KEY POINTS

  • Queen Elizabeth was only "shy" and not "frigid" toward Princess Diana
  • The Queen and the Princess of Wales had different ways of raising kids
  • Princess Diana's hands-on parenting was picked up by her kids, Princes William and Harry 

For many years, it was believed that Princess Diana and Queen Elizabeth didn’t get along well, but according to a royal author, the monarch was just too shy to talk to her daughter-in-law.

In a 2019 interview with Daily Mail, royal biographer Sarah Bradford, Viscountess Bangor, explained the truth behind the infamous coldness of Queen Elizabeth during one visit of Princess Diana and her kids, Princes Harry and William. It may be perceived as rudeness, but the royal expert claimed that the monarch was actually being polite to the Princess of Wales at the time.

Since they had different ways of raising their children, Queen Elizabeth reportedly thought it would be respectful to just remain quiet about how Princess Diana was rearing the boys. Bradford also claimed that the ruler didn’t understand how crucial it was for the mom-of-two to be hands-on.

“I remember one courtier describing the Queen as ‘frigid’ when Diana and the boys came to tea. I understand what he was trying to say, but it wasn’t so much frigidity as shyness. She was holding back because their ideas on bringing up children were different,” Bradford told Daily Mail in 2019.

Express UK noted that Queen Elizabeth was raised differently from Princess Diana, growing up during a time when it was usually the staff who did most of the rearing of royal kids. It was traditional that anything related to bringing up children was accomplished by maids and nannies.

In addition, Queen Elizabeth had lesser time for bonding since she was always busy with royal engagements and meetings with the prime minister. On the other hand, Princess Diana, as a queen-in-waiting, had lesser work so she had more time for her children.

Bradford narrated an instance where Prince William’s nanny was on holiday and Princess Diana insisted on looking after him. Queen Elizabeth was reportedly confused as to why the mother did that.

“The Queen was surprised and said, ‘I don’t understand why Diana has to do this; there are millions of housemaids around,’” Bradford recalled.

It showed the stark contrast between Queen Elizabeth and Princess Diana’s way of raising kids, which is also evident in the parenting styles of Princes William and Harry, Bradford continued. The Duke of Cambridge tied the knot with Kate Middleton, and together, they try to keep their kids out of the spotlight as much as possible.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, meanwhile, have moved to Los Angeles to raise their child, Archie Harrison. Both the Duke of Sussex and Prince William have opted to give their kids “as normal a life as possible,” a nod to how Princess Diana wanted to raise them.

“She made it quite clear to her private secretaries that she didn’t want any interference in her day before 9:30 in the morning unless it was an overseas visit because she wanted to personally oversee taking the children to school,” Ken Wharfe, ex-royal protection officer said.

Princess Diana, Queen Elizabeth II Pictured: Princess Diana, the Queen at the Braemer Highland games. Photo: Getty Images/PA/AFP