Diaper Guilt

As someone who considers herself a natural, alternative, bordering on the hippie kind of Mama and homemaker, my guilt over using disposable diapers has been excruciating, but, hey, since my last child is showing signs of potty training, it’s almost over.

On Ghost Mountain, Lompico, California, circa 1990 -- Back in my seriously hippie days

I lodge no complaint against the holier-than-thou attitude of the cloth diaperers. I know they are in the right, fulfilling yet another of the requirements of the “Natural Living” standards that gets you in the club. I completely ignore the ECers (“elimination communication,” where apparently you follow your barebutt, legwarmer-wearing child around with a bucket all day) since who even wants to reach that kind of saintliness. I’m only human, after all.

But how many of them have gone totally carless for nine years, like I did? Relying solely on a bike with bike trailer or buses, whether rain, shine, gale force winds… no matter what? (And yes, this was with two, then three kids, not as a single childless person!)

Yeah, I thought so. They toted their righteous poop catchers  home in some kind of earth-polluting monstrosity. (And hey, even the electric cars are tied to resource depletion, so don’t even start with me!) My near-decade of pedal power has to count for something.

I did try cloth diapering for about three months with my third child. This was during the two years I didn’t have a dryer, but had to either use the clothesline in the back yard or, when the Oregon weather would piddle for days on end, I’d have to use wooden racks, shower rods, the backs of chairs, etc. (Yeah, and how many have done THAT? So see, I do have some karma in the bank…)

After the three months it just sucked unbelievably bad. Like not even worth being in your lousy club bad. Maybe if I’d had the money to invest in the fluffy-bunz-smooshy-cozy-ne’er-do-leak covers and the pre-fold-half-caf-double-back-flip-twisted inserts, it would have been a true joy. But with some old hand-me-downs and some stuff I found at the thrift store being the only diapering system within my financial reach, it was beyond craptastic.

So as I begin to wonder which will be the last pack of evil throw-away pee soppers I’ll ever buy, I can also feel myself relax into the possibility of being a real, 100% grade A certified natural human, once I’ve shed this terrible addiction to convenience.

You’ll have to excuse me, now, I think I smell something untoward that’s gonna put another black spot on my record…


6 responses to “Diaper Guilt

  1. 🙂 Luschka was right – I do like your style of writing. My Little Man is 27 months and though I have been trying very hard to potty train him for a few months now, he really shows no sign of just going himself. (Hats off to those EC Momma’s – but it’s not for me!) I did make the switch to cloth, but it was much later in his life than it should have been. Like you, I carried that guilt of not doing so – but – but – well, you said it best and it needs not repeating.

  2. Ha ha! You’ll like the I’m a Natural Parent — But… carnival. 🙂 You’ve got me beat for hippie cred. I cloth diaper, but I cheat by using a diaper service. (Shh!) I do love it, though. I think some of the cloth diaperers are trying to spread the joy rather than the guilt, though I can’t speak for all of them. I’d let you in on all my dirty little secrets, but I’d fill up your comments.

  3. I loved this post. My sister just had a baby and she called me last night balling her eyes out about the guilt she feels every time she throws a diaper in the trash. I’ll have to forward your wisdom along to her. Thanks for a good laugh!

    • I’m glad your sister has you there for emotional support! Caring for a newborn is a fabulous time for blowing things out of all proportion, and we all need someone who can put things back in perspective!

      And I’m glad you enjoyed the post. Thanks so much for stopping by!

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