Throughout the scandals, she was "never short; never irritable; completely steady."
The world continues to come to terms with the loss of Queen Elizabeth II. As we continue to remember her for her service and dedication to her people, we must honor how she battled adversity with utmost dignity. Three of Queen Elizabeth's children separated from their spouses in the 90s, and while it became a big deal in public, the British monarch remained as stoic as ever. However, she was not as indifferent about it behind closed doors, as she seemed in public.
In the upcoming biography, Queen of Our Times: The Life of Queen Elizabeth II, author Robert Hardman analyzes the Queen's private pain when the marriages of Prince Charles, Prince Andrew, and Princess Anne each came to an end, according to PEOPLE.
"Outwardly stoical, as ever, the Queen was finding the divorce talks deeply upsetting," Hardman wrote in his book. "Another former member of the Household recalls that, every now and then, there would be a glimpse of her despair."
"It distressed her much more than she let on," a former staffer told Hardman, recalling his attempt to put the broken royal marriages into some sort of perspective. "I said, 'Ma'am, it seems to be happening everywhere. This is almost common practice.' But she just said, 'Three out of four!' in sheer sadness and exasperation. One shouldn't underestimate the pain she's been through."
But, despite what she was going through personally, the Queen never lost her cool during her horrible year, or "annus horribilis," in 1992. In that year alone, the Queen saw a fire destroy part of Windsor Castle and the collapse of Charles, Anne, and Andrew's marriages—as well as the ongoing scandals surrounding Princess Diana and Prince Charles.
"I don't remember a single occasion when I went to see her and she exclaimed, 'No! What next?' " her former press secretary Charles Anson told Hardman in Queen of Our Times, out April 5. "The issue was sometimes embarrassing, but she got on with it. It is immensely reassuring in those situations to work for someone who isn't knocked back."
Throughout, he added, she was "never short; never irritable; completely steady."
On the outward, the Queen chose "stillness" amid all the drama surrounding Charles and Diana's split—an approach she learned from her father, King George VI.
"Her mother's strategy in these situations— to carry on as if they were not happening—had earned her the nickname 'imperial ostrich' among royal staff," Hardman wrote. "The Queen's response, as ever, was to follow the example of her father, absorbed from his days at sea, and to treat adversity like the ocean."
"Storms will come and go, some worse than others," Sir John Major, who worked so closely with her through this period, told Hardman. "But she will always put her head down and plough through them. The Queen has always lived by the doctrine, 'This too shall pass.' "
"While the Queen has sometimes been accused of being slow to act, there has never been a charge of panic. Her default mode in the face of a crisis is stillness," wrote Hardman.
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Sean Gallup