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To think I am the worst Godmother and don't deserve the title

(34 Posts)
badonkydonk Mon 25-Jul-16 21:27:33

My Goddaughter has recently turned four - she is an absolute dream and I am incredibly privileged to have been asked to play that part in her life.

I am really asking for advice on how to be more involved. I see her a lot and myself and my husband are always welcomed by her i.e. lots of hugs and she is comfortable with us both. They live 2+ hours away but I make a point of finishing work early and spending an evening with her a couple of times a month (not enough, I know). When I do pop down, we have days out with mum and dad but I am not brave enough to look after her on my own.

My issue is (and here is the advice section), we both would love for her to come and stay with us for a night or a weekend but I am absolutely petrified by little children. Myself and my husband only have one friend with kids and as an only child, I never had the experience of there being a little one in the house. This means, aside from the fun stuff, I have absolutely no idea how to look after a little one.

I know I am being amazingly unreasonable but this is really playing on my mind. I am 29 years of age and the thought of having a child in my care frightens me so much that I feel I am loosing out.

As I said, I would love to have her come and stay but, I worry that I know so little about how to care for children either I won't provide adequate care, she'll hate it (because I have no idea) or I'll do something wrong.

Any words of wisdom or advice would be incredibly well received.

doing Mon 25-Jul-16 21:30:18

Why do you want her to come and stay?

She's still very little and I'm not sure what she would get out of it. She'd likely miss her parents and not really enjoy it.

Just chill for now and spend time with her and her family, making taking her out for the odd afternoon on her own once she's older. I wouldn't expect her to stay overnight except with super close friends and only then when she's 8,9,10 ish.

Stop trying to conform to an artificial picture you have in your head of a godparent.

cozietoesie Mon 25-Jul-16 21:30:56

Could you go by yourself overnight, occasionally, and stay with her and her parents? smile

HelenaJustina Mon 25-Jul-16 21:32:33

Don't start with an overnight would be my advice!

Start with a morning, take to the park and then to a cafe for a treat. Drop her home.

Then maybe take her swimming, out to lunch and then drop her home.

Then a whole day, the zoo, open farm, for example.

You sound absolutely lovely and it's great that you want to be involved. At 4 they are pretty able to make their needs known 'I need a wee' 'I'm hungry' you just need a plan of action and to start with smaller chunks of time until you feel confident. Have you talked to her parents about how you feel?

badonkydonk Mon 25-Jul-16 21:33:54

I think I am over thinking doing.

Her Mum and I are cousins so there is a long history and it was more that Mum actively encourages us having her for the night.

I love her to come and stay because she is absolutely fab and I do think we'd all have fun but I have absolutely no idea.

IrenetheQuaint Mon 25-Jul-16 21:34:57

Gosh that sounds fine to me. You sound like an excellent godmother, especially given that they lives more than two hours away! In fact, that's more than I see any of my godchildren, all of whom live 1-2 hours away. Once a month is normal for me.

I have found that my relationship with godchild #1 (now 6) has developed through me staying with his parents (who are good friends) and just hanging out, including getting up early with him, playing games and an hour or two babysitting. I wouldn't invite him for the weekend and this wouldn't be expected of me.

HelenaJustina Mon 25-Jul-16 21:35:01

For what it's worth, I have a goddaughter. They live locally and she'll be five this year.

I buy her the occasional random treat, show interest in her development, get her decent Christmas/birthday presents. Have taken care of her when her mum needed a hand.

I have 4DC of my own and have never felt the need to have her overnight! You're not a bad godparent for not doing that.

thisismyfirsttime Mon 25-Jul-16 21:35:20

Could you go for a couple of fun sleepovers with her first and bath her/ put her to bed? And get up with her and make her breakfast? Would her parents like that?
Also have you actually asked if they/ she would be ready to come for a sleepover? You might be jumping the gun a bit and it will happen more naturally in a few years when dgd asks to and she is toilet trained, can tell you what she wants a bit more etc.

Lariflete Mon 25-Jul-16 21:36:18

I think that sounds like you are already very involved in her life. My best friend is DD's GM and she doesn't really bother with her much.

I wouldn't stress yourself out with taking her overnight / for a weekend - maybe start a bit smaller, like an afternoon or day out. TBH, at 4, as long as you feed them, they will survive. Other than that, you should be fine as long as you don't overthink it!!

