually assume the knowledge and resilience to be competent adults, to grow into what will be expected of them. There are doubtless variations, but people on KMR are within their rights to comment on how the children are being raised, including what kind of examples the parents are setting for them.
Excellent response, Vivian.
This is a good discussion. Some commenters are mean, using names like chutney and whiney and some even saying they “hate” these two. I think their lack of working is fair game and I’m always interested in royal fashion but their parenting skills – well I’m not sure, since we really don’t know what goes on in their home. But it’s always good to talk things out.
A bit late to this, but allow me to thank KMR for this post. I think it is excellent. I am not a fan of Kate (or William, for that matter) because I think she is lazy and entitled. I think she is a poor role model for young girls. But I don’t let it blind me to anything positive about her. For example, and for what it is worth, I thought she was right to chastise George if he was indeed being naughty at the wedding. and maybe Charlotte needed more attention, being a younger child. As a mother myself, I know it is hard work in many respects. Every interaction I have seen with her children looks perfectly fine and loving to me.
As an aside, I know someone who was present at Pippa’s wedding and Kate spent very little time with her children that day: she did not dress them, and she did not put them in the car. She “wrangled” the kids from the car door to the church door — the publicly visible parts of the day — and that is about it. It was her sister’s wedding and her nanny was there so she could enjoy the day, so I don’t criticise her for not doing more, just providing counter-evidence against the “Kate was in charge of the kids that day” theory.
Again, though — great post, KMR. A timely and thoughtful reminder to us all to keep our heads about us and stay rational, lest our many legitimate criticisms be dismissed as blind hatred.
Great post! Love hearing perspective from people “on the ground”. Did your acquaintance also attend the reception at the Middleton place? And what were their thoughts on the wedding? Details please, if you can!!
Sorry, Ray, but I can’t disclose further details.
I enjoyed reading your perspective and think you take a very balanced approach. I have one question though. How would someone who attended the wedding know who dressed the children??
Kate and Will drove in from London just before the wedding. Remember how wrinkled Kate’s dress was from sitting in the car? The children must have stayed with Carole and Mike (and Maria) in Bucklebury the night before as they were ready and waiting at the church for Kate to escort them down the path.
That makes sense. Thanks!
I think comments about parenting are always going to be more emotionally charged than comments about fashion, for example, or even about work performance. The debate centering on mothers who work outside the home and SAHMs, for instance, rarely compares apples to apples. One woman may not earn enough money at her job to justify the cost of quality childcare compared to another who might suffer career suicide if she stays home for several years. It’s rarely an easy decision for the modern woman and many find themselves occasionally wondering if they made the right one. I think much of the vehemence against someone else’s choice can be in defense of their own.
The Cambridge children are in a strange place socially. They aren’t normal. They’re an extension of the human representation of the state. We shudder at the thought of earlier monarchs bathing, bedding, and birthing in view of the court, but that’s part of the role. QEII might be inclined to be a private person, but she knows she — and by extension, the monarch — has to be seen to be believed. In a sense, she is public property. So is her grandson and his son. I think that’s why the commentary can get extreme at times. People are reacting to the idea that George is theirs. They’re also conflating that with their own ideas about parenting. The combination can be vicious.
My thoughts on Kate? She’s mostly just hair. We’ve seen little evidence of substance, and a lot of focus on style. She does seem hyper-aware of being watched, though, and is rarely relaxed in public. It’s no surprise, then, that she felt the need to micro-manage her children for the walk to the church. It’s possible that she’s close enough to her kids that George picked up on her tension and cried a bit. But he’s not yet four. He might not even know why he cried at that point. It didn’t last long and if he were any other child, no one would have noticed.
I see pippa’s publicist is still trying to promote her. I wonder what type of job she’s trying to get? Media based?
I’m curious to see the endgame too. But even more curious to see how effective that expensive PR is/will be for Pippa. Sure, the wedding was front and centre after flogging it, day in day out, like a dead horse. That’s one aspect. But the long game is whether it changes people’s perceptions of Pippa, wipe the slate clean. With the PR overkill to sate her appetite for attention (no diet plate there), and demonstrably materialistic nature of the event, I’m not so sure. Every article about Pips mentions money: how much this or that costs. It’s tiresome and very, very boring to read about someone so materially driven and one-dimensional. She’s still the same as far as I can see.
