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To expect BIL to attend Christening?

(103 Posts)
Pinkcatgirl Thu 02-Jul-15 15:09:28

My DS is being christened in a few months, and my sister is one of his Godmothers. Her husband is refusing to come to the christening as apparently he "doesn't believe in it". He and my sister got married in church 7 years ago, and attended church weddings (inc mine) so this is a recent thing. I don't mind if he doesn't join in the vows about prayer etc just as I wouldn't if I attended a wedding of another faith, but I'd still go.

He's entitled to his views but I find it odd that he's not coming to his nephew's christening, especially when his wife has an important role. They v sadly don't have children, which may be part of the reason for his non attendance, but my sister will find it far harder to deal with all the "when will you have kids?" prying questions on her own, I'd be seriously unimpressed if my DH did this to me!

He also didn't attend my DD christening 2 yrs ago, apparently he had a cold. Bit annoyed then as it was a sit down meal and we'd already paid for it / had seating plan etc.

YUDOTHIS Thu 02-Jul-15 15:11:44

I won't attend christenings for the same reason, YANBU to be disappointed. YABU to expect him/force him to come.

LazyLouLou Thu 02-Jul-15 15:12:42

So, your sister has married a total curmudgeon.

I suppose all you can do is support her and ignore his sad, old, judgemental (soon to be lonely) self!

Don't let him spoil the day!

LondonLady29 Thu 02-Jul-15 15:17:41

He sounds very unreasonable and a bit of a misery but although the christening is for your LO its really your sisters problem (if she thinks it is one) to deal with, rather than yours. YANU to expect him to come, but if he won't there's nothing you can do about it sadly. Your poor sister. Has she said anything about it?

LurkingHusband Thu 02-Jul-15 15:32:34

I never understand how some atheists get shirty about visiting (not attending) church. If there really is no God, what does it matter to them ? It's not as if Churches vet visitors anyway. Some are quite keen to have non-believers in grin.

I'll happily attend any religious nonsense I'm invited to. (It helps to like history and architecture). I'd never dream of being disrespectful, but I'm afraid I can't believe in it.

TTWK Thu 02-Jul-15 15:32:42

I go to church weddings, as it involves two consenting adults. I give Christenings a miss as it is about inflicting nonsense on child who should not have that choice made for them. I don't agree with it.

What I don't get is that he married in a church. I could never have done that. Is his departure from Christianity recent. If so, then fair enough. If not, he's a twat.

chantico Thu 02-Jul-15 15:34:01

Even though he would attend ceremonies as a spectator before, his beliefs have changed, and no matter how little you like that change I think it should be respected.

That assumes, of course, that he now does not attend any Christian ceremonies.

FruChristerOla Thu 02-Jul-15 15:34:06

It sounds as though his, recent, non-belief is an excuse to get out of attending. Perhaps he has some issues with your wider family which you're unaware of and which your sister hasn't told you about?

If you/we all look at the wider picture, if you/we had an invitation to a wedding ceremony or wanted to attend a funeral of someone with different religious beliefs to us, would we not go just because we are not of the same religion or belief? Certainly for me, I'd still attend.

So, sadly, it sounds as though it's more personal than just a difference in religious beliefs.

loveareadingthanks Thu 02-Jul-15 15:37:00

Maybe his views have changed and he now doesn't believe and doesn't want to be there, which seems a bit silly (as an atheist who happily goes to anything).

Or maybe he is still Christian but doesn't believe in child baptism, there are denominations who think it should be left until old enough to make up their own minds. In that case, I can understand more why he doesn't want to support this.

Probably he just finds these things really boring and doesn't want to come.

Sorry for your sister's problems but people shouldn't be rude enough to ask personal questions like that. Their fault, not his.

HermioneWeasley Thu 02-Jul-15 15:41:58

I didn't got to my own child's christening

Lottapianos Thu 02-Jul-15 15:42:39

'Sorry for your sister's problems but people shouldn't be rude enough to ask personal questions like that'

And yet they are, all too often sad

And their difficulty conceiving may not just be painful for your sister, but possibly for both of them. Could it be that he may find it too painful to be around a baby-centred event, and the belief issue is just a cover up?

