to feel short-changed by this Godmother?(42 Posts)
Dh is from Italy. He and I are both religious, but DH's family approach baptism with a lot of pomp and circumstance (family church, priest in the family, family christening gown, huge ceremony, spend loads of money, everyone invited, massive meal in hired restaurant and people flying over from abroad.) I really quite enjoy the elaborateness of it all and with our other DC have taken the opportunity to ask my old female friends to be Godmother to show how much they mean to me.
With DS (DC no.4) Dh asked me if I would please let one of his oldest female friends be Godmother. I didn't know her very well and English is her third language, so communication with her in the past has been broken at best, but I wanted to make DH happy and wanted to affirm my positive support of DH's culture and his friends, non-verbally, considering I do not speak Italian well enough to have a strong connection with them, so agreed. I also hoped that it might be a way I could get to know her better or forge a friendship, like a gesture of goodwill.
Anyway, the day before the christening came. She and the Godfather (another friend of DH's) stayed over the night before the ceremony because the church is quite hard to get to. DH and I prepared a dinner for the four of us and drinks with both sets of Grandparents and the kids.
Dh's friend arrived and from the moment she got into the house, she completely walked past me. She greeted DH and his parents and then went to sit by the Godfather, ignoring me and my parents. My Ddad (80yo!) had practiced a few sentences in Italian to greet her, and he tried them out and she looked at him dismissively, corrected him, and walked off. I went up to her eventually and said hi in italian, making an effort, and she gave me a quick HI back. I took DS over (who she hadn't yet met) and she made a few noises but mostly ignored him. I didn't expect her to take him or to swoon over him or anything like that, but I did expect her to acknowledge somehow the reason she was there, and to touch base with me in some way.
I'd cooked dinner for us as a four, and DH's friend directed conversation at the Godfather only, and had turned her chair around to completely face him. Everything was in Italian so I couldn't really understand what was being said. Godfather and DH were occasionally translating the bits I didn't understand, but even DH was mostly left out of the conversation too.
Dh and I had made a big effort with the meal and were looking forward to reconnecting with the Godfather who we hardly see, and her. In fact, they talked so much, DH and I felt like we were intruding because they looked annoyed whenever we asked them anything, and so after dinner, we left the room early and they didn't notice and carried on drinking wine.
At around 2am when I got up to feed DS, I saw them stumbling up the steps together holding hands. The next day, DH went to get Godfather from his room because both were late for the baptism, and found them in the same bed.
She spent the entire day fixated on Godfather, moody with everyone else and trying to be alone with him again. When he went to speak to other guests or to carry DS, she got moody with him and stormed off out of the restaurant at one point. All very dramatic. She didn't want to hold DS for photos, got upset when he dribbled on her, and spent most of the time in the loos or trying to speak to Godfather.
AIBU to feel a bit shortchanged by the whole experience? Or am I putting too much importance on it? This whole culture takes it very seriously, so it's not like we were trying to impose our expectations of what the role should be. I feel now that I should have asked one of my friends to be Godmother because she obviously has no interest in DH, me or DS but now it's all done and that's her role and we're not going to do it again. DH says that's just what she's like and not to be offended - it's not personal. Godfather says it was just a one night stand and has fizzled out now.
I'd be making it pretty clear to DH that she's not welcome again. No excuse for her appalling behaviour.
You could explain this to one of your friends and maybe ask her to step up as an unofficial godmother...
I'd say that the Godfather had very little respect, as well. He was there to attend the Christening, not to pick up.
She shouldn't be excused because it's "How she is", your DH has made a huge mistake in asking her to be Godmother. There should be an interest in the child, at the very least.
It doesn't sound as though she has anything positive at all to share with your DS. His Godparents shouldn't have been picked on just the basis of being an old friend.
She'd have been out of the door as soon as she was rude to my dad. No excuse for that
Your DH should be contacting her for an explanation and apology, and I'm not sure why he'd want to stay friends with someone who behaved like that if neither is forthcoming.
And I'd definitely be wanting to ask someone else to be godmother. It might even be that your vicar/minister/priest would be willing to hold a short 5 minute ceremony for them to make the godparent promises.
She's setting a terrible example for your child in her rude behaviour and disrespect for your family (yes I know the baby is too young to have understood this time), and she's shown no interest in the baby she's promised to pray for and nurture and keep a close eye on.
So your DH expected her to behave like that and still asked her?
Sorry, did I miss a bit? The GODPARENTS think it is appropriate to fuck in your house the night before the christening? I wouldn't be speaking to either of them again. I'm not even religious and think that's pretty gross.
Actually, rereading it, Godfather behaved really badly too. I guess if they wanted a one night stand that's their business, but how dare they behave like that during the meal!
This confirms my feelings about picking godparents - it shouldn't just be about who your closest friends are, but about who would make the best godparents.
Who showed an ongoing interest in any older siblings?
Who has actually got to know older siblings, not just (but including) babysitting, but also talking to them when they visit?
Who is supportive through thick and thin?
