Queen Margrethe II of Denmark issued an official apology Monday after she stripped her grandchildren of their royal titles last week.
The 82-year-old monarch said that she had been considering the change for a long time and wanted to keep the monarchy “in the times” and that it would “future-proof” the institution, according to an official statement.
The monarch also said that she “underestimated” her family’s reaction to the change “and for that I am sorry.”
According to the initial proclamation, the title change would have taken place next year.
“The titles of prince and princess that they have held up until now will be discontinued,” read the initial statement.
“Prince Joachim’s descendants will thus have to be addressed as excellencies in the future.”
Queen Margrethe II’s reasoning behind removing her grandchildren’s titles is that it will enable them to “shape their own lives” instead of “being limited.”
Prince Joachim — who is sixth in line for the throne — said that he was very upset with the initial decision.
“It’s never fun to see your children being mistreated like that,” he said to local Danish outlet Ekstra Bladet.
“They find themselves in a situation they do not understand.”
According to the family, Queen Margrethe, cousin to the late Queen Elizabeth II, has not spoken to them since the change was announced.
“We are, as my parents have also stated, in shock at this decision and at how quickly it has actually gone,” said a shocked Prince Nikolai. “I am very confused as to why it has to happen like this.”
“As I said, we were shocked. But it is clear that it hits even harder now that it has been published,” he added.
Crown Prince Frederik and his wife Mary supported the Queen.
“Change can be difficult and can really hurt,” the Crown Princess said to local Danish outlet Billed Bladet. “But this does not mean that the decision is not the right one.”