Princess Diana's Relationship with her Stepmother, Raine Spencer


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Raine had difficult step children, let's not pretend that Raine was the evil step mother. I have never heard of Raine doing anything bad to the Spencer children; she did abandon her own kids but nothing about Raine has warranted the treatment she received especially from Diana and her brother.
 
I don't disagree with you, Xenia, on her having difficult step-children. Raine was a VERY strong character though, in her own right.
 
Raine had difficult step children, let's not pretend that Raine was the evil step mother. I have never heard of Raine doing anything bad to the Spencer children; she did abandon her own kids but nothing about Raine has warranted the treatment she received especially from Diana and her brother.
I dont say she was evil but I dont think she was very nice either. Frances SK has been criticised for leaving her kids, and Raine left hers...
I've not heard of many people who liked Raine much, even if the Spencer children took their anger too far. She seems arrogant pushy, selfish, snobby, full of herself. And I can understand that Diana who I think never got over her mother leaving, was bitterly unhappy that her father (who had then left the kids to nannies) was then marrying a woman that none of them liked. I do admit that Di seems to have had times when perhaps she felt more freiendly towards her stepmother.. whether that was guilt at her own previous unkind behaviour, or perhaps that it suited her to have Raine as an ally.. I dont know.
 
:previous: Mohamed Al Fayed was a friend of Diana's father. That was the original connection and why Diana didn't feel uncomfortable vacationing with his family.
 
Diana didn't have the example of a stable, loving home life to follow.
I think that she missed her mother, and when Frances had gone, tried ot look after her father and followed him about, but he kept himself locked away a lot.
Diana's mother did not abandon her.
Her mother moved to London and took the Diana & Charles with her.
At Christmas time Diana & Charles went to live with their father and were enrolled in school in Norfolk.
It was joint custody not abandonment. The joint custody continued after the divorce. She saw more of her mother than her father. This is according to her step sister.

Had Johnny married a warm, soft, loving woman, things might have been different between them. Raine might have been right for Johnny, who was attracted to strong-willed women, but she seems to have been a difficult step-mother.
And then he chose a vulgar arrogant woman for his new wife, who Im sure would not have been particularly affectionate to Diana, (Unless it suited her)...So she didn't have a warm female presence, apart from nannies who came and went. I think that the relationship with Raine was always stormy though she did get togethter with her later on.
I dont say she was evil but I dont think she was very nice either. Frances SK has been criticised for leaving her kids, and Raine left hers...
I've not heard of many people who liked Raine much, even if the Spencer children took their anger too far. She seems arrogant pushy, selfish, snobby, full of herself.
And I can understand that Diana who I think never got over her mother leaving, was bitterly unhappy that her father (who had then left the kids to nannies) was then marrying a woman that none of them liked. I do admit that Di seems to have had times when perhaps she felt more freiendly towards her stepmother.. whether that was guilt at her own previous unkind behaviour, or perhaps that it suited her to have Raine as an ally.. I dont know.
This perspective is very one sided in favor of the Spencers who were adults and teens when their father remarried. They never gave Raine a chance. The words used to describe Raine should be applied and are better suited to describe Diana, Jane, Charles Spencer and Sarah.

Raine had difficult step children, let's not pretend that Raine was the evil step mother. I have never heard of Raine doing anything bad to the Spencer children; she did abandon her own kids but nothing about Raine has warranted the treatment she received especially from Diana and her brother.
The Spencers stepchildren were ungrateful. If it was not for Raine, John Spencer would have died in 1978. The woman married a sickly man and took care of him. She placed the welfare of her new husband and his ungrateful children above her own children.
I believe Raine later had joint custody of her children.

Admittedly, he was the third party in Raine's divorce but he was single then. She was the adulterer not him.
Interesting view. Adultery is usually defined if either or both party is married.
 
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I think that Raine saw Johnny as a bigger fish than her then husband. She was involved in local politics as a councillor and she got into the newspapers. however Johnny Spencer was a man lost after his wife's leaving him and clearly willing to let her do what she liked.. so I think she latched onto him, and saw herself as chatelaine of a big famous country house etc.
 
Yes, Denville, I think that's true. Raine's mother, Barbara, was a very flamboyant, larger than life character, and I think she probably trained her daughter to approach life the same way. Raine didn't have her mother's talent (if talent it was) but she had a certain confidence and charm that would appeal to men who enjoy being organised and managed.

