While the Royal families of Europe are frequently the subject of scandal, affairs, and love children, no one could have predicted what has come out of Belgium. King Albert buried himself deeper into a hole of shame when he refused to acknowledge his daughter, the product of an 18-year long affair. Now with his reputation in tatters, he is finally taking responsibility.
Former King of Belgium Meets Love Child
The European monarchy was rocked when for the first time, the Belgian courts have ruled that Delphine Boël was legally a princess, giving her and her children their Royal titles. Her father, former King Albert was exposed by a journalist for having fathered Delphine during an 18-year-long affair.
Countless Royals have had affairs like Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles or had children separate from their spouses like Princess Anne's husband Mark Phillips fathering a child from a one-night stand. But this will be the first time the product of one of these affairs has earned a Royal title.
Delphine kept her father's secret well into her 30's until he was caught by the media and he cut her off from communication and was cruel to her when she attempted to reach out to him. After years of being denied by her father, she finally had enough and took her paternity to the courts. Unfortunately, he could not be summoned to the court while he was King because he was immune to prosecution.
Finally, when he abdicated from the throne in 2013 she pursued her paternity again and was locked in a vicious 7-year court battle with the former King who publicly shamed her and denied he was her father. For years he refused to take a paternity test until the Belgian courts demanded he pay over €5,000 in fees for every day that he did not submit to a DNA test. Once he took the test, it was confirmed what both Delphine and the Former King already knew, he was in fact her father.
On October 5th, 2020, the courts granted her and her children their Royal title and Delphine was happy to return back to her work as an artist. Her father still refused to meet her while the current King of Belgium, her half brother Philippe immediately wanted to meet her. The two have since formed a relationship and are acknowledging of Delphine's relation to the crown.
Now in a surprising turn of events, the former King of Belgium has agreed to meet his daughter for the first time in years. The two had spent a great deal of time together when she was a child, as he spent a lot of time with her mother, but they have not seen each other since the news of her existence first broke in 1999.
In a statement released by the Belgian Royal Palace, the Royals explained, "This Sunday, October 25, a new chapter opened, imbued with emotions, appeasement, understanding and also, hope. Our meeting took place at the Château du Belvédère, a meeting during which each of us was able to e express, calmly and with empathy, our feelings, and our experiences."
Along with a photo of Princess Delphine (52), former King Albert II (86), and former Queen Paola (83), they continued with: "After the turmoil, the hurt and the suffering, comes the time for forgiveness, healing and reconciliation. It is the path, patient and sometimes difficult, that we have decided to take resolutely together. The first steps open the way that it is now up to us to pursue peacefully." The statement was jointly signed by all three parties."
Princess Delphine had said during the October 5th press conference that she "expected nothing" from the Royal family and all she wished for was acknowledgment. The Belgian public had been rapidly losing respect for King Albert II the more he denied and attacked in court, now that the ruling is over and the truth is out, both parties can heal and move forward.