The Duchess of Cambridge reflected on her early years, while partaking in a candid Q&A session following the results from her landmark 5 Big Questions survey. When asked, “What did you like most in your childhood,” Kate Middleton, 38, replied, “That’s a very good question. I loved spending time outside and that has stuck with me for my whole life.” The Duchess, who is a mom to Prince George, seven, Princess Charlotte, five, and Prince Louis, two, was also asked how she manages “toddler tantrums” in her household, “especially with multiple children.” “Yes, that’s a hard one. I’d also like to ask the experts myself!” she laughed.
During the Q&A, Kate revealed what sparked her interest in the early years. “I actually get asked this question a lot. I think people assume that because I am a parent, that’s why I’ve taken an interest in the Early Years. I think this really is bigger than that,” she shared. “This isn’t just about happy healthy children, this is about the society I hope we could and can become. Right from the early days, meeting lots of people who are suffering with addiction or poor mental health, and hearing time and time again that their troubles now in adulthood stem right back from early childhood experience.”
On Nov. 26, the mom of three unveiled the findings of the biggest ever UK study on the early years, marking a milestone moment for her work on the importance of early childhood in shaping the rest of our lives and broader societal outcomes. The Duchess emphasized her “ambition to put the Early Years on an equal footing with the other great social challenges” in a keynote speech on Friday during The Royal Foundation’s “What the UK thinks about the Early Years” online forum.
“People often ask why I care so passionately about the early years. Many mistakenly believe that my interest stems from having children of my own. And while of course I care hugely about their start in life, this ultimately sells the issue short,” the Duchess said. “Parenthood isn’t a prerequisite for understanding the importance of the early years. If we only expect people to take an interest in the early years when they have children, we are not only too late for them, we are underestimating the huge role others can play in shaping our most formative years too.”
Kate concluded her speech saying, “Only by working together can we bring about lasting change for the generations to come. Because I truly believe, big change starts small.”