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Cloth Diaper Blowback

Mar02

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Advice Smackdown ArchivesSo I read pretty much every post you ever wrote on cloth diapering, and I’m in love with the idea for our 3rd child, due in August. But..you know. Just the idea, at this point. I haven’t really looked into the cost of diaper services around Philly, but I know that personally, I am bad at laundry. I am REALLY bad at laundry. It piles up on the best of days. With a newborn and a 7 year old and a husband AND cloth diapers…I just don’t know. But as I mull it over, one of the other issues that comes to mind is the family…

My husband’s parents and aunts are going to be clamoring over this child. Especially his parents. They are super helpful, and with our last child, they respected all our wishes about basic care. But I worry about the concept of cloth diapering with them. They’re not super old fashioned, but old fashioned enough that a lot of the newer “hippie” stuff just seems overbearing to them. And his dad is seriously one of your stereotypical grandpas – super fun and loving and awesome, but kind of oblivious when it comes to general child care. So to make a long question slightly less long, I’ll get to the point – I know your parents and Jason’s parents are all in my area (Philly-ish) and probably don’t do a whole lot of babysitting, but when they do…how did the cloth diaper thing go over with them? Did they call you dirty hippies? Did they roll their eyes a lot?

Any advice for dealing with the masses of assvice givers and whatnot?

Thanks!
Kate

First, on the laundry topic. I am not exaggerating when I say that I am really, truly terrible with laundry. I HATE LAUNDRY. I hate lugging it downstairs, I hate folding and ironing and putting stuff away. But cloth diaper laundry…it’s different. Part of it is surely the whole you-have-no-choice aspect of it — either you make sure your kid has diapers available or you’re left MacGuyvering a burp rag and a swim diaper during the rinse cycle.

But I really have never viewed it on the same level as regular-clothes laundry. I don’t know how to explain why it’s different, but it is. Our main diaper pail is two feet away from our washing machine. We have a small interim one with a handle at the top of the basement steps, where we toss diapers during the day and then make a trip downstairs whenever it’s convenient. I dump the contents into the wash and turn on the soak cycle before bed. My husband adds the detergent and starts the wash cycle the next morning when he’s downstairs ironing a shirt or fetching boxer shorts from a giant unfolded pile that we’ve been ignoring for days. I put them in the dryer at some point, then carry them upstairs and either stuff the inserts while watching TV or just toss them all back in the drawer unstuffed, because it really only takes about 10 seconds to perform an on-demand stuffing when I need to. It’s now just part of the rhythm of our crazy life, along with a ton of other chores/tasks that I don’t particularly LOVE, but are just part of raising and wrangling a household of kids who need you to sack up and be the responsible grown-up from time to time.

We’ve gotten just about every reaction you can imagine about our choice to switch to cloth diapers — shocked, confused, enthusiastic, admiring, patronizing…to downright judge-y and rude.

My in-laws are pretty crunchy and eco-minded, and are very big proponents of “natural” living, so they are more than fine with the cloth diapers. They were definitely a little nervous about them at first, because there really is this huge misconception that cloth diapering is so hard and so different and disposables represent the Greatest Technological Advancement In Baby Waste Management Since Indoor Plumbing, but that’s a misconception that MOST people quickly get over, especially when you’re using pockets or all-in-ones or anything other than pins and plastic pants. Today, my in-laws are cloth diaper pros, and never bat an eye about washing them when we’re visiting or ask them to babysit for overnight/extended trips. They visited this weekend and caught a glimpse of my massive stash of prefolds and my father-in-law asked for a demonstration, which I performed on a teddy bear. It was actually really cute, watching him practice afterwards, determined to get it right so he could hit the ground running in June.

