Prince Joachim of Denmark says there's a silence within the royal family.
The Danish royal, 53, claimed in a new interview that he hasn't talked to his mother Queen Margrethe II, his brother Crown Prince Frederik or his sister-in-law Crown Princess Mary since the palace announced his four children will lose their prince and princess titles next year.
Opening up to Danish outlet B.T. in a joint interview with his wife Princess Marie on Saturday, Prince Joachim said relations remain strained amid the major shakeup.
When the reporter asked if the dynamic felt difficult, Marie, 46, replied, "It's complicated, namely. That's it."
Her husband added that Queen Margrethe, 82, "unfortunately" had not connected with them since releasing the news of the titles change.
"It's also family. Or whatever we want to call it," he said.
Princess Marie added that she and Prince Joachim "would have liked to have had time to talk about it" with their family. Joachim shares sons Prince Nikolai, 23, and Prince Felix, 20, with his first wife, Alexandra, Countess of Frederiksborg. He got remarried to Marie in 2008, and they went on to welcome son Prince Henrik, 13, and daughter Princess Athena, 10.
On Wednesday, the Danish royal palace announced that as of Jan. 1, 2023, Joachim's four kids will lose their royal titles and instead be known by His Excellency Count of Monpezat or Her Excellency Countess of Monpezat. The second son of Queen Margrethe and the late Prince Henrik, Prince Joachim is currently sixth in line to the Danish throne, with his children falling in the line of succession behind him. It's speculated that the change was made to streamline the future of the monarchy.
Robin Utrecht Photography/Getty
"The reality must still be: whether you modernize or slim down, it must be done in a proper way," Joachim told B.T. "It's about children. Orderliness and children. It is a very heavy matter."
Though her son said they haven't spoken one on one since the shocking shakeup, Queen Margrethe has maintained that the plans had been in motion for a while.
Explaining her decision the day it was announced, the Queen told reporters, "It is a consideration I have had for quite a long time and I think it will be good for them in their future. That is the reason," Hello! reported.
Patrick van Katwijk/Getty Queen Margrethe with Prince Joachim and his family
Asked if the move was for her grandchildren's "sake," the monarch said, "Yes, of course."
She also addressed reports that they felt "ostracized" and said, per the outlet, "Well, you have to see how you ... I haven't seen it myself, I must say."
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Announcing the move, the palace said in a statement, "With her decision, Her Majesty The Queen wishes to create the framework for the four grandchildren to be able to shape their own lives to a much greater extent without being limited by the special considerations and duties that a formal affiliation with the Royal House of Denmark as an institution involves."
To that end, Princess Mary said she isn't even sure what the Danish royal household will look like when her 16-year-old son Prince Christian becomes the monarch one day.
Patrick van Katwijk/Getty Prince Vincent, Crown Prince Frederik, Princess Isabella, Queen Margrethe, Prince Christian, Princess Josephine and Crown Princess Mary
Commenting on the news affecting her niece and nephews, the future Queen Consort said, "I can understand that it is a difficult decision to make and a very difficult decision to receive," Hello! reported Friday. "Change can be difficult and can really hurt. But this does not mean that the decision is not the right one."
"We will also look at our children's titles when the time comes," Princess Mary continued, pointing to the status of her three younger children: Princess Isabella, 15, and 11-year-old twins Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine. "Today we do not know what the royal house will look like in Christian's time, or when Christian's time begins to approach."
Unlike their first cousins, the four children of Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary remain in the royal house for the foreseeable future.