I also hate how the Daily Mail constantly prices items in their articles. That’s not on Pippa, though. They do that for everyone. If they’re writing about a British chef, they’ll mention that his children go to a school that costs x pounds per term as an aside. If they mention someone’s dress, they’ll often provide the price. We see a lot of that with Kate and Pippa because there isn’t much else to say about them.
The media keeps reporting that now that Pippa is married she wants to settle into a quiet life away from the spotlight with her husband. Time will tell, but so far with the tips to photographers on their honeymoon it doesn’t appear so. I wonder what her endgame is. If she wants fame that is fine, just don’t say you don’t.
I wonder if the declaration of ‘settling into quiet married life’ is akin to the declaration to have a ‘small family wedding’. Sigh.
Please don’t read the Pippa articles. The only way to make them go away is to ignore them.
Just don’t click. Just don’t click…
I’m late to the discussion, but I want to thank KMR for bringing up a very thought-provoking topic. I’ve really enjoyed reading the comments and seeing the different POV’s. I appreciate this site and the content. There have been comments lately that I’ve read (specifically on Pippa’s wedding) that have made me uncomfortable, so to see this addressed made me very happy. Thank you for a fantastic site!
KMR, I’m sorry to say that after being put firmly in my place with regard to my comments about HM visiting Manchester – which I have to say were said with more than a passing knowledge of the subject of security, I’ve stayed well away because its obvious that if you don’t agree with the things certain people say, you’re not welcome. I used to read another site about the Royals but some comments became way too nasty to the point of being slanderous. And unfortunately over the past month or so – especially regarding Pippa’s wedding, that nastiness & sarcastic comments have raised there head on here! The way some people have been spoken to is not on – perhaps the topic of bullying needs to be raised again. Everybody has different opinions on Kate, but we don’t know her, we don’t know her family, only what we read in the press & 9 times out of 10 its made up tosh, but that doesn’t mean we have the right to rip her & her family ( royal & non-royal ) to pieces every time they do or say something we would’nt. It also doesn’t mean people have the right to ” have a go ” at those that offer a different/positive perspective to the conversation. If the site needs guidelines perhaps those applied to bullying should be adhered to.
Same feeling here, Poppy. It is a very thin line between objective thoughts and comments and plain, ordinary bullying.The harshness of some of the commenters here is quite daunting to say the least. “Why don’t you simply go away?” is the first response when somebody honestly tries to simply understand. A positive suggestion of understanding and respect is followed by a series of verbal attacks. It is interesting to see the reactions when the tables turn and people get confronted with their own ways. With the “tax payer funded” excuse it is apparently ok to rip others apart. But what about other tax funded individuals out there? Let’s say teachers, people on benefits, police officers, fire men, doctors, nurses, care takers, civil servants. They are payed by the state, so by definition by us, the tax payers. Do we automatically have te right to shred them to pieces and subject them under heavy scrutiny from the moment they do something we don’t like? Probably some of you will say they are not in the same category as the royals since they are not so privileged/well payed. But can put an amount on what people have to receive from the state so others can have a go at them? And is this right we think we have that once we pay somebody we can comment freely on the most intimate parts of their life, body, behaviour, family life, marriage, …etc. not the same arrogance as we accuse the royals of? We dislike how (as we assume so firmly) nanny Maria is obliged to put on that silly uniform.It demeans her, it puts her down and is snobbish.So we believe. But we also put people in mental uniforms from the moment a couple of pounds of our tax money is used for their upkeep and therefore we have a feeling of compleet controle over them. Can you imagine your boss criticising and scrutinise you in the same way? Feeling he honestly has the right to do so since you are paid straight out of his pocket? Don’t we think it is our basic right to be judged at work on a professional level? Don’t we all take for granted we are entitled to a fair amount of privacy? That neither our boss or our colleagues have the right to look into our private and family life? Imagine your boss commenting on your parenting style, the way you interact with your partner? Yes, the Duke and Duchess are representing the state so their subjects (the people who they actually represent in the UK and other Commonwealth countries. Not Americans, French or Dutch.) have the right to call on them if they do something that undermines that state and/or it’s subjects. Does that include the way somebody holds her hands? Or what kind of shoes she prefers to wear? Does anyone seriously think that will harm the state or is a sign of corruption?Although I find many people here very intelligent and objective in their way of commenting, I suspect some just found the perfect excuses (Royal, privileged, wealthy, tax funded) to have a go at the Cambridges. It’s the kind of people who want to have a go at anyone who dares to question their motives or suggest another, more positive, way of looking at things.
