In his traditional National Day interview, Prince Albert has spoken of Princess Charlene’s recovery, the serious role he takes in parenting, and his children’s ‘mini school’ in the Palace.
Prince Albert II candidly spoke about a number of personal family topics in his annual pre-National Day interview with local daily newspaper Monaco Matin, namely about the ongoing health issues plaguing his wife, his love for his children and how he does what he can to ensure they have as normal a life as possible despite Covid concerns.
On the topic of Princess Charlene, the head of state said: “She is better but she still needs rest and peace. It is not in the Principality, but we will be able to visit very soon. I cannot tell you more out of discretion. There is fatigue, not just physical, which can only be treated with a period of rest and follow-up.”
The Prince also addressed allegations in certain media regarding his relationship with the Princess, saying he doesn’t want to be seen as “a cranky old man”, and that he is taking it in his stride as much as possible, trying to “make sure it doesn’t bother me too much.”
He then went on to talk about the twins, Hereditary Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella, and how he spends as much time as he can with them, whilst juggling state duties.
“For me, it’s pretty simple: my priority is my family,” he said. “Of course, without neglecting state affairs. On the contrary, I do everything possible and essential. I hope everyone understands that. When I can be with my kids, I do it without hesitation.”
Prince Albert said it was important as a parent to be present for his children, especially given the trying times of the last year, the absence of their mother and the fact that his life as head of state is rather demanding.
“Indeed, this is an extremely important time in their life: the way they grow up helps them see the world. And if one of the parents is away for medical reasons, the other parent has to be there. I have heard too many friends and acquaintances telling me that they wish they had been there for their children, at a certain age, but were taken up by their work or their professional life. I don’t want to have these regrets.”
The Prince’s children have taken on more public duties this year, a concerted effort by both parents to slowly ease them into public life and not frighten them off, says the Prince. This, he told Monaco Matin, is modelled after his own childhood experiences, when one of his first official duties was a ribbon cutting ceremony when he was six years old.
As for the twins’ unique schooling situation, the Prince explained that due to the “uncertainty of the pandemic” he and his wife had decided to move a small classroom to the Palace. The kids are educated by the same teacher they would have had at FANB and are socialised with the addition of four other students who currently follow the same curriculum as the twins. Additionally, they do some sport classes, such as swimming, with the other kids from school.