The first decade of Kate Middleton and Prince William’s marriage has been largely trouble-free — until recently, that is. Some media outlets are calling this the worst royal scandal in 85 years, thanks to Harry and Meghan going public with their feelings. Many royal watchers believe that the union of Harry and Meghan has changed the dynamic of the Cambridges’ relationship from the beginning. Here’s what’s happening – and why it matters.
It’s understandable that Kate and William’s relationship has changed with time, given their shared experience with highs and lows. Because of their love for Scotland, their relationship dates back to their time as students at the University of St Andrews in the same year, 2001. According to reports, William fell in love with Kate after seeing her walk down the runway at a charity fashion show.
Even though Kate was close with William at the time, their relationship was only described as platonic. Then came the first shift. William appeared to be amazed when the future duchess walked the catwalk in a risky, translucent outfit that revealed her undies. To a pal, the prince was allegedly heard saying, “Kate’s hot!” according to Vanity Fair.
In fact, an unknown insider quoted in Katie Nicholl’s biography William and Harry (2010) claims that William and Kate’s experience on the catwalk changed everything. It was obvious to us that William was smitten with Kate, as Nicholl reported. That night, he actually informed her that she was a knockout, which made her blush a little bit. While they didn’t have much chemistry, Kate had left a strong impression on William.
‘[Kate] played it cool and pulled away from William when he seemed to lean in to kiss her,’ said the person. Because she didn’t want to make it seem like an easy task for Will, she was cautious about saying anything.” Who knows what would have happened if royal reporters had been present at the time.
Kate and William’s subsequent dating relationship brought yet another shift. However, avoiding the attention of the media wasn’t always an easy task for the newlyweds. Because they wanted to keep their relationship a secret from their classmates, the couple left the residence where they lived separately. When in public, the couple was especially cautious about holding hands.
Though it took a while, word ultimately got around about the incident. When the media started paying a lot of attention to Kate, she had no choice but to file a lawsuit through her lawyers. Consequently, she and William parted ways in 2007, albeit they quickly reconnected subsequently. Fortunately, it didn’t appear that anything would be able to keep them apart for an extended time period of time.
And in November of last year, Kate and William’s relationship took on still another dimension with the announcement of their engagement. Even though the photos were traditional and solemn, they grinned for the cameras when marking the event. Kate and William appeared to be a young couple in love in one shot that seemed to shed all the royal accoutrements.
After taking the couple’s formal engagement photos, Mario Testino admitted to The Daily Telegraph in 2014 that he wasn’t “completely satisfied” with the final product. However, after capturing a heartwarming moment between the royal couple, his perspective was slightly altered. Kate and William immediately cuddled in front of a radiator when I concluded the session, according to photographer Mario Testino. The emotion just came out of nowhere. It was clear they were head over heels in love.”
After a ten-year courtship, William and Kate were married at Westminster Abbey on May 29, 2011. A historic event, witnessed by millions of people throughout the world, had just taken place. William kissed his bride on the cheek as he stepped out onto the balcony to greet the onlookers. People in the crowd called for him to kiss her again and he gladly obliged.
Even at a wedding, royals aren’t known to get overly emotional, especially in church. William and Kate’s Dean of Westminster informed Yahoo News months before their nuptials: “There will be no wedding kiss during the ceremony. That’s not how it works in the Church of England, unfortunately. To kiss the bride is something out of a Hollywood film. There is no such thing as that happening here.”
Several media reported in the weeks leading up to the wedding that William and Kate had practiced their balcony kiss before the big day. The lip-lock was supposedly planned into the festivities in an utterly unromantic move. On the other hand, it appeared as though the second kiss of the day was considerably more spontaneous.
They also got married and started a family after that. Their first kid, Prince George, was born in 2013, and they’ve since started a family. The couple did not share a kiss on the hospital steps when they unveiled their new arrival, despite the fact that they were probably thrilled. Instead, they sat George down and smiled for the cameras while holding his hand. Royal watchers have also noted that despite the couple’s apparent closeness, they rarely made it known. Even still, as it turned out, the royals’ reserve had been warranted.
Because they were at work, William and Kate opted not to display their affection publicly. Kate and William did not hold hands in front of the cameras like a married couple might decide not to at the office. Even though they were announcing the birth of a new infant, they were still representing the entire British monarchy at the time.
Duchess Kate is virtually always pictured with the duke during formal engagements, thus it would be inappropriate for the couple to hold hands.” Also, they need to shake hands with a large number of individuals when they encounter them, making it impractical for them to do so outside from being on duty.
In more formal settings, you wouldn’t expect them to put that on display. “We know [the duke and duchess] are very affectionate and that sometimes comes across during more lighthearted moments, such as sporting events or similar.” This royal rule, however, was abruptly thrown down in 2017. Because of this, Prince Harry and his new wife Meghan were more than willing to engage in public displays of love, or PDA, for short.
As a matter of fact, Harry and Meghan have appeared in numerous photos together, including one in which they shared a heated kiss during a charity polo tournament in July 2018. That’s why the media adored it so much. This is a refreshingly modern attitude to Meghan and Harry’s new role as a couple and as representatives of the royal family, according to royal etiquette expert Myka Meier, who spoke to People magazine in 2017.
A lot of Meier’s argument hinges on the nature of the event, he explained. Even while senior royals like Charles and Camilla have been spotted holding hands, “a more serious engagement would deserve a more serious degree of professionalism, which each royal is bound to follow.”
Also, keep in mind that professionalism used to be quite severe. An author looked at the affection or lack thereof shown by the Queen and Prince Philip in public in her Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life biography published in 2017. They weren’t physically expressive in upper-class fashion, she wrote.