Who takes their promises really seriously?
Who is the kind of person you'd be happy having an influence over your child?
And who would you actually listen to if they raised a concern about some aspect of parenting, or how your child was?
Probably not this child's godmother, that's for sure!
I really fucking hate people who say "oh its nothing personal to you, thats just how she is". So?! I wouldnt expect to get away with being crashingly rude at the very important religious ceremony for my friends child, so why should I let someone else get away with it?
I would be insisting that your contacts her and makes it clear how pissed off you both are with her behaviour. If he wont then the first email needs to go to him about refusing to pull up shit behaviour to his wife and family.
I'd ask for a do-over for godparents, definitely.
What awful behaviour.
Charming pair... I don't think your DS is going to get a hell of a lot of love, attention and support from his godparents...
Use Google translate to tell her. She's in Italy. What can she do? Also tell the godfather too as he isn't blameless. He encouraged her.
PS if your DH already knew what she was like, why the hell did he suggest her as godmother? As for their one-night stand - disgusting feral behaviour!
Yeah, why are you just angry at her for this and not the Godfather? It's just as much his fault.
Is he also a friend of DH? Is there history between the two of them? If so possibly her bad behaviour can be explained by being on edge about seeing him.
When you said oldest female friend, I thought she was elderly. That doesn't seem to be the case thought, if she was more interested in getting laid.
Their behaviour was awful. What does your DH think about it all?
And if I could have a sooner, I would.
I am not so fussed about them getting together tbh, if they had ended up in a LTR/married/kids etc then it would be seen as romantic, the fact that it was a ONS is between them.
To me the issue is the rudeness, and she was definitely the main villain there.
Do the godmother and godfather have history OP?
You do have to wonder dione....sounds like she might have had a sweat on about him for a while and thought her time had come (as it where) and he took advantage of an offer on a plate. Neither covered themselves in glory about that, but tbh I cant really get worked up about it in the face of her crashing rudeness long before it got to bed time.
"DH says that's just what she's like and not to be offended - it's not personal. Godfather says it was just a one night stand and has fizzled out now."
I bloody hate that shite. 'It's just what he/she's like.' 'Oh, it's just her/his way'. Only because everybody panders to the bastards!! I'd be annoyed with all of them to be honest. Godmother, godfather, husband. But mainly husband, because hey, he knew what she's like. And yet still he has lumbered his child with godparents who will have no interest in his child. Dad of the year!
Sounds bloody rude. Was she punishing you because she was hoping to be the one marrying your dh and having his babies instead?
It does sound like the Dad has not picked the right Godparents. But I can't help thinking that in this situation the Godfather has behaved worse. It sounds like she is a bit...vulnerable.
If it's 'just her way' she obviously makes a habit of drinking too much and sleeping with men thinking that they like her and it's going to be some big romance but getting knocked back in the morning because they just wanted a shag. It's really horrible for the OP that this happened at her child's Christening but I can't help thinking this sounds like a very sad and grim pattern for the Godmother too.
It sounds like the night before, with the intense talking and focus on each other, he gave the impression that he really liked her, and he clearly didn't and just wanted a shag. I can't help thinking that to do this at a Christening it's worse to do it if you think it's a one night stand and just a shag than if you think that it's the start of a relationship.
They both sound like very unsuitable Godparents, OP has every right to be really annoyed with her DP and it would be upsetting and disappointing this happened at the Christening and she has every right to be upset. But I can't help feeling a little sorry for the Godmother. It sounds like she is rather desperate to be in a relationship but goes about it the wrong way so ends up being shagged and used by rather unpleasant men. I also suspect part of the reason she was so rude and unkind to the OP was jealousy of her happy family and stable relationship. The Godfather sounds like a bit of a cunt who used her for a one night stand despite it being a really inappropriate situation.
OP, would it be worth when you come back to England having some sort of non-religious naming ceremony party where you can ask a couple of reliable friends to be 'sponsor' type things? It might make up a bit for the disappointment and give your son two nice, stable figures to have in his life instead.
What on earth did your Italian PILS say about the godparents behaviour? They are both out of order.
Thanks for all responses. I am more disappointed with her than him because he at least showed an interest in DS, spoke to other guests, did not get annoyed when DS dribbled on him (took DS from godmother when she said she couldn't handle it.) And he was not rude to me or my dparents.
I think what DH meant about her being "like this" was what someone said upthread. I think she has a pattern of seeking out intense situations and needing to be someone's centre of attention in those situations. It's just it wasn't appropriate at the christening to do this.
The worst part for me was feeling like an annoyance to her over the meal every time we spoke like we were getting in the way of her agenda. And then feeling we had to leave the room (of our own house!)
DH thinks she will be a good godparent outside of this scenario; like on a day to day basis she'll be normal and interested, though there is no proof of that yet.
I feel that she spoilt the day and the night before. And that she pissed all over the connection I was trying to make with her and that feels quite unforgivable.
Italian PILS are old and didn't really notice. Nobody apart from DH and I knows they shaggged.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.