The late Queen reportedly believed motherhood is ‘the only job which matters’

This month will mark the first anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II’s death

 Queen Elizabeth II
(Image credit: Getty Images / Jonathan Brady - WPA Pool)

Queen Elizabeth III reportedly saw being a mother as a more important role than her job as Queen, saying that motherhood is ‘the only job which matters.’

As the UK prepares to mark the first anniversary of the late Queen Elizabeth II's death on 8 September 2023, many royal fans and experts alike are looking back at the many triumphs of her record-breaking reign.

But while the late monarch was a staunch believer in the importance of royal duties, there is one role she believed in much more so than her position as Queen - being a mother. 

The Royal Family have always been incredibly protective of their family lives and always make sure to pencil in time to celebrate their nearest and dearest despite the hectic schedule that comes with being a royal. From Kate Middleton 'rolling up her sleeves' and 'helping out with events' at her children's school as she keeps in mind a savvy ‘life plan’ to help balance family life with royal duties, to Meghan Markle celebrating her mum's birthday with the perfect gift, the royals understand the importance of family life despite the family also being their co-workers in The Firm.

Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh with their children

(Image credit: TIM GRAHAM/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

According to reports in The Daily Mail, the Queen was no different when it came to prioritising her family over her royal duties and even reportedly called motherhood 'the only job which matters.'

But despite her love for her four children, whom she gave birth to over a 15 year period, she seemingly disliked being pregnant, or at least telling people she was pregnant. 

Speaking to US Weekly, a Palace source revealed that the late Queen disliked the term 'pregnant' and instead preferred to say she was 'in the family way.' This innocuous term was paired with the fact that the monarch, according to The List, tended to physically hide her growing baby bump with fashion choices that disguised her maternity. 

The publication reports that once the bump was too obvious to hide with clothing, the Queen would retreat from public appearances and do all of her work from home. In these times, the Palace would release ambiguous statements that told the press and public that she wouldn't make any public appearances for a while, never once mentioning why. 

Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh with their children

(Image credit: Central Press/Getty Images)

Queen Elizabeth had four varying experiences throughout the births of her four children. Before she was Queen, she gave birth to her first child, now King Charles III, via C-section on November 18, 1948 at 9:14 pm. She endured a 30 hour labour and welcomed the baby at Buckingham Palace. 

Princess Anne was born at 11:50 am on August 15, 1950 at Clarence House and weighed six pounds exactly. Despite Elizabeth not announcing her pregnancy, royal fans believed her to be pregnant as she had taken a hiatus from royal appearances similar to that of when she was pregnant with Charles. Therefore, around the time she was in labour, crowds began gathering outside the then-Princess' home for any news of the baby's arrival. 

By the time Elizabeth's third child, Prince Andrew, was born, she was already Queen and was now living full time at Buckingham Palace. Andrew was born at the Palace at 3:30 pm on February 19, 1960, and weighed seven pounds, three ounces. 

The birth of the Queen's fourth and last child was the only one her husband, Prince Philip, was present for as opinions on a man's place during the ordeal had only just changed. "The Duke of Edinburgh was actually holding his wife's hand as their youngest was born," royal expert Ingrid Seward wrote in her book My Husband and I. "She'd been keenly reading women's magazines that stressed the importance of involving fathers in childbirth and had become fascinated by the idea."

Prince Edward was born on March 10, 1964, at 8:20 pm at Buckingham Palace.

News writer

Charlie Elizabeth Culverhouse is a news writer for Goodtoknow, specialising in family content. She began her freelance journalism career after graduating from Nottingham Trent University with an MA in Magazine Journalism, receiving an NCTJ diploma, and earning a First Class BA (Hons) in Journalism at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute. She has also worked with BBC Good Food and The Independent.