What do you think about when you hear the words cloth diapers? Plastic? Pins? Dunking?
I recently had a lady at the mall give me the rundown and one of those patronizing oh-these-hippy-kids-today looks when she happened across me changing my daughter's diaper in the bathroom. Yes, my kids wear cloth. And yes, I wash them myself. And no, I wouldn't go back to those paper attrocities if you paid me.
What I fail to understand, when I run into these people who turn up their noses at our decision to cloth diaper, is how they can be so close minded to something so healthy and beneficial. I'm not running up waving prefolds under other parent's noses or preaching that the way of disposables is death, so why do I come under scructiny for wanting what I view as the best for my children?
I'm not saying cloth is for everyone, just like not everyone can successfully breastfeed, and not everyone wants to pack around their baby in a sling. Every parent has the right to make the decisions that they feel are best for their family. And it really goes both ways. I've met other cloth diapering mommys that wouldn't assocciate with you if your child's butt had anything but natural fibers on it, and still others who are the preaching sorts and never fail to tell you the error of your ways.
It simply makes me bristle when I'm told that I must be crazy or granola. One has only to look at me to find a complete un-hippy aura about me. It could be the whiff of cleanliness from my daily showers, my shiny and shaven legs, and the lack of braids and flowers. And the ever present Starbucks cup in my hand...or do hippies like coffee, I don't know. I've learned, when these people who feel the need to judge my children's bottoms, offer their unasked for advice and comments, that a simple one liner seems to be the best retort.
Here are some good ones that I found on Diaperjungle.com that I have (or have come close to) using a time or two:
"Yeah, it is a pain to haul them down to the river and beat them against rocks, but it's worth it."
"Well, I save $1500.00 a year so I laugh myself to bank every Friday."
"I don't know it just seems silly to me to wrap $30.00 a week in a plastic garbage bag and throw it away....but maybe that's just me."
"What do you mean you don't have time for that? You don't have time to change your baby?"
"Oh right, washing poo off of cloth diapers is an inconvenience but if we don't then we have to wash poo off clothing, crib sheets, car seats, carpet, couches, etc. because of leaky disposables. I think we picked the easier path."
"Well, diaper duty is never fun but I sleep well at night knowing my choice doesn't involve thousands of pounds of poo wrapped in paper and plastic and stuck in the landfill for hundreds of years to come."
"Would YOU want to wear paper underwear?"
"Well, my child doesn't have diaper rash anymore so I guess their comfort is worth it."
"Oh, we have just chosen a more natural, less chemically produced, lazily dependent upon modern conveniences style of parenting that's all." (my favorite)
"She has a big butt you say? Well, SHE is wearing a cloth diaper underneath her clothing...What is your excuse?"
I'm not saying that cloth diapering is the easiest way to go. Some days I don't feel like the extra load of laundry, but if I'm going to have to change a diaper anyway, it might as well be one that is comfortable and healthy for my children. I refuse to choose my own welfare over my children's, so an extra load of laundry or two? Count me in.
If you want an interesting read, try this link: http://www.diaperjungle.com/Disposable-Diapers-Exposed.html