Good points Tanja.
Given the recent tragedies in Manchester and London, I am full of admiration for nurses, doctors, police, fire fighters, military et al. They are highly trained, qualified people who turn up every day to work long shifts in high stress situations for little money and no acknowledgement. People don’t do those jobs for the money. A policeman was killed in London a couple of months ago while at work. A normal day’s work. Some nurses need to use food banks because their pay is so low. A doctor in Manchester not on call went to work anyway; he knew he’d be needed.
If, as you suggest, we compare workers paid by the state, the most highly trained and best educated who save lives, teach and so on, are paid the lowest amounts of money and enjoy little status or security, while at the other end of the spectrum, to be born into one family called ‘royal’, or marry into it, no other qualifications necessary, attracts some £300+ million pounds per year to perform peripatetic tasks, some of questionable value to the public good. The majority of these tasks involve being paid by the public purse to perform charity.
Those in the former public servant category are under constant pressure to perform to measurable standards, meet certain targets, be accountable for funds, and yes, dress appropriately for the work they perform. There is constant surveillance. Those in the latter category – royal – can choose what and how much work they do, are not accountable or transparent with the public monies they take, and with an iron fist yield considerable power that allows obfuscation, corruption and secrecy to flourish. They live in a goldfish bowl, to be sure, though isn’t this a result of deliberately setting themselves apart from society: as superior beings, of blue blood, sent from God?
The disparity of pay and conditions of state servants, from emergency services workers to royals, indicates what society currently values or lacks the appetite to change. But do not doubt that those enjoying lesser status/lesser pay are not accountable; they are, but not so publicly and they can lose their jobs easily even if performing at a high level. And do not think for a moment that your ‘look’ will not determine whether you get a job or not, or are under the gun from an employer at his/her whim.
Royals, in lieu of being accountable in terms of finances and amount of work come under press scrutiny for performance some of the time. However, much of that press is palace-driven and obsequious. And there are many months of the year when the royals are invisible; they do enjoy considerable privacy for a good 7 or so months of the year. Elevating a family to such a rarefied level creates incredible distortion of their lives, and ultimately cruels any chances of true self-development. They become dependent on the myth of ‘specialness’ and the material privilege provided, hearing only voices that will agree with them. Hence, their worldview is small and their relevance diminished.
It is fair to evaluate the royals on performance in their public roles. I’d expect Kate to dress appropriately for the occasion, to be mindful and carry herself professionally. To have more than a dozen incidents of dresses blowing up to reveal no/ skimpy underwear suggests this has been a difficult lesson for her to learn. If Kate offers her determination to fill her diary with engagements, I expect that promise to be fulfilled. I expect that William and Kate will use their ample non-public time to prepare thoroughly for their engagements and far more beyond that if they are to assume more diplomatic roles, yet we have heard William say that he does not read his prepared briefings. What an appalling attitude. As for parenting, do not wheel out the children as a PR vehicle, as they clearly do. Why tell people they have no nannies or few staff when they clearly do? Be honest. My observation is that to date the Cambridge’s are insubstantial and offer little value to the public good; they need to step it up in terms of quantity and quality of work, be genuinely engaged and learn from their elders. If they did so they might find themselves less reliant on the construction of flattering PR fluff.
Actually most of the professions you listed require background checks before they begin their job. At least in the states, so yes, to some degree your boss does know certain aspects of your private life.
I’m a nurse and we have uniform and personal appearance policies. At least at all the hospitals I’ve worked at. That goes from clothes you wear to jewelry and nail polish to even the tats one might have. You can get written up/fired if violating them. So our clothes and appearance are actually scrutinized.
All these professions undergo reviews and if not performing to standards get fired or voted in and out of office if people don’t like how they are performing. Unless teacher with tenure then that’s a different story
I might add teachers in the US routinely spend their own money on supplies for their students, first responders work long hrs sometimes for little pay. So I’m sorry but these aren’t good comparisons. Kate worked what 62 days last year??
Because hereditary rule means they can’t get fired, they think they can get away with lots. So I have no qualms with scrutinizing them and calling them out on things.
