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Asked to be Godparent. How do I say no nicely and should i?And I am back pg11


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#1 Guest_3Keiki_*

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:40 PM

Hi all,
Just need a few varying opinions i guess.
One of my BIL/SIL has asked me to be godparent to their child. This is late DHs brother.
Honestly I have never been close to the couple and apart from christmas family functions not that much to do with them. But have always got on with them - until recently.
Awhile back I posted about getting a fairly large Death and Disability payout from Dhs work re his death. I made a decision to move to a property and chase a dream DH and I had together. When MIL found out the family made decision to try and stop me from doing so - stating that this money is really the childrens and I am being irresponsible with it. It is all legally without a leg but is taking precious time  an dmoney sorting out. Anyway since then things have been somewhat tense within the family. When BILs baby was born they used DHs name as his middle name, I found out via the facebook announcement. Now I have no issue with what they call this child but I think basic manners suggests they could have told me themselves.
So back to the request - I get a phone call off BIL asking me today and I really don't want too. I just think saying no could tip the whole family relationship into never never land.
But I don't have a close relationship with BIL and SIL, I really don't like the way they raise their kids (yeah I know it is judgey but we come from totally different places in childrearing - their kids are spoilt beyond all sense) so I really see why they asked anyway.
I don't know what to do, I want to maintain some kind of relationship for the sake of my kids but this is getting a bit much.

Edited by 3Keiki, 25 November 2012 - 07:41 PM.


#2 Livsh

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:45 PM

Meh, god parents don't really do that much, they are probably asking you to build a bridge and I agree with you, if you say no the family relationship will probably go down the toilet.

It's worth doing to keep the peace and make sure your kids have a relationship with their Dad's family.

#3 statua angelam

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:48 PM

I think there's a prior question to the one about family relationships.  Are you prepared to take on responsibility for helping to raise your nephew as a Christian?  Because if not, then family issues aside, you shouldn't do it (and you have the perfect excuse - you don't want to be a hypocrite).

#4 niggles

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:49 PM

This may be their way of mending bridges. Or it could be their way of connecting this new baby with a family they may not have a lot to do with but who is important to them.

Being a godparent is a relationship between you and the baby. Unless you really object I think you should just try to separate this from the other issues and accept. It is strange that they've chosen you but they have chosen you.

That's just my 2 cents. It's a tricky situation. Follow your gut.

#5 boatiebabe

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:49 PM

That's a hard situation.

Why exactly is it that you don't want to do it? Are you not religious - that could get you out of it!

Do you think they want money from you?

It sounds to me like they are trying to involve you in their lives (depite the fact they may have been somewhat ham fisted about it) so I would consider carefully before rebuffing them.

How important is your DH's family to you? and your kids?

#6 Guest_3Keiki_*

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:51 PM

AngeVert this is a problem too - I am in fact a 'practising' christian SIL comes from a kinda odd break away religion and that is the religion in which the baby is being christianed. I also have to attend some meetings with the pastor so I can be educated about the religion beforehand.

#7 Guest_3Keiki_*

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:56 PM

QUOTE (boatiebabe @ 22/11/2012, 04:49 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Do you think they want money from you?


Funny you should mention that - there is in fact an expectation that birthdays and christmas become grand affairs for the godchild. I know because SIL got up another GOdParent because they didn't spend enough on child

#8 jennywin

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:56 PM

Im seeing it more from their point of view. They seem like they care for your kids, they care about their brother, and they want to maintain a relationship with their neices and nephews.And yes, you are being judgey in a reverse snob sort of way.

I would say yes, as being godparent is easy, you just have to show up for birthdays and around xmas with a present for the child. Wouldnt this be good for all the children - to keep in contact just twice a year? Is this what your husband would have wanted?

#9 threelittlegems

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:58 PM

QUOTE (3Keiki @ 22/11/2012, 04:51 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
AngeVert this is a problem too - I am in fact a 'practising' christian SIL comes from a kinda odd break away religion and that is the religion in which the baby is being christianed. I also have to attend some meetings with the pastor so I can be educated about the religion beforehand.


Well there is your opportunity to politely excuse yourself.

FWIW, I think it sounds like they are trying to keep you in the family and your husbands memory alive. Unless they have been particularly nasty, or you feel the relationship with them is doomed, I would probably just agree to it.

Good luck

#10 idignantlyright

Posted 22 November 2012 - 03:59 PM

I would just say "Sorry, for reasons I would rather not go into. I have to decline the offer to be ****'s godmother."



#11 credence

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:04 PM

I wouldn't refuse to be honest. Without even reading other people's replies, I came to the assumption that they are trying to make good with you and to keep ties with your family.

Whether you believe in their particular variety of Christianity or not is kind of beside the point. Being a Godparent is about being a part of a child's life in a token sort of way. You're not the child's blood relative, but BIL and SIL would like to make you a God-relative, to keep you in their family.

Would it be such a bad thing long term to try and mend relationships?

