From Alabaster Pixie ~ My husband and I decided before Leah was born that we were going to use cloth diapers. Since we were given several packages of disposables as gifts, we decided to use them instead of waste them. My sister-in-law asked why we were going to use cloth, and I said because it's a lot less expensive to do laundry a few times a week than to buy disposables that will just end up in a landfill. She said the diapers she buys (I'm not sure which brand it is) cost just the same as me doing laundry. She thought it was extremely funny that I was going to use cloth and made me feel kind of dumb I know I'm going to do cloth, but I can't remember all the good reasons for doing it. And boy does it hurt when someone criticizes you for doing something a little differently than everyone else!
From Lisa Jo ~ My reasons for cloth diapering:
* Environmentally friendlier
I believe your sister-in-law is way off base on the cost thing. It would be virtually impossible to spend more using cloth unless you use a diaper service the whole time.
* Healthier for baby's bottom - would you want plastic, paper and icky chemicals against your privates 24/7?
* Cost savings (last on my list actually; I would still cloth diaper even if it cost more!)
* Cute diapers!
I have seen estimates that disposables cost around $1500 for one child. I'd be surprised if I spent even 1/5 that amount cloth diapering each one of my kids. I used top quality items, but bought them used from eBay and on-line swap sites. If you use your cloth diapers through 2 or more children, the savings are even more amazing. Also, if you buy good quality items and take care of them, they will have resale value when you are finished with them. I have actually made money buying diapers or covers, using them awhile, then re-selling them. Try that with disposables!
Check out the FAQs in StorkNet's Cloth Diapering Cubby for more reassurance that you're not crazy for choosing cloth.
From SonjaG ~ Lisa gave you some fantastic arguments for your sister-in-law. The reasons why I cloth diaper:
1) to save money. this was the initial reason, and my husband was all for it. I calculated that I would spend about $600-700 for top of the line stuff, but use it for all four kids we plan to have, and thus save something like $4 grand.
[ FYI - The environmentally friendly reason was never high on my personal list, and it can be countered with all that extra soap (phosphates) and water you'll be using, so I just ignore that one. ]
2) Better for baby's tushy. I found this out the hard way, when I used disposables on a trip. Besides, the gel stuff in normal premium disposables just freaks me out - 20 years from now they'll tell us it causes cancer -- and the non-gel "natural" brand is more expensive, which is doubly crazy because the natural ones don't hold more than a half ounce of fluid.
3) I don't mind doing laundry. In fact, it's the only household chore that I can honestly say I love.
Congrats on your baby's birth! Don't let your sister-in-law's comments get to you.
From SusanH ~ Reasons I use them:
~they are soft, comfy, adorable, better for her skin, contain no creepy gel crystals and don't smell like chemicals
~they are much less expensive
~they are definitely better for the environment. I can't believe that the extra 1/4 cup of detergent and the water from 2 loads of laundry a week comes close to the amount of environmental damage caused by throwing away 80 disposables a week. Not to mention the machinery required to manufacture and deliver all those diapers to the stores.
From CynthiaH ~ We have used cloth since the beginning with my son, although we did have a few disposables left from the hospital. I didn't want to waste them either but the first time I saw that gel gunk on my son's stomach - ewww! My husband and I think that in 20 years they'll figure out that's where all this ADD came from all of a sudden.
I LOVE cloth diapers; my pediatrician even told me that they are better for preventing rashes etc because you change them more often - you can tell when they're wet! Think about it, people often put off changing with disposables because the baby doesn't "feel" wet, but that wetness is still in there, not breathing away from the body. I read somewhere that it can get to be 104 degrees inside those things. Some studies say that disposables may be responsible for low sperm count for this reason.
Another thing is that cloth diapered babies potty train quicker again because they KNOW when they're wet. I have read many posts of people changing to cloth at that age for that reason.
I did buy a pack of disposables for an extended trip thinking that it would be convenient - but couldn't stand the way you could smell them right through the clothes - ewww! (the diapers I mean, not what was in them!)
Well, that's sort of rambling, but I just gave up justifying anything I do with my son. My inlaws just clucked when I told them I was going to use cloth and said we'll see how long that lasts . . . I just smiled.
