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  #461  
Old 09-04-2006, 09:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quality Blonde
Wow interesting article posted above....

....The thing that strikes me most forcefully is the sheer irony in this situation (and many the same in royal and non-royal families over the years) is the fact that it is the men who are putting pressure on these women to conceive a boy.............when it is actually dependent on the MAN to determine the sex of the child

Henry the VIII is just one who comes to mind - but perhaps he can be forgiven due to ignorance. Whereas the modern Prince....

Another thought/question. Since it is now possible to determine the sex of an embryo before it is implanted in IVF procedures - is it likely that this is what may have occured? Would there have been pressure I wonder for Princess Kiko to undergo this?

The reason I assume the need for IVF is the age of these ladies. It is a well studied fact that fertility greatly declines after 35 years of age.
I agree on your opinion about that article 100%. It explains how the Japanese royals are viewed not just as monarchical figures but as a tie to the divine origins of their very own nation. And that sometimes is difficult to accept in other nations that don't share the religion and question the use of 'divine' beginings of other people.

If someone questioned the way the Popes, Bishops, Priests, Pastors, Rabbis, Ayatollahs, Mullahs and Dalai Lamas, etc are revered, many will find questioning their social and religious authority offensive. But in Japan, like in many non-christian/muslim/jewish, etc places, religion goes hand in hand with monarchy because the royal or imperial family represent that bond between heaven and earth in ways some of us might fail to understand. Unless we try to see it in the way our respective religious leaders are shown the same respect.

That article sumarizes it very well. It's more about faith and monarchy than just about monarchy. The bridge between Kiko's child and Masako's daugther is bigger than what I thought not only because religion is deeply involved but also because, as I pointed out before, the imposed post WWII constitution really messed things up in their political and social structure.
What we are seen these days is like a snowball rolling down from 1947 getting bigger and bigger until it became impossible to stop. Interesting thing is that the Thai royals are also revered as both symbols of the country and it's religion, yet they have come to a middle term were the royals have become more approchable and also modern, adapting with the changes since the 1940's along with the rest of us.

About a boy: Dynasty, Japan-style
quotes from the above link (it's a long article)

...This is no ordinary baby, but one born into controversy and with the weight of the world's oldest hereditary institution on its shoulders. If it is a boy, he will one day head a dynasty that claims to trace its roots back to before the Romans stepped on British soil. If it is a girl, she will come into the world to the sound of a collective sigh of disappointment. Not an easy start in life....

Everyone knows this is a soufflé that cannot rise twice. At almost 40, and after a complicated pregnancy that put her in Aiiku Hospital on 15 August to prevent possible premature bleeding, Princess Kiko will almost certainly not have another child. She has two daughters. Her sister-in-law Masako, who is 43 this year, has been so worn down by her transition from diplomat to member of the cloistered imperial household that rumors of depression, divorce and worse abound.

In a world struggling to deal with melting polar ice caps and the disintegration of the Middle East, the problems of Tokyo's imperial household might seem small. But traditionalists believe the family boasts an unbroken bloodline that stretches back more than 125 generations and 2,000 years, and which has survived war, revolution and Japan's transition to a modern secular democracy. Some even cling to the myth that Emperor Akihito is a direct descendent of the sun goddess Amaterasu, the most important Shinto deity and "the father" of the "pure" Japanese race.

..."It looked as though Masako's daughter would be the first reigning empress in modern Japanese history and Masako would have been the one who shaped her. And now she doesn't even get to do that," says Ken Ruoff, the author of The People's Emperor. "So she may well ask herself: what is the purpose of all this? Why have I made all these sacrifices? People who know say this is a really dicey situation and that she is really unhappy."

...One publication says that a boy will boost the economy to the tune of more than $200m (£105m); the editors didn't bother to calculate the economic dividend from a girl....