I can’t get over comparing a super privileged royal with your ordinary every day worker as if they are equal. If you think about it, it’s insulting to the worker who actually has to work hard *to make a living* which includes everyone not royal or uber rich. Imagine comparing those cossetted wastrels to the hard scrabble life of the rest of us. Why anyone would need to defend them is beyond me. They are lying sloths. And they continue to lie. I don’t see the virtue in these egregious and fallacious comparisons.
Furthermore, criteria for professionalism are socially and institutionally agreed upon and the Cambs don’t come anywhere near that standard. It’s laughable to even take them seriously in that respect given their history.
The Royals can be fired, its called becoming a republic. So in a way they are the same as other profession’s. Also the Prime Minister can get involved after a certain point – I saw that on a documentary.
But its still not right to attack somebody personally, by all means call Kate out on work ethic -I have & do, call her out on her spending – I have & do. As a British taxpayer i want value for my pound but calling her names for wearing a pair of wedges, nude shoes, eyeliner etc there is no need for that. Same with ripping her to shreds for her mothering skills – nobody really knows what goes on, assumptions are just made on gossip & pap shots – unless youre a fly on the wall at Anmer/Kensington. How would you feel if people you didn’t know & most importantly didn’t know you, apart from the role you do told others round the world that you were not only crap at your job, but also a bad person then went onto call you all names going? I too used to wear a uniform & if somebody did that to me I’d be devastated, especially when there is no need for it.
W&K kept George out of sight after his birth, the world moaned because there were never any pictures of him, same with Charlotte. Yet when they do bring the kids out, they’re using them. They can’t win no matter what they do.
Freedom of speech is a wonderful thing, just a shame the few ruin it for the many!
The issue the majority of us have with the kids is that they’re only trotted out for PR. Being criticized for not working? Bring out the kids to earn goodwill points and try to push the workshy thing off for a bit. Caught in a big snafu again? Hey look, here are our kids! Want to really earn the big bucks from your sister’s wedding coverage? Show the kids.
G&C are a dog and pony show. They never just bring the kids out for fun. Look at the Swedes. Their kids are always visible just being kids. W&K try to sue anyone who looks at their kids outside of their carefully crafted false narrative.
Well said Poppy. Apparently there are many people in this comment section who know the Cambridges very well. They know exactly when they lie, when they are manipulative and what they even think! As you said; I think it is normal that professionals are being held accountable for their appearance at work. Do The Duke and Duchess have to step up their game? Like many others, I think they do. But I find it really interesting to see that all nuance is falling to pieces from the moment we have this feeling that we “owe” a person because he/she is famous, rich and works in the public eye. It is for me, from a professional point of view, very interesting to see and to test out how people talk and interact with each other in the anonymity of the internet.How they project their own feelings onto somebody they think they know. It is just what happened when Princess Diana died. All the outpouring of grief wasn’t about her. Since very few people met her and really knew what kind of woman she was in private. It was a collective outpouring of grief about who we thought she was. For some she was the loving mother we never had, the glamorous princess we secretly wanted to be, the betrayed wife we also once were at some point in our life, the superhero rebel we thought was going to change and save the world and take away all our misery. But the truth was that nobody of those people who stood in line for hours to lay flowers at the gates of Kensington Palace, really knew her.And Kate? For some she is the embodiment of the fairy tales we grew op with.The princess we secretly want to be ourselves. For some she is that annoying perfect girl at school that made us feel so insecure all the time. For others she might be the sister that always put us down and was more loved by our parents. Who she really is and what she really thinks? Probably we, the public, will never know.
If you can’t handle people saying, well, no, this is why HM for example wouldn’t be visiting right away I don’t know what to tell you as I don’t think anyone was rude to you, just stating facts and how the RF do things. If anyone was rude to you – and I’ve seen it on KMR over the last year or so I’ve been reading and posting – they’d have been told as such. I’ve been put in my place before and rightly so!
Ellie, regarding my comment about HM, it was the dismissive almost arrogant way it was replied to that got me when there was no need. Anybody with an ounce of commonsense would’ve been worried about a Country’s Monarch in her 90’s going to an area directly after a bomb attack when houses are still being raided & people arrested, that’s why i said the final decision would’ve been made by my Government & Security. Just because I’m relatively new to this site doesn’t mean I’m less knowledgeable on topics & I don’t think I should be dismissed as though I am. I have just re-read my comment and I never said anybody was rude to me but, I do think its rude to call somebody stupid for making a comment that perhaps the masses don’t agree with, and yes I have read that on here. As Tanja said, sometimes things are said on the internet that wouldn’t be said if people were face to face.
