While we see a lot of expecting couples doing their research at our stores, it's not uncommon to see pregnant women come in alone, gathering information for their partners who are reluctant to consider using cloth diapers. We are well-prepared for this, we have handouts that detail the who-what-why of cloth diapers, a chart that breaks down the cost savings, and a glossary of terms with a chart that outlines the pros/cons of different systems. What can I say, we want you to be prepared!
If your partner is still on the fence, the following tips can help bring him over to the dark side.
Make him read this. What can I say, I think I did a pretty good job of poking holes through any argument against using cloth diapers.
Show him what today's cloth diapers look like. Like your future daycare provider, your partner may have some preconceived notions about what cloth diapers are, and how they work. If you take him to a store that sells cloth diapers (like ours, hint hint), allowing him to see and feel cloth diapers, you'll do a lot ot sway him to your point of view.
Buy him his own stash. If your partner is still hesitant about using cloth diapers because of their perceived difficulty of use, then buy some easy-to-use diapers just for him. Yes, prefolds are easy to use, however, if he's going to reach for a disposable diaper because prefolds scare him, then buying him his own diapers will be worthwhile investment. Consider a velcro pocket diaper, if you stuff it beforehand, it goes on just as quickly and easily as a disposable diaper.
Keep it simple. Oh, how can I put this delicately. There are some people out there with a lot of time on their hands. I'm not a make-work person, so the thought of folding and color-coding our cloth diapers ever time I wash them makes me shudder. Like anything in life, using cloth diapers can be as complicated or as simple as you make it. If your partner is already worried about the workload involved, make it easy on him by storing everything in a hamper. It doesn't have to look pretty, but it makes laundry day so much easier when all you have to do is pull everything out of the dryer and stick it in a hamper. So. Easy.
Point out the obvious. No matter how liberated you and your other half may be, truth is, for the first few months at least, mom will likely be the baby's primary caregiver. It's just the way things tend to work out. As a result, he will not be changing as many diapers as you will. If you're the one changing poopy bums, you should be the one to make the call as to what goes on junior's bum.
Sign up for a diaper loan program. Over six years ago, I developed the concept of a diaper loan program (a genius idea, if I may say so myself!) as a way to enable parents to seriously consider cloth diapers, giving them a chance to 'test the waters' without making a serious financial investment. A loan program is a great way to see what using cloth diapers involves (easy-peasy, I swear!), and your partner will get a chance to try a variety of diapers -- who knows, maybe he'll turn out to be a prefold fan after all!
It wasn't terribly hard to bring my husband on board with respect to using cloth diapers. The cost savings alone sealed the deal (like me, my husband is a frugal person, a man after my own heart!). Nine years and four babies later, he has never regretted the decision. Your partner won't either, I promise!