Not everyone will be unhappy with a girl...It would be important if the national symbol could be a woman, and in fact it is ridiculous that it isn't," says Mr Ruoff. "An empress would also make it difficult for the patriarchal far right to hold onto their chauvinism."
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  #462  
Old 09-04-2006, 10:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zarat
Interesting article zarat.

The one thing that really struck me was that even though many people want this baby to be a boy for various reasons, the article nicely points out how difficult this little boy's life will be. We're all so focused on the now: Will it be a boy or a girl? And if it's a girl, what happens to Aiko, etc. that nobody is thinking about what life for this little boy might be like in 20 or 30 years from now.

What if his wife endures the same problems that Masako has and the problems experienced by the imperial family now are only rehashed two or three decades down the line?

And it made me sad when I read this one paragraph:
Quote:
That secrecy means that when the fuss has died down next week, the baby will be whisked away, to be wheeled out on official photo opportunities. The child's life will move in tandem with the ancient rhythms of tradition, overseen by the same IHA officials who have made life miserable for its aunt.
It made me think that this little boy will only be a show piece for the imperial family and that he could grow up to be just as miserable and sad and depressed as Masako is now. What kind of a life is that for a child?

Ultimately I feel bad for everyone involved because as the article clearly illustrates, there aren't any good or easy options. But really, I feel bad for Masako because she could've done some amazing things and we could easily be writing about the great work she is doing like the kind of praise we grant Maxima for her work with microcredit, and instead, we are talking about how gilded her life has become.
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  #463  
Old 09-04-2006, 11:56 AM
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Quote:
Another thought/question. Since it is now possible to determine the sex of an embryo before it is implanted in IVF procedures - is it likely that this is what may have occured? Would there have been pressure I wonder for Princess Kiko to undergo this?
Since there are reports that people from the IHA have been putting pressure on Masako and Kiko to have another child, obviously because a boy is needed rather than because the IHA happens to like children in general, I'd be very surprised if they hadn't used medical technology to the fullest possible extent to ensure that a boy is what they get. Whether that involves pre-implantation gender selection, or any other technique or combination of techniques that result in a male, it makes no sense for the outcome of this pregnancy to be left to chance.

In the very highly unlikely situation that a girl is born or the boy isn't healthy or something, I wonder how much pressure will be put on the Crown Prince to divorce his wife and marry someone younger.
  #464  
Old 09-04-2006, 12:29 PM
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I have this bad feeling that Princess Kiko became pregnant (as in she was probably ordered to become pregnant) only when they failed to get Princess Masako to give it another try using technology...or maybe she did and the outcome explains the depression she had all these years. And also it would explain why Kiko became the next in-line to be forced into a dangerous pregnancy.

Both women are placed against each other for the sake of a male heir. One life mirrors the other woman's life making both the victims of a situation they did not expect when they married their princes.
  #465  
Old 09-04-2006, 10:56 PM
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Japan’s princesses find different fates

By Hiroshi Hiyama

TOKYO: Both are commoners who married into the world’s oldest monarchy. But while former career woman Crown Princess Masako struggles to cope, housewife Kiko seems to relish the chance to be an emperor’s mother....

From the Manila Times, Sep 5, 06,

http://www.manilatimes.net/national/...60905opi7.html
  #466  
Old 09-05-2006, 12:20 AM
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Tomorrow is the intended date of birth.....my prayers go out to both mommy and baby for a smooth and safe delivery. And my heart goes out to both CP Masako and Pss Kiko.

The news article above... "housewife Kiko seems to relish..." really...who can a woman possible "relish" such a situation???!!!
  #467  
Old 09-05-2006, 02:32 AM
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Princess Kiko to give birth to 3rd child on Wednesday
............Masao Nakabayashi, the princess' chief physician who heads the hospital, will perform the Caesarean. He has attended the princess twice before, when she gave birth to Princess Mako and Princess Kako in 1991 and 1994 by natural delivery.
Princess Kiko has had some of her blood taken since her hospitalization in the event that she needs a transfusion during the operation, according to the Imperial Household Agency.
Wednesday falls in the 37th week of the princess' pregnancy and was chosen as the delivery date after taking into account the condition of her placenta and the fetus, the agency said. Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko are away in Hokkaido due to their official duties and are expected to return to Tokyo on Saturday..............
http://asia.news.yahoo.com/060905/kyodo/d8jud4sg0.html

