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Family fallout - Christening. Am I being unfair?

(32 Posts)
ChiefChocolateTester Wed 13-Apr-16 14:42:03

Apologies in advance but this is probably going to be quite long to avoid drip-feeding.

About three years ago, my Grandad died. Following that, my mum had a huge fallout with my Auntie and Uncle (her brother and sister, so not a couple) because my mum got fed up of being told she would be looking after my Grandma on x,y and z dates, without any discussion, and because of the way they were treating my grandma (my Auntie practically ignored my Grandma for a year due to her living in an annex of my Auntie's house, and my Auntie couldn't face going in there and seeing where my Grandad used to sit). As a result, both my Auntie and Uncle refuse to speak to my mum.

At this point, my Auntie and Uncle stopped contacting me. I have never been close to my Uncle so wasn't bothered, but I was hurt as to why my Auntie had stopped talking to me. I tried to speak to her about it and she said it was because she was in so much grief she wasn't speaking to anyone. I explained we were all in grief but Grandad would have wanted us to support each other. I was told that she 'didn't have time for my issues" and that "she was very sorry she couldn't grieve the way I wanted" - said very sarcastically. So my Auntie then did not speak to me for approximately two years. As a result, I also did not get to see my two much younger cousins to who I was close, and my Auntie also did not see my daughter, which hurt me very much.

Last Christmas, I attempted to restore contact by asking my Auntie if she fancied getting together with the kids over the Xmas holidays to do something. I was told that is wasn't as simple as that, and that I had offended her husband and she could not have her kids around someone who thinks so little of her husband. Which was odd, because apart from once telling him not to be grumpy towards my Grandma, when he was being very short tempered with her because she walks slowly, I hadn't said anything. So I asked what I was meant to have said. She couldn't remember. She also said that I appeared to be conspiring with my mum to think bad things about her husband. I hadn't and told her this. She also said she was distancing her family from me as I am my mother's daughter?

All this has rankled, as her husband has made comments on the size of my breasts when drunk, grabbed my breasts from behind at a family meal when drunk, in front of my then fiancé (now DH) and felt quite happy telling me when I had put on weight. And yet I am rude?? They have also both said that as soon as my Grandma dies, they are having nothing to do with the wider family ever again.

When I was younger, I had a very good relationship with both of them, even living with them for a while when I moved across the country to be nearer my family, though I soon discovered that my Aunt in particular is prone to emotional blackmail and is very controlling.

So since last Xmas, we have been polite via text but nothing more. Which brings us to present day. I am having my five- year old daughter Christened. I said when she was born that my Aunt would be Godmother, but as the relationship has deteriorated, and I was cut off, I no longer feel it's appropriate. My Grandma who Is invited to the Christening thinks I am being very unfair as my Aunt apparently adores my daughter (she has seen her in passing approximately twice in three years).

My DH and I have decided not to have her as godmother, and to have a small ceremony with only Grandparents and Godparents there. We don't want to invite Aunts and Uncles, as we don't want there to be any awkwardness overshadowing the day. My Grandma has said she won't be able to come for health reasons, and is not telling my Aunts and Uncles about the Christening to avoid hurting their feelings at the lack of an invitation.

So AIBU in not having my Auntie as Godmother, and for not inviting my Aunts and Uncles to the Christening? Apologies for this being so epic!

NotSpartacus Wed 13-Apr-16 14:47:06

You should choose the godparents you want for your daughter. Will your auntie be upset? Probably - she seems from what you've written to be easily offended. But you can't choose someone who doesn't speak to you as godparent to your child - that's nuts!

Should you invite other aunts and uncles? If they are in your life and you want them there, yes.

TimeToMuskUp Wed 13-Apr-16 14:48:53

No. You choose Godparents for your DCs who will (hopefully) set an example, care for them, help guide them and be a positive part of their lives. Of course, relationships change and lots of people have nothing to do with their Godparents, but ideally when you're choosing you do it with the very best of intentions.

Your Aunt sounds as though she's having a lot of trouble differentiating between reality and her imagination and sounds incredibly manipulative and hard work. Is she going to set a great example to your DD? Is she going to be a regular part of her life, is she going to add to DD's life in any way (not in the mercenary way, more the emotional)? If not, then there's no way she deserves to be a Godparent.

Also, your Uncle (her DH) is a dick. Touching your breasts? He deserves a fucking good throat punch and a visit from the police.

Goingtobeawesome Wed 13-Apr-16 14:51:04

YANBU for not having her as Godmother.

I hope you bollocked your perverted Uncle for groping you.