I'm not sure that coming into a man's ancestral home as his quite new second wife and selling items that had been there for centuries and ordering bright gilding in every state room is the right way to go about things, though! It certainly didn't impress her step-children!
 
I'm not sure that coming into a man's ancestral home as his quite new second wife and selling items that had been there for centuries and ordering bright gilding in every state room is the right way to go about things, though! It certainly didn't impress her step-children!

Raine married John in 1976, the selling was in 1991
John Spencer approved of the sales.
In 1991, he specifically made of point of naming Diana as not understanding about money when the sale of items became public.

Diana never had a real job. She would only work a few months, usually a few days a week, before quitting and going on vacation for a few months.
If she had paid her own way rather than expect her mother to pay for her flat and her father to foot the bills she would have appreciated what Raine was doing.

In 1997, Diana claimed she could not afford to remove the Laura Ashley wall covering even with a very large divorce settlement and with Charles still paying for all her household expenses.

This is probably when Diana finally appreciated and realized what Raine had been trying to do.
 
Yes, Denville, I think that's true. Raine's mother, Barbara, was a very flamboyant, larger than life character, and I think she probably trained her daughter to approach life the same way. Raine
I'm not sure that coming into a man's ancestral home as his quite new second wife and selling items that had been there for centuries and ordering bright gilding in every state room is the right way to go about things, though! It certainly didn't impress her step-children!
No. I know that those houses do cost a mint of money to maintain, but still, i think it is as much the arrogant way she did it, as the fact that she did it...that annoyed them. If she'd been polite and low key and tried to explain to them that it was necessary to make money, they might have taken it better... And had she tried to be nicer and win their affection rather than getting intot a fairly blatant affair with him and then marrying him...and I think that she DID latch on to J SPencer. Perhaps her husband was not so easily dominated or he did not have a big glamorous historical house for her to reorganise.
 
Yikes! Does anyone have a link to substantiate any of these nasty accusations against Raine? It seems to me that time is being used as a sliding scale to "condense" time so these stories "fit".
 
Raine married Earl Spencer two months after her divorce from the Earl of Dartmouth was finalised, in 1976. That's a matter of public record. It was known in London Society that she had met Johnny Spencer while on a committee they had both sat on in London in 1971 which resulted in a book of historic buildings for the Greater London Council, (Sally Bedell Smith's biography of Diana, page 58) and they had fallen in love.

Raine left her husband in 1974. Johnny was named co-respondent in the divorce (again a matter of public record) and the Earl was given custody of their four children.

The difficulties between Raine and her stepchildren have featured in every biography of Diana I have ever read, and Raine herself has talked about the refurbishing and gilding of Althorp, (which her stepchildren were appalled by.)
Charles Spencer has been quoted as saying of the new furniture she brought in that it had 'the wedding-cake vulgarity of a five star hotel in Monaco.'
('Althorp: The Story of An English House.' Charles Spencer.)
http://www.theguardian.com/theobserver/2004/jul/18/features.review27

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raine_Spencer,_Countess_Spencer
(The paragraph in wiki referring to the sale of the Althorp art treasures and the refurbishment by Raine is taken from Hugo Vickers on Spencer (Edward) John in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography May 2009)
 
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What's nasty about it? She is an arrogant woman, she left her husband for Johnny Spencer and her husband was awarded custody. that was n the 70s when I would say it was more usual for a mother to get custody even if she were the unfaithful party.. so taht suggests she wasn't overly concerned about leaving her children. Many people seem to dislike her in society, she was seen as pushy and arrogant and with a talent for self publicity, like her mothers. As C has said her difficulties with her step children are well known, and while the fault was probably on both sides it seems a bit telling that all 4 of them disliked her, at least 3 of them vehemently. Im not sure when she took control of Althorp but her alterations were seen by many including the Spencer children to be vulgar and she was seen as selling off family treasures for money.
 
The problem with princess diana was that she never was disaplined as a child. She needed her but beat. As for her brother, what he did to his stepmother was awful and he also needed a good wooping.

I also don't believe Diana hated her stepmother so much like she so bluntly put it.
 
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The problem with princess diana was that she never was disaplined as a child. She needed her but beat. As for her brother, what he did to his stepmother was awful and he also needed a good wooping.


I believe it is possible to discipline a child without "beating their butt" or "whooping." Tell them your expectations and what the reasonable consequence will be if the expectation is not met. Then follow through with the consequence if needed.