My parents raised skeptical eyebrows — they are very much wary of tree-hugging hippie crap and big into convenience everything, from food to cleaning products to…yeah, EVERYTHING. So I mostly framed cloth diapers as a cost-savings endeavor. My mom expressed amazement at how far and “fancy” the new cloth diapering systems have come, and admitted that wow, they really are super ridiculously cute. But she won’t change them. They “intimidate” her, or something. (Or maybe they just provide a handy excuse for not being THAT hands-on of a grandmother, who gets to skip the diaper-changing duties altogether. Whatevs.) But I know that if she HAD to, she would. Maybe she’d talk about it afterwards to my sister on the phone and they’d agree that I’ve gotten REALLY WEIRD recently, but probably not, because she’s always been unfailingly supportive of my parenting choices, even ones that are the polar opposite of what she did with her own children. (All four of which, however, were cloth diapered.)

If the situation was reversed, and my parents were the ones who did most of the babysitting, I would absolutely not push cloth diapers on them, at their home, anyway. I’d show up with a package of disposables. Though when they came to visit at our house, yeah, sorry. We use cloth. This is what we have. They really aren’t scary or strange, swear to God. Take off old diaper. Put in pail. Grab diaper from drawer. Put on baby. Every few days, take diapers from pail and put in washing machine, just like I used to take the disposables from the pail and put them in the trash. Ta-daaa!

Let’s see…I actually have to think about other reactions here…we visit Jason’s aunt and uncle at the beach every summer, and I was hesitant to show up with the cloth diapers the first time, but again — they were resoundingly enthusiastic. Cloth diapers were what THEY used on their kids, after all, and disposables are expensive and filling up the landfills and etc. They had no problem changing the occasional cloth diaper when they watched the kids for the evening or to get Ezra up from his nap while we stayed with Noah out on the beach. (Though I can tell that old prefold habits die hard, because they always put extra inserts directly against Ezra’s bum, or used an extra unstuffed cover on top, not quite fully grasping the whole pocket-diaper concept.) Again, just another example and reminder that cloth diapers are not exactly a foreign concept to the older generations, and there’s usually at least ONE documented benefit that you can choose to focus on — your family might not be super into the environmental angle, but most people can understand and get behind the fact that cloth diapering saves you a buttload of money in the long run.

Honestly, the only really judge-y you freaking weirdo you moments have always come from other moms. Usually moms I don’t know and/or have just met. The equivalent of the playground drive-by about your baby’s lack of mittens or your toddler’s juice box. And weirdly, I got more crap for making homemade baby food than I EVER got about cloth diapers. Things people actually said to me included: “You know they sell that stuff in the STORE, right?” and “Oh, my sister/friend/daughter tried doing that ONCE, until she realized that she could just BUY it in JARS and it was JUST as good.” I never realized that pureeing steamed carrots made me such an idealistic overachiever.

One time — ONE time — I met a mom who managed to give me a hard time about the cloth diaper sticking out of Ezra’s pants waistband AND my little tupperware container of mashed sweet potatoes. She might as well have been wearing a t-shirt that said I AM INSECURE ABOUT MY PARENTING CHOICES and started making jokes at my expense about how weird I was (and it got noticeably hostile after her baby started rejecting jar after jar of Earth’s Best while Ezra Hoovered up everything I offered him, like I was showing her up ON PURPOSE). I was polite up to a reasonable point, I SWEAR, before I finally said something like “Seriously, I did not choose these things to make you feel personally attacked or judged or whatever. I chose these things because they work for us.” We did not go on to become best Mom Friends, obviously.

Dealing with potential blowback about cloth diapers is no different than dealing with potential blowback over ANYTHING. Breast or bottle. Co-sleeping or sleep training. Babywearing but using Baby Bjorn instead an Ergo or a using a sling and encountering someone who heard about that one kind of sling being recalled and are you sure your baby can BREATHE THEY LOOK SO SQUISHED IN THERE ARE THEY OKAY? Yeah, sure, you THINK you’re saving the world with your cloth diapers but I read an article once about how the water and energy you’re using to wash the diapers isn’t any better than the landfill waste, so WHATEVER. You’re either the Weird Mom who won’t let them have food coloring or the Bad Mom who treats them to McNuggets for lunch.

