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Who would be your child's legal guardian?

(24 Posts)
fatmomma Sun 12-Jun-05 00:01:24

We are in the process of sorting out our will and the only thing holding it up is deciding who to ask to be our ds's legal guardians. Just wondering how other mners came to their decisions and how the nominee's reacted?

TIA, fatmomma

jampots Sun 12-Jun-05 00:08:26

we asked my older sister a few years ago and her response was "i'll check with dh" ! We waited a couple of years for the response and had to ask again as we really have no one else. She thought she had said yes to us ! So my older sis and her dh!

Ladymuck Sun 12-Jun-05 00:14:04

We have some friends. Our siblings were both young free and single, our parents were getting on in years. We chose friends with older children 9in fact in the last year both their kids have left home), yet who are only about 10 yeasr older than us. Most of out other friends had family close in age to us, and it seemed unfair to foist an exact 2 traumistised children onto them whilst ours are young.

We do have an annual agreement though - both sides have a think once a year, and either party can change their mind. So as the boys get older we will probably look for someone a bit closer to home (and the age difference issue may not be so much an issue). And likewise for them, there will proably come a time when they don't want to return to parenting again.
In terms of why them in particular - reasons of their age and the age of their children obvilsuy featured, but mainly because they have similar values to us, and would be liley to think along the smae lines on discipline, choice of schools, choices over religion etc.

limoncello Sun 12-Jun-05 00:23:29

I mentioned this recently in the sense that guardianship held up the possibility of making a will - but it is possible for each of you to make wills even if you can't yet decide on guardianship and at least either of the parents would be able to have financial stability if one parent died (as in most cases it's likely that should the worst happen you probably won't die together)- my father died without a will and it took 3 anxious years for probate because he was intestate...

fatmomma Sun 12-Jun-05 23:21:35

Good point limoncello - it hadn't occured to me we could do one without the other (doh!). My grandfather died without a will and it took 7 years to sort everything out so I know I need to sort this out poste haste.

Our main problem is that none of our family members have the same views and values which we live by. It feels like we are trying to choose between several options that are not quite good enough and that feels like we are letting our ds down .

Gobbledigook Sun 12-Jun-05 23:29:13

We need to sort this too.

Dh's sis has put us down for her dd but she didn't even ask - I don't actually know what I'd do if the event ever arose but to be perfectly honest, I've got 3 boys and couldn't handle another child - let alone a girl - I'm just not geared up for it. Obviously I wouldn't be callous enough to just say no if she was stranded but I just hope it never happens (obviously)

For our part, it's difficult. I def would not choose said SIL and BIL - they have completely different values to me and they live in London and one of the key reasons I moved away from there is that I didn't want to bring up children there.

I have 2 brothers but both are not married (yet) and have no children so it's hard to know really if they'd be suitable, or indeed if they'd want to - after all, we do have 3 boys so it would be a lot to take on and I wouldn't want them splitting up.

My ideal would be for my parents to have them but I know they really want to get on with their retirement together - however, they are the only people that I know would bring them up the way I'd want them to be brought up.

It actually makes me feel quite sick to think this situation could arise but we do need to think about it.

Janh Sun 12-Jun-05 23:40:05

My brother is my kids' guardian - I did ask him first! - but on the understanding that they probably wouldn't have lived with him. (He lives over 100 miles away and I wouldn't have wanted to do that to my kids - bad enough losing their parents without being taken away from the rest of their life.)

The idea was that he would have made suitable arrangements for them to stay in the area they have always lived in. It's pretty academic now - the eldest is 23 and the youngest is 12 - but it is still how things would be sorted out if we both died.

pixiefish Sun 12-Jun-05 23:41:44

my parents. we asked before seeing the solicitor

MarsLady Sun 12-Jun-05 23:44:15

DS1's godparents. They've agreed despite me having the DTs after they worked out how expensive my three would be lol

QueenEagle Sun 12-Jun-05 23:44:53

I asked my brother and his wife who had 2 at the time. I was on my own having recently divorced and had 3 children. We agreed we would take on each others kids should anything happen to either of us and I had it stipulated in my will. Made sure too that my life insurance would be paid into trust to enable them to care for them all until the youngest was 18.

happyhuggy Sun 12-Jun-05 23:49:21

God, if my mil asks me this question once more i'll scream!!!!

she thinks it'll be her but it wont! cant tell her that though!

we've decided on my sister.

my mom - has a five yr old already, works and we have some disagreements on how toraise children

mil - no no no, she has no idea of child safety and her age is a factor too.

bil/sil - ive posted about bil before he's a prat and mil is doing the loins share in bringing up there kids

so that leaves my sister. shes only 19 but very sensible and level headed, has a job and would get our house if we died to bring the kids up in.

Me and dh would get custody of my little brother in the event that my mom died.

happyhuggy Sun 12-Jun-05 23:51:01

and also would have my friends dd if anything happened to her - although she never asked first

MarsLady Sun 12-Jun-05 23:55:35

I also chose DS1's godparents above family. They have the same outlook as us and the things that are important to us are important to them. They want the same things, church, school, lifestyle. They would be wonderful for our children. I love my family dearly, but they would bring my children up in a completely different way. DH's family put the dsyfunctional into dsyfunctional. I wouldn't give them a single opening into the lives of my children and DH feels the same!

fatmomma Mon 13-Jun-05 23:42:01

I'm glad it's not just me that doesn't trust their family. My options are:

Sister - single mum of two boys with psycho xh who put her in hospital with broken cheek bones.

