How to pick a guardian for your child.

It isn’t the easiest decision but it's an important one

Picking a godparent is a difficult task but later when you and your partner are considering a long-term guardian for your child in the event of your deaths it is much harder. A godparent though important is usually a friend or family member but some parents often concur that while they love this person they may not be a suitable long-term guardian and in any case the relevant paper work must be done to ensure your child’s future is secure in the event of the unthinkable. Most, would brush it aside and decide that it doesn’t have to be done as it is unlikely that your kids will be left without both their parents. However, as unlikely as it is your children deserve to have a guardian in place just in case. Preparation is never a bad thing and there is no harm in having it though it is hoped you would never need it to be used. To help you decide here are a few tips to consider before you go see your solicitor and finalise the details.
Is the potential guardian willing to be your child’s full-time guardian if the worst happens? It is all very well and good saying yes, but putting pen to paper is quite another thing. Taking on such a responsibility is a mammoth task and one that no person should take lightly. As previously mentioned, a god-parent is easy to choose, and they never really have to take on a major challenge and some can walk away from their duties easily. However, a long-term guardian cannot, and your children could be reliant on them in the future. This is an extremely tough decision.
Are they in a relationship themselves or have their own family? In an ideal world this person may have kids that are older so if they did have to take on your own they would be able to devote their time to them. Though this isn’t always possible and if their own kids are around your kid’s age this can be a good thing. It is still a big ask though and the guardian and yourselves must be sure.
Where does your chosen guardian live? Your children will be unlikely to want to move away if something happened to their parents but in some cases, there isn’t a choice. Ideally you would keep the kids close to their home and the people they care for, but every option must be examined.
How is your child/children’s relationship with this person? There is no point in placing your children (potentially) in this person’s full-time care, if they never see this person or have a relationship with them. You would effectively be placing them into a stranger’s hands and this would be greatly upsetting for nippers. Whoever you choose should be active in your kids’ lives.
Who shares your values and morals most? Does this person share your personal values and morals? Will they follow your hopes for your kids and ensure they go to college and follow their dreams? Are they a good role model? Someone who will motivate your kids and be there for them when they need them? You must consider all of this too.  
If your kids are older what are their thoughts? Older children especially teenagers may be able to have a say even in a light-hearted discussion. Their point of view matters as they are the ones involved.
What sort of future can this guardian offer your children? Can they offer your child a good home, love and comfort? If they take on guardianship will they look after any monies put aside for the kid’s future. Can you trust them?
It isn’t the easiest decision and talking to your partner and the potential guardian is key. Remember it probably will never happen but you owe it to your kids to be responsible and have care arranged for them in the event that you and your partner lose your lives before they reach adulthood.

{{ post.excerpt }}
{{ post.content.formatted }}

What is Family Friendly HQ?

Family Friendly HQ is Ireland’s trusted parenting community, dedicated to mums and dads, and families of all shapes and sizes.

Read more about us