Spread the love about cloth diapering without judgement.
As a mom who has used cloth diapers for both of her children and also wants to pass on the fluffy butt love to other parents, I feel that I have to write this. This is for all of us, myself included, so that our cloth diaper advocacy efforts are not in vain.
I love my cloth diapers and we solely use them when we’re home and out and about. I use disposables, however, when I’m at other places where people who are not familiar with cloth diapers. I do this as a courtesy to those who are taking care of my child and as a way to show them that I am flexible. I can be flexible. Why? Because in the grand scheme of things, in the big picture of my daughter’s life, wearing a disposable for two or three hours will probably not cause her any harm.
I’m involved in a mother’s group at my church. We have two times that our groups meet and we watch each others kids at least twice a semester. There is a mother whose kid is in the “walkers” room – meaning that most of those children are one years old and walking steadily. Her child wears cloth diapers to our group when they’ve asked that all children be placed in disposables. They do this because our childcare works on a volunteer system and to be nice to the two hours that our volunteers are already giving up to watch our children they want to make life easier for them.
Unfortunately this mom is known as a crazy cloth diapering mama and I’ll tell you why. She is so focused on her child that she doesn’t see how her frequent visits and check ups to the room her child is in wreaks havoc to the rest of the kids in there. One year olds have a hard time separating from their parents. After a little while they overcome their anxiety and almost forget that Mom or Dad left them. All is peaceful…that is until the door opens and a mother walks in. It doesn’t have to be their mother; what that child knows is that someone’s mother is in the room which then reminds them that their mother is not. Chaos explodes and suddenly half of the 13 children you have in there who were happily playing are now upset. And the cause of the now chaotic room is because a mom who uses cloth diapers insisted that no one else change her child or put them in a disposable.
While the cloth diaper movement is gaining serious momentum I think it’s important to keep in mind that we are still living in a disposable world. Cloth diapering, while its roots are classic, historic even, are not the norm right now. Those who don’t use cloth diapers already have preconceived notions about us. I’m sure some of those ideas are probably that we’re tree hugging, granolas who only wear everything organic and wash our hair with mayonnaise. Some of us do live that way but not all of us just like some disposable using parents eat organic and all natural.
In order to spread the word about cloth diapers and show how they are really more beneficial economically, environmentally and emotionally (okay I added the emotionally part because they are just so stinkin’ cute!) we have to be willing to not be extreme with our cloth diapering. We cannot and shouldn’t insist to have our way especially if it causes problems or chaotic situations like the one that I described above.
I guess what I’m saying is that if a public place like daycare, church nurseries, the gym, etc. have a disposable only rule don’t try to bully your way into getting what you want. It only makes you look fanatical. Since we’re not the societal norm we have to not be over-zealous so that we can attract others to this lifestyle. If we act in such a way that we come across as self-righteous and pious about cloth diapers our efforts to continue to spread fluffy love will be in vain. Who wants to join something so that they too can be self-righteous? Probably no one. I think we need to be up for change from our fluffy needs and try our best to not insist on always getting things done our way.
You do catch more flies with honey. If we are loving, accepting and flexible, I think we’ll all find that more parents will jump on the bandwagon because they too will realize that the switch to cloth really isn’t as hard as they thought it would be. Plus, the community of cloth diaper lovers is just fabulous!