SIL & dh - she a chain smokin, reef swilling tattoed lady & he an ex-con who's done time for fraud.

FIL - 65 and has made it clear, even though we haven't asked him, that he doesn't want the responsibility.

My parents - love my daddy but he is hell to live with, anyone who read the mother/child relationship thread will know why I am reluctant to consider my mum. Plus they are in their 50s, although very fit.

Brother - generally a good guy and my closest family member but selfish, materialistic and child-phobic.

I have a good friend who I share a lot of values and views with but I have only known her for approx. a year and feel it is a huge amount to ask of her. This is making my head hurt!

MarsLady - what was the grand total?? Or would it scare us all too much

Chandra Tue 14-Jun-05 00:03:34

We are also wondering about this. We initially thought of my sis and bil, but in the last year one of their children was diagnosed with a disability so we thought that they may have already have too much on their plates.

The grandparents are not that old but they will be by the time DS becomes a teenager.

Our other sisters are both unmarried, very self centred and really can be very nasty when they are angry so we wouldn't like DS going there either.

The person we have in mind is DS's godmother. She is my best friend and we think alike in most things, her husband is not only lovely but has very solid moral values without being a "holier than thou" person. The only thing that keep us from asking them is that I don't know how to ask the question without giving her the shock of her life as they don't have children of their own nor do plan to have them in the near future. Any suggestions are more than welcome!

fatmomma Tue 14-Jun-05 00:31:45

Agree with Chandra, how do you broach the subject? 'When I'm dead will go look after my kids?' ??????????

jabberwocky Tue 14-Jun-05 06:14:30

I have a nephew who is in his late twenties. After we asked him and his wife to be godparents and they agreed we discussed that it would be put into our will and ds would have a trust set up in the event, etc. It really wasn't awkward at all. They seemed to take it as a huge compliment (as they should )

collision Tue 14-Jun-05 07:56:06

My brother and his wife. They have no children and are great fun. We thought long and hard about it.....DH's parents are definitely a No No and my parents wouldnt want to be, I dont think. I have 2 other brothers who are married with children and a sister who is 19.

My brother was really pleased when we asked him. Must remind him though that we have 2 boys now so he would get both!!!!!!

acnebride Tue 14-Jun-05 08:57:09

Dh's brother and girlfriend (about to be wife). I really like him (actually he is disturbingly goodlooking - OK I'm not going there) but she is just fantastic - she's a youth worker with excluded teenagers and an all-round fabulous person. We will check with them again as/when they have kids of their own.

DS is about to become Jewish and I'm slightly sad that he would probably lose that, as they are not at all religious in any form, but I'd still rather they brought him up than e.g. my brother who is an extremely devout Christian but not as good with kids IMO.

We brought it up in the context of making a will and they seemed happy to do it.

Bellie Tue 14-Jun-05 09:08:16

we chose dd godparents - both myself and dh are only children so no siblings to consider. Both parents are too old and her godparents have very solid moral values and whilst they have no children of their own are fantastic with dd and she adores them.
It is written into our will and trusts set up to ensure that they are covered financially.

expatinscotland Tue 14-Jun-05 09:15:38

My sister and her husband. It is in both our wills, although it means our daughter would leave the UK and be brought up in America. My ILs feel they are too old to take on a young child, and their house is too small. My SIL is a single mum. My BIL is unmarried and still lives at home. My sister, however, has two daughters - 6 and 8 years older than DD, is a primary school teacher, married to an engineer for 14 years, and has a lovely, spacious home. She is willing to bring up our child should DH and I pass on and her family could offer her a stable, loving home with good educational opportunities (my sister teaches in a private school and fees are waived for her dependents). There is money available for DD to make visits to her Scottish family at holidays.

DD is a dual national so the move would involve no extra paperwork and she'd be free to return to the UK upon her maturity.

Wills Tue 14-Jun-05 09:18:38

It tooks us years to do ours for just that reason. My youngest brother is the most obvious choice and he would/is over the moon but he's only 19 at the moment and still at university so we've told him and stipulated in our wills that our children would only go to him if he were over over 30 and in an appropriate position to look after them as deemed by the executors of the wills. We have two sets of very close friends. We've asked one set to be our children's guardians as she is my closest friend and we see eye to eye on loving and raising children. I know for a fact that she loves our daughters almost as much as her own (as do I of her daughters). And we've asked the other couple (the man) to be the executor of our wills. We've asked all three people (I'll explain why its three in a moment) to work together to raise the children.

Its three people not 5 because at the advice of the solicitor we have given guardianship of our children to one person in the relationship - not the couple. We can't see the future and it reduces complications should the couple ever fall out and divorce (although to be honest I can't imagine them doing that and her husband would be a fantastic father to our children). The same logic was applied to the executor.

All three/five people were honoured. All of them gave it serious thought and were included in the design of the wills (although they found this a little embarassing). We were at odds to show that we had put in place the necessary investments to help them to support our children in the even of our death.

By the way. GET A HUGE BOTTLE OF WINE BESIDE YOU WHEN YOU DO THIS AS ITS AWFUL.

email me should you want more details

beansmum Tue 14-Jun-05 09:21:42

my parents would be ds's guardians, I might change it to my sister once she is older but at the moment she's too young/busy/selfish. I haven't got a will, can't remember what you call the thing I have got, it just says what to do about beanie, nothing else.

Tortington Tue 14-Jun-05 12:18:32

i always thought my in laws - beucase they are the only ones young enough.

i hope we both live for a couple of years - if so then my eldest ds can look after them.

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