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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

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Cloth Diapering for the Working Momma

I think working moms avoid cloth diapering. There are plenty of reasons why. It's a little unusual, a bit of a hassle, and extra work. What's fun about cloth diapering is putting the cute fluff on your baby's bottom. It isn't quite as enjoyable when it seems you just do the laundry.

But if you've committed to cloth, there are people willing to support your endeavors. My childcare provider while I work is family. This is a wonderful advantage and makes working while being a mother much easier. Your family will cloth diaper your little one because they love you. There is also a drawback. They can tell you that they don't want to watch your child because of the added mess of cloth diapering.

So to ease the process, here is how I helped inspire my father-in-law and sister to cloth diaper my daughter. First, I introduced them to a well-fitting diaper with Velcro. My father-in-law didn't understand what I meant when I said I was modern cloth diapering. Once I showed him how easy and similar to disposables these diapers were, he had no problem changing my girl. It was easy and close to what he was doing for my nephews. The only big difference was what to do when done with the changing. Instead of throwing the diaper away, just put it in a bag for me to clean when I got home. Easy.

The other key factor in convincing my father-in-law was using disposable wipes. I wanted to use cloth wipes because it only made sense. But this was much easier in convincing the men in my life (husband included) to cloth diaper. It made the experience seem more like a regular diaper. Maybe if I prepped cloth wipes every day, I could have pushed the idea, but it seemed like everyone thought disposable wipes were better. So, they did the change, and leave the wipes in the diaper. I would then throw the wipe away, and spray and rinse the diaper when I got home.

I was able to rotate a few snap options in the mix as my family got used to cloth diapers. This was especially important as my daughter learned to remove her Velcro diapers herself and the Velcro loosened. I also had to very gently talk about making sure the diaper was tight enough to avoid leaks. It's difficult to do this because it can feel like a micromanaging mother. I would usually do it with extra enthusiasm. "I just got this new diaper! Let me show you how this one works!"

It's also important to keep up on stripping to avoid bad smells. I'm still learning the best methods to care for my diapers, but the smell was the biggest complaint of my family members.

There are times when it just sounds easier to buy disposable diapers with all the extra laundry, and going through the day's stinky diapers, but working does have a big advantage: it's easy to justify a new purchase of cute, unnecessary diapers and accessories to keep me going.

Bio: Alicia is an 8th grade English and Drama teacher and is a pretty crunchy momma. She shares her Arizona home with a wonderful husband, energetic 3 year old, sweet 2 month old, 1 crazy dog, and 7 happy chickens.


angel gonzales said...

Thanks for your lovely post. There are a lot of advantages to cloth diaper. Cost savings, better to the baby, better to the environment and less time in diapers and they are also adorable, with the variety of colors you can choose.


Pix said...

I was working full time when my son was born and he had only been cloth diapered. He has had a nanny, family watch him, and daycare. They participated. I wouldn't have done it any other way.

Jared Smith said...

Great Post on Cloth diapers, i'm pregnant now, and just bought a few to test out from, i can't wait to try them, and this post helped me realize how to get my family excited about the idea too!

Mystie said...

That's funny! Luckily my husband and in-laws were on board with the cloth diaper but I actually bought a bunch of velcro closures to make it easier on everyone. Eventually they got the hang of the velcro and then snaps wasn't a problem but it did make for good transition!