#12 Guest_Sunnycat_*

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:05 PM

Maybe ask them what their expectations are from you as a godparent and then decide from there.

The cynic in me did think they want money from you though more than they are trying to build bridges. There are other ways to build bridges, this seems kind of odd.

#13 Bel Rowley

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:06 PM

I am not even religious, but in your situation I would see it as an attempt to be conciliatory and maintain a relationship between your family and theirs, and I would say yes. I like to think I'd want my children to stay in contact with their cousins and this seems like a way to ensure that will happen. Of course I don't know you or your ILs so it's difficult to know if this would be the right decision or not.

#14 la di dah

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:06 PM

The positive view is they are trying to cement an ongoing bond with you for the future, to have more than memories going forward.

The negative view is they want a big ol' gift at the ceremony and a "but your godsonnnn" forever more.

It sounds like you don't feel like it's the former?

Can you just say "I'm only supposed to god-mother members of xyz church, but I'm honoured you thought of me" and give a nice-ish but not silly-expensive gift?

#15 Guest_3Keiki_*

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:09 PM

I think I am going to try and pin BIL down and ask why me. I get the feeling they asked because they think they 'should' not because they really want me too. Frankly I would rather try and repair the relationship other ways than this. ANd yeah I will admit it is a little strange to think I will have to go to a big family event and then front the same people in court 2 weeks later to retain the right to manage my money and my life as I see fit.

#16 Guest_3Keiki_*

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:12 PM

QUOTE (Sunnycat @ 22/11/2012, 05:05 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Maybe ask them what their expectations are from you as a godparent and then decide from there.

The cynic in me did think they want money from you though more than they are trying to build bridges. There are other ways to build bridges, this seems kind of odd.


Yeah this way my first thought too


QUOTE (la di dah @ 22/11/2012, 05:06 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Can you just say "I'm only supposed to god-mother members of xyz church, but I'm honoured you thought of me" and give a nice-ish but not silly-expensive gift?


I like it - not true but I like it

#17 M1B2G

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:14 PM

I would say to them with the stress of the trial that it is all too much for you right now.  Maybe if it had been a different time but right now you are not comfortable with the idea...

Edited by Mumof1B2G, 22 November 2012 - 04:15 PM.


#18 qak

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:15 PM

I am seeing a lot of reasons not to do it.

And who the heck takes their prospective God parents to court?!?!


#19 JuniPooks_

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:17 PM

I'd probably accept the olive branch tbh.

#20 niggles

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:17 PM

QUOTE (3Keiki @ 22/11/2012, 02:09 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think I am going to try and pin BIL down and ask why me. I get the feeling they asked because they think they 'should' not because they really want me too. Frankly I would rather try and repair the relationship other ways than this. ANd yeah I will admit it is a little strange to think I will have to go to a big family event and then front the same people in court 2 weeks later to retain the right to manage my money and my life as I see fit.


In that case I think the response "I am very honoured but for reasons I'd rather not discuss I am declining your offer to be a Godparent" is the best one. Followed up with a nice gift and a heartfelt message in a lovely card.

#21 epl0822

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:18 PM

Clarify with them what they mean. I have a friend with two godparents, one does nothing and the other simply takes her out for a meal every now and then and asks how her life is going. Another friend has godparents who paid for her university tuition and let her live with them because they felt it was their duty.

If it's simply a title that is one step promotion above "aunt" then I don't see any harm in accepting. If they expect you to do more than that you can simply say you don't feel you're up to fulfilling the honour and their child deserves to have someone who is able to play a more active role in their lives.

#22 binchen

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:19 PM

Godparents are expected to buy expensive presents ...... especially when they have Money that everybody knows of .....

#23 mummanazz

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:25 PM

The fact that there is a court case involved adds a whole new element to this story- I would personally not agree to be God mother in this instance..... The fact they are taking you to court makes the whole thing too messy.....

Just my two cents though :-)

#24 ~~~

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:28 PM

QUOTE (credence @ 22/11/2012, 05:04 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Whether you believe in their particular variety of Christianity or not is kind of beside the point. Being a Godparent is about being a part of a child's life in a token sort of way. You're not the child's blood relative, but BIL and SIL would like to make you a God-relative, to keep you in their family.

I thought that the point of being a godparent was to raise then child in a similar (whatever religious) way that the parents had intended...... If they have significant differences in the way they practice, I would have thought that would be a big issue.....


QUOTE (3Keiki @ 22/11/2012, 05:09 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
And yeah I will admit it is a little strange to think I will have to go to a big family event and then front the same people in court 2 weeks later to retain the right to manage my money and my life as I see fit.

They are taking you to court over the money thing??? unsure.gif

#25 PrincessPeach

Posted 22 November 2012 - 04:38 PM

Totally off topic - but they are taking you to court over money you received from your DH's payout because they think it belongs to your kids???

I am not exactly the worlds most religious person, however to me that doesn't exactly sound the most christian thing to do.

Back on topic - I think declining to due differing of religious opinions might be your safest bets.




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