Prince William Promised Kate Middleton She Wouldn't Have to Give Up on Her Family to Marry Him

Seems like the bare minimum, but it's a big deal in the Royal Family.

The Duke And Duchess Of Cambridge Visit The Foundling Museum
(Image credit: Getty/Chris Jackson)

These days, when you get married, you don't expect to, like... never see your family of origin again. If you personally do and that's a choice, that's totally understandable, but for someone like Kate Middleton who comes from such a tight-knit family, it seems absurd to even suggest it.

But, like with everything else, being a royal comes with its own set of bizarre and archaic unwritten rules—one of which being that when you marry into the Royal Family, you can pretty much forget about your own. Thankfully, Prince William knew that that arrangement wouldn't work for his long-time love, and he promised her she could still be close with the Middletons after they got married.

"Once you married into the Royal Family, you became a Windsor and that was that," royal expert Katie Nicholl said on the documentary Kate Middleton: Working Class to Windsor (via the Mirror). "When William asked Kate to marry him, he made it very clear that she wouldn’t have to leave her family behind her once she married into his family.

"He promised her that they’d always stay a part of the family and they have done.

"Whether it’s joining the Queen at Ascot or being on an important barge within the Queen’s fleet at the Diamond Jubilee celebrations, they’ve been there."

This seems like a pretty good thing, given how much of a life change becoming a royal already entails. If the duchess had had to also forego her family, I can only imagine how hard it would have been on her emotionally—not to mention how utterly unnecessary.

The Sussexes somewhat mirrored this arrangement as well: While they were working royals, Meghan Markle's mom Doria Ragland was often involved in Royal Family gatherings.

Iris Goldsztajn
Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of British Vogue, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Refinery29 and SELF. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.