Princess mary: this is how she raises her children to be responsible royals

Princess Mary Private insights into her family life: "We raise our children with love and security"

On 5. February 2022 Princess Mary, 49, reaches a milestone in her life: The wife of Prince Frederik, 53, heir to the Danish throne, celebrates her birthday. Not an ordinary one, because she turns 50 years old. One gets the impression that the Royal approaches this day with a certain lightness of touch. She seems to have found her center. The past has been kind to her. Since 14. May 2004 she is happily married to one of the most eligible bachelors in Europe at that time. The marriage has produced four children who fill her with pride – and for whom she has a very "normal" To be a mother who, despite her special task as wife of the future Danish king, shares the joys and sorrows of all loving parents.

Princess Mary: Her own childhood laid the foundation for her parenting style

One thing was clear to Mary from the beginning, as she makes clear in the book "Kronprinsesse Mary af Danmark" I want to be a mother one hundred percent. I don’t want my children to be raised by nannies. Certainly not." The biography was published in 2005, shortly before the birth of her son Prince Christian, 16, who will one day take the throne after his father.

An intimate desire that, in addition to the need for many children of their own, surely stems from their own childhood. Mary grew up in Australia as the child of the Scottish couple John Dalgleish and Henrietta Clark Donaldson with three other siblings. With her father a professor of applied mathematics and her mother an assistant vice chancellor at the University of Tasmania, she lived a middle-class life with a focus on family. "Family is the place where I feel most at home and most myself", the Danish magazine "Her&" quotes the princess Nu" the princess from the illustrated book "Mary H.K.H.".

Mary’s children must be aware of their position

Her educational concept is based on the values of her parental home and the requirements of royalty. "I assume that children become strong through love and security. Growing up in a royal family also means that the children have to do some thinking because of the publicity that surrounds their person", the 49-year-old summarizes the basic principle at home.

Princess Josephine, birthday portrait

Princess Josephine

Prince Vincent, birthday portrait

Prince Vincent, birthday portrait with puppy dog

Princess Josephine + Prince Vincent New portraits at 11. Birthday of the Danish Royals

Growing up in a royal environment is certainly not always easy for Prince Christian, 16, Princess Isabella, 14, Princess Josephine and Prince Vincent, both 11, – but their parents constantly raise awareness of the special position that comes with obligations but also privileges. "We are very aware of that – also of how important it is to be proud of who you are, what family you belong to and what that family wants to be for the Danish people."

Self-confidence and empathy

Of course, royal lineage alone is not enough to be successful in life, Princess Mary explained in an interview with Eurowoman magazine in 2016: "But it is just as important to always make an effort. At school, with friends, in the community and so on, you have to do your best. I still remember this from my own childhood."

Her main goal: to raise her children to be self-confident people who at the same time show empathy to others. "I think it’s important for kids to know themselves well enough to stand by who they are and have the empathy to put themselves in other people’s shoes."

"They are only on loan"

Even then she was wistful at the thought that her children would one day leave home. "Even though I sometimes want to press the pause button myself, you can’t stop time." Mary only realized how difficult it would be for her to let go of her first child, however, after her eldest son Prince Christian made a decision to that effect. The 16-year-old moved to Herlufsholm boarding school in Næstved in August 2021, where he will complete his high school education.

Now parents and son are separated by about 90 kilometers. Not an easy step. "When the decision was made, I told myself not to think about it until he went to boarding school", Mary remembers in an interview with the Danish magazine "Billed Bladet". She admits it was hard for her as the goodbye approached: "Up until his first day of school, I felt like it was hard", she confesses. "But that’s the way it is with children. She is only on loan."

Respect for media, but room for error

The future heir to the throne thus emancipates himself from the parental home – and must now prove that he can handle his special position responsibly. This applies especially to dealing with social media and the press. A challenge for young adults, as Mary knows, but especially for her offspring: "When you have two teenage kids in the house, you think a little bit about the times we live in, where everyone, everywhere, can take pictures or film in any way they want.", she says. "They are more exposed and it is important that they are aware of this. And they are, because they have grown up with the media image we have today", she explains in the interview.

Mary, Frederik and children

Nevertheless, the princess does not demand perfection: "The teenage years are very drastic, and they are also vulnerable years. These are also the years in which we learn and make mistakes. And it’s okay to make mistakes, as long as you learn from them" Mary adds. "And so I hope that they continue to have the freedom and space to make those mistakes, and that they can get through the searching and exploring teenage years just fine."

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