Prince William ‘looks up’ to Kate Middleton’s parents and has taken inspiration from their ‘down-to-earth’ parenting style

"We’ve seen over the past few years that he gets on really well with them"

Carole and Michael Middleton and Prince William
(Image credit: Neil Mockford/GC Images and Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images)

According to a royal expert, Prince William ‘looks up’ to Kate Middleton’s parents, Carole and Michael Middleton, 'admiring' the way they brought up their children and taking inspiration from their ‘down-to-earth’ parenting style.

Prince William and Kate Middleton are often praised for their parenting style. From their 'realistic' coronation parenting' that prevented Prince Louis having a televised mini-meltdown, to what's been dubbed Prince William's 'Rubik's Cube' approach to parenting that sees him use 'non-verbal cues' and a more 'hands-off approach,' the Prince and Princess of Wales seem to have taken to raising their three young children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, like fishes to water. 

But the pair had some good mentors. While it has previously been reported that William is 'trying not to repeat his father’s mistakes' when it comes to parenting, there is another couple close to home who he 'looks up to' and 'admires' for their 'down-to-earth' parenting style - his in-laws, Carole and Michael Middleton. 

In an interview with OK! Magazine, royal expert Rachael Andrew shared that the Prince of Wales, as well as taking inspiration from Kate's parents for the way they raised their kids, also has a very close relationship with the couple and finds relief in having them there to 'confide' in. 

Prince William and Prince Louis

(Image credit: Daniel Leal - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

According to Andrews, William 'admires' the couple for the way they have brought up their three children, Kate, Pippa, and James, who has recently opened up about his struggles with his mental health.

Andrews told OK! Magazine, "We’ve seen over the past few years that he gets on really well with them. He admires the way that Carole and Michael brought up Catherine, Pippa and James and that seems to be reflected in the way William is a down-to-earth father now.

"He, of course, lost Diana when he was very young and probably looks up to Carole because he’s lacked a mother figure for so much of his life. With Carole and Michael, he’s got people to confide in who are removed from the monarchy." 

Following the Wales' move to Windsor in August 2022, William and Kate are now just a short drive from Bucklebury, where Carole and Michael currently live. Considering that Carole reportedly had an 'indispensable' role in raising the couple's three children before the move, now they practically live on each other's doorsteps her involvement has likely grown.

Speaking on the Royal Round-Up podcast, royal correspondent Richard Palmer explained, "I think also Carole Middleton steps in…I think when we were in the Caribbean with them, Carole was looking after the children, I'm sure with the help of the nanny, but she was in charge for a time as far as I understand it." 

Prince William, Kate Middleton, prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis

(Image credit: Jonathan Brady - Pool/Getty Images)

William may be first in the royal line of succession, but when he's with the Middletons, the future king is treated just like any other member of their family. He is reportedly required to "pitch in" around the house, with him and his father-in-law once being photographed washing a car together, and Carole reportedly getting him to help her clean up after family dinners.

But this involvement with the in-laws is not a usual thing for the royal family. In his book, Elizabeth: An Intimate Portrait, author Gyles Brandreth explains, "Generations of royal in-laws have complained about being airbrushed out of the picture once the union is announced, but William, who now called Michael Middleton 'Dad', made it clear that his in-laws were not going to suffer the same fate."

Following their marriage in April 2011, William reportedly was keen to have Kate's parents involved in their lives as royal author Katie Nicholl explained in the Channel 5 documentary, When The Middletons Met The Monarchy. She shared, "William sat down with them and explained how things would change. He made sure that he was there for them.[They] had William’s number in their phones."

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.