Even though I am an advocate of cloth diapers, we actually did not use cloth diapers from the outset. Our family used disposable diapers with our eldest from birth, without really questioning our decision to do so, because like many others, we were too busy to research the alternatives, and we assumed it would be too much work to do cloth. Disposable diapers were conveniently available from the supermarket and drug store, whereas cloth diapers would have required more effort to locate.
However, after 5 months of using disposable diapers (during which time my mom constantly reminded me that she had cloth diapered me when I was a kid — thanks mom!) we became concerned about how much waste we were generating as a household. The problem was only going to get worse since the diapers were becoming larger as our daughter grew. We did not want our child's legacy to be a ton of plastic garbage that would sit in a landfill for hundreds of years. After asking a friend about her experiences with cloth diapers, and trying out a couple cloth diapers that she recommended, we discovered that cloth diapers were surprisingly not as hard to use and wash as we had expected. We made the transition to cloth at that point, and have not looked back since.
Once we made the switch, our eldest wore cloth diapers full time until she was toilet-trained and now her little sister is continuing our cloth adventures, having been exclusively in cloth diapers since she was 1 week old. We love the fact that, with minimal added effort on our part, we are living a conscious decision to reduce our environmental footprint for our kids. We also love that we are putting something real on our kid's bum, and are avoiding exposing our kids to the harmful chemicals in disposable diapers. Our kids have been happy and rash-free in cloth diapers. Using cloth diapers has also made us, and our kids, more motivated to start the toilet training process. Our eldest was completely out of diapers, even at night time, by the time she was 24 months old, and our youngest, who is now 12 months old, is continuing that trend -- she loves potty time and will go find her potty as soon as she wakes up.
Plus, on top of all the above-mentioned benefits, cloth diapers have saved us thousands of dollars over the cost of disposable diapers. They are also more stylish and fun to wear than disposable diapers. When our youngest is out of diapers, we look forward to passing our cloth diaper collection on to another family, so that they too can experience all the many advantages of cloth.