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November 17, 2006 / allyo

I think this turned out to be less interesting than I planned–updated

I really need to write about my hellish trip home but I’m still a little fragile. (Joking.) Mostly.

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Of all the little mom-to-mom digs I read online (I was formula fed and I’m ok! Formula kills! Why should I have to watch you feed your kid with your boob, gross! I only feed my precious growing baby organic!) the one that is the most puzzling is when someone says they’re proud of using disposible diapers.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think you’re bad if you use sposies. I used them for a year exclusively, and since the laundry didn’t get done last night (I, uh, fell asleep quicker than Jamie, I think) my kid went to daycare with some in his diaper bag. Using disposible diapers is the norm. It is what most of us are comfortable with, and if we think of cloth diapers at all, it’s to shake our heads and wonder why you’d be so crazy to add to the day to day complexities of raising children by using them. That was me, anyway, until the day I thought about how many putrid little balls of plastic we had contributed to our landfills and how many more we had left to go and it was so depressing we switched to cloth.

So no, it’s not the slight shake of the head and thinking I’m crazy. That’s fine. It’s the "I use Pampers and I’m PROUD!" Why? Why is it something to be proud of unless you’re just trying to prove your superiority by swimming with the mainstream? While I may be crazy for running cloth stained with human excrement through my washing machine a few times a week, I’m not doing it to make a statement. I’m doing it because I’m worried about the environment. I’m worried about the chemicals we use and that are all around us. I worry about pesticides, global warming, overfishing and the rain forest.  Using cloth doesn’t affect those particular issues of course and maybe I’m just whistling out my ass because I haven’t made plans to stop eating fish or to by a hybrid car. We’ve been saying we’re going to start recycling for years. But then, I don’t walk around saying how proud I am for not having done so.

You know what it is, it’s like someone on the FCD board at BBC said once when talking about blinkies. About how most of them simply state the obvious in an overly obnoxious, in your face way. And that she was going to have blinkies that say, "I sleep laying down," and other equally funny things that I can’t recall at the moment. It would be like me having a blinky that said, "Proud to be contributing our fair share to the landfills!" or, "Proud be a part of our throw-away culture!" Because, I could say the same about using throw-away plastic containers or paper towels, but the point is, I don’t.

Speaking of the FCD at the BBC, I haven’t been there much lately. I’ve been here instead. It’s members’ only but I’d be happy to vouch for you if you want to create an account.

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8 Comments

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  1. Kelly / Nov 17 2006 5:21 pm

    I really need to get into the dish as the FCD at BC has been taken over by a popculture/current news OT steak and it is BigTime Annoying.

    With hypothetical baby number two, I am willing to give cloth a go — if our DCP allows it.

    I am certainly not proud of the number of little poop bombs we have sent out into the world!

  2. Ally / Nov 17 2006 7:14 pm

    Regs in Ohio actually make using cloth a snap. DCPs have to dump the poo regardless of whether it is cloth or disposible. Our only requirement is that we supplied our own trash can and bring a clean bag every day (and we got reusible ones, so we’re not throwing out a bag every day!).

    There’s a pretty interesting conversation going on about t-day and wht kids l

  3. Ally / Nov 17 2006 7:20 pm

    and what kids learn in school. Toddler freaking out, gotta go!

  4. karrie / Nov 18 2006 8:59 am

    People on the internet are proud of the most ridiculous things!

  5. Vienna / Nov 18 2006 10:03 pm

    But I DO sleep lying down! I do, I do! I feel badly about the poop bombs, but they’re so easy to slam dunk into the trash! But, I have no blinkies and do not brag about killing the environment, so feel absolved. If I buy Fair Trade Organic and recycle my paper and plastic, does that help my soul? 🙂

  6. Amanda. / Nov 19 2006 2:39 pm

    I know nothing about cloth but isn’t it true that in some locales it is better to use sposies because of water conservation? Yay? Nay?

    What do I know? I’m a proud mom who ran out of underwear for almost potty trained son today and since I’m too lazy to do laundry I put a diaper on him!

  7. Jody / Nov 19 2006 8:07 pm

    For me, it’s the idiocy of the “I’m part of the mainstream and I’m PROUD to make this radical choice” statement. Uh, going with the majority isn’t really a personal-statement moment, you know. Little perspective with that heaping helping of high self-regard there?

    We used disposibles and probably created an entire mountain at the landfill all by ourselves. If I could do it over, I would give cloth a shot in a second (although the environmental costs are not as clear-cut as you’d expect, cloth still wins in all but the most water-starved locations in the US), but I think you have to have either lots of courage, lots of support, or prior mothering experience to take on cloth diapers and infant multiples at the same time.

    Alas that, at first, I had none of the necessary qualifications.

  8. Ally / Nov 19 2006 10:32 pm

    LOL, Vienna. Yeah, I think your karma points are still leaning towards the positive. Amanda, as Jody mentioned, there are some places in the US where water is at a premium and cloth wouldn’t make sense.

    Jody, you’ve hit the nail on the head, as usual. It’s the pride in swimming with the mainstream that cracks me up. And over something that’s not emotionally charged like say, breast vs. bottle. I can’t imagine doing cloth with triplets. You’d save money in the long run the same as you would with a singleton, but the initial outlay would be astronomical and the laundry. Yikes! I didn’t get it together enough to do cloth with a single until he was 1!

    Another one that poster came up with (her initials are c/f) was, “I eat with a fork!” Which is of course western-centric, but cracks me up anyway.

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