Kate Middleton Was Reportedly Very Hurt by Queen Elizabeth's Early Criticisms of Her Lifestyle

Kate Middleton is a model monarch now, but Queen Elizabeth II didn't always approve of Prince William's wife. Kate's relationship with the Queen was strained during her engagement to Will because the Queen thought Kate lived a "frivolous" lifestyle.

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Close your eyes and picture the personification of "royal grace and sophistication." Did you picture Kate Middleton (opens in new tab)? Because that would be totally fair. The Duchess of Cambridge (opens in new tab) is, in many ways, the epitome of the royal ideal. While Prince Harry and Meghan Markle (opens in new tab) are out holding hands in public (opens in new tab) like heathens, Kate and her love, Prince William (opens in new tab), are pretty royal classic when it comes to decorum and rule-following (opens in new tab).

Turns out, however, that the royal family matriarch, Queen Elizabeth II, wasn't always so sure about Kate and her lifestyle choices. In fact, according to Express (opens in new tab), royal expert and biographer Katie Nicholl (opens in new tab) said that the Queen expressed “grave concerns” about Kate (opens in new tab) back in the day, even going so far as to criticize Kate's "unpalatable" "frivolous displays of wealth."

Oh, and she thought it was kind of lazy and unbecoming that Kate didn't have a full-time job (opens in new tab) after college. According to Nicholl, the Queen, who was—and is—still one of the "hardest-working Royals, despite her age" felt like the fact that "a future member of the family was without a full-time job was unacceptable."

YIKES. Is anyone else curling up into fetal position on Kate's behalf right now? Because, to paraphrase the immortal words of Cher Horowitz (opens in new tab), "Way harsh, Liz."

Kate was reportedly super hurt (opens in new tab) by the comments (which, duh), but was advised to "hold her tongue" (opens in new tab) because talking back to your future grandmother-in-law is never a great plan, but it's even worse when she's the Queen of England and legally has say over who your fiancé marries (opens in new tab).

Apparently, the Queen thought Kate and her love of lavish holidays was a bad ~lewk~ for the royal family, considering the state of the British economy at the time.

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Kate frolicking on a beach during a Queen Elizabeth-approved trip to Australia in 2014, but possibly thinking about Mustique. 

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"If Kate was not with William at Balmoral then the couple were skiing or holidaying on Mustique (opens in new tab)," Nicholl wrote of Will and Kate, according to Express (opens in new tab). "Britain was now in recession and such frivolous displays of wealth were unpalatable to the Queen."

So how did Kate and the Queen (opens in new tab) mend the rift in their relationship? Apparently, the Queen "quietly suggested" that Kate (opens in new tab) start working with a charity and the future Duchess of Cambridge (opens in new tab) took the, um, advice to heart. She promptly got involved with Starlight (opens in new tab), a charity that works with seriously and terminally ill children, and it seemed to do the trick because, these days, Kate and the Queen are all, "Feud? What feud?"

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"Much love."

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Kayleigh Roberts
Weekend Editor

Kayleigh Roberts is a freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of professional experience. Her byline has appeared in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, The Atlantic, Allure, Entertainment Weekly, MTV, Bustle, Refinery29, Girls’ Life Magazine, Just Jared, and Tiger Beat, among other publications. She's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.