And honestly, I could not care less about any of it anymore. I’m a cloth-diapering breast-feeding bottle-supplementing co-sleeping crib-transitioning baby-food-making baby-wearing stroller-pushing ingredient-obsessing cartoon-watching Weird Bad Good Enough Mom, and I LOVE IT.

* Photo by simplyla

__________________________________________________________________
If there is a question you would like answered by Amalah on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to amyadvice@gmail.com.

About the author

Amalah

http://www.amalah.com
Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy's daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it's pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to amyadvice@gmail.com.

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.


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42 Responses to “Cloth Diaper Blowback”

  1. Rachael Mar 02 at 11:43 am Reply Reply

    I live in the area of Eugene, Oregon… aka The Crunchy Capital of the US. It’s funny, I get judged for NOT citing environmental reasons for CDing. I’m all about the benjamins in my pocket, yo, so cloth it is…. and am looked at as horrible, greedy, Gordon Gecko. You’d think I was a Republican or something. ;)

    Amy is right. You will get judged for EVERYTHING by some people. You just have to let it roll off your back.

    (I also rock a mean Gerber tub. I tried the food thing, but it just wasn’t for me. Even with the cost-savings factor. Yet another gasp-worthy infraction around here.)

  2. redwood mama Mar 02 at 11:51 am Reply Reply

    Once again, I am happy I live in hippyville. Because I only get defensive when my kid is in disposables (which still sucks, ’cause really? Either tell me my kid has an adorable bum, or quit looking at it.) And second the “everything is controversial, so do what you feel is right” statement. Nobody will know the difference once they start kindergarten. Pinky swear.

  3. Olivia Mar 02 at 12:14 pm Reply Reply

    My experience is pretty much like Amy’s. I tend to downplay the green aspect and push the money savings because that’s how my family rolls. My mom shrugged and said she didn’t like the cloth available in her day, but yeah these new diapers are much better. My sister and one friend smirked and expressed their doubts about how long I would last with doing the laundry, but they stopped saying anything once we were several months in and I told them the laundry wasn’t that bad. One aquaintance got a little defensive about her choice to use disposables, but I think that’s because her sister’s family (not sure about the rest of the family) is VERY green/natural and I think that puts her on edge about her choices in general.

  4. the grumbles Mar 02 at 12:15 pm Reply Reply

    Excellent advice, as usual, but the comment about your father-in-law practicing for June? I DIE, Amy, I DIE with the cute.

  5. gizella Mar 02 at 1:38 pm Reply Reply

    you know, my mom only had cloth diapers for me (i’m 37) so neither my in law, who did the same, or my mom had any problem whatsoever. In a way, it makes them feel closer to the experience they had. Or that is how it worked for us. I’m not saying either of them were super helpful really, but they changed the diapers and didn’t really ask questions.

  6. Rachel Mar 02 at 1:42 pm Reply Reply

    To the OP, when our son was born we lived outside of Philly and used this diaper service http://www.babyschoicediapers.com/ and found the cost reasonable.  If you don’t like do to laundry I would recommend using this service and getting a bunch of the thirsties diaper covers (the ones the diapers service sells are ok too, but not as cute).  You will be doing less laundry than your friends because that system is basically blow-out proof, while we found that disposables seem to funnel newborn baby poop directly onto their clothes. :)

  7. Kate Mar 02 at 1:58 pm Reply Reply

    Amy’s right — the only negative comments I’ve ever gotten have been from other moms of babies and young kids who probably feel a little insecure about their own decisions. Whatever, I don’t care what they do/did. Reactions from older generations have pretty much universally been, “You’re kidding?! that’s a cloth diaper now? that’s so cool/advanced/easy/great.” Also, this doesn’t mean much since you don’t know my dad, but omg, MY DAD cloth diapers my son. Seriously, MY DAD, who probably never changed a diaper for my brothers or me, or combed our hair or remembered to feed us lunch, or even remembered to breathe without my mom reminding him. HE does it = it’s SO EASY.

