It’s rare that the public isn’t introduced to a royal baby shortly after they’re born. Think about it: Usually we get our first glimpses of the brand new royal within hours of their release from the hospital. But that makes the fact that we haven’t seen Harry and Meghan’s daughter, Lilibet, yet—even though she was born in June—all the more surprising. It’s a testament to Harry and Meghan that the privacy they worked so hard to cultivate, and which they listed as a key reason for stepping away from royal duties, is doing what it was intended.
So when will we get to see a new photo of Archie (who we haven’t seen in public for months), or our first peek at little Lilibet? Well, according to The Daily Beast, that air of total privacy is likely going to remain the name of the game for as long as possible—even if the public doesn't get to see them until Archie and Lilibet can consent to being photographed as members of the public-facing family themselves.
The publication interviewed the royal expert Christopher Anderson, author of the 2001 book Diana’s Boys, about the secrecy. He said:
“As the littlest Sussexes get older they face the inevitable hounding by an intrusive paparazzi—photographers jumping out from behind bushes and parked cars and all that. I’m sure Harry especially wants to shield them from that trauma as long as humanly possible, so that his children can have something akin to the proverbial ‘normal’ childhood.”
The royal family usually has to walk to a tightrope when it comes to giving the media access to their children—like how Prince William and Kate create some organized opportunities for the press to take photographs of their kids, or release some snaps of them taken by the family, while keeping the children otherwise out of the public eye.
But Harry and Meghan are not messing around with their privacy plan. They said when they departed England and stepped away from their royal duties that that privacy was a major reason for doing so. Prior to their move, Harry allegedly hated having to give the media access to Archie, and now that they're out, he and Meghan have shown themselves willing to bring legal action against any publication who invades their carefully-cultivated private lives—like when they sued a photo agency for using a drone to capture images of Archie on a walk with Meghan’s mother Doria.
Another Daily Beast source, Giles Harrison, who the publication calls “a veteran paparazzo,” said that Harry and Meghan’s legally-enforceable commitment to providing their children with a private life has left many photographers unwilling to risk their scorn—even as the prices for photos of Archie and Lilibet skyrocket because of their scarcity. “If you get the pictures of them, they are gonna try and sue you no matter what happens, no matter where you were,” Giles told the site. “And they can afford to sue you a lot more than you can afford to defend yourself.”
Those lockdowns on their children’s images are yet another way that Harry and Meghan are throwing out the royal traditions that no longer suit them. It makes perfect sense that they would use the influence they’ve attained to make sure that their kids have the choice to become public-facing, if and when they’re ready.