I personally have learnt a lot about the Royals from commenters on here and I’ve enjoyed the things I’ve read. But there are times when people get can get quite animated with certain topics of discussion, and at times they go too far. We are never going to all agree on everything because we’re all different, like Meghan’s comment about the kids not being allowed to just play, I totally agree with that and I commented on that in the Windsor horse show blog – the kids are missing out, but I can also understand that William doesn’t want the kids to go through all the intrusion him & Harry had to endure!
Tanja, are you a Psychiatrist by any chance because you made some really sound comments with the Diana “breakdown”?
@Poppy; let”s say I’m a “researcher” who studies the online behaviour of people on blogs like these.So, yes in a way I’m a psychiatrist or psychologist if you wish. Definitely I’m very familiar with sociology and human behaviour. Since there were a few cases where cyber bullying and trolling ended dramatically with both kids and adults, “we” (my patrons and me) believe we have to study where this behaviour originates from. And to develop systems that we can teach young children about how to behave online (What do you put out there? What is respectful debate online?). Who are the people who spend significant amounts of time on blogs about celebrities, politicians, royals? Why do we feel free to criticise and scrutinise others, only on the grounds of their social and/or material status? After reading blogs like these for so many months now, I believe the comment sections are ,for a lot of people, a safe way for ventilating anger and personal frustration. Safe because they can do it anonymously and don’t have to look the other person in the face. They do not have to be confronted by the potential feelings of hurt, sadness, devastation and sorrow their words provoke in the other person. The group dynamic here is very fascinating; already after 3 comments I was slashed as the “newcomer” who had to go away. 1 person felt so pressured that he/she changed their views instantly in order to stay “at the right side”. I’m accused of being dishonest and not sincere. I have, according to one commenter, false pretences and others feel patronised by what I wrote. And the only thing I really wrote was the suggestion that we, maybe, see things wrong about The Duke and Duchess. From a professional point of view it teaches me a lot. 🙂 And for the record; I really do feel about The Duchess and The Duke like I wrote in the previous comments. I didn’t made comments like that to provoke any reactions, these are my real thoughts and views about the topic.
Since I had to “blow up my cover”, I will withdraw from this discussion and get back to my place of silent observer. Stay strong Poppy, stay true to yourself. 🙂
Tanya: It’s interesting that you identify as a psychiatrist or someone in a similar profession or interest which is a field of science that specifically looks to minimise harm to others yet you came on here with many assumptions that you insist ARE true and proceeeded to tar all of us with these accusations and when someone starts to unravel the truth of who you might be, you withdraw with a self-satisfied metaphoric smirk.
Everything you’ve said is a red flag for what not to do as a psychiatrist or someone interested in that field. I’ve had enough therapy to know.
Even where you felt you must challenge our opinions – a good thing by the way because nothing worse than an echo chamber – You insisted upon your preconceived conclusions and didn’t address anything that challenged them or any counter arguments offered which is another red flag for someone in your self-identified area of study.
Further, you continue to berate everyone whilst admitting to being satisfied at the damage you’ve caused such that some people felt they had to change their opinion to agree with you so as not to draw your wrath.
I have no problem with anything i write here nor with anyone disagreeing with me. I welcome the difference in opinion because my experience and my life are as different from everyone here and i find their different opinions interesting, thought provoking, funny and even self-reflective like the title and op-ed of this post. There is nothing i write here that i would not say to the subject to their face, including you.
Further, you false flag twofold by diagnosing us and ascribing/ blaming cultural tropes without knowing anything about our real lives or even life experiences that drive why we are here or indeed those who wept for Diana. You imagine that we suffer from unhappy life experiences in different parts of our lives including high school and that’s why we discuss royalty. Someone better tell David Starkey (he hates Richard 3, but loves The Tudors -what is that all about?) And every historian who discusses historical/ public figures. If they can’t agree with the publicly accepted version of that person, then clearly their lives must be lacking. That is a basis of your thesis in a nutshell.
You insist that we can’t know these people as if they live in a vacuum and can’t possibly be part of everyday lives.
Well, you are wrong. If i recall, we’ve had someone who grew up at KP adding their comments to our own. We welcomed their views.
We’ve had people who live near KP. People with expertise in various subjects that can add a more nuanced comments. People with life experiences that also add nuanced comments.
