Why do little girls dream of becoming princesses? Is it because of fairytales?
In their heart of hearts, little girls and grown women believe there exists that perfect man, or Prince Charming, created just for her. He will love, cherish, and protect her from the harsh realities of life.
Once they become adults, women replace fairytales with romance novels and romantic heroes. Both the fairytale prince and the romance novel male represent an unrealistic vision of a happily ever after.
But what if while she grows up and waits for him to appear in her life, the prince endures those very same or worse harsh realities from which he must shield her?
And yet, men and woman may slog through the mire of reality, awaiting his Princess or her Prince Charming. In other words, they await that happy ending promised by those childhood fairytales and romance novels.
She expects to be some man’s princess and subsequent queen. He expects to find that mythological creature who will unconditionally love and adore him. Basically, in their subconscious lurks the hope of a better life than they currently have.
What if, by a quirk of fate, their hopes and dreams become a reality? What will they find at the end of that magical rainbow?
This writer found the answer in a fascinating and yet heartbreaking program on Netflix, The Crown. It is a historical drama about the reign of Queen Elizabeth II.
Although the series focuses on that specific royal family, behind the illusion of any monarchy exists the genuine pain and almost unnatural lifestyle royals must endure. Those born into the monarchy of any country or kingdom must project and perpetuate the illusion people imagine living such a “perfect” life.
Supposedly, the monarchy helps distract people from their ordinary existence.
Periodically, especially in modern times and because privacy is a luxury no one in the public eye can have, fissures appear in the façade of royal perfection. Those fissures are just a glimpse into their reality. The lives they live behind closed, and at times, slightly cracked open doors.
As is often the case, the use of considerable poetic license occurred while crafting a cohesive and entertaining story about real people and historical events. Overall, the underlying expectations of the royals and their lives are factual.
Unless we grew up during the events portrayed in The Crown, it is painful to watch the tight-lipped and tight-posterior-like behavior of human beings to one another. After all, they are family. But then, as we see almost daily in the news, man’s inhumanity to man and family members knows no bounds.
In truth, this lady never developed a fascination with real-life royalty. Perhaps it is because she, too, is part of old Hungarian royalty on her maternal side. As it happens, that particular line was not wealthy. Thankfully, her grandfather was not too proud to earn a living for his family, working for the railroad.
Of course, when she was a young girl and in her naivety, she told everyone she was a princess. As we stated early on in this column, little girls dream and believe in fanciful dreams.
Watching The Crown series made this woman grateful for her loving parents. The idea of remote parenting via nannies and boarding schools is saddening and destructive. Like the royals, even well-intentioned parents make mistakes creating damaged and needy children craving love and attention.
People and the royals excuse family members’ outlandish and destructive behavior with a shrug or turn a blind eye.
If we look up the meaning of illusion in the dictionary, we learn it is “a perception, as of visual stimuli, that represents what is perceived in a way different from the way it is in reality.”
Although entitled and wealthy, the royals’ wretched and almost inhuman lives are not desirable. The remoteness between couples, the acceptance of affairs out of boredom, and envy of attention given to someone other than themselves is not appealing. God only knows where those bored dipsticks have been and what germs they brought home to her royal oil well.
But it is their reality.