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forget cloth v disposable!

(12 Posts)
pesme Tue 09-Aug-05 12:30:48

Who needs nappies

Issymum Tue 09-Aug-05 12:34:18

My DDs were adopted from Vietnam and Cambodia (at 4 months and 12 months respectively) and neither of them wore nappies before being adopted. I have to say their skin was fantastic and they both developed quite nasty nappy rash after a month of nappy-wearing.

frogs Tue 09-Aug-05 12:42:52

Issymum, that's really interesting! Presumably your two were not being cared for on a one-to-one basis, so how did it work?

Issymum Tue 09-Aug-05 13:37:27

My two were actually being cared for one-to-one. DD1 was with her birth mother and DD2 in an orphanage but with an exclusive nanny (amazingly lucky for DD2). From watching the birth mother, I think she had a supply of thin, raggy clothes and just kept changing them and washing DD1 as they became soiled. Northern Vietnam can be quite chilly at night, so I'm not sure how that worked, particularly as DD1 and birth-mother were co-sleeping.

It was interesting to see a woman care for a child without nappies, bottles, cot, bedding, buggy, sling, changing mat etc. etc.. Everything that the birth-mother used for DD1 she gave to us and it fitted into a small-sized wash bag. And DD1 was radiantly well.

nailpolish Tue 09-Aug-05 14:17:12

issymum that is really interesting.

it doesnt say in the article what is done at night - does the baby hold on the wee, and kick and shout til mummy comes along? or does she use nappies?

i could maybe see it being possible with baby no 1, but how on earth does she have the time/keep the baby within view/earshot while she has 2 older ones

respect to her and her patience

frogs Tue 09-Aug-05 14:40:59

I find the idea interesting, but the tone of these 'nappy-free' articles slightly grating, with their implicit reproach ("If you were a really good mummy, you would intuit your baby's every little wee-wee").

I suspect that as Issymum suggests, mothers who manage without all these trappings are still using cloths of various kinds to mop up the inevitable accidents. When we lived in Africa, where babies are carried on their mother's back for long periods I seem to remember various cloths being used around the babies' nether regions, though that was in my pre-child days, so I didn't notice the details the way I would now.

But dd2 is nearly 20 months, so my nappying days are hopefully pretty limited. Hurrah! And then i need never care again what arrangements people make for their babies' eliminations.

Issymum, sounds as if your dd's are doubly lucky in having great adoptive parents and good pre-adoption care. I have friends who adopted two children from Bulgaria, who were by no means 'radiantly well' when they arrived here. Hopefully those images of them being loved and cared for in their pre-adoption lives will help see your dd's through the difficult questions about adoption.

moondog Tue 09-Aug-05 14:50:26

I've read a lot about this. Very intersting. Arguably much easier in a hot country with very few soft furnishings I would think. Wee and poo would then just dry very quickly.
My g/mother said they held babies over the pot from 6 months.
I reckon that I could send ds's (13 months)bowel movements. Not sure about the wees though.

I did find cloth nappies hastened potty training for dd as she could feel the wet nappy. She was in knickers a few months before the age of 2.

Issymum Tue 09-Aug-05 15:17:39

"Arguably much easier in a hot country with very few soft furnishings I would think."

You're right Moondog. One of the things I noticed about DD2's orphanages was that there wasn't a single piece of soft-furnishing in it. Even the sleeping platforms were covered by a kind of woven, plastic mat. Not very comfortable for us, but DD2 didn't seem to mind. There again she loves her cot and still snuggles down into the matress and under the blankets with giggles of delight. So perhaps she did mind!

Thank you Frogs - I wish I really was a 'great adoptive parent' who didn't resort to shouting, Cbeebies or bribing with chocolate buttons! I think the pre-adoption care has made their lives much easier in terms of the general physical, emotional and developmental well-being, but I'm not sure it's going to make the 'why' question any easier to answer.

moondog Tue 09-Aug-05 15:50:06

Yes Issymum. I grew up in PNG and don't remember seeing many textiles or nappies come to thinkof it. One lovely thing there was the way they used their bilums. These are intricatley woven and very colourful big string bags with a very long integral handle that they use to carry everything.

For newborns,they weave them with possum fur so that they are soft,then pop the baby in,hang it from a tree and give it a push every now and then. The mesh also keeps the flies away.

Lovely story about your dd's by the way. I flew home from Moscow once with my 10 month old dd, and sat next to a couple taking their newly adopted girl form Azerbaijan back to NY. it was 2 days after 9/11. What a maelstrom of emotions they must have been feeeling!

frogs Tue 09-Aug-05 15:52:35

Issymum, if shouting, Cbeebies and chocolate bribes constitute bad parenting, then all our kids are stuffed.

suedonim Tue 09-Aug-05 15:55:00

When we lived in Indonesia babies were nappy-free zones. It must be much easier to do in a warm climate. It didn't appear to be a problem if there was more than one child as most people semed to have much bigger gaps between their children than we do here. It was unusual to see people with a baby and a toddler - the older child was generally at least 3yo before No2 came along. I also found this article on the subject, which answers the night-time question.

moondog Tue 09-Aug-05 16:03:06

Suedonim,bigger gap probably due to extended b/feeding acting as a natural contraceptive (one of the wider implications of b/feeding that is often forgotten,along with the energy implications of boiling up water,which is probably unsafe anyway to make up formula.)

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