Thursday, January 3, 2013

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Dads and Diapers: The Art of Persuasion

I’ve always wanted to cloth diaper because I wanted to help save the planet. However, my husband hasn’t always shared my enthusiasm for environmentalism; I knew I’d need my best persuasion skills to get him on board. Just in case my skills didn’t cut it and cloth diapers went over like recycling, I was fully prepared to play the “I’m pregnant! Do what I want!” card. I figured if it came down to it, I would take on the brunt of the responsibility myself until I could wrangle him into doing them too.

Since I didn’t actually want all of the diaper responsibility for our upcoming little bundle of joy, I carefully planned my strategy for getting him to see how wonderful cloth diapering could be. I decided my best bet was to go for maximum impact right away and tell him how it would improve our bank account.

I initially approached the topic armed with lots of financial research. To my surprise, our first discussion about cloth diapers didn’t even start with the questions I expected, (like, how much will it cost?) To my benefit, he had no experience with any diapers, let alone cloth, so he mainly wanted to know what would be involved. I explained that it would require us to do more laundry, but they would be so much better for the baby, our bank account, and the planet.

The first time we talked about cloth diapers, I had very little understanding of modern cloth diapers, but I did the best I could to explain prefolds, covers, and laundering methods. In hindsight, I really am surprised he was willing to listen to me at all since I didn’t even try to win him over with the easiest types of cloth diapers!

He asked me to do more research and give him details. So, I learned all I could about all-in-ones, all-in-twos, fitteds, one-size diapers, detergents, wet bags, where to buy diapers, etc. While I was spending all this time doing internet research, fate was smiling on me and making my persuasion job a lot easier. Our friends started cloth diapering!

About the same time I was feeling ready to bring them up again, my husband comes home from work and says, “Bill and Jacqui are cloth diapering. If Bill can handle it, then I’m sure I can.” It was that simple. He was willing to cloth diaper. It just became a matter of what kind and how many. I’ve always known the best way to get my husband to do something, is to convince him that another guy will do it too. I just never imagined that this strategy would work for cloth diapering. (In case you are wondering, we bought the same diapers and the same number that Bill and Jacqui did.)

If your husband needs a little convincing from another guy, I’m willing to lend you my husband. He’s now a bona fide cloth diaper enthusiast. He’s helped me diaper AND launder from day one. He loves them and feels just as good about our decision to cloth diaper as I do.

I will also say I am extremely proud of my husband. Cloth diapering has had its challenges and he’s been willing to tackle them all with me. In fact, he probably does the dirty diaper laundry more than I do! ☺

By Angie L.
Originally posted 2/7/2010

1 comment:

Katie said...

All I had to say was, "It will save us a lot of money," and my husband was on board. He's been as enthusiastic about cloth diapers as I have been, is far more enthusiastic about prefolds than I am, and anytime someone asks, "Isn't that a pain in the butt?" or "But how do you deal with the laundry?" he's the first to defend it. He changes diapers and does diaper laundry. I think the dads who claim it's too hard or too gross need to man up. ;)