Prince Charles' lack of popularity discussed by expert
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Charles is the longest-ever serving Prince of Wales and has been the heir apparent since he was just three years old. This means his entire life has been building up to something he may only end up doing for a couple of decades, and will be doing in his old age. On the one hand, he may be itching to get on with the job, but on the other hand he knows that it cannot happen until his mother dies, which will obviously be a very sad time for him.
The Queen, who is now 95 and still going strong, has amazed many people both with her longevity and with how active she still is well into her nineties.
Relationship expert Neil Wilkie told Express.co.uk that the Royal Family has an unusual dynamic in that their roles will shape who they are and their relationships with each other.
For one thing there is an inherent hierarchy; Prince Charles comes before his siblings in the line of succession and has always been destined to be King, which makes for a strange sibling relationship.
Prince William and Prince Harry have had the same thing, and likely Prince George will with his siblings too.
Charles also knows that the role he was born to do will be out of reach until the death of his mother.
Mr Wilkie said: “Prince Charles has been in the very uncomfortable position for many years as the King-in-waiting, waiting for his mother to die.
“And she’s outlasted many expectations, so he’s in a very frustrating position that he probably felt he was ready for the role about 20 years ago and it never happened.
“It may not happen for quite a few years to come and if he does become King then he’s not going to have a very long shot before he passes on and it goes to William.”
This is because the Queen was just 22 when she had Charles, whereas he was 33 when he had William.
Mr Wilkie compared Charles’ situation to that of Princess Anne, who has been a hard-working royal all her life, but never had to shoulder the burden of being the future monarch.
When she was born, she was second-in-line to the throne but rapidly went down the line of succession as the Queen had more sons and each of them had children.
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While Anne has a fantastic reputation as being a royal dedicated to duty, her brother Prince Andrew has not such a reputation.
Mr Wilkie said: “If you look at Princess Anne, she has taken on the fact that she can never be Queen anyway, but she is a royal and a hard-working diligent royal who generally rows the line and is a nice person to the rest of the world and works hard and is a great representative for the Royal Family.
“If you look at the other relatives, Prince Andrew hasn’t exactly been a shining example.
“So fundamentally a dysfunctional family and the normal ones are fairly rare and Princess Anne I guess I would classify as fairly normal.
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“The rest are really weighed down by tradition, expectations, media interest.”
The Queen’s youngest son, Prince Edward, spoke recently about the odd feeling of taking on a title from your dead parents.
Edward is destined to be the Duke of Edinburgh once both his parents have died.
The told The Telegraph in June: “It’s a very bittersweet role to take on because the only way the title can come to me is after both my parents have actually passed away.
“It has to go back to the Crown first.”
He added that theoretically the title – which was his father Prince Philip’s before – theoretically should have gone to Andrew.
The Earl of Wessex said: “My father was very keen that the title should continue, but didn’t move quickly enough with Andrew, so it was us who he eventually had the conversation with.
“It was a lovely idea, a lovely thought.”
Mr Wilkie is the author of The Relationship Paradigm series of books and creator of the online couples therapy platform, the Relationship Paradigm.
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