Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II passed away peacefully on Thursday, September 8, at Balmoral Castle, surrounded by her loved ones.
The relationship dynamics in the British royal family have gained traction for ages, and perhaps one of the most talked-about was the mother-son relationship between Queen Elizabeth and her then heir-apparent, Prince Charles.
In June, citizens witnessed a historical moment in the British royal empire with the reign of Queen Elizabeth II. The highly-esteemed monarch commemorated her platinum jubilee on the throne with several events.
A platinum Jubilee concert was held, having the likes of Diana Ross, Sir Elton John, Alicia Keys, and Sir Rod Stewart, among others, gracing the occasion with performances.
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales on the balcony of Buckingham Palace on June 5, 2022 | Source: Getty Images
During the star-studded concert held in her honor, the Queen’s first child, and longest-serving heir, Prince Charles, stepped forward to close off the evening of entertainment.
The Prince of Wales started his speech using the endearing term, “Mommy,” and the guests were enthralled. While many expressed their approval for how Charles praised his mother, the Queen’s reaction stood out.
Queen Elizabeth II smiles on the balcony of Buckingham Palace during Trooping the Colour alongside Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Charles, Prince Louis of Cambridge, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, Princess Charlotte of Cambridge, Prince George of Cambridge, and Prince William during Trooping The Colour on June 02, 2022 in London, England | Source: Getty Images
Although it wasn’t the first time Charles had used the word “mommy” to address Queen Elizabeth publicly, she couldn’t help but roll her eyes before cracking a smile. This expression evoked laughter from some royal family members, who also noticed.
Inside Prince Charles’ Relationship with the Queen
Prince Charles and Queen Elizabeth II on May 18, 2009 in London | Source: Getty Images
Queen Elizabeth II symbolized authority and reverence to millions of people globally, and all this is tied to the monarchy. However, it is safe to say that her relationship with her immediate family members and her son, in particular, should rank higher.
However, there’s been many inside stories, some notably from Prince Charles himself, pointing to the opposite. In time past, Charles has been vocal about the distance between him and his parents.
In his biography penned by Jonathan Dimbleby, Charles’ point of view was that of a young boy who rarely saw his parents or shared emotional moments with them. The then crowned Prince was miserable about being sent to the same strict Scottish school his father attended.
While opening up about his parents, Charles described how the late Prince Philip was quick to mete discipline to a fault. He recalled how he was “easily cowed by the forceful personality of his father.”
Charles’ friends, who got his permission to make input in the biography, remembered Prince Philip to be “bullying” and “belittling” towards his son. Charles shared that Queen Elizabeth was “not indifferent so much as detached.”
One of the most revealing moments of the distance between the Queen and her son was when the Queen and Philip had been away for months. When the duo returned, they memorably reunited with their children by extending handshakes.
Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla Parker Bowles on April 9, 2005 in Berkshire, England | Source: Getty Images
Martin Charteris, Queen Elizabeth’s private secretary then, shared that Charles “must have been baffled by what a natural mother-son relationship was meant to be like.” However, the Prince did get affection elsewhere.
His maternal grandmother, Elizabeth The Queen Mother, was physically and emotionally present in his formative years. It was with her that Charles learned to “look at things.” Growing up, the Prince was highly sensitive, and the Queen Mother encouraged his gentle nature.
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales during the State Opening of Parliament at the Palace of Westminster on October 14, 2019 in London, England | Source: Getty Images
According to insiders, Prince Charles was often vocal about his mom being distant and unavailable. In Dimbleby’s book, Charles recalled how his childhood was molded by the nursery staff and not his “emotionally reserved parents.”
His Life as a Prince
Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles in the U.K. in 1979 | Source: Getty Images
The relationship between Charles and Queen Elizabeth was complicated, and it also did not help that he started taking on duties while growing older. Unlike his siblings, Princess Anne and Prince Andrew, Charles’ life has been molded for the crown.
In 1969, his mother crowned him the Prince of Wales, further sealing his place in the royal family. Charles’ tumultuous love life played out in the public eye until he eventually married the woman he always wanted, Camilla Parker Bowles.
Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer at Craigowan Lodge, Balmoral, Scotland, 6th May 1981 | Source: Getty Images
Before Charles became the Prince of Wales, his mother left most of his formative years in the hands of Prince Philip. According to Royal biographers, Philip noticed his son’s sensitivity and chose to toughen him up.
The Highlight of Prince Charle’s Heydays
Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales during their tour to Ottawa in Canada. | Source: Getty Images
The complications and emotional upheaval that Charles reportedly experienced with his parents came full circle when he fell in love with Camilla and married Princess Diana instead.
At the time, the Queen disapproved of Camilla, noting that she did not fit for the royal family. Camilla ended up marrying Andrew Parker Bowles, while Charles married Lady Diana Spencer, who became Princess Diana in marriage.
Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles at the after party for the “Fashion Rocks” concert and fashion show on October 15, 2003 in London. | Source: Getty Images
With the arrangement, Charles was once again dealt the hand of the monarchy. His marriage with Diana was disastrous and ladened with cheating issues. The pair eventually called things off in 1996, before Diana’s death the following year.
Many years later, the then Prince Charles rekindled his relationship with Camilla, who was also long divorced. The pair got married, and although the Queen did not attend the church wedding, she was present for the religious blessing and the reception.
Elizabeth was the head of the Church of England, which frowned upon divorce. Prince Philip was also absent for the same reason.
However, in recent times, it seems Queen Elizabeth softened up with her duties and obligations. During her seventh anniversary of the ascension to the throne, she renewed her pledge to the institution and added some words for good measure.
The Queen urged her people to throw their support in favor of then Prince Charles and his wife when her remarkable reign ended. This was followed by appreciating words as the Queen consented to Camilla becoming Queen Consort after her demise.
Before this pronouncement, the protocol dictated that Camilla would become Princess Consort when Charles ascended the throne. This had been in place after the pair’s 2005 wedding.
The Queen always hinted that Charles would be her perfect successor. She once gushed about him being able to handle the commonwealth in her absence. The Queen took pride in knowing that her father’s works that began in the 40s would be duly continued.