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MIL is in a mood about DD's christening

(112 Posts)
HowVeryOdd Thu 02-Jun-16 22:20:05

I don't want to drop feed so will try to be succinct. DH and I are christening our baby in the summer. My two female cousins and my brother are godparents. MIL is annoyed that no one from 'her side' is acting as Godparent. We are extremely close to my family, DH is good mates with my brother and cousins and we see them very regularly and they dote on our little girl (6 months). My family are extremely hands on, we help each other out, are very informal and we have a lot of fun together. By comparison, DH's family are very (I hate to use the word uptight, but they are). Pils makes very little effort. If we didn't phone them, we'd never hear from them. Met them today to tell them the plans and she was very hmm when we told her about the plans for godparents and asked who we'd be having from her side. DH's only brother isn't christened so that rules them out and we see his extended family once a year or at special occasions like weddings. She was very funny about us not asking DH brother but the reality is that he has only seen her once (DH family live an hour away), he never contacts his brother and isn't that bothered and they're not close. AIBU to think that she shouldn't view this as a massive snub? She didn't even christen her own children.

Gardenbirds123 Thu 02-Jun-16 22:22:43

TBH it sounds like a bit of a snub to me, but we're closer to both sides of family so would never dream of having all from one side. but if your DH is happy with it then MIL will just have to take it up with him / deal with it

OwlinaTree Thu 02-Jun-16 22:23:04

Well I can see why to her it seems one sided, but it's not up to her. As long as you and dh are happy with your choices, it's OK.

Could you ask dh brother to do a reading or something to get him involved?

fastdaytears Thu 02-Jun-16 22:25:22

Do you have to be Christened to be a Godparent? I didn't know that.

Obviously you can choose whoever you want, but this was always going to look like a snub of her family especially as you've chosen all family rather than friends.

Idea to include your BIL by asking him to do a reading sounds good.

HowVeryOdd Thu 02-Jun-16 22:25:42

Thanks. This is what I'm wondering. Is it good etiquette to have a 'token' godparent to keep the balance of family representation or do you have people that play a big part in your child's life? For context, my cousins are more like siblings and we actually lived two doors down from each other throughout of childhood. They are all christened and DH and his brother aren't. The only other family we could choose from DH's side are his cousins who live miles away and he barely knows and Mil's sisters who, like I said, we see once in a blue moon.

PurpleDaisies Thu 02-Jun-16 22:25:44

I don't think it's a snub. Has she understood what the christening is all about and what the role of godparents is? In my c of e church most people don't choose family members as godparents because family will already have a role in raising the child.

If you and your dh are happy with your choice, just be polite and firm. You don't need to justify it to her.

HowVeryOdd Thu 02-Jun-16 22:27:49

We'd prefer not to have friends as we have a fairly large circle of good friends and I couldn't choose one over the other. And ultimately I want my cousins.

I don't think you HAVE to be christened but some churches are stricter and ours seems to be one of them.

AnnaMarlowe Thu 02-Jun-16 22:29:41

This is not her decision.

As she didn't choose to Christen her own DC it is even less her decision (it's not family tradition or anything)

We went for friends rather than family. My Mum was a bit hmm that didn't ask my sibling but I pointed out that as they hadn't asked me (they didn't Christen their DC) it was a rather moot point.

You are the parents, pick who you think is best.

BettyCrystal Thu 02-Jun-16 22:29:46

Ach, some families... Do as you want. Stick with your plans. It will be the same after the christening anyway. I have a similar set up. My family spend lots of quality time together. His are a different kettle of fish. MIL wasn't impressed with our wedding... I only see them at Christmas.

HowVeryOdd Thu 02-Jun-16 22:29:55

Also - at our wedding 2 years ago, it was absolutely 50/50 in terms of family involvement so I don't feel bad about it.

AnnaMarlowe Thu 02-Jun-16 22:31:26

Does the brother even want to be a godfather?

