Rose Hanbury Doesn’t Deserve to Be Shamed for a “Rumored” Affair With Prince William

Prince William’s legal threats may have gagged the British media from reporting on his alleged affair with countryside neighbor, Rose Hanbury, the Marchioness of Cholmondeley, but the reports have only multiplied on this side of the pond, plunging Kensington Palace in its biggest scandal to date.

The reaction to the rumor has seen Twitter dragging William, with little regard to the veracity of the tabloid claims, and filling social media channels with obscene bullying of Hanbury. A quick search of her name will bring back results of some hideous slut-shaming and body-shaming of the former model, wife and mother of three. With a seemingly-endless stream of side-by-side photos comparing Hanbury to Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, it’s a tale as old as time of women pitted against each other.

The public’s appetite for juicy celebrity scandals is bottomless, something tabloids work hard to satisfy, often at the cost of the truth itself. One need look no further than how Meghan, Duchess of Sussex has been bullied for an example. But besides a now-deleted tweet from Giles Coren, a British food critic for the Times, there has been absolutely no proof to support the claim Hanbury and William carried on an affair. For that matter, the original story of a feud between Hanbury and Kate has also not been verified by reliable sources. When it comes to gossip, it seems the public’s common sense goes right out the window.

And if the rumors are true and William and Hanbury did carry on an affair during Kate’s pregnancy with Prince Louis, it’s still not the public’s business. The royals may be public figures, but their marriages and relationships deserve the respect and privacy any commoner would want applied to theirs.

These are the least nasty tweets making the rounds on Twitter right now:

Since the news of the alleged affair broke last month, the onus and brunt of blame has been placed on Hanbury’s shoulders, with little to no thought given to what she and her family are going through during this media blitz. Have we learned nothing from the Jordyn Woods and Tristan Thompson scandal? The truth is complex, it takes two to cheat and slut-shaming of women as the man escapes unscathed is the kind of overt sexism we are trying to move past. Instead, social media is churning with backlash and comparisons to “Becky with the good hair.”

Hanbury deserves none of the blame laid at her feet, regardless of what happened between her and Prince William. And we should all pause and apply some common sense before we satisfy our deep-seated desire for some casual schadenfreude.

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