Royal Baby Fever Hits the Nation

December 15, 2012 7:26 pm

It is amazing how much information 140 characters can convey. I’m relatively new to Twitter, and mainly use it to catch up with the news whilst I’m at university. I first heard about the Duchess of Cambridge’s pregnancy whilst using the Twitter app on my phone. Wonderful news. It was also there, however, that I discovered the hysteria that has been attached to it. BBC News (UK) tweeted: ‘Does the Duchess of Cambridge’s acute morning sickness mean she’s more likely to have twins?’ 92 characters have never fascinated me more. How can so few characters convey the enormity of baby fever that has hit the nation?

Starting a family must be one of the happiest times in a person’s life, but surely it can also be one of the scariest for new mothers. There’s the realisation that someone is going to be entirely dependent on you for their entire existence, or at least the first few years of life. Add in the pressure of being the Duchess of Cambridge and providing a royal heir and things must be so much harder.

The Royal Couple are expecting their first child

I couldn’t imagine being in the Duchess’s position. Not only had there been no end of speculation about when she would fall pregnant (regardless of the Duchess’ own feelings on the matter), now that the long-awaited news is finally here, there is no end of speculation about the baby itself. A click on the link attached to the BBC’s tweet revealed that people have been betting on whether the Duchess is expecting twins or not. It is unfathomable to me why people are betting on this, and how people are even able to bet on such a thing. The news of the Duchess’ pregnancy has hardly reached our ears and we’re already asking hundreds of questions, without even a thought for her health after being admitted to hospital for acute morning sickness.

It won’t be long before various magazines will be scrutinising how the Duchess looks during pregnancy. It has already been the case with other celebrities, for example with Beyoncé flaunting her baby bump and then photographs of Blue Ivy herself just weeks after she was born, and now there are rumours about a second child on the way. How the Duchess bears all this with a smile to the media I’ll never know. I think I’d rather be second in line to the throne; the Duke’s job seems to be much easier in comparison. Unfortunately, we are not going to be able to escape Royal baby fever until the baby has been born.

Don’t get me wrong – I think it is wonderful that the public is united in their happiness concerning the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and their story has lifted the nation at a difficult economic time. But there is a point when the mania just goes too far, as the Australian radio show on 2Day FM discovered, to the world’s absolute horror,  the tragic death of the nurse Jacintha Saldanha who took the prank call. It’s truly awful that people are prepared to play pranks in order to access confidential information.

Patience and respecting privacy are wonderful things that the public needs to have more of. We should take a step back and give the Duke and Duchess time to adjust and prepare themselves before we dive in and ask them twenty questions about it. There will be time enough to enjoy the prospect of a royal baby in the future. For now, give the couple a break away from the mania and media attention to enjoy the excitement of starting a family together on their own.

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