The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have a new baby son. I will have to admit that I was shocked that at the same time I heard of his arrival, I also saw pictures of him and his mother and father posing on the steps of some building. But, I think I must have shrugged and got on with life. Their business, not mine, bloody pleased my adolescent dreams of Prince William falling in love with me never came to pass. Because (among other things) there’s no way I could look like that with a year-old-baby let along a less-than-day-old-baby.
And then I read this piece on the NZ Herald. I almost don’t want to give you the link because I don’t want to give them the traffic. But, just so we’re all on the same page, there it is.
The piece opens with the question,
“Did the Duchess really need to face the world so quickly after giving birth?”
and goes on about how much of a shame it is, how dreadful it must have been, how terrible it is that the Duchess of Cambridge some two hours after delivery (the author speculates) would have needed hair and make-up, to wiggle into that dress, and push her feet into some heels. The author makes a big deal about the heels being the colour nude.
But the author misses the point. It is not uncommon for mothers to want to leave hospital as soon as possible after the birth of their babies. Mothers want their own bed, their own Netflix channel, their own bathroom, their own brand of tea bag, and not to listen to the other mothers farting, snoring and arguing with their partners. Why should we presume that the Duchess of Cambridge is any different, or has any less of a right to make this decision than anyone else?
Or, could it be that the author deliberately misses the point, and assumes the absolute right of the press to demand photos as soon as the royal family want to leave the hospital? Just so they can get a few snipes in about nude pumps and actually looking quite exhausted. When, in fact if it wasn’t for the hordes of press photographers and journalists waiting outside, the threesome could have slipped home quietly, the Duchess might not have needed the hair-and-make-up, and she might indeed have scuffed home in track-pants and Ugg boots. Surely then, the press, The Media, is very much to blame in this scenario? And in writing this criticism of a mum (not very original, is it?) and then using one of the photos of the royal threesome on the steps to get traffic, the NZ Herald has stooped to a hypocritical low.