With all the hubbub surrounding Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding last month, it’s only natural that we common folk begin to wonder what it really means to marry a British royal. After all, Meghan is a commoner and snagged her Prince Charming. She’s living proof that you can have a prince (or princess!), the castle and on-call blowouts (aka Kate Middleton-style fabulous hair) even if you were born on the other side of the tracks (or world, in Markle’s case). Yes, you can live the dream. But only if you’re willing to do the following five things (and most certainly more):
Forget about negotiating a move closer to your mom and dad. Royals are a close-knit bunch, even more so than those crazy family members you love seeing every Fourth of July BBQ. To marry a royal, you’re going to have to assume his or her family is more important than your own. And you’ll most certainly have to live on one of the Queen’s properties in England.
You might be a self-made professional now, but if you want to marry a royal, you probably won’t be able to stay one for long. Most members of the royal family are expected to spend the majority of their time doing charitable work and are discouraged from profit-seeking endeavors. If you thought you could consult an EB-5 visa attorney so your new spouse can invest in your start-up, “Posh Pet Palaces” company, and further cement your status as one of “America’s Top Entrepreneurs Under 40,” think again. You’re more likely to be touring hospices and attending sporting events than leveraging a new company venture (with or without your royal spouse’s help).
And that’s not because you’ll have to be skinny. You’ll have to eat less because royals follow the Queen’s lead. At royal functions, you will eat when she eats; and when she doesn’t, neither will you. You’ll also be required to skip shrimp cocktails, oysters on the half shell and other seafood in order to avoid poisoning, allergic reactions and food-borne illnesses. Simply put, your menu will incorporate less variety and be restricted by time – the Queen’s time and your own due to your busy schedule.
A big component of being a royal is playing the part. You must know your etiquette rules. You must speak well. You must present yourself in a respectful way. Like it or not, a lot of it comes down to dressing well. You must look the part. If you’ve never been one to follow fashion, priding yourself on your disregard for social formalities, now’s the time to reassess your priorities and goals. While marching to the beat of your own drum might reveal your confidence, it doesn’t demonstrate loyalty to or reverence for the monarchy you’ve joined. Get help if you have to, but know that you’re going to be the book everyone’s judging by its cover.
It’s 2018. Society has come a long way. People are engaged on a variety of levels – professionally, politically and socially –– in ways they haven’t been previously. Opinions are welcome in all areas of life. Maybe you’ve been active in grassroots efforts championing a certain civic leader. Maybe you’ve got a Twitter account with a million followers. Whatever the case, get used to keeping your thoughts to yourself. Royals strive to remain neutral in public affairs so as not to cast undue influence on their subjects. You’ll need to follow suit if you want to live the life of a royal in 2018.