Duchess Kate & Prince William empathize with grieving children & working mums


After the Duchess of Cambridge did an event at the Anna Freud Centre yesterday, she joined Prince William for her second event of the day, a trip to the Child Bereavement UK Centre in London. Kate wore the same Eponine coatdress, and I tried to choose some photos where you can see that the coat perhaps needed some extra buttons on the skirt. To be fair though, I think she’s wearing something underneath? Perhaps a very short skirt?

As for this stop at the Child Bereavement Centre, William was the one who made news. He was talking to a little girl who had lost her father and he told the girl, “Do you know what happened to me? You know I lost my mummy when I was very young too. I was [15] and my brother was 12. So we lost our mummy when we were young as well. Do you speak about your daddy? It’s very important to talk about it, very, very important.” He also invoked his mother’s death with another child – the other kid’s mom told media outlets, “He told my son that, when his mum died, he was 15 at the time, and he was very angry and found it very difficult to talk about it.” I have mixed feelings about this – on one hand, I’m never going to criticize William for doing what he can to empathize with grieving children and for encouraging them to talk about their feelings. On the other hand, William absolutely knows that his comments will receive a lot of attention, and that he’ll get another round of sympathetic “William talks about his late mother” stories, right on cue.

What else? During her solo visit to the Anna Freud Centre, Kate talked to a group of mothers and Kate also tried to empathize, saying: “Parenting is tough. And with the history and all the things and the experiences you’ve all witnessed, to do that on top of your own anxieties and the lack of support you also received as mothers…I find it extraordinary how you’ve managed actually.” Some people criticized her for saying “parenting is tough” but… parenting IS tough. Even when you have royal nannies, I’m sure. Just ask Carole!



Photos courtesy of WENN.

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91 Responses to “Duchess Kate & Prince William empathize with grieving children & working mums”

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  1. Mrs.Curious says:

    Did Kate ask George and Charlotte’s nannies if parenting is tough?

  2. Sarah says:

    I don’t know what to think about the William-part. He knows exactly he has the Diana-bonus so he uses it when he can. Especially when people criticize him.

    • bluhare says:

      This is the kind of situation where it’s really appropriate to talk about it — to other kids who’ve lost their parents. He gets a pass from me in these situations.

      • TheOtherOne says:

        I agree.

      • Maria says:

        I so agree with you. My boys lost their dad when they were 10 and 14. I think William is in a good position to talk about it. And there is no bonus in losing a parent at that age.

      • Chaine says:

        I agree. The comments from him to the children are helpful and needed.

      • Lorelai says:

        @Bluhare I agree. This is actually an appropriate situation for him to discuss it, in order to help others, and possibly cathartic for himself as well.

        It’s when he tries to use it against the royal press pack, as a prince in his mid-30’s, that it becomes obnoxious.

        ETA: FWIW, if the OP is the same Sarah who comments here frequently, I think “bonus” was probably just a poor choice of words rather than used maliciously. We all knew what she meant; I don’t think anyone would actually consider a child losing a beloved mother at a young age as a “bonus.”

      • Kori says:

        I agree. It’s one of the few areas he really can relate to. It’s awful to lose a parent.

      • Susie says:

        William seems to have really opened up about his mother’s death over the past couple of years, which is a good thing. Keeping something like that locked inside can eat up, as I know from experience. You become very bitter towards life in general. He probably also felt more relaxed because it was a charity Diana had been involved in before her death, and also Julia Samuels, founder of the charity was Diana’s best friend. Shame he didn’t get involved with the charity before 2009, it may have helped not only him but Harry as well cope better.

    • Seraphina says:

      I whole heartedly agree because he knows people will soften to him.

      I had a friend whose mother was dieing and she came to work and did what was expected. After the passing of her mother, she’s back at work WORKING. While I understand it must have been very difficult for William, we should not let it soften the public to holding him and his wife accountable for the work they are expected to do, the work that comes with their birthright and that comes with living in wealth and priveledge none of can imagine.

      • Luca76 says:

        So much insensitivity. WIlliam isn’t my favorite person but losing a parent is not ever a f-ing bonus. And losing a parent when you are a FREAKING adult isn’t the same as losing a parent in your early teens. May you never know how that kind of pain.

      • Timbuktu says:

        I think you missed the point.