Boy or girl? Japan awaits birth
Conservatives keen to keep women from ascending the Chrysanthemum Throne are hoping this week will bring the answer to their prayers: the birth of Japan's first imperial male heir in more than four decades.
Princess Kiko, the 39-year-old wife of Emperor Akihito's second son, is scheduled to give birth by a Caesarean operation on Wednesday following pregnancy complications.
The birth of a boy would almost certainly derail debate on revising Japan's males-only imperial succession law to let women take the throne.
"Before Kiko's pregnancy there was momentum toward change, but if a boy is born, enthusiasm will diminish," said Miiko Kodama, a professor at Musashi University in Tokyo.
Japanese tabloid media, never reluctant to probe celebrity secrets, have already decided that the royal baby is a boy.
In an article titled "Countdown to Princess Kiko's Childbirth", the weekly Shukan Bunshun wrote last week that Kiko's husband, Prince Akishino, had told a friend their third child would be a boy. But the magazine added nothing was certain...................
http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/asiapc...ion=cnn_latest
  #468  
Old 09-05-2006, 02:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexandria
Interesting article zarat.

The one thing that really struck me was that even though many people want this baby to be a boy for various reasons, the article nicely points out how difficult this little boy's life will be. We're all so focused on the now: Will it be a boy or a girl? And if it's a girl, what happens to Aiko, etc. that nobody is thinking about what life for this little boy might be like in 20 or 30 years from now.

What if his wife endures the same problems that Masako has and the problems experienced by the imperial family now are only rehashed two or three decades down the line?

And it made me sad when I read this one paragraph:


It made me think that this little boy will only be a show piece for the imperial family and that he could grow up to be just as miserable and sad and depressed as Masako is now. What kind of a life is that for a child?

Ultimately I feel bad for everyone involved because as the article clearly illustrates, there aren't any good or easy options. But really, I feel bad for Masako because she could've done some amazing things and we could easily be writing about the great work she is doing like the kind of praise we grant Maxima for her work with microcredit, and instead, we are talking about how gilded her life has become.

Hello Alexandria
You'are completely right about possible future of this child _ probably he will be treated like his predecessor shown in film entitled "Emperator" -no personal freedom , without possbility of having own choices...
I won't be surprised if IHA has already decided who will be his wife (obviously from the best family, educated in "suitable" school" )...

I'm joking because he ( for 99% it will a be a boy) ) isnt' even born but we can expect IHA to have thought about this possibility
  #469  
Old 09-05-2006, 09:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexandria
...It made me think that this little boy will only be a show piece for the imperial family and that he could grow up to be just as miserable and sad and depressed as Masako is now. What kind of a life is that for a child?

Ultimately I feel bad for everyone involved because as the article clearly illustrates, there aren't any good or easy options. But really, I feel bad for Masako because she could've done some amazing things and we could easily be writing about the great work she is doing like the kind of praise we grant Maxima for her work with microcredit, and instead, we are talking about how gilded her life has become.
Wouldn't the new baby of Kiko and Akishino, if it turns out to be a boy, be raised like CP Naruhito was raised? He turned out just fine. I hardly think this child will have a horrible life as the future emperor of Japan. He will have two loving parents who are already raising two amazing daughters.
  #470  
Old 09-05-2006, 09:53 AM
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I would like to think the little child will not succumb to depression like Masako and Michiko. It seems their depressions (although their circumstances were somewhat different) stemmed ultimately from marrying into the rigid system. I think if you are raised in it, it would be easier.