From jennmomof1 ~ I enjoy using cloth diapers. I really have no choice because Rachel breaks out in a horrible rash. So I am lucky. Even if you don't save money now you will with the second. Like you I wish people would stop bugging me about doing things different. I really think they feel threatened because you're questioning the way they did things by doing them differently. Or maybe they are jealous.
From mmcbride ~ My city just came through a 2 week garbage strike and unlike everyone else I know with babies, I didn't have to drive out to the dump to get rid of my rotting disposables. I would say use the disposables when you are out or overnight, that's what we do. I second the cost thing. Disposables here are a minimum of $60 a month (Costco) for the megapack (same as diaper service). But once I started washing my own costs, drop to buying supplies and detergent. All told less than $200.
From djk42 ~ We do 50/50 pretty much, and once we made back the cost of the supplies, we figure we are saving about $1 per day (the price of six disposable diapers), even when you count the washing costs. So, we plan on saving that $600 we are going to be saving the next two years and adding it to the $1,500 saved by breastfeeding . . . if we could, it would go in a college account, but for now it just means we are a little less in debt. Why throw it all away? I'd like to have grandkids, and the way we toss stuff it isn't going to happen. Disposable dishes, even sippy cups now, and so much other stuff . . . we are killing ourselves faster and faster each year.
From JKY ~ I don't have a lot of fancy diapering accessories; I would if money weren't an issue but I want to stay at home with my son as long as possible. The less I spend, the better. I spent maybe $125-150 on my diapers (bought them online, but not eBay or used). I have three dozen Chinese prefolds (actually a few less now because my dog chewed some up pretty badly - something to watch out for if you have a dog, it's not unusual for them to do that). I use diaper pins and the Gerber pull-on plastic pants. They cost about three dollars for a pack of three at Target or such places.
But mainly, it's the *gel*. I have used disposable diapers and all I can say is that gel stuff creeps me out. There's no way I want to put that near a baby's orifices, it cannot possibly be good for him. We may not know yet in what way it's not good for them - but rest assured that the big corporations who are making diapers are not in business because they care about our babies' well-being.
By the way, even if I had to pay to do laundry at the laundromat (which is fortunately not the case), it wouldn't cost as much as buying disposables, I don't care what brand.
From littlebit ~ I use them for all the reasons above AND one extra benefit I'm now starting to enjoy is EARLY POTTY TRAINING! My almost 14 month old son is now potty training and I truly feel that he is doing so because he is cloth diapered. How's that for saving money!!! You're the one changing the baby's pants; don't let anyone else tell you cloth diapering isn't AWESOME!!!
From Alabaster Pixie ~ Thanks for all the responses and support! I too got the, "Let's see how long this will last," from the inlaws. It does hurt to be mocked by them But, I can't wait to start with the cloth diapers. We have one more pack of disposables!
From laj ~ it's pretty common to at least HAVE some cloth nappies here. I grew up with them all around me. It was just normal for us! We use disposables at night and going out. It doesn't have to be all or nothing. When it comes down to it, my reasons are . . . What would I rather have on my toush? Paper or cloth? CLOTH I say. It's more comfy, and it IS cheaper. It's $13 for a pack of nappies here that would last NEARLY a week. It doesn't cost me anywhere near that to wash them!
My girls have all toilet trained early. I say it's because of the cloth nappies..
From midwifetx ~ I cloth diapered one of my children and he took twice as many YEARS to potty train as my paper diapered children. CD'ing does not necessarily = early potty training! FWIW, I use Tushies diapers and am very pleased with them. If you buy them online they are no more $$ than premium diapers from the grocery. They do have to be changed quite frequently, but then, so do cloth.
From Ursula ~ Your MIL is wrong about the laundry issue. It costs half as much to have a diaper service than to have disposables, and it costs half as much as a diaper service if you launder yourself. That's a 1/4 the cost, right? We used disposables for the first time last week while on vacation. They're yucky! The chemicals are terrible. The first thing my husband did when we got home was to put our daughter back into a cloth diaper.