    • Megan says:

      I am not going to criticize a man for encouraging children to talk about their grief, rather than bottle up their feelings. My husband lost his father when he was 14 and he wishes his family had professional support to help them work through their grief. Instead, they dealt with it individually and, to this day, it profoundly impacts family dynamics, and not for the good.

      • bluhare says:

        I agree. My husband’s family lost both parents in a car accident when the youngest were in their early teens. I did not know him then (he was married to someone else) but the fall out continues to this day.

      • Chaine says:

        Yes. Both my parents lost their moms when they were young ages (17 and 23). It has had profound reverberations on them and their younger siblings and continues through to this day for me and my siblings who have never had a grandmother on either side.

    • Tris says:

      The “Diana-bonus”? That’s beneath you, beneath anyone. The thought that anyone would use the violent death of their mother for political gain says a lot about the thinker.

      • justMYop says:

        But Harry and William have this bonus, that’s also why Charles handles them with kid gloves which is a bad idea. William doesn’t have a good image. You just need to read the commentaries on British websites (he’s weak, the Middletons own him, he’s work shy, he’s lazy, …). They’re not impressed.

      • bluhare says:

        The point is that it’s not a “bonus”. And that losing a parent at such a young age is not a bonus for anyone. He may use it to his advantage now to get his way, I don’t disagree with that, but it’s hardly a bonus!

    • Maria says:

      Totally agree with you. It’ s tough in an emotional way. You never stop worrying about your children. Even when they are grown. That’s why it must be so awful to lose a child. For Kate, sure she has help, but the emotional part is hers.

      • Maria says:

        Sorry, wrong post.

      • sarah says:

        And to give Kate her due, as a parent I didn’t have to worry about my child/children being targets of terrorists. I think that would give me many, many sleepless nights.

    • MellyMel says:

      I lost my mom around the same age as well, so I’m not going to judge him for his comments. Calling it a “Diana bonus” is a bit insensitive and honestly disgusting. Talking with people who’ve also lost a parent, especially when you’re a kid is helpful and incredibly therapeutic. Unless you’ve been through it personally, you really have no idea.

  3. GemslieKnope says:

    “I find it extraordinary how you’ve managed actually”. Aaaargh, STFU seriously! I’m sure she meant well but oh my lord how patronising is she!

    • Fallon says:

      Her phrasing is terrible, in every statement she makes. She uses so many filler words and is condescending.

  4. Barrett says:

    Ah who is to judge anyone regarding loss of a parent? Even if William is work shy, it’s a terrible emotional loss that stings.

  5. MunichGirl says:

    Sorry but I’m pretty sure when parenting gets tough she asks the nanny or Carole for help – “he’s crying, do something against it”.

    She’s probably only there for her children when they behave.

  6. Digital Unicorn (aka Betti) says:

    He made an effort but he also knew there was a camera right in his face so played to it, everything is calculated with these 2.

    As for her comments, it was a positive sentiment but she’s not very eloquent. But you know I sometimes struggle to be eloquent when in an unfamiliar situation – she as usual tried to relate her own life to these women but I wish she would stop doing that as her life is nothing like these woman and their families. She will never struggle as a single parent or struggle with money etc..

  7. Mikasa says:

    This woman is really starting to bore me to tears.

  8. Sixer says:

    I don’t know, I think I’ll give him a thumbs up for that comment, really. Provided that he actually stuck around with that particular child long enough to listen to whatever it was they may have wanted to say.

    He gave a relatable experience and followed it up with an invitation for the child to have his/her views heard. That’s pretty much the way to do it.

    For Bill, that’s a literal triumph!

    (I had to explain the golden shower incident to two tweens yesterday, so yes, parenting is tough!)

    • Megan says:

      I had to explain it to my 75 year old mother! Sometimes being a child is tough!

      • Sixer says:

        LOL! How did your mother find out? The Sixlets got it from school gossip.

        Major was pretty fine – it’s not about the golden showers per se, it’s about Trump, a bad man who must be both opposed and mocked. Minor, on the other hand, a very proper person, flatly refused to believe that anyone would do such a thing and got his understanding of fake news all mixed up. The very existence of golden showers was so ridiculous it had to be fake news in his mind, so he had missed every point going, bless him. But it’s not really a conversation I’d have chosen to have on a Wednesday afternoon!