MNemonica Wed 13-Apr-16 14:51:09

YANBU at all, your Auntie sounds very hard work.

If she has already announced that she doesn't want anything to do with her wider family after the death of your Grandma, there's no point in having her as godmother anyway.

Besides, why on earth would you choose someone so toxic?

ChiefChocolateTester Wed 13-Apr-16 14:52:35

Thanks for replying. Have to go collect DD from school so will reply later. Again, thanks so much for taking time to reply, it really does help.

MamaLazarou Wed 13-Apr-16 14:54:51

YANBU! Choose someone who respects and supports you and your children instead.

HanYOLO Wed 13-Apr-16 15:08:52

She sounds absolutely nuts. YANBU.

Letustryagain Wed 13-Apr-16 15:09:42

I think you should have the Christening that you want for your daughter and the same goes for choosing the Godparents that you want.

Yes, your Aunt will likely be upset but it sounds like most of this she has brought on herself (and her foul husband...).

Would you feel comfortable explaining fully in a letter and sending it to her? As she's threatening to cut the whole family off after your Grandma dies anyway, it sounds like nothing worse can come from it.

I would send a letter, explaining how upset you are about everything that's happened and about how you feel about not seeing her and your cousins and why you're not inviting her to the christening. Just be totally honest and it may even go some way to fixing things...

girlinacoma Wed 13-Apr-16 15:31:43

You are a mother now. You and only you get to to decide who will be godparents for your child (and your DH of course).

Nobody is entitled to anything and your Aunt should not be at all surprised that she is no longer Godmother. Don't even think about letting that woman have an influence on your DD's life.

Make an alternate decision and then tell everyone (not ask them)

Knockmesideways Wed 13-Apr-16 15:34:55

Godparents are there for your child. Your Auntie hasn't been. End of story. YADNBU.

ChiefChocolateTester Wed 13-Apr-16 15:40:44

Thanks for replying. I only really have contact with my Grandma now and she doesn't intend to tell them about the christening so my Aunt won't know about it. If she ever does find out I was planning to explain what some of you have said I.e. That we want Godparents that will be I our DDs life.

Letus - I honestly don't think sending a letter would help. My Aunt literally never thinks she's wrong, and tries to use tactics to make sure she has a strong means of protecting herself from criticism e.g. When her kids were being awfully behaved at school, she became head of governers so the children were basically above reproach. I think I would kick off ww3.

When I told others in the family what my uncle did, I was told "oh, that's just him, he doesn't mean anything by it". My DH thought it was really off but I knew none of my family would support me if i addressed his behaviour.

M00nUnit Wed 13-Apr-16 15:44:28

She can't be your DS's godmother, even if you want her to be because she's already said that "as soon Grandma dies, they are having nothing to do with the wider family ever again." Nobody can be a godparent to someone they intend to have nothing to do with.

blankmind Wed 13-Apr-16 15:50:20

"She couldn't remember. She also said that I appeared to be conspiring with my mum to think bad things about her husband. I hadn't and told her this. She also said she was distancing her family from me as I am my mother's daughter? "

You don't need someone who behaves like that anywhere near you or your daughter, let alone asking them to perform an important role in her life.

StrictlyMumDancing Wed 13-Apr-16 15:51:57

If I were you I'd call my grandma and tell her aunt has made her intentions clear on the fact she will not be part of DDs life in future so therefore cannot be a godparent. If that offends aunt then that's her problem and not anyone else's. I'd then tell grandma its a shame she's not going to come too but there's nothing that can be done about that too, and offer to send her a photo of the day if she wants - if she doesn't then I'd say fine and wish her well, but I'm not going to entertain conversations about aunt and uncle will be offended by their own actions.

bakeoffcake Wed 13-Apr-16 15:53:46

Why on earth would you ask someone to be a Godparent when they won't even talk to you?
Your grandma needs to accept that it's a ridiculous idea

Also I wouldn't want my dd anywhere near a pervert like your uncle.

ChiefChocolateTester Wed 13-Apr-16 16:01:22

I have told my Grandma exactly why I don't want my Aunt as Godmother. That's when she said that I was being extreme because my aunt adores my DD apparently.

Moon and Blank - that's exactly what I think too. You don't get to have a pivotal role in my DDs life if you aren't actually in her life.

For years, the whole family made me out to be a troublemaker when I wouldn't go along with all her plans without question e.g. Spending £500 on a weekend away for my Grandparents' wedding anniversary. My aunts and uncles, led by thus particular auntie have made out I was unreasonable for it. My mum used to just go along with it, until after my Grandad died when she realised she was being manipulated. And now it seems they hate her for not following the party line. They told my mum she would have no family and be lonely in old age if my mum spent Xmas with me and my family instead of with my Grandma.

