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Queen Elizabeth II has privately struggled with the divorces of three of her four children, according to a new report.
In an upcoming biography titled “Queen of Our Times: The Life of Queen Elizabeth II”, written by Robert Hardman, the author details the private pain the Queen allegedly endured during the divorces of Prince Charles, Prince Andrew and the Princess Anne.
“Seemingly stoic, as always, the Queen found the divorce talks deeply upsetting,” Hardman notes in the book, according to People.
“Another former member of the House remembers that every once in a while there would be a glimpse of his despair.”
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The biography is set to be released on April 5.
“Sadness and Exasperation”
“It distressed her a lot more than she let on,” a former staffer told Hardman. “I said, ‘Madam, this seems to be happening everywhere. It is an almost common practice. But she just said, ‘Three out of four!’ in sadness and exasperation. The pain she went through should not be underestimated.”
The Queen is said to have maintained her stoic composure, no matter how serious private matters. In the biography, Hardman details his “annus horribilis,” or horrible year, in 1992.
“I don’t remember a single time when I went to see her and she said, ‘No! What’s next?” her former publicist Charles Anson told Hardman. “The problem was embarrassing at times, but she got through it. It’s extremely reassuring in these situations to work for someone who isn’t upset.”
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Her former press officer added that the Queen was “never small, never irritable, completely stable”.
In 1992, a fire destroyed part of Windsor Castle. It was also the end of the now beleaguered marriages of Charles, Andrew and Anne. Additionally, Queen Elizabeth II was battling the scandals surrounding Princess Diana and Prince Charles.
The calm of the mother
The Queen channeled her mother’s composure over Charles’ divorce from Diana, which Hardman mentions in the biography.
“His mother’s strategy in these situations – carrying on as if they weren’t happening – had earned him the nickname ‘imperial ostrich’ among royal staff,” Hardman writes. “The Queen’s response, as always, has been to follow her father’s example, absorbed in his days at sea, and to treat adversity like the ocean.”
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Sir Major John, who worked closely with the Queen during this time, told Hardman: “Storms come and go, some worse than others.”
“But she will always bow her head and walk through them. The Queen has always lived by the doctrine: ‘That too shall pass.’ “
Hardman writes, “While the Queen has sometimes been accused of being slow to act, there has never been an accusation of panicking. Her default mode in the face of a crisis is stillness.”
Members of the Royal Family recently celebrated the Queen on International Women’s Day on March 8.
Kate Middleton, Prince William, Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, all took part in the Queen’s recognition on International Women’s Day.
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“Mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and head of state, the Queen’s extraordinary reign has been longer than any other monarch in British history – inspiring a nation and dedicating her life to the service of the Commonwealth and of his people,” the caption reads.
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