      • Megan says:

        My mom subscribes to three newspapers (her local paper, NYT, WSJ) and reads them cover to cover everyday. It was inevitable that she would stumble across the news that the entire report could be found on Buzzfeed.

      • Sixer says:

        At least my two hadn’t actually gone anywhere near Buzzfeed. I’d probably still be there trying to explain it all now!

      • Megan says:

        I just thank goddess she doesn’t own a television and finds watching video on her iPad tedious.

    • bluhare says:

      Please let me be a fly on your wall if you ever have to explain teabagging.

      • Sixer says:

        Heaven forfend. It’s like a sitcom here as it is!

      • Kori says:

        Oh I’ve had to and more. My eldest heard things in high school and didn’t want to google them for fear of what would come up. I gave her the info as well as I could but I needed a drink afterwards!

      • Sixer says:

        I honestly don’t mind explaining this (sex) stuff in general but when it all gets interconnected with politics and racism as this one did, it’s a total headache! Still there’s usually some hilarity. This convo ended with Minor saying, “Well, you don’t have to worry about ME, Mum. I won’t be doing THAT.” And before I could say, “Good to hear, lovely, good to hear,” or something similarly soothing, Major cut in with “Never say never!” Then they had a row because Minor was outraged and that, of course, was exactly what Major had intended. I made Major empty the dishwasher. That showed him. I bet nobody made Trump empty the dishwasher when HE was a child.

      • bluhare says:

        That would have involved doing unspeakable things to the maid, Sixer.

      • Sixer says:


  9. alfaQ says:

    raising 2 kids with several nannies, a cook, maid and driver is so difficult. all she has to do is lay back and get pregnant and thats about all she will ever accomplish.

    • Citresse says:

      Don’t forget Ma Middles or Ma Meddles- she directs the entire operation in addition to preparing cheese on toast.
      Kate is looking heavier….she may not be pregnant…. It could be weight gain with age….it happens to most women during the years approaching 40.

  10. Guest says:

    Kate and her lame standard answers. You just know that she doesn’t want to be there. She would rather stay at home, drink some wine and look at pics of Ben Ainslie.

  11. FromEurope says:

    The only thing I have to say is: cut your hair, Bland!

    • eXo says:

      I hope she gave Charlotte her clips back.

      • HK9 says:

        It looks as if Charlotte is going to have to thumb wrestle her mummy for those clips because Kate looks really attached to them. Seriously, why is a 35 year old woman going to an event with those clips in her hair??

  12. Amy says:

    I know it sounds stupid but when I see William and Catherine, I don’t see parents. I see two spoiled, lazy and work-shy whiners. That’s it.

  13. vava says:

    Kate needs to fire Tash. Tash destroyed that coat dress by turning it into an empire waist.

    Kate also needs to work on her small talk. It’s obvious she does absolutely no preparation.

    • Deedee says:

      I know that Tash was PR’d to be her stylist, but I don’t quite believe it. Kate’s style hasn’t changed much at all. We still get the same looks in different colors, the same bowdlerizing of expensive designer pieces, theme dressing and the same shoddy alterations. If anything, Will’s style has changed more than Kate’s. Saying Tash was her stylist gave her two things; someone who won’t divulge that it’s really Kate and Carole doing the styling, and it works to debunk the “Kate has no friends” stories. Tash gets on the payroll and takes the blame for Kate’s poor choices.

      • Digital Unicorn (aKa Betti) says:

        My issue with Tash is that she has no prior experience or training as a stylist. Kate could have her pick of the best out there if she choose to. But instead she asked a PA to style her, a PA who dresses just like every other Sloaney. Kate still dresses like one too only she is wear high end designer clothes. It’s sad as Kate is not dressing for her silhouette. While many of the dress coats r tailored to make her torso look shorter they acentuate her broad shoulders.

    • Anitas says:

      This is the most infuriating thing about her for me. She does so few events and even the ones she does, she can’t be bothered to properly prepare for them. Like she’s briefed in the car on the way to the event and that’s it.

      I can understand she may be nervous talking to people at these occasions, especially when she knows her words will be transcribed and repeated in the press, but she could’ve become a pro by now if she’d put her mind to practice and learn.

  14. als says:

    There are a lot of tough things in life. We all try to face them the best way we can.
    These two are too passive – aggressive and spoiled to face anything.

