I was given a book about being a father which said “Babies don’t know how to operate their waste control muscles till they are about two years old, so don’t bother training them till then“. What a total load of wank. Those authors had NFI.
At two weeks old I was holding my son over the Laundry tub and he was straining to squirt that last bit of poop out. Ughhh. He didn’t have the strength to hold his head up but the little guy knew exactly what to do with the muscles he had control over. Genius!
We heard about “Natural Infant Hygiene” before Maven was born and decided to give it a try. We read about it on the net and started the day after he was born. I felt a bit silly holding him over the tub but then I caught a pee and realised that this was going to work.
Over the weeks the little bloke gradually got better control and bladder capacity. He also started trying to alert us about when he wanted to go and he would get upset when he wet himself. It seemed like we were doing the normal natural thing. He’s eleven months old now and it’s rare for him to poo anywhere but the toilet.
At the shopping centre I take Maven into the parenting room when he needs to go. Often there are other parents there changing their kids’ nappies. Some of the kids are walking and talking (and probably playing skilful computer games) but they just lay there while their parent wipes the crap off their butts (and back). When I see this I feel like something is weird and wrong. Long term nappy use is disturbing to me now. Nappies are for little babies!
Another observation I have made is the funky smell that sometimes surrounds families. There is only so much that even the best nappy can do. Nappy is just another name for a strap-on poo bag. Don’t be caught in a confined space with a toddler or child in nappies! I often think it would be better for these babies if their nappies were transparent so their parents would change them more often.
Now I’m not saying that everything is perfect with the nappy free system. Sometimes he gets excited or startled and just pees where he is. But he also spews, dribbles, tips over coffee, wine and plants occasionally and nappies aren’t going to help keep that mess off the floor – so you’re going to have to clean up anyway. At least the nappy free cleanup is less smelly and the baby is cleaner.
Finally, something to think about is the cost of nappies. If you use nappies you will also need baby wipes, powder and probably nappy rash medicated creams. It costs about $20 for a weeks worth of cheap nappies. If you earn more than $20/hour then it doesn’t seem like much until you consider you will need about one hundred and fifty packs over three years for conventional toilet training. That’s about $3000 or the cost of a nice video projector. How many weeks are you willing to work so that your son or daughter can have the privilege of fermenting in their own poo for three years? Try the alternative.
This entry was originally written when Maven was 8 or so months old, so he was already using nappies as a casual, part-time only ‘parenting tool’. Isn’t it great to see that Dads really find EC a much cleaner and practical way to go! Discover More about My Elimination Communication eBook: Part Time EC: A Personal Guide to Developing Your Elimination Communication Confidence…