So, did Kate and William continue to uphold these norms, or have Harry and Meghan’s sway rubbed off on them? Fans were treated to a little PDA of their own when Prince William and Kate Middleton appeared in public together in October 2018. With Prince Louis still a few months away, Kate just returned from maternity leave and joined William in London for the Global Ministerial Mental Health Summit. Even more unusually for the royal couple, William was seen stroking Kate’s back and then her leg during the celebration.
That, however, was not all. When Kate and William attended Princess Eugenie’s wedding just days after the summit, they looked even near than usual. “Commentary crew oohs and aahs over a supposedly unusual PDA by William and Kate,” reporter Kirsten Aiken posted on Twitter.
Also weighing in on Kate and William’s conduct was body language expert Judi James. The Daily Mirror quoted her as saying, “They managed to outdo Harry and Meghan here. It was a really romantic move on his part, when Kate reached across the chair to place her hand on his arm.
James also studied the summit attendees’ facial expressions and body language. “Kate appears to have grown in confidence here at their first public trip together since the birth, and William is particularly tactile, flashing some sweet “pinging” smiles at his wife to suggest he’s extremely glad to have her back at his side,” she told another publication, the Daily Express.
But what may have prompted this shift in the public image of the Duke and Duchess? As James told the Daily Mirror, “the highly tactile displays from Harry and Meghan” may have provoked it. Others speculated that they were trying to one-up the monarchy. According to a tweet sent out after Princess Eugenie’s wedding, William and Kate were trying to “upstage” the newlyweds.
The royal family is also said to have had enmity amongst themselves. Meghan and Kate were rumored to be at odds before the former actress married Prince Harry in 2018, according to tabloid reports. In the words of unnamed insiders, Kate and Meghan were displeased over the bridesmaid outfit worn by Princess Charlotte.
As for Kate and Meghan, there was still talk of a rift between the two. In fact, it was rumored in November 2018 that Harry and Meghan were planning to leave Kensington Palace — and therefore be separated from William and Kate for the time being. According to the Daily Mail, a rift among the royal women sparked the move, which was later confirmed by an unidentified source.
According to this “close friend of the Cambridges,” Kate and Meghan don’t get along, and this was confirmed by the source. ‘Kate and Meghan are completely different personalities,’ they asserted. The two of them “do not get along very well.” Another insider told The Sun the same month, though, that the issue wasn’t with the royal wives at all, but rather between William and Harry.
A body language expert was consulted by Metro in April 2019 regarding one of William and Harry’s most recent public appearances, which was at the end of March 2019. Both princes had been invited to an event with naturalist Sir David Attenborough, but despite arriving in the same car, they promptly split up afterward.
As Peter Clayton said to Metro, “Normally when they arrive at an event, the brothers always walk together – even if it is behind their father. When meeting organizers or supporters, they often crack a quick joke to ensure that they come across as friendly and cheery. However, the behavior has completely shifted since then.
The distance between William and Harry would have fooled you if you hadn’t seen them step out of the car together, according to Clayton. They don’t even try to look at one other, and it appears that they want to keep that barrier between them. “Whatever has happened, I hope they can put it behind them fast,” said the body language expert, “since I have always really admitted how the two princes have always remained together and been such good friends.”
No matter how many stories there are about the royals’ private lives, only a few handful are privy to how they interact with one another. As a general rule, Kensington Palace does not divulge material of this nature to the media or the public. As a result, many people’s impressions of the Windsors are based on their public demonstrations of affection and body language.
Take a look at this body language, shall we? As an example, when Kate and Meghan met up with the rest of the royal family for Christmas in 2018, they appeared to be content and cheerful. Nevertheless, were they feigning a disdain for one another for the sake of the cameras? Experts in body language, on the other hand, thought otherwise. What do you make of their giggling and walking in unison? That’s what expert Patti Wood said to Marie Claire. This is really tough if you have a strong dislike for someone.
Accessories appear to have some significance, even for the royals. As an illustration, consider Kate as she appears in the accompanying snapshot. Rather than placing her handbag between herself and William in this photo, Kate is seen arranging her clutch bag between them. Experts, on the other hand, believe that Meghan, who is walking on Kate’s other side, is a favorable indication for the royal family. There is nothing separating the sisters-in-law, both metaphorically and physically speaking.
According to Wood, “Kate has her handbag in the way of her and Will’s relationship.” There’s nothing wrong with it, but given the recent public attention on her connection with Meghan, I believe she’s just trying to keep [their] relationship looking nice by making sure there’s no barrier or blockage between them.
In spite of this, Kate and Meghan’s alleged quarrel lingered well into 2019. Considering this, it’s possible that Sarah Ferguson was inspired to weigh in on the subject in February of that year due to the ongoing suspicion. And in doing so, the Duchess of York – who was previously pitted against Princess Diana – brought attention to the coarseness of internet rumor. According to her, “it appears” in an open letter for Hello magazine, “that anything goes online.”
It reminds me of how people attempted to depict Diana and I as rivals all the time, which is something neither of us really truly felt,” Ferguson continued. They are free to speak things online that they would never say in front of another human being.” And that gives others the confidence to join.”
Even if there is conflict between Meghan and Kate, or between Harry and William, it’s important to keep in mind that no evidence of this has surfaced yet. There’s also no evidence that anyone is trying to overshadow the other family members. Charles and Camilla should also be considered if public shows of affection are a concern. As an example, Camilla was photographed placing her hand on Prince Harry’s leg in the December 2018 issue of Vanity Fair.