  15. Adele Dazeem says:

    Did anyone see the photos of the press and “well wishers” that came out to see them at their event? Cringe worthy. I think we here at celebitchy care far more about those two than anyone else! I’ve seen more people at a gas station midday.

  16. justsaying says:

    They received a lot of negative comments on the Internet again. People don’t respect them – because why should they? – and they will have a hard time as King and Queen Consort.

  17. Jade says:

    I know they whine but they don’t seem like they’re whining here. I’m trying to be less cynical. I’m not a parent but I think she can say parenting is tough. You can do everything right and everything is taken care of but inculcating values is not straightforward. As for what values they champion, that’s another issue.

  18. Lemon says:

    Not going to lie. I feel like there statements would go a long way if they didn’t sound so self serving. Both of them never sound genuine to me. Even with William talking about his mom, I feel like he just wants to remind us that 1. He is Diana’s son and 2. He deserves all the sympathy. Anything else seems like an afterthought.

    • rory says:


    • Jan says:

      Exactly. He only ever brings up Diana for PR purposes when he gets bad press. Too bad he never learned about genuine empathy, compassion and an amazing work ethic from her. She would be horrified if she could see him today. And his so-called Duchess? She and her mother would never have gotten within sniffing distance if she were around. If he’s still hasn’t dealt with his mother’s death after almost 20 years, that’s too bad but it’s also high time he get some help to deal with it in a manner like any other “normal” grown-up would.

    • Lorelai says:

      I think William’s grief for Diana is extremely complicated. I believe it is absolutely genuine, but I also think that over the years it has become warped and enmeshed with his conflicted feelings about his father, his dad’s family, his role, intrusion (real and perceived) by the press, etc.

      He does seem to use it as a weapon at times, but I believe that deep down it truly is heartbreaking for him to think about what happened to her.

      • notasugarhere says:

        His grief vies with resentment of her and her choices. It has taken a strange turn lately, where he is using Diana working hard against her. Part of his anti-working-parents theme, that somehow she was a bad mother because she worked hard for charity.

        Like what happened between his parents. He isn’t on “her side” as it were. He resents what their failing relationship did to him, and what her subsequent romantic relationships did to *their* relationship. But given his track record and where they’re raising their family, doesn’t have a problem with infidelity.

        It leaves the nasty taste in my mouth that he’ll use her, her memory, anything to get what he wants. Or to get out of what he doesn’t want to do. Any excuse in the storm.

    • Cerys says:

      I have to agree with you. Im sure he misses his mother terribly and grieves for her but it never comes across as genuine in public. I think we are so cynical about the Dolittles that everything they say is regarded as a PR exercise. That’s a shame, because they are in a position to do so much good.

  19. Margo S. says:

    First, I think it’s amazing that will was so open with those children who lost parents. I think that meant so much to those kids to hear that from him.

    And Kate saying lamenting is tough. It is! Stay at home moms, working mom’s, even mom’s with nannies, it’s hard as hell for anyone.

  20. Z says:

    Kate gets flack (correctly) for not working much. But when she does, she gets flack for having child care? Apparently, nothing she does is correct or appropriate to some people.

    • notasugarhere says:

      They both get flack regarding the child care because they have massive of help, yet insist they cannot work more because? They have all of that help so that they can work for the country, not so they can run around doing anything but working. The sideways bashing of working parents by William certainly doesn’t help, nor did the stories throwing Diana under the bus because she worked hard for her charities.

  21. M.A.F. says:

    What is he suppose to do in those situations? Not talk about how he lost his mother? Come on. It’s not as if he was at some gala or state function and he brought up his mother’s death for no reason. He was at the Child Bereavement UK Center, where one would expect that topic to come up.

  22. Racer says:

    Parenting is tough. So many people focus on “wanting a child” when the reality is that you are basically signing your life away forever to be responsible for another human being and you have no control over the personality or prospects of your offspring. Living that lifestyle is not appealing to me, but deciding to walk blindly and hand over your existence indefinitely is a tough job. Its deeper than money and resources.

    • Maria says:

      Totally agree with you. It’ s tough in an emotional way. You never stop worrying about your children. Even when they are grown. That’s why it must be so awful to lose a child. For Kate, sure she has help, but the emotional part is hers.

  23. bizzylizzy says:

    And with the history and all the things and the experiences you’ve all witnessed, to do that on top of your own anxieties and the lack of support you also received as mothers”

    WHAT is with all the words?…what the hell is she talking about?!? – it reminds me of when I taught english as a foreign language in Japan….