Does all this sound very messed.up or I am being unfair? Its so hard to know when its what you've been brought up with.

StrictlyMumDancing Wed 13-Apr-16 16:06:45

I've been told that about relatives adoring my DD too. I laughed at the person saying it like they were a moron (just a natural reaction to that idiotic statement) and said they didn't even know her, they'd met her twice years ago. Oddly it never got brought up again.

You would really do better keeping your DD away from that bull.

WhereYouLeftIt Wed 13-Apr-16 16:18:37

You are not being unfair. Your aunt is a git and you are well rid. Don't give her another thought.

The only problem I can see in all this for you is your Grandma. She is trying to believe in happy families, which results in unfairness to you and your mother. You are not being extreme. What was extreme was your aunt not going into Grandma's annexe for a year.

Now, I can see your Grandma's behaviour in one of two ways. First possibility - the apple didn't fall far from the tree and Grandma's a dab hand at emotional blackmail. Second possibility - she's afraid of your aunt's reaction and is trying to avoid it by having you invite your aunt, and not attending/not mentioning it to her.

TreadSoftlyOnMyDreams Wed 13-Apr-16 16:20:29

Your grandmother is entitled to her misguided opinion and not to attend.

Under the circs you describe your Aunt is the last person I'd be inviting to be a godparent. That would be completely deranged.

MNemonica Wed 13-Apr-16 16:29:20

YABU to even ask if YABU.

Your Auntie has made her contempt for both you and your DM obvious, enjoys being offended and has stated openly that she wants to distance herself from you. It can hardly be plainer that she has no regard for you.

The supposed affection she feels for your daughter is either your DGM's wishful thinking ( I imagine she is sad that the family is falling apart) or is something your aunt said to her to make you look bad, e.g. "I really love MiniChocolate, what a shame I don't get to see her as Chocolate is such a nasty piece". Either way, ignore!

Choose someone you can count on to be your DD's godmother, invite people you like to the Christening and have a lovely party. Don't give your awful aunt another thought. She's already not speaking to you, has already refused an olive branch from you at Christmas, so it's not going to change anything if you don't include her.

shovetheholly Wed 13-Apr-16 16:42:33

This seems like a classic case of family members expecting to be allowed to act however they like, with no consequences! Basically, you are supposed to soak up all kinds of insults and assaults, while any tiny thing that is done back is resented with the fiery passion of a thousand suns.

It's unequal, unfair, and screwed up!

Do your own thing. But also recognise that the aforementioned fiery passion thing means that they will enact reprisals on your daughter - she may well be cut out of their lives. Accept that as a price worth paying wink

Pepperpot99 Wed 13-Apr-16 16:55:15

Would you want your dd to be left alone in the company of a pervert? no. That's why you should not invite your aunt or her dh. They sound vile.

ChiefChocolateTester Wed 13-Apr-16 17:21:51

You are all absolutely write in what you've said.

My Grandma does hate to see the family fall apart. She phoned me after Xmas and told me I needed to make effort to let bygones be bygones. I explained that I instigated contact with my Aunt and it was declined. Cue a text from my aunt saying to leave my Grandma out of things as it upsets her. I felt like banging my head against a brick wall! My Grandma is also the queen of emotional manipulation. She really complained about mu Aunts behaviour for a year after my Grandad died, and really relied on me and my mum. As soon as she started getting along with my Aunt again, she treated my mum very badly.

My mum is no saint and did.absolutely lose it with my Aunt to a huge degree. And it wasn't said in the best way. But she had been provoked for so long with my Aunt saying you have to book your holidays for the year now as you're coming to stay with Grandma in thus, this, and this week. Its not not been until theres a.major family get together like the Christening, that its caused difficulties.

ChiefChocolateTester Wed 13-Apr-16 17:30:02

Your replies have been really helpful and now I know that objectively it seems a mad idea, I feel even more strongly that DH and I are taking the right stance. We have asked some friends who are delighted to be asked, and my sister-in-law and her lovely husband. They are all thrilled and love my DD to pieces and I know will always be there for her.

It has actually done wonders for myself esteem talking about this. For so long, my family have implied I'm weird for questioning their behaviour. But it turns out that I'm not.

Is it very wrong that I now don't want them in my life at all, as they just bring grief. And though i don't think pervy uncle would be pervy to DD at her age, I don't want her to think such behaviour is normal. I actually want nothing further to do with them now.

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