Prince William and Kate Middleton have been married for more than 11 years now. In the last decade, the couple has become very popular, despite Kate having a rough start to her royal life. Initially, she was taunted by the paparazzi press and even had her phone hacked.
Yet Kate made it through with the help of her husband. But even though the couple seemingly enjoyed their time together as newlyweds, beginning their journey as active royals, King Charles was anything but happy.
In fact, the then-Prince Charles even called his son and daughter-in-law “tasteless” when they once appeared in what he thought was an embarrassing picture.
Prince William and Kate Middleton’s relationship goes way back to when they were students. Over the years, Kate learned what royal life is all about, never more than when she turned into the paparazzi’s new subject to stalk.
William and Kate have always seemed very happy in each other’s company. Naturally, as with all couples, they have had their ups and downs.
William & Kate’s love story
William and Kate studied at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. The couple are said to have met through friends, though Kate was timid at first.
“I actually went bright red when I met you and scuttled off feeling very shy about meeting you,” she recalled.
“William wasn’t there for quite a bit of the time initially, he wasn’t there from Fresher’s Week, so it did take a bit of time for us to get to know each other.”
William, meanwhile, couldn’t recall the couple’s first meeting, saying he had to “wrack his brains” to remember it.
In the beginning, William and Kate and were nothing but excellent friends. However, as the years at university went by, things became more serious. As reported by Insider, Kate caught William’s eye with an outfit at a fashion show – one that only cost about $40 – and the couple began dating soon after.
According to the documentary, The Day Will and Kate Got Married, which aired in April of 2021, that specific outfit changed everything.
“A switch had been flicked, he suddenly saw her in a different light, and I really believe that was the turning point in their relationship,” Katie Nicholl, Vanity Fair’s royal correspondent, said in the documentary.
Soon, they were deeply in love. Even though the outfit Kate wore did indeed catch his eye, William explained that things changed between the couple when they started to hang out.
Kate Middleton’s first royal apperance
“We were friends for over a year first and it just sort of blossomed from then on,” William told The Telegraph. “We just spent more time with each other and had a good giggle, and realized we shared the same interests.”
William and Kate spent a lot of time getting to know each other at university. In 2005 both of them graduated; Kate Middleton earned a degree in art history, and William one in geography.
By this point, things had started to get serious. William and Kate had publicly announced that they were dating, and by the time they graduated, they had already lived together for quite some time.
A year later, in 2006, Kate made her first public appearance with the Royal Family. Later that year, with her family, she attended the Sovereign’s Parade at the Royal Military Academy, in which William appeared. A year later, the couple broke up for a short while, before reuniting in 2008.
Being a member of the Royal Family must be a wonderful thing. With all the money, nice houses, and fancy dinners, life seems easy. However – as we have seen in history, for example, with Princess Diana – it can also be very tough.
This is hardly helped by the British tabloid press, notorious for crossing boundaries when they find someone new stalk. Kate Middleton, sadly, experienced this, she became a subject of intense media fascination all over the country.
Kate was called “Waity Katie” by the press
After all, she was dating a future king. Of course, at the same time, that’s hardly an excuse for the media to dig deep into her private life.
She was only 19 when she and William started dating, but that didn’t matter to the tabloids. Coming from a middle-class background – her parents made their millions through their company – Kate was labeled “a commoner.”
Before the couple announced their engagement in 2010, Kate was nicknamed “Waity Katie” and “Lazy Katie.” According to Buckingham Palace officials, it was a reference to the fact that Middleton had recently quit her job to “prepare for her future life.”
One can only imagine what it’s like to prepare for a life as a royal. It’s no great understatement to say that there probably exists no more extensive change in lifestyle – and publicity– in the world. But Kate Middleton managed, thanks to the help of “The Firm” and her then-fiancée, William.
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According to royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams, William made sure to – in private – help Kate prepare for life as a royal.
“It was very sensible in the circumstances for Kate and William to get to know each other over the length of time that they felt appropriate. But it can be hurtful seeing those headlines and obviously very stressful,” he said.
Even so, the paparazzi decided to give Kate cruel nicknames and dug deep in her family tree to try and find nasty things to write about her.
The most significant outrage of invading the Princess’ privacy came to light in 2013. The former royal editor of the scandalous tabloid News of the World, Clive Goodman, revealed that he had hacked Kate Middleton’s phone 155 times, beginning during the 2005 Christmas holidays.
Goodman hacked her voicemails on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and added that he had also hacked the phones of Prince William 35 times and Prince Harry nine times.
The former editor told the jury that Kate was a “figure of increasing importance around the royal family. There were discussions of her and Prince William marrying, moving in, settling down. She had started receiving royal status around the royal family.”
“I’m really not the slightest bit proud of this. I don’t want anyone to think I’m not ashamed,” Goodman said during the trial.
Following their breakup in 2006, things got better between Kate and William. They became a loving couple again and were very much appreciated by the public. Then, in 2010, the couple took the next step.
Willian proposed in Kenya
During a holiday in Kenya, William proposed. The prince had reportedly been carrying a ring around in a bag for three weeks and never let it go. Kate Middleton had considered the idea that William might propose, but it came as a “total shock” even so.
“It was very romantic, Kate said. “There’s a true romantic in there.”
The ring was exceptional and, of course, fitting for a future Queen, or Queen Consort, as it belonged to William’s mother, Princess Diana. On April 29, 2011, William and Kate tied the knot at Westminster Abbey in London.
Only time will tell if Kate will be titled Queen Consort or Queen. However, as Camilla will get the title during King Charles’s coronation, Kate is likely to follow in her footsteps.
Over the years, William and Kate have undergone hundreds of royal engagements and performed many other duties that they are obligated to follow.
As the future King and Queen (or Queen Consort), it’s important always to show yourself your best side, be nice, and treat all people with respect.
Charles was angry with Kate & William after first royal tour
But perhaps the new, more modern royals differ from the older generation. And that could be why King Charles, then Prince, was said to be frustrated with William and Kate when they did something during their first royal tour together.
After tying the knot, William and Kate didn’t waste any time in beginning their royal duties. They went on a 10-day visit to the US and Canada, their first overseas visit as husband and wife and as a royal couple.
The newlyweds got a warm welcome everywhere they went. However, the reaction to William and Kate’s trip was not quite as positive back in England.
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According to royal author Sally Bedell Smith, the couple adopted a very laid-back attitude during the trip and posed for a set of photos that left Charles “more than a little irked.”
In her book, Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life, she wrote that Charles thought William and Kate’s trip to the US and Canada had too many “tasteless” photo opportunities.
Moreover, the now-King thought they were too much of a “camera-friendly couple,” treating the trip as a holiday rather than work.
Alleged rivalry between Charles and William
So what did Kate and William do`? Well, one particular photo showed the couple wearing cowboy hats. It was in honor of pressing the button which launched the Calgary Stampede, an annual rodeo festival held in Calgary, Alberta.
According to royal author Phil Dampier, shortly after the tour, a rivalry between Charles and William rose.
“When Charles and Camilla visited Canada two years ago they were greeted by relatively small crowds. They are in their Sixties and are not what you would call glamorous,” he told The Mirror.
“Charles felt overshadowed by Diana and now it seems he feels overshadowed by their son. Some people may think he is jealous. I have always felt that as soon as William got married, Charles would feel sidelined.”
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