I completely agree with Alexandria's last statement that I feel badly for Masako also. She is such a talented woman and I do believe she is capable of really amazing things -- I am still holding out hope some kind of solution will be involved. Contrary to what has been written about her relationship with the Emperor and Empress, there are certainly indications that they are sensitive to her situation. That makes me think they will work toward her mental health recovery as they are able.
  #471  
Old 09-05-2006, 10:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emily
...I completely agree with Alexandria's last statement that I feel badly for Masako also. She is such a talented woman and I do believe she is capable of really amazing things -- I am still holding out hope some kind of solution will be involved. Contrary to what has been written about her relationship with the Emperor and Empress, there are certainly indications that they are sensitive to her situation. That makes me think they will work toward her mental health recovery as they are able.
About Masako: She whines too much in my opinion. The fact is she willingly married into a very conservative monarchy. Her #1 duty as CPss was to bear heirs. It was not to be an ambassador and travel around the world. Now many CP's do this but as CP Mary revealed before she married CP Frederik, her first priority was to give birth to an heir. Her role as CP would develop over time but the main purpose of monarchy is continuity. It is all about the heir. Maybe that doesn't sound romantic but there it is.
  #472  
Old 09-05-2006, 10:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laviollette
Wouldn't the new baby of Kiko and Akishino, if it turns out to be a boy, be raised like CP Naruhito was raised? He turned out just fine. I hardly think this child will have a horrible life as the future emperor of Japan. He will have two loving parents who are already raising two amazing daughters.
Unfortunately, due to the current circumstances, I think this child won't be raised in the same manner that his uncle Naruhito was raised.

There is at present time, just one day before his arrival into the world, tremendous pressure on the outcome of his sex. As some of the articles I've read have implied, he has the whole imperial family's future on his little shoulders.

And unlike Naruhito, there is seemingly no spare on the horizon, and as such, from what I understand about the IHA, they will be more fiercely protective of this little boy than ever.

On his parents, I have no doubts about their love for this child and their parenting skills. They have indeed raised two wonderful daughters, but with a son who would one day become Emperor, I think the dynamics will change for his immediate family and for his extended family of his grandparents, uncle Naruhito, aunt Masako and cousin Aiko.
  #473  
Old 09-05-2006, 10:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alexandria
Unfortunately, due to the current circumstances, I think this child won't be raised in the same manner that his uncle Naruhito was raised.

There is at present time, just one day before his arrival into the world, tremendous pressure on the outcome of his sex. As some of the articles I've read have implied, he has the whole imperial family's future on his little shoulders.

And unlike Naruhito, there is seemingly no spare on the horizon, and as such, from what I understand about the IHA, they will be more fiercely protective of this little boy than ever.

On his parents, I have no doubts about their love for this child and their parenting skills. They have indeed raised two wonderful daughters, but with a son who would one day become Emperor, I think the dynamics will change for his immediate family and for his extended family of his grandparents, uncle Naruhito, aunt Masako and cousin Aiko.
Wouldn't the same pressure apply if it were Naruhito and Masako having a male heir, if that's what this child will be? Imo, the objection to this situation by many is that it is Akishino and Kiko who might be the parents of the heir and not the CP couple.
  #474  
Old 09-05-2006, 10:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laviollette
About Masako: She whines too much in my opinion. The fact is she willingly married into a very conservative monarchy. Her #1 duty as CPss was to bear heirs. It was not to be an ambassador and travel around the world. Now many CP's do this but as CP Mary revealed before she married CP Frederik, her first priority was to give birth to an heir. Her role as CP would develop over time but the main purpose of monarchy is continuity. It is all about the heir. Maybe that doesn't sound romantic but there it is.
Masako whines too much...wow...thats a little harsh..but its your opinion and you are certainly entitled to it.

