Monday, 31 March 2014

SECOND HAND DIAPERS - do it with honour.

I have had the chance (in the past) to thankfully receive 2nd hand cloth diapers from friends and neighbours.  It was actually my introduction to diapers other then Kushies, as well as some different styles.  The diapers I was gifted were clean and fresh.  No stink, no ammonia.   Freshly laundered. 

Here's the thing I received them in good condition, the same way I gift second hand items: in good condition.  

I have also passed on diaper stashes (after baby #4 and #5), when I thought I do longer needed the stash.  Did I pass on my entire stash?  Nope.  I passed on the ones in good condition.   The others went to diaper heaven (aka: the rag bin). 

I never had ammonia so that wasn't the issue.  And thankfully baby and I never had to fight thrush.  So they were all healthy diapers that I washed clean, sun bleached,  ironed and folded so they would be like new to the next mom and baby.  Ever heard the term "New to me"?  Well that's not just about having something 2nd hand you didn't have before,  it should be about receiving something 2nd hand in the best condition so it feels as new as possible. 

In fact anytime I pass on items second hand, or donate items second hand I do two things.  1. launder them with care.  2. sort out what's in good condition and what isn't.  I dont just garbage bag up my junk and pass it onto someone else to deal with.  I was taught to pass on in an honourable manner. To pass on for someone else's enjoyment,  not for my convenience.   I thought all people were.  Apparently I was wrong. 

I recently have heard 3 reports of people buying 2nd hand diapers only to discover they have ammonia.   If you have had ammonia once, cleared it properly out of your diapers, then.continued to use your diapers.without issue, sure pass them on or re-sell them...but be honest about the diapers history.   If you have reoccurring ammonia issues (they stink often and / or you need to strip often), or if you just stripped for ammonia and are now done with the stash (having not gone back to using them you cant know the issue is gone), then your diapers are not fit to pass on or re-sell!  Why would anyone think passing on an issue like this is ok?  It's not ok!  Ammonia causes painful rash on babies bums so passing on that diaper is essentially hurting someone else's baby! 

Like I've said a few times, Im old to cloth diapering but new to the internet world of cloth.  I dont know much about these buy/sell/trade sites.  I haven't ordered diapers off eBay.   I almost received diapers off kijiji but it fell through.   But I do know this. 
when giving/selling : Be honest about your diapers history.  If your embarrassed of its history then send it to your rag bin.  Tell the receiving person up front:
•If baby has had a yeast problem. 
•If diapers have had ammonia (stink), if so how often, how you treated and how  long without ammonia were they last used.
• If and how often you stripped the diapers
• did you add bleach,  scents, fabric softeners to your laundry.
• Any atypical use or care. 
•Any absorbency issues
• Any question the buyer / receiving party has!
When receiving / buying second hand: You want to receive a clean healthy diaper so be prepared:
• Ask questions (see above list).
• Ask about return / refund policy and make sure it's practical
• Only purchase healthy, clean diapers
•Be wary of those stripping and bleaching often and choose a different buyer.  Cuz even if the diaper no longer has an issue, that much wear will be producing some tare. 
•make sure you can test and return. (soak in water and check for smells, inspect diaper for damage).
• Dont get diapers connected to sites that have unending ammonia / stripping habits. 

One would wish that everyone would pass on or re-sell  with honour.   But apparently that's not the case.  So be honourable when you pass on and be wise when you receive.  If your fave site for second hand has issues then suggest some rules, a history of items sold, a buyer and seller rating system and a standard return policy that is reasonable to the buyer and the seller.  Or set up your own site, perhaps a local one where all diapers go through those managing the site to make sure items are always being passed on in an honourable way.