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Trying to understand Kate Middleton’s frame of mind lately has been a big mystery for many royal analysts. After rumors of her shunning her once close friend, Rose Hanbury, out of Prince William’s orbit has made some question about how Kate feels about being a royal.

While a lot of these rumors are very much unsubstantiated, the best way to understand Kate is to study her background. Looking at her parents and how they raised her can tell you more than anything going on in the present. Take a minute to learn about who her parents are and how she was already set up to assimilate a royal life.

Who are Michael and Carole Middleton?

Michael and Carole Middleton
Michael and Carole Middleton | Danny Martindale/WireImage

The life Kate’s parents have had is considered somewhat wealthy, even though they’ve worked strictly in the world of business for decades. Before starting their own business, they once worked in the aviation industry, but in separate jobs.

Michael Middleton was employed with British Airways as a pilot while Carole Middleton was a flight attendant, plus a flight dispatcher for a time. What’s most ironic is Michael Middleton has connections to the royal family. His parents and grandparents came from huge wealth and involved hanging out with the royal family in the early half of the 20th century.

According to records, Michael’s father, Captain Peter Middleton, also did some piloting with Prince Philip back in the early 1960s. No doubt when Philip heard this, there was an immediate recognition that Kate was probably the perfect woman to become a part of the Windsor clan.

Carole came from more humble parentage in comparison. Even so, she and Michael had the perfect love story by falling in love when working as ground crew for British Airways. They wed in 1980.

Carole Middleton had similarities to her daughter, Kate

Sometimes history truly does repeat itself, and you can see some parallels between Carole and Kate in life trajectory. With Carole, she basically married into wealth — or heir apparent — when marrying Michael. Plus, Carole had three children, just like Kate has now.

Only Kate having a rumored fourth child would break this chain of similarity. Kate (or Catherine) is the oldest of the three Middleton children, born in 1982. We all know about Pippa as the second oldest sister, yet Kate’s younger brother, James, doesn’t receive nearly as much attention.

All of them have grown up to be respectable adults, despite a few controversies here and there. With the Middleton parents eventually starting their own business, you can start to dig into what truly shaped the psyche of Kate and her way of living.

The popular business the Middletons continue to run

Just because Michael came from a wealthy family doesn’t mean he hasn’t had to fare for himself. For the most part, the Middletons would be designated upper middle class in today’s British terms.

Rather than spend time away working in the airline industry with kids, the Middleton parents decided to start a party supplies business called Party Pieces. It became a smashing success, eventually becoming an international operation when going online.

After 32 years of running this business, Kate’s parents have recently experienced some problems in having to cut back on staff. There were even some fears maybe the business was going under.

In this case, we have to wonder if the royal family would help them out if such a thing did occur.

The Middleton family made their business together

Carole Middleton has said the party supplies business was successful because of the direct, hard-working input from the kids. Obviously, this isn’t entirely possible now. Regardless, they’ve managed to stay close outside of the royal connections.

With the Windsors having all the wealth they’ll ever need, the Middletons may feel like they have a huge financial backer behind them if they ever needed one. Rumors are, Party Pieces is just regrouping and will likely be saved anyway.

What’s most important is that Kate has a strong family to fall back on as well, something Meghan Markle will have an imbalance of for possibly the rest of her life.