  8. Nora Mar 02 at 2:18 pm Reply Reply

    I was surprised that my in-laws were supportive and impressed when my husband told them we were going to try CDing. I always say “try” because this kid is coming in two months and if you tell people definitively that you plan to breastfeed/CD/natural birth they just LOVE to tell you how you’ll probably fail at it, and oh did you know that I knew somebody who had to have a C-section and are you aware of how little sleep you’ll get and blah blah blah. Why are you killing my DREAMS, people?!

    Anyway, my in-laws are not particularly progressive with stuff like this, but they also are very frugal and minimalist. I think they appreciate that saving money is of more value to us than saving time.

  9. JCF Mar 02 at 4:05 pm Reply Reply

    We have also gotten little to no criticism whatsoever from extended family, especially once they see how far diapers have come since I was a baby. Everyone had a little lesson in how to change cloth diapers, and it goes pretty smoothly for the most part. The only thing that I would say is difficult about grandparents and cloth diapering is absolutely my fault. I have switched up my stash from prefolds, to pockets, to fitteds, to hybrids, and now a combo of hybrids and fitteds. So everyone else gets confused, which I totally get. I just try to make sure I send the kids with only ONE style of diaper, and I remind my parents or in-laws, “Okay, I sent the ones that need a cover today” or something like that. Do yourself a favor and don’t be such a waffler.

    And yes, the worst criticism we get is from other parents. Stuff like, “I don’t have time for that.” Or “I have better things to do with my time.” Really? Do you think I scrub diapers on a washboard all day long? Do you think it takes so much time that I had to give up hobbies? But I digress…

  10. When I was pregnant and said we were using cloth diapers, EVERYONE in our respective families judged me. They said I’d quit, that it would be too much work, that it would be gross, etc, etc, etc. Some of them even insisted they would bring disposables to use on our baby when they baby-sat!

    I’m proud to say I’ve converted all of them. My family, my husband’s family, friends — everyone admits the cloth diapers were not “a colossal mistake.” They now see that they really do save money, are easy to use, and are OMIGOD SO CUTE!

  11. Kimm Mar 02 at 7:07 pm Reply Reply

    All the grandparents can’t understand why we want to try this, but they all use plastic and paper plates and are surprised when they visit and we only have real dishes. They think plastic is the best thing ever invented, & I have gotten a lot of, “Oh we’ll see how long that lasts, once he starts keeping you up all night, you’ll never keep up with the laundry.”
    But DH is more concerned about the environment than I used to be, and he is 100% into this, so I think we can do it!

  12. JL Mar 02 at 9:14 pm Reply Reply

    As for the laundry – even if you’re someone who hates laundry, you know that it piles up pretty quickly with a newborn. I wash my newborns clothes and diapers in the same wash – I know that’s not for everyone, but we’ve had no problem with it (we do it since our laundry is coin-op).
     So it’s actually no more laundry then we were going to be doing in the first place. 

  13. Miranda Mar 02 at 11:55 pm Reply Reply

    I love the last paragraph where you list what you are. Made me remember to laugh at all of this parenting stuff and not take it so seriously. Unless dangerous food dyes are present :)

  14. Kerry Mar 02 at 11:56 pm Reply Reply

    I am really considering CD-ing with future children, but I have a stupid question I just have to ask- do you have to disinfect your washing machine often? If I just put dirty diapers in the wash, won’t it get all clogged with poo? Even if I were to do a hot water cycle, I still feel like the machine would still be dirty- like a toilet. I’m sorry if I’m totally missing the boat- I’m really not trying to be rude or sarcastic. Just honestly clueless.

  15. Amalah Mar 03 at 12:12 am Reply Reply

    Kerry – You don’t put poop in the washing machine (other than newborn breastmilk-only poop, which washes away like water, really). At least not in quantities that would affect the machine and not rinse fully away. You either shake/scrape the solid-ish stuff into the toilet first and flush, or you can use a diaper sprayer that hooks onto the toilet, or soak the diapers in a wet pail before putting them in the wash — there are probably a dozen different solutions to choose from.

    We do the shake/scrape solids method and don’t worry about washing small trace bits or the liquid-y stains. It all rinses away and we’ve never had to disinfect our machine or anything like that. 