ApocalypseThen Thu 02-Jul-15 16:07:17

What a pathetic excuse he is. Who puts non belief before family? I don't believe in baptism myself but I do believe in family and the importance of building inter generational links between kin.

loveareadingthanks Thu 02-Jul-15 16:19:27

'Could it be that he may find it too painful to be around a baby-centred event, and the belief issue is just a cover up?'

That's another possibility too.

blink1552 Thu 02-Jul-15 16:21:22

I would doubt if it's a new thing, it might be just that he doesn't believe in baptising non-consenting babies. And even if it is a recent thing, people are allowed to change their view.

It's a shame he is declining to fulfil this social obligation but you will have a nicer time without him. Move on.

Heels99 Thu 02-Jul-15 16:21:39

Meh he sounds grumpy. But do you really care if he doesn't come

maybebabybee Thu 02-Jul-15 16:23:43

I don't believe it's right to indoctrinate a child into a religion over which it has no say, so if he has similar beliefs I can understand why he wouldn't want to go. My Dad always said if I got married in church then he wouldn't come (no danger of that happening, thankfully!).

That being said, I would go if it was a family member and just suck it up.

OneDayWhenIGrowUp Thu 02-Jul-15 16:28:45

You can expect all you want, but its not obligatory for anyone to attend your child's christening, for whatever reason (or none!) they want to give. It's also not up to you to assess or judge a person's view on religion and whether it's consistent in your opinion it not.

BeaufortBelle Thu 02-Jul-15 16:32:13

A christening is an introduction not an indoctrination. Faith is embraced upon confirmation either in the teenage years in the Anglican church or later. I was confirmed at 40.

You can't Sa you disagree with or don't like Chinese food if you don't try it.

He should be there as your sister's partner. Not negotiable Imo - and with a smile on his face.

MrsGentlyBenevolent Thu 02-Jul-15 16:39:35

Yes, he may well be inconsiderate for not coming, especially if your sister is going to have annoying questions directed at her (though, I'm sure she can cope). However, I personally find christnings ridiculous and have only been to a couple in my life (too young to say no). Unless the family is really, truly religious, they are just a spectical really - having a christening because it's just what you do, or one set of grandparents want it. Never mind the whole taking a choice away from the child to start with (I think that is a point that grinds me the most as a 'lapsed Christian'). It's just another irritant on a social calender if you're none religious, I wouldn't waste my time sat in an uncomfy church, listening to some vicar babber on about things I thought were total tosh, when I could honestly find something better to do. Yes, it's a bit harsh, it should be about family, but that's your choice as a family unit to have a baptism, it's his to not go.

WorraLiberty Thu 02-Jul-15 16:45:24

Are you religious OP? Do you and your DH go to church?

If not, perhaps he just thinks it's a farce/waste of time?

TTWK Thu 02-Jul-15 16:45:52

What a pathetic excuse he is. Who puts non belief before family?

It's disgraceful isn't it, people sticking by their principles. hmm

rumbleinthrjungle Thu 02-Jul-15 16:51:46

I'd think it boils down to nothing more complex than he doesn't want to.To him: his wedding = interesting, SiL's baby's christening = not interesting. Got family members like this and they're a joy. confused Not much you can do about it, and you'll have much more fun if he stays away rather than comes under protest and hangs around all day looking bored, spoiling it for everyone else who'll have a lovely time.

TwoTribes Thu 02-Jul-15 16:52:41

They v sadly don't have children

OP it sounds like you are implying that they would like children but are having problems conceiving/may never be able to. It sounds to me like this might be the real reason. It may just be too hard for him and the religious side might be an excuse.

It's his choice and if your sister has a problem with that then she needs to talk to him about it but it's really none of your business. He was invited, he declined. Accept that with grace and enjoy your day.

ASorcererIsAWizardSquared Thu 02-Jul-15 16:53:02

absolute rot and nonsense.

i'm pagan and attending church this weekend for the christening of my friend and her three children, i dont believe, i won't join in the prayers, but i'm going because its important, as her friend, to be there to support her and her children as her family are rather thin on the ground!

VivaLeBeaver Thu 02-Jul-15 16:54:10

My BIL hasn't bothered coming to my house once in 15 years. He can't be arsed. grin My thoughts are that if my sister is happy with having a dh who never accompanies her anywhere then thats her lookout.

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