ShutYerCakeHole Mon 25-Jul-16 21:36:19

Gosh you actually sound like an amazing Godmother!

I'd love my little one to have someone do what you already do!
Are you expected to have her overnight? Have you discussed it with her parents? Is it necessary? I wouldn't expect someone who isn't used to kids to take mine overnight, so I certainly wouldn't beat yourself up over it, you sound just great!

badonkydonk Mon 25-Jul-16 21:37:57

cozietoesie, I do stay over at least every other month which is great but the care of her is still overseen by Mum and Dad.

I think she would be fine staying with us (she idolises my husband and literally follows him around) but the thought of having the responsbility scares the beejesus out of me.

Sabie Mon 25-Jul-16 21:38:32

You can be our kids godparent any day....she's young don't stress about having her overnight, maybe try a day out, then an overnight in her own bed... Grade it. I was scared of kids before I had mine... I'm still vaguely scared of other people's!

hazeimcgee Mon 25-Jul-16 21:40:45

Not read all replies.

Can she and mom come for a night? Kick OH out for girl time. See what its like and get her used to house. Then take ot from there. Or offer to sleep over cousins house with DGD one night to bany sit whilst they go out so you get all her home comforts and structure

badonkydonk Mon 25-Jul-16 21:43:14

Aww you are all absolutely fab! Such lovely comments and you've put a smile on my very dreary Monday!

HelenaJustina - they have just had another little one (around 4 months old) so I haven't broached the subject recently. Your advice was so kind :-)

cozietoesie Mon 25-Jul-16 21:43:14

Baby sitting occasionally sounds like a fine idea. smile

TimeIhadaNameChange Mon 25-Jul-16 21:44:43

If you're the worst godmother I dread to think what that makes me.

I admitted to his parents when they asked me that despite appearances (going to church whenever I was staying with my mother) I was actually an atheist. They asked me to accept regardless, so I did.

When he was a month old I moved 800 miles away, and have never moved. This means my godson has only seen me a few times a year.

He's never stayed a night with me, nor me with him.

Despite all this we have a very good relationship. If we can be close with all these obstacles you won't have any trouble, sleepover, or no sleepover.h

T0ddlerSlave Mon 25-Jul-16 21:44:43

start small and work up. Help with bed routine, then next time send the parents to the pub round the corner while you go solo. Go out with her for two hours without meals, next time go out for a morning.

Ilovetea82 Mon 25-Jul-16 21:45:47

Maybe suggest that you look after her overnight in her own house while her parents have a night away!
I would love that offer! And if her mum has already suggested you having her overnight it might be w good compromise all round

Iliveinalighthousewiththeghost Mon 25-Jul-16 21:48:46

Your role as a God mother is to ensure that she follows her Religion. Not to be there as a free baby sitter for her parents

hazeimcgee Mon 25-Jul-16 21:55:15

ilive i think its probably easier to do that if she's part of DGD life too? Its not about free child care its about being involved

badonkydonk Mon 25-Jul-16 21:58:40

Thank you all so much for the advice. It is genuinely so kind and I value the comments . I think I will start small and work up.

As there is a new(ish) baby in the picture too (and I really have no idea how to care for a new born!), I'm going to suggest that I'll pop down and stay over so Mum and Dad can have a night out, nice meal, a few hours out etc but ask if Grandma would be there with me. She dotes on her grandchildren so it would mean I could have some quality time with the 4 year old and I am not panicking about having them both. As an ease in, it also means I have someone to be an knowledge bank but I can still make the eldest a nice dinner and bathe, chat, read to her etc.

I know I have massively over thought this but I genuinely appreciate the advice.

I have no idea why I am so scared of looking after something so robust......

redexpat Mon 25-Jul-16 21:58:56

I clicked on the title thinking you had dropped the baby! You sound wonderfully dedicated to her. I would build up to it, so try a night at hers with the parents there. Then one night when theyre not there. Then at yours.

redexpat Mon 25-Jul-16 21:59:51

Oh x post. Good plan!

IJustAteTheKidsFoodAgain Mon 25-Jul-16 22:00:31

You do more than my DCs godparents and I can't fault any of them - you sound great. But I wouldn't worry about having her stay - if you have a good relationship with her and get a few things wrong she'll probably enjoy telling you what to do

badonkydonk Mon 25-Jul-16 22:00:43

Just read that back - I meant give her a bath, not me have a long soak after the stress of making an evening meal smile

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