When our two daughters were toddlers, I worked on a Proctor and Gamble job
wherein I surveyed people using disposable diapers about their preferences on
one type of fastener versus another. Not many people I knew at that time used
disposable diapers, and I decided we would buy a supply just for traveling and
emergencies (but I wasn't concerned about the types of fasteners!). That
worked well and even when our youngest child was wearing diapers in the late
70s, I used cloth diapers from his older siblings supplies. We used the same
washer for about 30 years, learned what washing products were most economical
and line dried when feasible. There are many ways to make small incomes stretch.
I have one daughter and one daughter-in-law who make their own laundry cleaning
potion. They say it saves significantly and works better; yet another way of
saving by having cloth diapers.
Those who criticize people for having children when they are poor need to step
back and see what your saying. Our son has 5 children and during the time they
were having these children he had a very high paying job. He could certainly
afford to have all the children he and his wife wanted! Now he is without a job
and is having no success finding another that pays well. It has been like that
for 5 years. In the mean time his wife divorced him and is on welfare.What would you have them do? Turn the children over to the state? Shoot them
so there are not so many? Please think before casting stones.Having
said that, as many people point out, there are other options for saving money
like using cloth diapers. Keep in mind that food stamps do not allow for things
like laundry soap, toilet paper, etc.
Cloth diapers are much cheaper - perhaps using "Huggies" part time when
not possible to use cloth diapers is the best choice. Cloth diapers don't
have to be the already cut out ones - buy material and fold to fit. Cloth
diapers are not so difficult to use. Even in the winter, a wooden rack can be
used inside to hang the diapers to dry. Washing a dozen diapers inside daily or
every couple of days is much easier & less stinky than letting them pile up.
If there is a way to have a line outside, it's best to hang diapers out
even in the winter as when you bring them in frozen and hang them around the
house, they dry faster.Avoid eating out would be another great way to save
money for diapers. A pot of healthy stew or even chili can be made for $10 or
less and will feed a family of four for two or three days.
There are plenty of ways to get set up with cloth for super inexpensive. I paid
maybe $75 total at max and have 3 (possibly 4) days worth of cloth diapers for
fyi, I do know the difference between here and hear... sorry I did not catch
that editing error
Considering the kids are already hear, telling them they are too poor to have
kids is a moot point. However, having raised kids myself, and trying both cloth
and disposable, I can tell you that cloth are far cheaper and if I had to choose
between diapers and food I would be choosing food first and getting pretty
creative in the diaper department. Even if cloth can't be used at the day
care, the kids are not at day care 24/7 and it would still save money to use
cloth as much as possible. I have hung plenty of diapers out to dry to know
that it is possible whatever your laundry circumstances.
It sounds like people need help. Where can I drop off a package of diapers?
The Nancy Pelosi philosophy:Have the baby now, and find out later
what is involved.
The comments saying, "If you can't afford them, don't have
them," are distasteful to me. We don't know people's situations.
My husband and I were both employed when I became pregnant w/our first child.
Then I lost my job, but my husband was still working so we could afford for me
not to work. I quickly became pregnant again, despite trying NOT to. That baby
was born three months early- right when my husband went from working 50 hours a
week to less than 20. Stuff happens that is beyond our control. It isn't
always as simple as, "Can't afford them, don't have them."In regards to diapers- both are expensive. Depending on how many kids in
diapers you have, you could end up washing diapers all day. I think if
you've got one, it makes sense, but if you've got multiple children in
diapers it's not practical and not very doable.
I think it's impossible to compare the 70's with today. You also
didn't have car insurance, pay for your own healthcare premiums, spend 50%
or more of your income on housing. College is exponential in comparison. It
increases about 10% a year much more than inflation.
Frustrated with the comment such as, "Can't afford the kids, then
don't have them."More often than you realize a family that
COULD afford the kids suddenly find themselves without work, or a significant
decrease in pay, or a chronic illness that reduces income, or a variety of other
unexpected emergencies. We have nine kids. Ninety-eight percent of
the time we could afford them, but there have been months scattered over the
years where we struggled and exhausted our savings, and both of us worked full
time jobs for $8/hr to tie us over until something else came along.Fortunately we had generous neighbors who donated diapers and other goods
until those months were over.Don't be so quick to blame growing
families for bigger economic issues. It's those children that others are
having that will someday be paying for your social security payments, or taking
care of you in a nursing home. Have a little compassion for them
now, so they will have compassion for you in the future.