I bet he doesn't if his own DC aren't Christened.

HowVeryOdd Thu 02-Jun-16 22:31:38

BettyCrystal this is just like our families. Mil always implies that we prioritise my family but the fact is they put in the effort. Every time we meet PIls it's as if we're meeting strangers for the first time.

Griphook Thu 02-Jun-16 22:32:20

I can see why she would see it as a snub, it almost reinforces that you are close to your family and not your
Dh's, and you there is no way for them to become close to you or dd.
That's not to say your wrong in
Your choice m, but I can see why she is hurt

HowVeryOdd Thu 02-Jun-16 22:32:23

Anna that is a good point and oddly something I hadn't thought about. DH brother has two kids, neither of them are christened.

witsender Thu 02-Jun-16 22:33:43

It is a snub, as you say yourself, you chose your family as you are closer so have in effect snubbed theirs. That isn't to say you're not in the right, I would have done the same thing. However it is a snub.

wheresthel1ght Thu 02-Jun-16 22:33:53

We ha e no one from dp's family as godparent to dd. My sister and her hubby, my best friend and her hubby and dp's best mate. (My BIL was only to placate a family row)

Have who you want - if they ant make an effort then they have no business bitching! And as for the fact her other son isn't christened speaks volumes!

Could you involve them in other ways? Maybe ask the brother to do a reading?

HowVeryOdd Thu 02-Jun-16 22:35:45

Thanks everyone. The reading suggestion is good. I understand, it is a snub of sorts. But I genuinely cannot think who we would have from DH's family as godparent without them thinking "what a surprise that they've asked me" if that makes sense.

DinosaursRoar Thu 02-Jun-16 22:40:30

Sadly, agree with witsender - it is a snub to your DH's family. Are you very religious? Because if not, then this is really a family event, and you should at least have a token member of DH's family or a friend from DH's side.

BeckyWithTheMediocreHair Thu 02-Jun-16 22:44:00

Well, it is a snub, although your reasoning is perfectly logical.

FWIW, in the Church of England you should be baptised in order to be a godparent but the non-baptised can be 'supporters' and the role in the ceremony is exactly the same.

5Foot5 Thu 02-Jun-16 22:44:22

TBH I can see why she might be offended.

Alarm bells rang for me when you described your family as "hands on" and your PILs as "uptight". It reminded me of the tension that used to exist between my PILs (who I think are lovely and who I have always got on very well with) and BILs exW. She was from a family who were always popping in and out of each others house and met up most days. PILs lived in the same town but felt very strongly that you don't just "pop in" but always call first to check it is OK. Their DIL decided they were stand-offish because of this, when in fact they were just trying to be considerate, and ultimately the relationship did not go well.

I guess what I am trying to say is that just because they are not all over you all the time don't assume it is because they don't care or are not interested. They might be doing what they think is the right thing by not crowding you and expecting you to visit all the time.

Birdsgottafly Thu 02-Jun-16 22:52:04

If there's no one suitable from your DHs side, then there's little you can do about it.

Your DH needs to take over the discussion about this.

Is there some other way that your DHs side can get involved, would they actually want to?

SanityAssassin Thu 02-Jun-16 22:54:46

I am a God Parent - no one ever asked if I was Christened.

BillSykesDog Thu 02-Jun-16 22:57:59

Yes, it's a snub. If you'd mixed in a friend it might have been okay. But all your family is a snub. The reasons you give are a snub.

Flisspaps Thu 02-Jun-16 22:58:05

My brother and sister are my DCs godparents - neither of them are Christened and nor am I. It was never discussed by the CofE vicar christening my DC.

Peppermintea Thu 02-Jun-16 23:02:28

YABU. At the end of the day you have to consider both sides of the family even if you're closer and prefer one side. It is etiquette and kind to do so and not always just about what you want when it's family involved. It would be right to at least have one person from each side of the family unless just having friends.

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