Personally i learnt so much more about Mental Health as a direct result of various conversations on this board as well as op-eds written by KMR. Much more than the risible ‘let’s talk’ campaign by HT though perhaps i should give it kudos for prompting KMR to start a discussion about the different types of mental health that are not being addressed by the campaign which in turn led to how people on this board have dealt with these different illnesses from real life experience or via their communities. Big and nuanced issues i have never had to think about or how to help if i should find myself in those situations.
I’ve learnt more about transplants from Kimothy and her journey, and frankly i’m still working on persuading her ?that Plantagenets are better than Tudors, but i digress….
Someone who claims to be a psychiatrist and or at the very least interested in bullying and is apparently working on ways to prevent it comes on a board and immediately calls everyone idiots (paraphrasing) before exiting with a metaphoric smirk is about as genuine as a $3 as the Americans would say.
And so are your efforts at being a provocateur.
Oh I’m so sorry Tanja. Well I hope this thread will help your research keep others, especially children online safe & secure in the future. Good luck
Bravo Herazeus!!! Very well put
If you actually are a professional, then what you are doing is unethical. Given your amateur and uninformed attempts at analysing commenters and this site I’m guessing you are not.
I think that the way Kate and William appear in public has a LOT to do with William and his dislike of the press. He just doesn’t want to give away anything to the press and furiously guards his family’s privacy. He appears awkward and distant and Kate seems so nervous and unrelaxed. They avoid many of the occassions where they could present themselves as a ‘normal’ family – eg with the cousins like Zara and co and their children. The cousins’ children appear to have a great time together doing normal kid things. Kate and William seem to keep their distance.
I think so too.
I think Kate would have preferred more press coverage–she’s called paparazzi, she has posed happily for things, loves the camera–but William is paranoid and hates the media, even legitimate media, so shuts all of that down. I get where it comes from and it comes from a place of him feeling hounded and bullied by the press (honestly, he needs to grow up and should probably talk to someone about it), and wanting to protect his kids, but it’s incredibly damaging to raise the kids that way when they are public figures from birth if you ask me.
There is something disingenuous about the comments of Tanya. There is significant dissatisfaction with how the Cambridges are doing their job, which is by its very definition performed in public, for the public. They accept the huge privileges and handouts of being royal, and shirk on the responsibilities. William could easily renounce his royal status, and be unemployed and still quite comfortable. The monarchy could be abolished, or cut back. And the British public could clarify what they require from the royals–they seem to be wanted for ordinary ceremonial and symbolic sponsorship duties in the UK itself, and expected to do noblesse oblige charitable activities entirely of their own choosing, in the way they choose to do them. The mythology of the “royal family” also makes the family’s interrelationships and interactions in public fair game—comments about Kate’s choice of one color of pump over another may seem petty, but overall questions of cost of her professional clothing and jewelry, appropriateness of clothing by common British conventions, general preparedness, ability to make a public talk, to convey interest and warmth, to graciously perform duties that may be boring or ordinary and to otherwise proudly represent, to inspire confidence that the next generation of royals are being thoughtfully prepared for what will be expected of them— all of that is fair game. And people keep returning to William’s contemptuous, off-hand admission in public that he does not even bother to read the briefing books that are prepared for him by a publicly funded staff—amazing!
disingenuous means insincere and dishonest. Is that what you meant?
It also means pretending not to know or understand something that one does in fact know. There is an obvious, huge difference between royals and ordinary public sector workers paid from the public purse, as others have pointed out. Also, suggesting that the Cambridges are being held to account because of “a pound or two” from the public purse obviously misrepresents the situation.
Vivian’s argument is both cogent and respectful. Your response, though, comes across as disingenuous and not a little patronising.
It is incredulous that Tanja would not understand the difference between public sector workers and royals. In her defence of a couple whose purpose is hard to fathom, she insults those workers vital to society’s well-being. I wonder what our communities would look like if public sector employees worked Kate’s meagre 62 days for a year?
It is also deliberately misleading of Tanja to assert that the royals cost “a pound or two a year” to support. When Charles and the Queen successfully petitioned to be excused from the FoI re. full disclosure of their publicly-funded expenditure, alarm bells should have been ringing. It should never have been agreed to, if only so that the public could clearly evaluate their investment in the Windsor’s.
