For many little girls, nothing would be better than being an actual, true-to-life princess.
It’s such a common dream that Disney has basically built an empire on it. After all, what’s not to love about being a princess? You get to do whatever you want, you live in a castle, and eventually, you get to become the queen.
Unfortunately, there are some things that they don’t tell you unless you’ve actually got the gig. For instance:
1. You can’t go by any nickname.
Kate Middleton found this out when she became Catherine. Although the tabloids might still call her Kate, that doesn’t fly in the world of international diplomacy.
Granted, she can also be introduced by her full title, Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Cambridge, Countess of Strathearn and Lady Carrickfergus.
2. You don’t get to vote.
Technically, princesses can vote in the United Kingdom, but they don’t do it. It’s seen as too overt a political move, and the royal family doesn’t get to be political anymore.
Likewise, the princess can’t run for public office (although some would argue that this is because she already has one).
3. You’re required to learn different languages.
This one makes sense if you think about it. The princess is basically a diplomat, and diplomats are more effective when they speak the languages of the countries they visit.
Princesses can expect to receive plenty of formal education from the time that they take on their roles, and picking up additional language skills is a big part of it.
4. You cannot work.
Again, this comes down to tradition, but what is being a princess if you don’t follow tradition? Members of the royal family do not work, except as a means of improving public relations. Prince Charles, for instance, worked at a factory, but he was basically just showing up in a uniform while journalists took pictures.
Generally, you’re expected to give up your career when you enter the royal family. This really does make sense: You’ve got a new career as a diplomat, so you’re not going to have a ton of free time.
5. You’ve got some strange dietary restrictions.
Because poisoning was a problem for the royal family a few hundred years ago, current members don’t eat shellfish. Say goodbye to oysters or anything else that might make you sick. After all, the country is depending on you.
Oh, and you have to stop eating when the queen stops eating (or king, if there is one). That means that even if you’re starving, when the queen puts down her fork at an official meal, you must do the same.
6. You can’t play Monopoly.
Finally, a rule that we could get behind. Prince Andrew (aka His Royal Highness the Duke of York) forbid the royal family from playing the popular board game at his home.
Why? “It gets too vicious,” he explained. Someone landed on a loaded-up Boardwalk.
7. You may have to sign a boatload of papers.
If your husband becomes king, you become the counselor to the state, which means that you take over many of his official duties. That means signing a ton of papers.
Yes, as a princess, you might end up with a desk job, pushing through a ton of paperwork. The crown’s not so glamorous now, is it?