  16. Hillary Mar 03 at 10:02 am Reply Reply

    It would be great to hear from some people for whom CD didn’t work out. I have two different parent friends that tried it and gave up. And the prevalence of newborn/small CD on Craigslist is a testament that others try and give up too. My friends gave up because of the smell. That has been, for me at least, the biggest thing that has upset me about CD. And I work and take them into daycare – I would’ve thought it would be laundry! My parents aren’t wild about changing diapers, so use the CD ‘difficulty’ to get out of that, and I won’t push it. My in-laws asked to learn how and handle it no problem. But if the diapers start to get a funk (which they all do no matter what at least once) then everyone who encounters them starts to question their worth. I recommend that if you do decide to CD you accept beforehand that it will smell really bad at least once. And you’ll try a lot of different stuff and eventually will fix it. Or, you’ll go back to disposables and sell your funky stash on Craigslist. :)

  17. Jenny Mar 03 at 11:00 am Reply Reply

    I love this: “I’m a cloth-diapering breast-feeding bottle-supplementing co-sleeping crib-transitioning baby-food-making baby-wearing stroller-pushing ingredient-obsessing cartoon-watching Weird Bad Good Enough Mom, and I LOVE IT.”

  18. andrea Mar 03 at 11:11 am Reply Reply

    I’ve found the shrugging of shoulders and a “yeah I don’t know” followed by changing the topic goes a long way.. If it’s not diapers it’s baby food or potty training or something else.

  19. JL Mar 03 at 11:19 am Reply Reply

    @Kerry – Even if you don’t cloth diaper, if you have kids, there’s probably going to be poopy stuff in your washing machine at one time or another! 

  20. sarah Mar 03 at 11:51 am Reply Reply

    Ok, we have been using the flip (which I LOVE) but got some hand me down pocket diapers, which I’m confused by for one reason only: do I take the soaked insert out before I wash them? I’m supposed to, right?

  21. Christina Mar 03 at 11:55 am Reply Reply

    Yeah, I went through the, “let’s see how long it lasts” response from my mother-in-law too. She and her best friend even made me a disposable diaper cake for my shower. Needless to say, I was a little annoyed. My mother on the other hand was super supportive, and is used to my hippy-dippy ways. Both cloth diapered, and both agree that it is easier than the old days.

    And I too HATE HATE HATE laundry. The CD thing isn’t so bad though. Rinse, pail. dump in the communal condo washer, dry and stuff. I do admit I am bad about re-stuffing after doing a diaper change though.

    Through all of this, I try to chuckle and remember that most likely when my son has children, everything that I did will probably be considered wrong again :)

  22. Flyover Belle Mar 03 at 12:07 pm Reply Reply

    I don’t have kids. For some reason, though, this column reminded me that I cloth-diapered the kid I sat for in college. Huh. Hadn’t thought about that for *years*, literally. It was a long time ago – post-pins (velcro covers) but no inserts or anything like that. I don’t even know what to call what they used, since it was so long ago, and like I said, no kids.

    But. I was a 21 year old kid, and even I bought in. Sure, I was occasionally grossed out (carrot poop, FTW!) but it was their choice. Slightly different than family – they *were* paying me – but still, I bought in. I like Amy’s suggestion to find an angle / reason that might resonate with different members of the family.

  23. Olivia Mar 03 at 12:58 pm Reply Reply

    Sarah, yes take the insert out before washing. I think most people remove the insert before putting the diaper in the pail after each changing (as opposed to removing them all at once when you are ready to launder).

    Hillary, I’m sure there are people who decide not to CD after trying it, but seeing used newborn sizes for sale could just mean the baby has outgrown them and the parents are planning on having more children. That’s how I got my stash of size one fuzzibunz.

  24. b Mar 03 at 3:03 pm Reply Reply

    We actually switch back and forth from CDs and disposables- only because when we started, I greatly underestimated the number we would need for my daughter. So now, most days, we use the CD during the day, and disposables at night and during naps. Our CDs weren’t great at keeping her dry when she slept- I guess she has a very active bladder…
    As for the families? They’re use to my hippy ideas of organic milk and food, and kind of just shrugged.