Yes, you are correct...her position (archaic as it may sound) is to provide male heris. Although man (I am speaking in the general sense) would like to control everything...we do not. It rests with a higher power. Although I am sure the pressure of IHA is not making it easier. I wonder how we would all react to the pressure of having a male child. We (again speaking in the general sense as human beings) are not trained circus animals.
  #475  
Old 09-05-2006, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laviollette
Wouldn't the same pressure apply if it were Naruhito and Masako having a male heir, if that's what this child will be? Imo, the objection to this situation by many is that it is Akishino and Kiko who might be the parents of the heir and not the CP couple.
I have never said that I have objections to Akishino and Kiko being parents of the future Emperor. Please don't put words in my mouth. I have acknowledged in my previous post that I think they are very good parents to their daughters and that they have done a good job with their daughters as they would with this third child, boy or girl.

If Aiko had been a boy or if after Aiko Naruhito and Masako had had a son, he would've been under similiar pressure and scrutiny as his father while he was growing up, I agree.

But in 2006, after the Crown Prince and the Crown Princess are unable to have a son after several miscarraiges and with Masko suffering from a stress-related disorder and out of commission, and with the current Emperor having three granddaughters—none of whom could succeed to the throne, and all the speculation about how this baby was conceived, I think that the media attention will be greater on this child if it is a boy and that his life will be under the thumb more than his uncle before him because he will be the only heir to the throne. This child, if it is a boy, is the last hope for an heir after his uncle, unless the Japanese government enacts policies that would allow women to succeed to the throne.
  #476  
Old 09-05-2006, 10:42 AM
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A few quick questions:

(0) is there any official confirmation that she's only having one baby and not twins?

(1) If it turns out to be a boy, is he guaranteed to become the next-next emperor

(2) if he does become the emperor in the future, what will be the royal status/title of his parents?

(3) the IHA should arrange to have him get married at 18 and have lots of offsprings as early as possible
  #477  
Old 09-05-2006, 11:36 AM
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I heard in TV that the Baby will come in a few hours.
Does anyone know more?
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  #478  
Old 09-05-2006, 11:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zonk1189
Masako whines too much...wow...thats a little harsh..but its your opinion and you are certainly entitled to it.

Yes, you are correct...her position (archaic as it may sound) is to provide male heris. Although man (I am speaking in the general sense) would like to control everything...we do not. It rests with a higher power. Although I am sure the pressure of IHA is not making it easier. I wonder how we would all react to the pressure of having a male child. We (again speaking in the general sense as human beings) are not trained circus animals.
If Kiko has a male child then it will be over for Masako. The pressure is off so why is everyone so hostile? You're right. She and Naruhito had no control over which sex their child was born as and that's why Akishino and Kiko gave it another go; to see if they could have a male child. What's the problem? Wouldn't this make Masako's life easier or would she simply find something else to whine about?
  #479  
Old 09-05-2006, 11:56 AM
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Do you honestly think the Masako's life is going to get easier? While I am sure she wishes for a healthy baby (be it boy or girl)..I think Masako's life will remain the same if not get worse. She might constantly have the birth of this innocent child thrown in her face....prime evidence of her failure to do her duty (as you so nicely pointed out).
  #480  
Old 09-05-2006, 12:01 PM
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[QUOTE]
Quote:
Originally Posted by KathyMoore
A few quick questions:

(0) is there any official confirmation that she's only having one baby and not twins?
Not that I know of. If it was an IVF pregnancy, multiple births are possible, but nothing's been said so far.

Quote:
(1) If it turns out to be a boy, is he guaranteed to become the next-next emperor
If Naruhito has a son, he would precede this one. I think if it's a boy, the legislation to allow females to inherit will be buried, so in the absence of any further children, he would become emperor after his uncle and father.

Quote:
(2) if he does become the emperor in the future, what will be the royal status/title of his parents?
Their title won't change, but their status will probably be much improved. I think we might well see some significant sidelining of the Naruhitos and a much higher profile for the Akishinos in the future.

Quote:
(3) the IHA should arrange to have him get married at 18 and have lots of offsprings as early as possible
Well, I'm sure there'll be pressure of that sort put on him if he really does turn out to be the only male of this generation and they don't change the succession laws. Or maybe they'll just revive the concubine tradition or something.
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