Will & Kate’s Christmas Body Language Raises Some Questions

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One of the British royal family’s most regular holiday traditions is their appearance at church on Christmas Day. This year, the Cambridges showed up dressed to the nines as they walked into St. Mary Magdalene Church at Sandringham — and for the very first time, Prince George and Princess Charlotte made an appearance as well. Prince William and Kate Middleton’s Christmas 2019 body language revealed that their family unit is strong, but the Duke and Duchess' dynamic is a little less clear.

To recap, the family walked into the church hand-in-hand on Dec. 25 wearing color-coordinating festive 'fits as they smiled for photographers. It was a big moment for George and Charlotte, who will hopefully join this ritual every year from now on — though Prince Louis apparently isn’t quite old enough to be included yet. Body language experts Patti Wood and Traci Brown spoke with Elite Daily about the royals’ Christmas body language, and Wood noticed a few unusual signs that William and Kate weren’t totally in sync. “I usually see them very proper,” she explains, noting that they tend to convey an air of “warmth and balance.” But here, that wasn’t exactly the case, and the photos convey that they might have been at odds with each other. In contrast, Brown found that for the most part, “they’re still the good team that we’re used to seeing.”

Maybe William and Kate were dealing with some unforeseen holiday stress. (Who hasn’t been there?) But whatever the case, the family’s vibe at this Christmas appearance is a bit ambiguous. Here’s what the details might mean.

They're In-Step.
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In this first photo, Wood points out that the family is all walking together in the same plane, with William and Kate leading the children. “Their chests are about even across, she with him,” Wood says. “No one's pulling ahead, no one's pulling back.” This shows that they want to present as a unified front. However, Wood notes Kate’s tight grip on her purse, which could be a sign of some underlying tension.

Brown calls attention to William and Kate’s feet, which are parallel and in-step. “That’s a tip-off to a couple that’s on the same page,” she says. “And they have just about the same look on their faces. The sun is in their eyes but they’re smiling through it.”

They Seem A Bit Strained.
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In this candid shot, Kate looks like she’s distracted by something to her left. “You see her pulling down and away from [William], looking away from him,” Wood says. “She could easily step up and be close to them. That's her baseline.” Wood notes Kate’s tight jaw, which appears to be holding some tension. In contrast, William looks like he’s trying to make eye contact with her.

Typically, Wood explains, William and Kate make frequent eye contact at public events, even when they’re with their children. “You're not seeing that mutual gaze or that gaze across their children's heads,” she says. “She’s well over a foot and a half away from him.”

But Brown perceives the situation a bit differently. “Again here, they’re together in their emotions,” she says. “Just a bit of strain on their faces.”

They're Presenting As A Family Unit.
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Kate’s bright smile here shows that she seems happy to be out with her family, Wood says. “She still has a great deal of pleasure being seen as a family unit,” she says, even if she and William might have been dealing with their own private stress that day.

Brown points out the way both partners are holding their children’s hands, with the exact same grip. And again, the emotion on their faces is similar.

They're Managing Stress.
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This photo doesn’t have the warmth and poise you would typically see from the Cambridges. Kate is holding her hand up by her neck in a pose Wood calls a “comfort queue,” which is a technique used to convey power or an urge for confrontation. “She's doing that to create space between the two of them,” Wood says, noting that she’s never seen Kate stand in this particular pose before.

William’s expression isn’t particularly happy either. “You see a little bit of downward posture from him instead of standing up and straight,” Wood notices. Rather than trying to comfort and talk to his children, she explains that he looks concerned and like something “isn’t quite right.”

Brown also says that William looks “concerned” and Kate’s face “is showing some anger,” while the kids look like they’re totally over it. “Her eyebrows are pointing down toward the bridge of her nose, which is a giveaway,” Brown says. She also points out Kate’s hand placement. “See how she’s scratching the back of her neck? We get a tingle there when we’re angry. It’s the same response that makes a dog’s neck hair stand on end when they’re about to fight.”

Unfortunately, it’s impossible to know what Kate and William were responding to here. Perhaps something in their line of vision? Whatever it is, Brown says Kate appears to be more affected by it than William.

Overall, it’s unclear what exactly these photos reveal. William and Kate may have had an off moment or two, but they were also presenting as a cohesive unit with their children. Like any family, perhaps the Cambridges were juggling a million holiday responsibilities with a lot on their minds. Regardless of the conflicting details, they showed up looking fabulous as always.

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