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Getting child christened if your aren't religious

(190 Posts)
Emboo19 Thu 06-Apr-17 10:26:18

Maybe not so much a AIBU, more WWYD!!

Neither me or my boyfriend are religious at all, we were both christened as babies though.
When we first talked about having dd, now 6 months christened, her dad was really against it. He said as we aren't religious it's just hypocritical. I think it was more to do with how he was adjusting to being a dad though as now he's saying we can do if I want.

My grandparents and my boyfriends mum and grandparents, are both quite religious and I know would both really like our dd to be christened. They haven't overly mentioned it or pressured us to have it done, but I know they'd be really happy if we decided to do so.

And there lies my what do I do!! I feel a bit odd, (but can't put my finger on why as I have no religious beliefs) that me and him are both christened and our dd isn't. But think I'd feel hypocritical, asking for her to be christened and standing in church doing whatever it is you do at a christening (I've only ever been to my own and can't remember that!)

It's not about marking or celebrating her being born, I know there's non religious alternatives. But I'm not interested in it from that point of view.

Did anyone get their child christened and don't actually follow the religion? And if so for what reason, family believes, tradition?

WorraLiberty Thu 06-Apr-17 10:28:40

No. I agree it's hypocritical and a waste of time if you're not religious.

WhereTheFuckIsWonderWoman Thu 06-Apr-17 10:30:21

It would be hypocritical for you to do it now. Let her make the choice herself when she's older.

AssassinatedBeauty Thu 06-Apr-17 10:31:44

At a christening you're standing up in front of family, friends and strangers, making promises about how you (and the godparents) will bring up the child in the church. It's a bit odd and hypocritical to do that if you have no intentions of doing so!

You could always have a non-religious naming ceremony if you feel the need to have a celebration.

Bettyspants Thu 06-Apr-17 10:31:56

Hypocritical and a waste of time and money. Baptising a child because it would mean a lot to someone else isn't a reason for baptism, when asked by the vicar the reasons for baptism what would you say? How about a naming ceremony instead?

Figgygal Thu 06-Apr-17 10:31:56

A complete waste of time if you're not religious what do you think it's going to happen to her because she's not christened and you are if you don't believe in God or an afterlife?

SetPhasersTaeMalkie Thu 06-Apr-17 10:32:02

I wouldn't bother if you're not religious. I can't see the point. I don't think you should feel guilty about it either.

DS was christened but we are a church going family.

WorraLiberty Thu 06-Apr-17 10:32:53

Actually, if your parents and grandparents are actually religious.

Surely the last thing they'd want is for you to lie in church and waste everyone's time?

RedStripeIassie Thu 06-Apr-17 10:33:21

We got our daughter baptised in the Catholic Church mainly to make our mum's happy!

Neither of us go to church but we both had the full mass and tea with nuns upbringing.

I didn't feel hypocritical. It felt right.

Meekonsandwich Thu 06-Apr-17 10:33:47

It's so awkward listening to the vicar/minister going on about how it's the god parents duty to teach the child about Christianity and protect them from the devil, when you don't believe a word that's said.

But then again non religious people marry in church and pretend to go to the service so they can get married there.

I couldn't do it. I couldn't sit there and listen to "god is looking down and blessing this marriage/christening" when I don't believe they are.
But that's just me.

You do you, but I'd look into a ceremony you can feel connected to, something special, your baby your rules smile

SetPhasersTaeMalkie Thu 06-Apr-17 10:33:58

I've been to two naming ceremonies. They were both lovely.

WorraLiberty Thu 06-Apr-17 10:34:14

Red why did it make them happy?

RedStripeIassie Thu 06-Apr-17 10:34:22

If nice to think she has a going to heaven back up as well!

RedStripeIassie Thu 06-Apr-17 10:34:59

Because of tradition and that if she dies she'd be allowed into heaven I think worra

NorksAkimbo72 Thu 06-Apr-17 10:35:15

I did it. My side of the family is quite religious, DH's isn't (and neither are DH and i). We didn't have a religious wedding ceremony, so baptizing our children was a gesture to my family. Dcs were baptised in the church my family has belonged to for 50 odd years, by the same priest who baptised me and all my cousins, and married my parents. All of that tradition was meaningful enough for us, my family was happy, and it certainly didn't harm dcs in any way. I also chose godparents who are religious, and they are involved in our children's lives, so they know they have people who can offer spiritual guidance if they should ever want it.

PinkHeart59156816 Thu 06-Apr-17 10:36:05

Me and dh didn't christen our dc as neither of us are the slightest bit religious and I do think it's hypocritical, not to mention a complete waste of time.

WorraLiberty Thu 06-Apr-17 10:36:52

Red, it's not a passport for non religious people to live life as they please but still get in through the gates grin

There's far more to it than that.

ExplodedCloud Thu 06-Apr-17 10:37:58

I think it's hypocritical. We are atheists. If the dc decide they want to follow any religion and be formally accepted into a faith that is up to them.

picklemepopcorn Thu 06-Apr-17 10:38:16

What about allowing the grandparents to christen the DCs in their church? They make the promises. Would you allow them to take them to Sunday school or messy church occasionally?

RedStripeIassie Thu 06-Apr-17 10:38:36

grin I know!!

It was a fun day and she looked adorable and there was cake and gifts too!

Lumpylumperson Thu 06-Apr-17 10:38:39

I'm a Christian but didn't have my kids christened. I don't like the whole 'you're christened so you're a Christian' thing. A ritual when you're a child doesn't make them a Christian.

We had our DC dedicated which means that we will raise them and allow them to make their own decisions when they're older.

Not sure why you'd want to christen your child when you have no intention to stick to what you promise to do etc in the service and don't believe in any of it.

SquatBetty Thu 06-Apr-17 10:38:44

Pointless nonsensical waste of time if you're not religious. Plus christenings are deadly dull.

picklemepopcorn Thu 06-Apr-17 10:39:28

It's also about membership of a particular community.

DeleteOrDecay Thu 06-Apr-17 10:39:45

I agree it's pointless if you're not religious. Getting a child christened to appease other family members is bonkersconfused I am christened but I have no idea why since my family aren't religious in the slightest.

NanFlanders Thu 06-Apr-17 10:40:22

Many churches will do a thanksgiving service for a new baby - that might be a compromise, i.e. you could quite legitimately express your thanks for the baby, without promising to bring them up as a Christian.

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