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Cloth Diapering with a Reluctant Spouse

It might surprise you to know that my husband is not the world's biggest cloth diapering fan. He appreciates the eco-friendliness, cost, and health benefits, but man is he grossed out by dealing with poop. Here's my interview with him, where he gave his honest opinion on all things cloth diapering.

What was your first impression when I told you I wanted to cloth diaper our oldest?

Eww. When there’s baby poop, I pretty much want to get it away from me and just throw it in the trash. Did anything sound appealing?

I’d heard that cloth diapering could lead to your baby potty training earlier, and that it could be less expensive. How did I convince you?

(You said) it could be cheaper if we did it ourselves, that it was better for the environment, and that it was important to you.

What percentage of the dirty diapers do you change?


Is it as gross as you thought?

Yes. Particularly spraying diapers before putting them in the laundry. [It’s also gross to] put them in the family washer, and the diapers smell pretty bad.

Is actually changing the cloth diapers grosser than changing disposables?

No. Changing a diaper is changing a diaper.

Would you choose to use cloth now?

I would ideally use a cloth diaper service, so I don’t have to put them in my washer with my clothes, and don’t have to worry about it after that. [I might use disposables] depending on the service’s cost.

What are the best/worst part of cloth diapering?

Best: Using extra diapers isn’t an issue, because you’re not going through a box of diapers; you already have them and it doesn’t matter how often you use them.

Worst: Having to spray the diapers off if you’re going to wash them yourself.

Have you ever washed a load of diapers?


Would you recommend cloth to a friend?

*Very hesitantly* Ummm, yes.

A few thoughts from me:

  • One of the things that really grossed him out at the beginning was the idea that the diapers would go into the same washer we used for his clothes. Part of convincing him to try it was agreeing to wash our washing machine regularly (this is also good practice for cloth diapering in general).

  • We found a style of diaper that works really well for our family, and my husband is just as good at putting them on as I am, despite doing it less frequently. I can imagine this might be a big pain point for other families though, leaks can get maddening really quickly.

  • I love that he picked up on a benefit of cloth I don't think about often; you never have to wonder if a diaper is "wet enough" to change. When you're not making trash, you can just change the diaper.

Did you or do you still have a reluctant spouse? Were you able to convince them? Are they total converts now, or still on the fence?

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