  25. Kerry Mar 03 at 7:35 pm Reply Reply

    Thanks for the clarification, Amalah. And yes JL, I’m sure there will be many poopy/ vomit-y laundry situations when kids are involved. :)

  26. Tasterspoon Mar 04 at 1:01 am Reply Reply

    Hillary, I won’t say it ‘hasn’t worked out,’ but if you’re looking for war stories, it hasn’t been as smooth as I anticipated.

    I’m finding the diaper sprayer to be a pain in the butt (I’m lazy, plus it blows poop all over the bathroom, it is very high pressure), so if there are enough poopy ones accumulated I’ll do a “quick wash” of them before putting the rest of the laundry in. It’s still breastfed poo at this point, so there’s no residue or odor anywhere.

    More pertinent for me is that our daughter gets diaper rashes when we use cloth, I don’t know why, and you’re not supposed to use cream with cloth (clogs up the fabric). When one develops, about once a week, she spends a day in disposables with goop until it clears up. Sometimes I use the cream with the big cheap flat folds or prefolds and I plan to strip them in a few weeks. I was mentioning this to a friends and she said her pediatrician actually recommended a combination of cloth and disposable.

    My husband’s still leery of the cloth ones. Like with b, he’s convinced they’re drier overnight (because they convert the liquid to a gel) and he thinks they make her smell like ‘baby.’ I think they smell gross, so I don’t know how to argue that one.

  27. Tasterspoon Mar 04 at 1:13 am Reply Reply

    I meant to say, my husband thinks *the disposables* are drier overnight and smell nicer.

    I have a combination of flat folds and plastic pants, prefolds and Thirsties covers and BumGeniuses – and I can honestly say I don’t have a preference among them, each type has its place, which I won’t get into here. But on the lazy front, for $30 you can get 24 flat folds and a three-pack of plastic pants (from Babies R Us, even) so if all of your other, fancier diapering systems are dirty and you just don’t feel like doing a load, you can still survive another day or two. Great insurance policy.

  28. Olivia Mar 04 at 8:45 am Reply Reply

    Tasterspoon has a good point that cloth diapering doesn’t have to be all or nothing. For about the first 1.5 yrs we used cloth 90% of the time and disposables overnight and long trips out. Now that she is in a daycare that won’t use cloth (and is dry almost every morning) she’s in disposables 80-90% of the time. Still saves us a lot of money and helps the enviornment in the long run.

  29. Kate Mar 04 at 9:23 am Reply Reply

    Taterspoon, some assvice, because that’s my specialty — Grandma El’s rash cream is CD safe and works as well as the Desitin, Balmex, etc… because it acts as a moisture barrier, unlike many other CD safe creams.

  30. professormama Mar 04 at 10:36 am Reply Reply

    Chances are your in-laws cloth diapered. You don’t really have to justify your choices to anyone else, as Amy explained. Once you start cloth diapering you realize how it’s perfectly normal, and not a big deal at all.  Honestly when we used paper diapers (that’s what disposables are) for traveling, it seemed weird to be putting paper pants you THROW AWAY on our babies bums.  The best reason for cloth diapering is EARLY TOILET TRAINING. Even if you don’t TRY to train early most cloth diapered kid will be using the toilet between 18 months and 2 years. Disposables make a wet diaper comfy, not exactly a help in the potty training department. We used cloth diapers and infant potty training and had both our kids diaper and accident free (day and night) by their first birthday. 

  31. Lizzie Mar 04 at 10:50 am Reply Reply

    FWIW, my husband and family (who live close by and do some regular babysitting) were not super keen on cloth, and I am lazy too. So I did a trial, Amy has mentioned it before but I did Jillian’s Drawers one, I think Kelly’s Closet has one too, but long story short ended up using the new Bum Genius all in one’s due to simplicity for both myself and the fam. There’s a pocket so I can stuff them for extra protection overnight but during the day it’s just a plain, straight up diaper you use just like a disposable. I love them, but that being said we didn’t start using them until my daughter started eating solids and had solid-ish poop. We plan to have more kids and I’ll probably do the same with the next, just not into sprayers, soak pails, and the like. But even so, I figure we will have used the cloth for well over a year per child so it’s definitely worth it in savings ($$ and trash!).

