cloth diapers, which is probably more than many other cloth curious mamas have available at their disposal. She convinced me it was easy and showed me the diapers she was using. They were pocket style diapers, I don't remember the brand, but I thought they looked easy enough. “So it's decided”, I thought, “I am going to cloth diaper my child.” I was so happy with my decision, I excitedly shared the news with anyone who'd listen. And those who did, sure had their opinion about cloth diapering. From my mother, to a stranger in a store, everyone had tried to convince me how difficult cloth diapers are, listing a whole bunch of reasons why I should go with disposable diapers instead. Two and half years later, I think it's time to debunk some myths about cloth diapers.
Myth number one: Cloth Diapering Is Complicated
I will agree, at first it is a bit intimidating. From figuring out the style of diapers you want to go with, to the ever famous “What do you do with the poop?” question, it can appear difficult. From my experience, however, it is not difficult at all. I mean, if my husband can do it, so could anyone. (Disclaimer: Not saying he is unintelligent, he just likes to simplify things as much as possible. I love you, honey!) They are just as easy as disposable diapers, you put them on, fasten with snaps or hook and loop system, enjoy the pretty patterns until they get soiled. Then you take them off, remove solids into the toilet, and instead of the garbage, place them in the diaper pail or a wet bag until there is enough dirty diapers for a load of laundry. Voila. Simple as pie. Then just wash, which leads me to:
Myth number two: Washing Diapers Is A Lot Of Work
This is perhaps the most misunderstood part of cloth diapering. It is made up to be so complicated, that many cloth curious moms are turning away from choosing to cloth diapers at all. Truth is, I find washing the diapers much easier than cutting my boys' nails. At least diapers don't fight back. And the machine does all the work. I just need to turn it on.
Yes, the process of washing diapers is a bit longer than my regular clothes, but I normally don't poop on my clothes. The extra rinses are there to make sure all the poop is gone. And speaking of poop in the washer....
Myth number three: The Poop Will Get On Your Clothes
I had someone literally smell a shirt I was wearing and say “Weird, I don't smell the poop. Do you have a separate washer for your diapers?” Really? I couldn't believe this was even asked. Just like the grease and grime from hubby's work clothes does not somehow end up on my pajamas, the poop gets washed away and poses no threat to anyone's wardrobe. I do clean my washer every three to four weeks, as everyone should, per the manufacturer guidelines, but I do not think it is necessary to clean the washer after every diaper load. That would neither be convenient, nor time or cost efficient. And where the cost is concerned, there is another myth...
Myth number four: Cloth Diapers Are Expensive
Okay, this one is not REALLY untrue. They are not cheap. Some cloth diapers are in the range of twenty to thirty dollars a piece. Comparing that to the ten to thirty cents per a disposable diaper, it may seem like a lot. However, you can't reuse disposable diapers. Or at least you shouldn't. Every time you change a disposable diaper, you are throwing away money. And if money is really what has you on the fence about cloth, you should know there are many options that will not break the bank. And then, when you are done with cloth, you can resell to recover some of the cost (I don't suppose anyone would want to buy used disposable diapers, though.).
There is one myth, that may hold true. Many of the cloth mamas find themselves saying goodbye to their cloth diapers sooner than expected, because it seems that often times their children potty train faster and easier. My very own son was out of the diapers before he even turned two. Thankfully, I have another baby to sport the adorable fluffy butt for now, but I know I will miss the diapers when they are gone...
Bio: Anna is a stay at home mom to two wonderful boys, ages 2 years, and 4 months old. She lives in Portland, Oregon area, where she and her family spend their days enjoying the beauty of The Pacific Northwest. This article was written from her own perspective based on her personal experience with cloth diapering.
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