Brandon and I have been cloth diapering Grayson for almost his entire life. We started pretty much as soon as his cord fell off and his circumcision healed. Still, that left us about a month that we had to use disposables. This time around, I decided that I wanted to use cloth as soon as we leave the hospital (being at the hospital without Grayson is going to be hard enough, so I figure we'll just use the hospital's diapers for a day. That, and those first couple of poo's are disgusting!). We have many reasons that we cloth diaper, but the biggest are definitely the cost-savings and the health benefits.
Now, I should mention that Brandon and I had actually read Dave Ramsey's book "Total Money Makeover" before we had Grayson. We used his plan and paid off all of our student loans and both cars. We were debt free except for the house! Then, we fell off the wagon and bought our Honda Pilot when we found out we were expecting. Our reasoning at the time was that we had a need for a bigger vehicle as we both had 2-door cars. However, we didn't realize that the "Honda Pilot" part was a want. In any case, even though Dave would have said 'no', I still LOVE our Pilot. It's the safest SUV on the road in its class and it holds all of the crud a baby 'needs'! haha It drives great and I'll be driving it until it falls apart. Now, it's our only debt aside from the house.
When I first mentioned the idea of cloth diapering to Brandon, he was skeptical, as are most people. But, the thing I love about my husband is that he didn't immediately shut me down. He listened to my research and agreed to keep an open mind about it. I read dozens of articles about the cost savings. Me, being the research-enthusiast that I am, actually sat down and did a cost-breakdown of what our savings would be if we went through with it. I even included cost estimates for the extra laundry and electricity/water consumption! [Yes, some people might call this 'anal', but I call it 'detailed' :o) ] After Brandon saw my spreadsheet and the fact that it would save us over $2000 just to cloth diaper Grayson, he agreed that we should give it a whirl. So, out came the squeaky wallet and we began our initial investment. (As a side note, I was able to sell all of Grayson's 'initial investment' diapers for more than I paid for them after he outgrew them!).
The other reason we cloth diaper arose from the massively accumulating data about all the hazardous chemicals in disposable diapers and its endocrine-disrupting abilities. They even release VOC's!!! You don't paint their room with them, yet you put them on their bottoms?! If you do a Google search on disposables, you'll be amazed at what's out there. I just knew that I wanted to do what was best for my son, regardless of the fact I might get a little dirty. Now, I will be the first to tell you that I'm not perfect when it comes to environmental toxins, but I do pay attention and buy organic whenever possible. Sometimes it's just not in the budget; other times we make room for it. We're just trying to do what we think is best. We do still use disposables occasionally, but we use the 7th Generation ones with fewer chemicals.
The other reasons we cloth diaper have arisen after we started cloth diapering. We found that our cloth diapers held in Grayson's explosive poo's much better (as in, we've never had a blowout in a cloth diaper). Brandon became a lot more 'into' the cloth diapers when Grayson had a blowout in a disposable IN THE CARSEAT when he was on duty! Talk about a mess!!! I firmly think that that moment he was thinking "WHY didn't I listen to Lisa and put him in cloth!!" A woman can always dream, right?! At this point in our lives, Brandon would much rather put Grayson in cloth than a disposable. He's found out through experience that it isn't as hard as everyone makes you think.
We also don't have hardly any diaper rash now that we use cloth almost exclusively. Yes, we have had it a couple of times due to detergent and hard-water build-up in our diapers, but that cleared up as soon as I washed the diapers a bit more thoroughly. The only other time we've had it with cloth was when Grayson ate too many peaches... and that'll get just about anyone! ;o) When he was in disposables, it seemed like his bottom was constantly red. Our cloth diapers, even after he's slept 12 hours in one, feel dry next to his skin when I go to change him. That is amazing to me, especially considering the diaper *thuds* to the floor after that long! They really do a great job of wicking the moisture away.
The final reason I cloth diaper probably has no impact on Brandon... but to other Mamas out there, you'll agree! Grayson's bum is SOOO cute in cloth diapers!! There's just no comparison to ugly disposables. Cloth diapers come in such an array of colors and prints, it's hard to not become 'addicted'! Now, I buy, sell and trade cloth diapers (without spending any extra money from our budget) all of the time. We have quite the stash of adorable-ness to cover his bottom and keep him dry...
Because that's all we Mamas really want right? A cute, dry, healthy booty!