The truth behind Kate Middleton’s photo editing controversy

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Over the past few weeks, the internet has been abuzz with discussions about the Princess of Wales's sudden disappearance from the public eye and her “mysterious” return with the allegedly edited photo.

Kate Middleton was last spotted on Christmas day, when she attended church service with the Royal Family. There was no update about Middleton until Jan. 17, when Kensington Palace announced on Instagram about her admission to the hospital for a planned abdominal surgery. The Palace later stated on Jan. 29 that Middleton was making “good progress” and “has returned home to continue her recovery.”

On Feb. 5, Buckingham Palace announced King Charles was diagnosed with “a form of cancer”; hence, he was “advised by doctors to postpone public-facing duties.” Even though he does not take on public-facing duties, he was photographed a few times since the announcement. On the other hand, Kate completely vanished since there were no photos updated about her. 

On March 4, Middleton was spotted for the first time in nearly two months by TMZ in the passenger seat of her mother Carole Middleton's car near Windsor castle. Six days later, Kate rekindled her online presence with an Instagram photo taken with her three children on Mother’s Day. However, the photo was accused of being edited, as the public recognized abnormalities in Charlotte's left cuff, Kate and Charlotte's hair, and the window. As rumors and conspiracy theories arose, social media users scrutinized the photo to prove that it was edited. In the meantime, plenty of theories were raised to explain the reason behind the edited photo, with internet users suggesting that her health was deteriorating,  a doppelganger had replaced her, or that her and William were having marital problems. 

On March 11, Middleton posted on X, formerly known as Twitter, to acknowledge the public controversy: “Like many amateur photographers, I do occasionally experiment with editing.” Later, on March 22, she announced on a video that she was diagnosed with a form of cancer, even though she thought her condition was non-cancerous at the time the surgery happened in January. “The surgery was successful, however tests after the operation found cancer has been present,” she stated. Middleton added how it takes time for her to recover from the surgery to start her treatment and more importantly to break the news to her three children. She assures that she is getting better, and refers to Prince William as “a great source of comfort.” Lastly, she thanked the love and support of the public.