One option is to do a hybrid of both disposable and cloth. I was able to buy
about $75 worth of cloth diapers, which lasts about 2 days. I try and use them
as often as possible, but there are some times when disposable is significantly
easier and/or better. I can see how not having a washer and dryer would make it
harder to use cloth diapers, though. It's hard to know how to
help the children to have the diapers they need (I don't know anyone who
would say a baby deserves to have a messy diaper) while encouraging the parents
to be responsible to care for their families.
There are so many ways to cut back, not to mention ways to get deals on diapers
too. We were on an income of around $2000/month when I had three kids in
diapers, all different sizes. We bought them at Costco, and made sure we used
coupons. We found that the Kirkland brand of diapers works very well, similar
to Huggies. If things had gotten to the point where diapers were unaffordable,
we would have used cloth. Like someone else said, you can wash them in the
sink and hang them to dry. In fact, the couple times I have had to wash
underwear during potty training mishaps, we washed them by hand in the sink
because we could do it right away and I hate washing small loads because
it's wasteful. It was gross, yes, but there are a lot of things about
parenting that are just plain gross. You deal with it and you move forward.
and I don't believe the costs of "getting set up" for cloth diapers
is always super high. You can buy pretty cheap cloth diapers and pins at
Walmart, you don't have to have fancy cloth ones.
Purchasing cloth diapers requires a significant up-front investment, not to
mention access to washer and dryer and money to buy detergent and bleach. Not
everyone has $300 to get set up. Disposable diapers are no longer considered a
luxury. Nearly everyone uses them.
we have 3 kids and 1 due in February. I found it a lot less money to get
inexpensive cloth diapers. If you don't have an outside clothesline, hang
them around the house, if you don't have a washer, wash them in the sink or
bathtub. You make it work. Kids aren't just for higher income families!
Having 4 kids while my husband is unemployed and his odd part time jobs earns
less than 10K a year was not in our plans but we make it work anyway. 2 bed/1
bath apt. Strict grocery budget, thrift store clothes, etc. It would make more
sense to provide cloth diapers when absolutely needed rather than disposable.
With disposable the family will keep needing more.
For those saying use cloth diapers, that would be great if the person has a
supply of cloth diapers, covers, and such. Plus also have very easy access to a
washer and dryer (or even better a clothesline to hang the diapers outside which
helps prevents diaper rash) and such. Also the child won't be
able to be in daycare, as nearly every daycare I know requires disposable
diapers. And I'm sure the people in the article thought
"let's have more kids so we can worry about how we'll pay for
diapers". I'm confident that wasn't that went through their mind.
My first child, I didnt work, I had a washer, dryer, and
clothesline, along with a diaper pail and diaper covers and all those fun things
so that he could be in cloth diapers. However when my second child came along, I
worked, didnt have a washer and dryer (as we moved into a rental unit without
hookups) and they were both in child care. Pretty much the only way I could go
Necessity is the mother of invention.
I've twins myself and we invested in cloth diapers around 3 months old. We
probably spent around $300 in cloth to have enough diapers, but it will save us
hundreds if not thousands in the long run.
This will sound harsh, but if one only makes $24,000 annually, 5 children cannot
be an option. My wife and I make $33K yearly. We would love 5 children. But it
is not reality for us. 1 now, and only 1 more on the way. There is no way we
could support more, and we don't want to be leaches on society, begging the
church for help, or saddling relatives with babysitting. So 5 are out of the
question for us, at this time until our income rises.
Cloth diapers have come a long way, and save you hundreds of dollars. If you
don't have money for the luxury kind, just get some cloth, pins, and a
plastic cover. Our ancestors didnt even have the plastic covers. I don't
think there's a problem with low income people having children, but I do
think there's a problem when they feel entitled to live like high income
people and expect the rest of us to pay for it. Disposable diapers are a
luxury item, not a nessecity. If money is night, don't buy luxury items.
Pathetic! I paid my way through college while supporting a wife, and
three children. I took no money from anyone, and managed three hour of sleep
per night. Hard work has its rewards, and I'm happily retired doing other
things. Diapers? Cloth diapers are re-usable. Wash and dry. Just
that simple. There are so many ways to make a dollar stretch.
Easy fix: If you can't afford diapers, you can't afford children, so
don't have one.
Save on diapers. Before there were disposable diapers, there were...Yep,
I know we don't like to think in these terms, but if diapers are a concern
among low income parents, then are they really in a position to be having
children at all? Causing children is the part that's too easy, the next 20
or so years are phenomenally hard financially. That you can have them is not a
substitute for asking if you should.