I’m reluctant to comment on this as I’m not a parent, wasn’t present at the wedding or saw any videos and really have no opinion one way or another about the fully hands on / completely neglectful aspect of their parenting lives. But one thing does bug me about the whole Pippa wedding, George scolding thing – why on earth did she do it in full public view? She knew the cameras were there, she had to know the kids were the main media focus. She had both of them with her so Maria would have been nearby, as SHOULD have been William. Yes if George was naughty she was right to scold him there and then but surely take him inside / behind a wall or car / anything instead of in full view of international media! That’s what bugs me, the dignity of the wee guy ending up on the front pages crying. It annoyed me that his media savvy mother ‘forgot’ and now these pictures are everywhere forever. She wasn’t on her own, there were plenty adults around to keep an eye on the other kids whilst she dealt with G privately. I just think it’s a shame for him. He’s not like other children. They don’t end up on the front pages of newspapers when they get a telling off and Kate should have thought about it and dealt with it out of sight. Poor lad, those pictures (plus that Obama one in his dressing gown) will follow him. Wonder what William thought seeing his son and wife in the news the next day?
“Oh, they were there,too?”
Lovely Blossom: i just got that!!!??????
This. As a parent I want to make sure my children know right from wrong and are rightly reprimanded when necessary. Causing them public embarassment and thereby shame is wrong and totally unnecessary. My mother did it constantly and I still have a paralyzing fear of public embarrassment. I can’t imagine what that does to a person on the world stage, especially a child.
omg, please another post,l KMR. I just read that William made a surprise visit to Manchester to thank the first responders. Would like to hear more here. I think this thread erved a good purpose, but to me, enough is enough. Please!
Hope everything is all right with you, KMR.
I agree with you Poppy and Tanja. I normally don’t comment here but just wanted to let you know that some readers do agree with you. Also yes Mary Elizabeth is right, enough is enough!
KMR, can you please close this blog to more comments? We are just saying the same things over and over, comments are getting personal, and all this politeness is killing me.
KMR, after going back to the beginning of this thread its blatantly obvious that there are those who just want to see Kate & William tarred, feathered then hung, drawn & quartered – and I still don’t think they’d be happy with that.
Those that want to come & have a balanced debate are not being allowed to because only the ” haters” views are correct & they will talk over you till you submit or leave, as other commenters have said up thread. The Kate Middleton hate campaigners have taken over. Even you were put in your place at one point & its your blog! Christine, Maggie, Ecelos & Lobbit made some really good points but because they’re probably classed as being part of the “sugars”, they were completely talked down! Even bluhare said that she hardly, if ever comments on here because of the ” haters” rudeness. Wonder how many other people you’ve lost? And as for people parachuting in, well this is a blog that’s open to all right? If this site is for purely hate comments then perhaps it needs to be made private access by password only!
KMR, you’ll never stop commenters ripping Kate to pieces & you’ll definitely never stop some people bullying, being rude, spiteful, nasty & even bit..y to others on here! Because they know it all. Not!
All of this supposed hate only really happens when folks start parachuting in and start causing problems. KMR runs a wonderful blog and 99% of the time we have thoughtful, productive discourse. If anyone gets out of line, they are corrected. But when something like this pops up, suddenly all these random people come out of the woodwork and start claiming that longterm readers (who are really wonderful people) are vulgar, spiteful, unfair, whatever. If you think it’s so bad then why are you here and why do you only comment when it’s an issue like this? I’m truly trying to understand that line of thinking.
Any other day we have a good time here. Sure, we might get a semi-regular poster who’s Looney Tunes, but everyone just ignores them. If they are hateful and nasty, they go bye-bye.
I’m pretty fed up,with so called psychiatrists coming in and calling us haters. I don’t hate Kate, I would love to like her more. I would love her to really make a difference.
I’m with others up post this is all getting too introspective, from a good starting point KMR . Can we please move on?
And Herazeus…I often disagree with you but your long post to Tanja I agree with 100% .
But hey the gorgeous Raffa played amazing tennis in Paris today so I’m chilled.
Hope everyone has a good weekend?
For what it’s worth, I started visited this blog a few months back, but have found the tone too hateful to actually enjoy it any longer. I look forward to stopping in again in the future to see if the comment policy will be enforced, hopefully creating a more engaging forum. – Best wishes
KMR, you need to monitor these comments for Bullying. That’s a formal request.
Quite agree. There’s somebody using unnecessarily aggressive language and bossing around moderators up thread.
Technically speaking, I don’t think we have moderators here.
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