The Queen broke royal parenting protocol, here's how

Is breast best?

The Queen broke royal parenting protocol, here's how
(Image credit: Getty)

Is breast best?

One of the biggest debates that new parents have to deal with is whether to breastfeed or formula feed their babies. Throw a royal tradition in the mix and it’s a tough one to contend with. 

Historically, female monarchs have relied on ‘wet nurses’ to feed their children. These women breastfed royal babies so that queens could return to duties quickly. 

Royal historian Amy Licence told The Guardian: “Breastfeeding offers a degree of contraceptive protection, so with their babies being fed by others, Queens were free to resume their duties and begin the process of conceiving the next heir."

The Queen bucked this tradition and chose to breastfeed Charles, Anne, Andrew, and Edward. In the same way that Her Majesty received important life advice from her mother, she has passed down the new tradition to today’s royal mothers. 

The Queen’s decision to breastfeed did throw up some criticism. It’s reported that Princess Magaret wasn’t a fan, calling it “distasteful”. 

Nevertheless, Princess Diana and The Duchess of Cambridge have both happily breastfed all of their children. “Princess Diana insisted on nursing William and Harry herself", Licence revealed, adding that both Kate and Prince William take a "hands-on" approach with their little ones.

The Queen broke royal parenting protocol, here's how


Choosing to breastfeed hasn’t been easy for Kate either. In a visit to St Joseph’s SureStart facility back in 2019, Kate spoke candidly about her experience and praised young mothers for overcoming their struggles. 

Prince William and Kate have always been open about their parenting experience. That’s why we know all the special things about the royal youngsters, like Louis’ favourite celebrity or Charlotte’s fancy go-to snack. Oh, and did we mention that Kate admits she’s ‘very broody’?

Through it all, one thing is for certain - the Queen is a trailblazing leader who is doing monarchy in her own way. That’s why we love her. 

Grace Warn

Grace Warn is the at Commercial Producer & Writer Marie Claire UK. From organising cover shoots and uncovering the latest news to creating social content, she loves the fact that no one day is the same!

Growing up just outside of London, Grace made the leap at 16 and started to intern. Juggling education, earning money, styling, producing and organising numerous fashion cupboards was as intoxicating as it was challenging and it's what's brought her here today.

After graduating in the pandemic, the only option was to take on as many freelance roles as possible. From demystifying health jargon to keeping up with the latest footwear drops, a strange concoction of health and footwear journalism became Grace's bread and butter but she always wanted a break in lifestyle journalism and production. Then she landed her dream role!

When she's not racing to deadlines, Grace can be found on anything that could pass as a dancefloor dancing to Diana Ross or scouting out vintage sales on the outskirts out South London - believe it or not, Beckenham is the place to go!