cloth diapering towards the end of my pregnancy and I ended up in the hospital before I could get started. I had some time to research diapers while I was there and realized how hard it can be to make decisions based on everyone’s very different opinion. And just as it is with most online information, there is some misinformation to sift through. Everyone loves to share life experiences and give advice online. Let’s face it… Your kids haven’t listened all day or your boss is going on about something irrelevant and its nice to give input to someone that might appreciate it! I realized early on in my advice giving that everyone gives different advice. Sometimes I just want to say “How dare you tell them to use those terrible diapers?!” when realistically they may work great for that mom and just not so great for me.
So here is my advice on how to get advice. You might seek out online groups with moms that cloth diaper (baby wear, breastfeed, etc). You might browse through the questions and answers of others first. You can always use the search feature to find keywords like “nighttime” to see what others use at night. Don’t ask questions like “Should I circumcise my child”. That’s right up there with talking about religion and politics on the first date and quite frankly there are just some things that are solely for you to decide.
You can search the Internet to find information, but be cautious. Bad experiences travel more quickly than good experiences, especially on the Internet. I think sometimes bloggers will sit around and just make up ideas on how to clean diapers hoping they’ll be the next big diaper genius, when in reality they’ve gotten maybe 3 moms to ruin their diapers and gross out their family by washing them in the dishwasher. Don’t do it. Just don’t.
Just like with any research, check your sources. Make sure you don’t see something totally silly (like cloth diaper make it hard for baby to learn to walk) and take it as the truth when there are tons of moms happy to spam you with info (and pictures) of their precious babes walking around in cloth. Websites like Kelly’s Closet allows for buyers to leave reviews of the product, so always check those out. It’s better to get advice from someone who actually OWNS the product!
Here is my personal experience, because like me, you may not know anyone else that cloth diapers and sometimes its nice to not feel like the odd mom out when it comes to cloth diaper victories as well as woes.
My sister in law actually bought Finn his first cloth diaper. It was a bumGenius 4.0 in Albert print (which appealed to my love of all things black and geeky). I kept researching because I was occasionally using one single cloth diaper and stumbled upon Kelly’s Closet, which had a trial period in which you could send back diapers. That made me WAY less stressed about spending the money to start a small stash. I ordered two types of a diaper (a pocket and an AIO) and decided I didn’t like the AIO, so I contacted KC to return them. No big deal. I’ve tried (and failed occasionally) various types of diapers. I struggled with bulky inserts and found myself in The Cloth Diaper Support Group where people were happy to help with my problems (like giant super-tush baby).
When you are looking for a group, there are some things you should consider. Take a look and make sure there are moderators that are active in the group, because they’re happy to help if they catch misinformation being given. Read group rules and group files. There you’ll learn the ropes, get lots of useful information, and get a feel for your group. It’s wonderful to be a part of a group that is happy to help and happy to lift a momma up. And when you want to know what color a diaper is in real life, those mommas will be there to spam you with pics.
For instance, here's my dude, above, in "the purple diaper" after lovely mommas sent me pics of this color IRL AND moderators sent me purple comparisons of a few brands!
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