    • Ravine says:

      It’s not THAT bad, sheesh. It’s hard to come up with perfectly elegant sentences off the cuff. Of course it looks funny if it gets written down for others to scrutinize, but I’m sure no one batted an eye at the event itself.

  24. sarri says:

    Start to think the people who say that the Dolittles will bring down the British monarchy, could be right. These two are not made for this job.

  25. Cakelover says:

    I’d like to know what Kate thinks when she’s attending royal duties. She always seems to be uninterested. Maybe something like: “How do I smuggle Ainslie to Mustique?”

  26. Starlight says:

    Parenting is tough when you can’t help but spoil your children with lots of material wealth but desperately it’s killing you inside because you know the mite will turn out to be petulant, spoilt, not attached to the real world and a pain in the neck, parenting is as tough as you want to make it

  27. Eden75 says:

    He gets a pass from me on this one. This is the one place that he can speak honestly about his feelings about his mother’s death to someone who will understand and where it will do some good. The fact that he is the future King of England and that these kids know who he is may also help them open up to those who can help them. “This famous/royal man lost his mommy like me and told me I should talk to someone. Maybe I will.” They also get to learn first hand that tragedy happens to everyone, no matter your station in life.

    No way in Hell am I going to criticize him for talking about his mother’s death to small children. They need to know that EVERYONE suffers from loss and they need to know they are not alone.

    • AnnieO says:

      My mother committed suicide. It would have been helpful to have gotten some hugs and kind words instead of being treated as a pariah and something to gossip about.

      • Maria says:

        I am so sorry, AnnieO, how awful for you. People say the stupidest things when a loved one dies, it must be worse when the death is self-inflicted. People want black and white answers, most of the time, it’s not quite that simple. The fact is shit happens, and it doesn’t always happen to other people.

  28. Kitty says:

    Kate needs to think before she speaks.

  29. Jumpingthesnark says:

    Didn’t Harry do an visit to a brazing orphanage a few years ago? The details elude me , but I remember that he did reference Diana at that visit, but that he did it a way that was both genuine and also respectful to the very adverse circumstances of the children, circumstances that he did not share. I don’t doubt that William is genuine about wanting to reach out to these kids and share with them, it is just the utter cluelessness of his and k comments about the other circumstances of these kids lives that grate. Unlike his brother.

    • LAK says:

      That was Sentebale. He was visiting their new building block in Lesotho.

      He always references Diana in the lovliest ways when he does anything for Sentebale.

  30. A says:

    I’m kind of glad that he’s at a place where he can talk about this sort of thing. He can clearly relate to this sort of thing and it’s obvious that his feelings about his mother and her death are fairly complex so like. I don’t know if a lay person can truly comment on whether it’s genuine or not, since that errs on the side of insensitive. Nobody except for those who have lost a parent while really young can ever speak for someone who has been in that position, and I wouldn’t try. Anyway, I’ve noticed that Harry has been more open about this for a while now, and I’m glad that William is following that lead, however stilted the execution. Points for effort, lol.

    Anyway, I didn’t know that Kate was actually going to be there for this and that this was a joint engagement and that she had done two things yesterday lol. As for her, she’s relating (or trying to lol) in the only way she knows. It’s clear that she cares a lot for her kids, whatever said and done, and I thought the comments she made were fairly less tone deaf than they usually are when they come out of her mouth so. Whatever I guess.

  31. weegiewarrior says:

    Both harry and william have spoken recently about not being able to talk about their mothers death for years….I dont know if they had counselling but it seems there are still outstanding issues they need to deal with especially william, his fraught relationship with th press is only one of them. Until he does he wont be able to find peace with his role or who he is and I think thats why he finds his royal life difficult.

    • Digital Unicorn (aka Betti) says:

      They got counselling, Charles made sure they did but I guess part of the reason they felt it difficult to talk to people about her death had prob something to do with whatever they said finding its way into the press.

      • Kaz says:

        And I think that as you mature you think about situations in different ways and see things from a range of perspectives. So William is more free and able to talk openly now as a mature man than he was as a teenager or young man. He is also slightly less bound by the restraints of still being a dependent child and surrounded by fsmily who had varying opinions (not always positive) of his mother and her behaviour.