Becoming parents for the first time is a tough challenge for any parents, but when you’re in the public eye, there are a number of other factors that come into play. And if the child you’re raising will one day grow up to be a monarch, that’s a whole different ball game altogether!
That’s the case for Prince William of England and his wife Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, who are the proud parents of Prince George, aged 4, and Princess Charlotte, aged 2.
While they’re known for their modern approach to parenting in some respects, such s practising ‘active listening’ with their children and skipping the royal formality of Christmas at Sandringham last year, it seems that in other respects, Kate and Wills are very traditional.
This has become apparent by observing the photographs from their public appearances, such as the one seen above.
So what are they doing that’s so traditional? Well, the photo below might give you a hint or two…
Yup, it has to do with gender. William always looks after Prince George while Kate takes care of Princess Charlotte, and they even stuck to the same format for the family Christmas card, where George held on to his father’s hands while his sister perched in front of her mother.
This is no coincidence, according to parenting expert Jasmine Peters who told the Daily Mail that it’s all part of setting George up for his role as future King.
‘Fathers are typically responsible for the disciplinary actions, redirection, protection and provision of the family,’ she explained.
‘It is not uncommon to see a father with his son to set the foundation of what his role and responsibilities will be in life with a family. It is often believed that it takes a man to raise a boy to be a man. If you look at the pictures it clearly reflects this common belief.’
She added that having boys with Dad and girls with Mum is actually a sign that William and Kate are instinctive and loving parents.
‘Yes, it could reflect that Kate and William are traditional, but it also reflects the importance of the bond created between father and son and mother and daughter that they both treasure and hold dearly as responsible and loving parents,’ she explained.
‘Children often equate their worth to the parent that looks like them.
‘And any parent that understands how their bond will affect their child in the future when they become adults understands the importance of creating a strong bond early on in their childhood and youth.’
She added that William and Kate clearly understand the responsibility they have to their children.
‘Although these pictures can look a bit traditional, William and Kate may also understand the importance of a son bonding with his father and a daughter bonding with her mother,’ she said.
This goes beyond gender roles and extends into the creation of the very essence of a human – being able to share stories and experiences with someone that looks just like you.
‘They realise the importance of bonding with them early on and training them up from their youth into adulthood, so establishing a solid foundation which is created early on in parent-child relationships.’
Lucy Shrimpton, The Sleep Nanny and expert at The Baby Show added that George may naturally gravitate towards his father because he’s the older child.
‘The children are close in age and when the new baby depends heavily on Mum, it is natural for the toddler to gravitate towards dad who can provide more attention when mum is busy with the baby.
‘If George has spent extra time with dad because mum has had her hands full with a new baby, they may have built a father-son bond that has stuck.
‘I believe the same would have happened even if they had a girl first and then a boy or even two girls. I imagine you would still see the older sibling with dad more and the younger with mum at this sort of age.
‘It will be interesting to see how the dynamic changes again with baby number three.’
What do you think of Kate and Wills’ approach? Are they doing the right thing? Have your say in the comments!