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Royal Split Rumor: Here's Why Prince Albert of Monaco's Marriage Is Crumbling

His Serene Highness, Prince Albert, the Sovereign Prince of Monaco has been married to South African Olympian, Charlene Wittstock, for 10 years now. A decade on, the marriage however, has been constantly shaken by intrigues since their wedding on July 1, 2011.

The couple shared fraternal twins, Princess Gabriella and Prince Jacques, born on December 6, 2014. The couple's marriage has long been blighted with controversies even before they tied the knot.

Royal twins. Princess Gabriella and Prince Jacques, the Hereditary Prince of Monaco

There were extraordinary stories popping up in the media that Charlene wanted to back out from the wedding due to Prince Albert's infidelity issues, only to be intercepted by the palace's security services when she attempted to leave Monaco. 

From then on, controversies continue to haunt their marriage, with Monaco residents reportedly getting fed up with Charlene's reluctant public appearances and dispirited smiles.

The playboy prince

Prince Albert became Monaco's Crown Head in April 2005 following the death of his father, Prince Rainier III of Monaco. His mother was the Hollywood actress, Grace Kelly. He has two sisters, Princess Caroline of Hanover and Princess Stephanie.

Prince Albert was already 53 when he got married in 2011

A known playboy, his image became a great concern to his father. The heir-apparent still refused to settle down even at the age of 46 in 2004.

He had dated strings of beautiful women, mostly supermodels and actresses, in the past, including Claudia Schiffer, Naomi Campbell, Tatum O'Neil, Brooke Shields and Janice Dickinson.

The only royal he dated was Catherine Oxenberg, an American actress. She is the daughter of Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia, first cousin once removed of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and first cousin of Prince Edward, the Duke of Kent.

His storied romances before marriage resulted to two illegitimate children who he acknowledged, Jazmin Grimaldi and Alexandre Coste. But despite being acknowledged, these children are not in line of succession to the Monegasque throne.

Paternity law suit

Prince Albert met Zimbabwean-born Olympic swimmer, Charlene Wittstock, in the 2000 Sydney Olympics where she was competing for South Africa in the swimming relay event. 

The royal wedding in 2011

However, it was not until 2002 that the two became friends. They went steady in 2005, and Charlene moved to Monaco to be with the prince. They got married on July 1, 2011.

But it seems all is not well for the Monegasque royals. 

Princess Charlene's bland facial expression each time they appeared in the palace's balcony did not escape from the scrutiny of the public.

Their Serene Highnesses with their twins

And those rumors of royal discord from the early years of their marriage became louder when in January this year, Prince Albert faced a paternity law suit in Italy filed by a Brazilian woman.

The claims said he fathered an illegitimate child with her in 2005. 

The teenager even wrote a letter to Prince Albert in September 2020, stating "I don't understand why I grew up without a father and now that I found you, you don't want to see me".

Prince Albert refused to acknowledge the girl, nor ever responded to her letter. All correspondence had been taken care by the prince's lawyer.

This issue of a third love child of Prince Albert had already surfaced in 2011, months before the royal wedding. Princess Charlene heard the rumors while had her bridal gown fitting in Paris. She broke down in tears and wanted to back off from the wedding.

Rumors on royal split

What made it controversial is the fact that Prince Albert was already in a serious relationship with Charlene in 2005, which means he had been unfaithful all along.

Days after the bombshell, Princess Charlene appeared with Prince Albert in a charity event sporting a rebellious hairstyle where she partly shaved her usually shoulder-length locks.

Two months later, she left for South Africa apparently on a conservation advocacy trip. But she had not returned ever since. 

Princess Charlene in South Africa

The only reason given for her long stay was to recuperate from an ear surgery. And that doctors prevented her from flying back home to avoid health complications.

Prince Albert graced public events without a wife by his side, forcing his young twins to accompany him to show some family unity.

Her long absence continues to breed rumors of royal split, missing a public appearance on Monaco's two important events of the year, the Grand Prix and the Red Cross ball. 

It became more intriguing when she failed to come home to celebrate her 10th wedding anniversary with the Sovereign Prince, a marriage milestone considered very significant to any couples.

However, the Grimaldi palace continues to debunk rumors of split.

To quell public rumors, Prince Albert and the twins flew to South Africa last week to reunite with Princess Charlene.

Their Serene Highnesses reuniting in South Africa

Her Serene Highness shared a photo of her and Prince Albert in her instagram account sharing a warm hug in a sunny South African reserve, but this did not stop rumors of royal split from circulating in the media.

Fairytale had long been gone

Although the Grimaldi palace has been faithfully reporting the activities of Princess Charlene in South Africa while away, including her campaign to stop the white rhinoceros poaching and teaching children how to swim, many believed the royal marriage is on the verge of crumbling.

Prince Albert and his twins attending the Grand Prix

Even before she left for South Africa, Princess Charlene rarely stayed in the royal palace with her husband and would come only on special events.

She reportedly preferred to stay at the flat on top of a luxury Chocolate shop in Monaco owned by her sister-in-law, Princess Caroline of Hanover.

Fairytale's gone it seems but the Grimaldi palace continues to quell rumors and would not confirm any of the reported controversies.

Even Princess Charlene herself is debunking the rumors of split.

In a zoom interview in July 2021, she expressed her despair of "separating for a long time" with her husband and twins, saying, "This is actually the longest period I've actually been away from Europe and my children".

She maintained however that her recovery period from an ear infection is the force that keeps her away from her family for a long period.

"It's just a waiting game. I cannot say how my healing process will go. But yeah, I'm sad that I cannot be with my children during this summer in Europe. I cannot force healing so I will be grounded in South Africa until the end of October".

Hoping for the best

With Prince Albert and the twins visiting Princess Charlene in South Africa, it is still unknown when she will be returning to Monaco, whether October is final. This only fuels the speculation of marriage going down the drain further.

We can only hope for the best for their Serene Highnesses because we do not want to hear another royal marriage biting the dust. We're hoping the absence makes their hearts grow fonder towards each other.

May they can sort out things while reuniting in South Africa.

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