Cloth Diapers are for Poor People

     What’s the worst thing someone has said to you about cloth diapers? Our cloth diaper journey started several years ago, but it still feels like yesterday. I didn’t start cloth diapering until my second son was 8 months old. Up until then, I didn’t even know they existed. I was working hard, cutting coupons, searching for deals and trying really hard to save the most money on the best disposable diapers I could find. I was able to get a really big box of disposables for $23-$25 and at just a few cents each. I felt proud. I was thrilled to get the “good” disposables at a deal and it was time consuming. I had two children in diapers, both with sensitive skin and I was searching for alternatives. After my son developed a terrible rash from a Pampers Baby Dry diaper, like red cracked and bleeding…I knew there had to be something else out there. I discovered cloth.

     Looking at all the diapers available was overwhelming. Just one pocket diaper was around $20 and I was changing 10-12 diapers a day on my baby. Luckily, my older son loved potty training and I knew his diaper days were numbered. I brought up the topic with some of those around me to try and get more information. I received mixed feedback. My Mom cloth diapered my brothers and I, not that many years ago, and recalled the poorly made flats and pull on covers. “Sometimes I would change you every hour and it wasn’t enough, they weren’t absorbent.” Many were supportive, but some had a different opinion. “Cloth Diapers are for Poor People.” We don’t need them “We can Afford Disposables.” Boom. Those words fell hard. At that very moment I knew my relationship with this person was over. O-V-E-R. We were very different people, it had teetered before and this sealed the deal. Becoming a parent has changed my relationship with others drastically I knew it would happen again and again.
     I sat there thinking. The words came out of my mouth (out of the earshots of my children). “That’s bullshit.” BULLSHIT! B, to the ULL, SHIT. I had been researching cloth diapers and found the complete opposite to be true. My family was in a tough place financially at the time. Conversations with my husband often started “Have you checked the checking account?” “Last time I did we had $4.42 in there.” I was wondering how we would buy food, let alone a $20 cloth diaper. I didn’t have this website up and running and didn’t know anyone who cloth diapered, or thought I didn’t. Much later into our journey, I learned that I know many Moms who cloth! They just don’t talk about it as much as they should.
     While researching cloth diapers on the web, I saw someone locally in a Mom group advertise that they had a FREE box of cloth diapers to give to someone in need. I contacted them. After answering some pretty personal questions about our finances, I agreed to meet up. Tuck in my pride and receive this brand new package of 2 covers and 12 prefold diapers. Let’s face it, there is no such thing as pride when you have children. Someone had a free kit of new diapers, and I needed them for my child. We met up in a public location and I was so excited to get the box. I looked inside and had no idea how to use the diapers, but put them to use immediately. I didn’t even prep them, they went right on the bum and I was thrilled.
     Little by little I built up a collection of (affiliate) 18 Bum Genius 4.0s and was lucky enough to win some diapers online in blogger contests. It was around the same time this website was being created, by me, as a way to connect with and share information with other Moms. I wish I knew about cloth sooner and love getting the word out. Today, we have tested over 30 brands of diapers and I love hosting giveaways and sharing information. The benefits are amazing and I love sharing our experiences with others.
     In addition to the financial and environmental benefits, cloth diapers come with a community. Moms, bloggers and brands connecting over social media. While not always 100% supportive, most of the conversations are supportive, cheerful and share the love for fluff. The words of this person often cross my mind. I wonder if other people feel the same way, that cloth is for poor people. It’s a misconception. I usually think of this when going through our diapers. One of my favorite diapers, is a $42 work at home Mom hybrid fitted with an embroidered dog on the back. While, this was a splurge, at the time I started cloth I would have never been able to afford this. I cherish it and it puts a smile on my face to put something so amazing on my baby!
     Need help getting diapers? There are ways to get free cloth diapers for people who qualify. The startup kit may be totally free, or a nominal shipping charge. I often direct people to cloth charities, and as always contests are a great way to add fluff to your stash. Having a baby is hard. It changes finances, getting all the ‘stuff’ baby needs is expensive. The benefits to cloth are more then financial. While using cloth over time is helpful for saving money, they also are excellent for the environment and save on resources needed to make and get disposable diapers overseas to our doorsteps.

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