Non-religious alternatives to Godparents — The Bump
October 2011 Moms

Non-religious alternatives to Godparents

Back story - my husband and I are not really religious at all. His family is Lutheran but my parents are two different religions and I grew up following no particular religion.

However, I really like the idea of Godparents, especially because our baby won't have a lot of Aunts and Uncles and I just like the idea of honoring two friends as an important person to us and the baby. Does anyone have a creative idea for how to incorporate something like this without a specific religion?

TIA!

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Re: Non-religious alternatives to Godparents

  • thank you for posting this - my husband and I are in the exact same boat. he suggested we start our own religion so we can have something equivalent to god parenta - haha. hoping some of the ladies on the board have some good ideas!
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  • imagegkmacdon:
    thank you for posting this - my husband and I are in the exact same boat. he suggested we start our own religion so we can have something equivalent to god parenta - haha. hoping some of the ladies on the board have some good ideas!

    We are in the same boat too!!! Great question!

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  • Not sure exactly what you would call them or whatever but you could have some sort of get together after the baby is born to introduce the people you want to honor and maybe call them "Guardians"?  Not sure, hope this is helpful!
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  • We are in the same boat too!  DH has been suggesting "Earth Parents," but that sounds a little odd.  I think that guardian sounds too legal, so we are still searching for a name. 
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  • The point of Godparents is supposed to be someone to assist you in your religious education, I don't know how you would come up with a nonreligious alternative or what the point would be.

  • imagecantalopes24:
    The point of Godparents is supposed to be someone to assist you in your religious education, I don't know how you would come up with a nonreligious alternative or what the point would be.

    I had Godparents growing up and was not raised in a religious home. They would have been my guardians had something happened to my parents. 

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  • imagealison2379:

    imagecantalopes24:
    The point of Godparents is supposed to be someone to assist you in your religious education, I don't know how you would come up with a nonreligious alternative or what the point would be.

    I had Godparents growing up and was not raised in a religious home. They would have been my guardians had something happened to my parents. 

    I know that happens but Godparents don't always equal guardians and the function they are supposed to serve is as support in your religious upbringing. We also have adults who are we close to and we just call them Aunt/Uncle So and So. I guess I don't understand the designation of someone outside of a guardian and in that case that is what they would be.

  • I am in the same boat. We will choose guardians. I had godparents growing up, without being raised in any special religion. The whole religion thing is not for us, but I like the idea of the "special uncle and/or aunt" who will take a bit more interest than the rest AND double as legal guardians in case something happens to both of us.

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  • k2westk2west member

    We are in the same situation....my sister and DH's bff will be the 'god parents';  they will have that title, just for the sake of making things easy, even though the lack of religion has been made clear. I do sometimes call them 'guide parents'. Maybe that will catch on.

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  • SO and I were both raised Christian but are not religious at all. We will be raising our kids non-religious. We have also decided to consider the people who would get the kids (if something happened to us) as their "godparents". We know that "godparents" are supposed to help with the religious upbringing and everything....but since we are not religious, we made up our own version of "godparents". And it will be in all legal paperwork stating that they will be the "guardians" if need be, but it would just be weird for me to hear the kids say "oh yeah, that is my guardian...." it sounds like we are already dead.
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  • imagecantalopes24:
    The point of Godparents is supposed to be someone to assist you in your religious education, I don't know how you would come up with a nonreligious alternative or what the point would be.

    I guess what I am looking for is to give the baby two more people in her life that she can go to as she is growing up who isn't her parents. I think that a lot of stuff can come up when someone is growing up that isn't related to religion that you want to talk to an adult about but don't want to talk to your parents about. So maybe like a mentor, but not even that formal. I also wouldn't be opposed to them helping the baby with learning right from wrong and decide what path she wants to take spiritually, but I don't want to define religion for her by choosing her religion at birth.

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  • My two best friends are my ds's godparents and soon to be dd's godparents. We dont really go to church or anything or follow anything but we call them godparents for lack of a better name. They are basically second parents to my ds and he loves them like they are. Unless you mean it to be religious I dont think it has to be. Its just a name if you make it just a name.
  • imageJulie822:

    imagecantalopes24:
    The point of Godparents is supposed to be someone to assist you in your religious education, I don't know how you would come up with a nonreligious alternative or what the point would be.

    I guess what I am looking for is to give the baby two more people in her life that she can go to as she is growing up who isn't her parents. I think that a lot of stuff can come up when someone is growing up that isn't related to religion that you want to talk to an adult about but don't want to talk to your parents about. So maybe like a mentor, but not even that formal. I also wouldn't be opposed to them helping the baby with learning right from wrong and decide what path she wants to take spiritually, but I don't want to define religion for her by choosing her religion at birth.

    I would just go with aunt/uncle title. I think the relationship would build itself and the title won't make them any more/less likely to fill that role and stick to it.

  • imagealison2379:

    imagecantalopes24:
    The point of Godparents is supposed to be someone to assist you in your religious education, I don't know how you would come up with a nonreligious alternative or what the point would be.

    I had Godparents growing up and was not raised in a religious home. They would have been my guardians had something happened to my parents. 

    This. I always had 'godparents' but not legally or religiously. We are not super religious. But will be using the term godparents. We already have them picked out. I want our child to have godparents for more of the legal reason, in case anything did happen to dh or I.

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  • imagecantalopes24:
    The point of Godparents is supposed to be someone to assist you in your religious education, I don't know how you would come up with a nonreligious alternative or what the point would be.

    I agree. When DH came home one day, feeling honored because his friends had chosen him to be the godfather of their son, I was confused because neither they nor he are religious, and you can bet DH and I won't be getting custody if something were to happen to them, the baby would go to relatives. DH got really annoyed at me for not being sentimental! Don't get me wrong, I think they're great and we've gotten even closer now that we're expecting as well, but I just find it odd that people use the term without realizing/caring what it traditionally means.

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  • imagethelastingers:
    imagealison2379:

    imagecantalopes24:
    The point of Godparents is supposed to be someone to assist you in your religious education, I don't know how you would come up with a nonreligious alternative or what the point would be.

    I had Godparents growing up and was not raised in a religious home. They would have been my guardians had something happened to my parents. 

    This. I always had 'godparents' but not legally or religiously. We are not super religious. But will be using the term godparents. We already have them picked out. I want our child to have godparents for more of the legal reason, in case anything did happen to dh or I.

    Hey sweets :).Just an FYI, Godparents have no legal standing so make sure you put it in writing.

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