  32. Olivia Mar 04 at 11:31 am Reply Reply

    I woudn’t tout the early toilet training as a reason for using cloth diapers. It doesn’t always happen early. (Says the mother of a 2yr old who is still very happy with her diaper)

  33. Marcy Mar 04 at 1:06 pm Reply Reply

    I’m with Olivia, mom of a cloth-diapered THREE year old who has no interest in using the toilet….

    BTW another option for ppl worried about the poo is using flushable liners. We use the Kushies ones, they’re like a thicker piece of toilet paper that how on the diaper, and them you can just lift it (and the poop) and flush them down te toilet. I don’t bother with my exclusively-breastfed baby, but for my 3yo I’d say 95% of the time there’s no poop that even gets on the diaper itself. Flushable liners are what finally convinced my husband to be open to cloth (which he now loves, btw!)

  34. Amalah
    Amalah Mar 04 at 1:29 pm Reply Reply

    Same here, Olivia. Ezra’s closing in on two-and-a-half and is absolutely refusing to have anything to do with the potty or big-boy pants and has no problem sitting in a wet or dirty cloth diaper.

    At this rate, he’ll probably train LATER than my disposable-wearing firstborn. GAH GAH GAH. 

    And I can’t believe I forgot to mention the flushable liners in my other comment — I was typing that at midnight, though, was sleepy. We use those too. Right now I think we have Bummis, but usually I just go with whatever seems cheapest at Amazon. Ha. 

    In other True Cloth Confessions: Ez has been having some tummy issues over the past couple days — stuff that even double liners haven’t been able to really contain, so I’ve been using disposables. We’re more prone to leghole leaks, but I’m happy to just toss the foul thing in the outside trash ASAP and wash the semi-messed up clothes instead.

  35. Olivia Mar 04 at 3:43 pm Reply Reply

    Oh, yes, liners for the win! We didn’t bother when she was 100% breastfed, but once she was eating solids we started using liners. I like the bummies for their very cloth-like feel, but kushies also work are I think are often cheaper.

    Amy, I’m hopeful my daughter will be ready to toilet train by the time she 2.5. At least she lets us know quickly when she needs a change. Maybe Ezra will get a kick in the pants so to speak after your baby arrives and he isn’t the “baby” anymore.

  36. Hannah Mar 04 at 3:46 pm Reply Reply

    We used disposables for my now-11 month old for the first little while until she could hold up the BumGenius, which we then used exclusively for 3 or 4 months (except for outings) and then…she…just sort of stopped fitting into them (she was between snap sizes or something). So we went back to disposables. Also, she has a strawberry hemangioma on one labia, and we’re supposed to keep diaper cream on it at all times to keep it happy and non-explody, so that went in favor of disposables. Then we started CDing her with the cream anyway. Then she started leaking out the CDs, so we’re back to disposables. Plus, in the middle of putting our house on the market, blah blah.

    Basically, a big, long commentto say, yes, we tried it, we liked it, we had no real issues (even just throwing everything all in the washer together), but sometimes, you just have to go with the disposables. Life sort of happens. We’ll go back to the CDs again, but right now is not that time.

  37. rachel Mar 05 at 1:02 pm Reply Reply

    Just a side note, but I don’t understand why people who use cloth diapers are considered “hippy” or “crunchy.” Humanity has been cloth diapering since the 1500s, if not earlier. Disposable didn’t come on the market until 50 years ago and are currently only used in industrialized nations mainly due to the cost.

    My mom cloth diapered me because disposables weren’t all that absorbent in the 1970s. Her mom cloth diapered her because that’s all that was available. If people are going to consider any kind of diaper “weird” you’d think it would be the disposables.