"Diana, stop sliding down the banister or you'll be in time out for ten minutes." 😄
 
I believe it is possible to discipline a child without "beating their butt" or "whooping." Tell them your expectations and what the reasonable consequence will be if the expectation is not met. Then follow through with the consequence if needed.

"Diana, stop sliding down the banister or you'll be in time out for ten minutes." 😄

That is what most "modern" parents do in Western countries these days, or at least what they are taught to do in "parenting classes" so to speak.
 
Oh, how I love revisionist history where the victims become the villains. Raine was not given custody of her children for the same reason as Frances didn't. It is essential that history is discussed in its time and place and not viewed through the lens of 2018!

They lived in a patriarchal society at a time where women were still forced to remain in an abusive marriage because they could not afford to support themselves and, in aristocratic families, the father would have had to be a convicted axe murderer to not win custody of his children.

How dare Diane slap her father's face. What an arrogant action and believing that she got to dictate her father's life. It's right up there with shoving Raine down the stairs and shoving her clothes and possessions in rubbish bags and throwing them out the door.

Too right she needed discipline as a child and self-discipline as an adult because she had neither.
 
As far as pushing Raine down the stairs, there were alot of guest there: someone had to have seen something. Another thing what if someone there had a confortation with her father and pushed him down the stairs, what she (Diana) will do about that? all what she did wasn't being a stong person she was damaged and weak and she was mentally ill.
 
Also it wasn't diana that shoved her clothes in bin bags it was her brother charles spencer. I just want to clarify that. Still diana was mean to her.
 
It is unfortionate that raine was the target. She just happen to join the spencer family at the wrong time of there lives, i think.
 
Diana was also very close to her father after the divorce. Her caretaking skills made their appearance during this time as Diana felt she had to look after her Daddy.

If I remember right, the Spencer children were not asked or involved at all with Johnny's decision to marry Raine and all of a sudden they were presented with a stepmother. That had to be a big blow. From what I do know of Raine, she did kind of have a personality like a steamroller and set about doing things the Raine way. With the girls all off to boarding school (not sure where Charles was at the time of the marriage), there was not really much of a chance for them all to come together at the beginning as a family and Raine was seen as an "intruder".

Diana and Raine did come to understand each other better and got along better before Diana died. I think that came about at Johnny's death because at that time, Charles became Earl Spencer and inherited Althorp and Raine went on into another marriage.
 
Yes Osipi, I totally agree 100%. I know it was difficult for diana because she loved her daddy so much. It still doesn't justify her actions that's all I'm saying.
 
Oh there was no excuse for her actions at all. Perhaps in a way going to boarding school as a young girl and teenager was the best option for her. At school, there was discipline and rules to be followed and as both her parents didn't actually actively participate in discipling Diana, she needed the structure of boarding school for that.

Diana has been described as always being a willful child and that persisted with her into her adulthood.
 
It was also said the when her father put her in boarding school, diana told him if you leave me now you don't love me. She probably felt raine was taking her father away from her.
 
Although my little green light next to my name seems to indicate that I'm here and alert and active, I've opted to select the "remember me" option at sign in and as I never usually shut my system down, it does look like I'm always here and ready to reply. I did kind of get sidetracked here for a bit with life, streaming some shows I need to catch up and things that I'd rather ignore like dirty dishes and preparing food and all those things us old retired folks do. :D

I remember that statement about Diana going away to boarding school. It was good for her though as it gave her a day to day structure of what was expected of her and rules she had to follow. Discipline. I also remember too that during her school years away, she often was deemed the caretaker and was always straightening up and doing for her schoolmates.

Diana's caretaking habits served her for her entire life in good stead. Its also very possible (in my opinion only) that the hurt and the hate and the betrayal she felt when Johnny married Raine planted the seed in Diana that any woman could pose a threat between her and her beloved.
 
Yea, I surppose your right. I also don't believe she hated her stepmother so much like she said, I do on the other hand feel though she felt that way towards her mother because she left her at a very tender age of six. With all about her pushing raine down the stairs because of her mother, it turned out she herself didn't speak to her own mother ever again and became to love raine towards the end. At least she had the desency to apologize for everything.
 
:previous: The really awful thing is that the stairs and clothes both happened when she was a married woman. She had no care about showing a degree of anger, hatred and hostility that would have shocked her loyal fans.

Actually, it shocked most adult people because normal adults do not behave this way. The may want to, but the strictures of society say such behaviour is unacceptable in a grown woman.
 
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