    I realize Alphamom avoided calling cloth diaper green, but I also don’t get it when people say they are good for the earth. I guess they might be “green-er” than disposables, but that’s like saying a Prius with it’s giant battery is better for the earth than a gas guzzling Escalade. I think part of the reason people get put off by parents who profess to be “helping” mother earth with their cloth diapers is because unless you are using elimination communication while holding your child over a compost pile, it’s probably not a good idea to tell anyone you’re doing mother earth any favors with your cloth diapers… or with your new Prius car for that matter ;)

  38. Erica Mar 06 at 8:53 pm Reply Reply

    Um, I’m sorry to get off topic, but …
    You got flack for feeding your child HOME MADE BABY FOOD?!?!?!?!????!!!!!
    Bhwha WHAAA????
    I’m …. I’m speechless. I got lots of “wow, that seems like a lot of extra work, that’s really impressive, I don’t know if I could do that…” for making my children’s baby food, but criticism? I’m still trying to wrap my head around this. People are weird sometimes. I am too, don’t get me wrong, I mean, I made almost all my kids’ baby food, but, still.
    Oy.

  39. Amber Rhea Mar 06 at 8:59 pm Reply Reply

    The prevalence of newborn/small size cloth diapers on Craigslist in no way indicates that people are giving up. It indicates that babies grow quickly and outgrow those sizes, and since cloth diapers hold their value well, people want to sell them to make some extra money. Also, when the diapers get a funk, it’s time to strip them, not do nothing.

  40. Caitlyn Mar 08 at 9:27 am Reply Reply

    we tried CD, with a diaper service, but I didn’t realize that the covers with pockets are what prevent diaper rash so I got covers without anything between the diaper and the baby and in then end disposables kept her consistently rash-free.  SO we gave up around four months.  I may or may not try again next baby.

    If you want to really get judged, though, try skipping purees altogether (babyledweaning.com) My mom did something similar with us, and we did it with Beauty, and it was fabulous.  You just start with soft finger foods when the baby is ready for solids, and go from there.  By the time she was seven or eight months old I could put dinner in front of her and go eat my own and talk to my husband with minimal interruption.  Blissful peace.

  41. Ms. K Mar 08 at 11:11 am Reply Reply

    FWIW, we always used Desitin – or any other random balm/cream we had on hand for mild rashes – with pre-fold cloth diapers and have never had any problems with clogging or funky smell (never had to “strip” as it’s called.)

    The only issue we have had is one severe diaper rash (a couple blisters on her labia), very recently. The doctor explained that two year-olds pee a lot, and just one toddler pee will totally soak a cloth diaper…and if the toddler pees immediately after you change her, she will be sitting in an ammonia-soaked clothie for two hours or more. The doctor just advised us to teach our toddler to tell us when she pees. It’s not the most reliable system yet (our daughter is only 2yr2months, and thinks it’s hilarious to lie about peeing, or cry wolf, or strip herself naked and run around screaming pee! pee! pee! but I digress…) but at least it’s a step towards potty training.

    We sometimes use disposies at night, or when traveling, or when my daughter had the super-bad rash (because it was too cold to let her run around naked until it healed) and it’s no big deal. Most of the time cloth works best, is easiest and cheapest for us. But my mom still won’t change my kid’s diaper. C’est la vie.

  42. Willow May 05 at 4:09 pm Reply Reply

    I’m impressed at everyone else being all “whatever works best for you” kinda thing. Both my parents and my in-laws still are of the opinion that even after 2 babies in CDs that I’m ridiculous and that disposables were invented by God for a Reason. My in-laws have spent quite a bit a time as care givers for both my kids and at first they would put up with my quirky CDs but as time wore on they just started buying disposables to keep at their house so they would be in a CD when I dropped them off and a disposable when I picked them up dispite the fact that I tried to give them pocket and All-in-one diapers most of the time. But as much as it irks me, it was my choice and not theirs so when they spend the day with the in-laws they get to diaper as they see fit and I need to just breath, but it still irks me.

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