My son, who is 16 months old, hates diaper changes. He pretty much has since we brought him home from the hospital. Even when he was a newborn, he hated lying on his back and now that he is a force-to-be-reckoned-with-can-run-faster-than-the-wind toddler, the dreaded diaper change is even worse. We have just had to accept this fact and learn to make due as much as possible. Here are my tips to survive diaper changes when your baby hates them.
Stay Positive – They Can Smell Fear
No word of a lie, I swear my son can smell fear when I try to wrangle his stinky self to change his diaper. It’s hard to admit, but there has been far more than one instance where his shrieks and tantrums have pushed me to my parenting limit. Although venting has its immediate gratification, it won’t stop your baby’s exuberant behaviours. I have found that keeping an upbeat tone and adding a bit of humour in to a full-fledge diaper changing melt-down can help dissipate those feelings.
Become As Efficient As Possible
Efficiency is key when it comes to changing your baby’s diaper. The more efficient you are, the less time it will take before your busy one will be up and running again – Which is pretty much all they want anyway.
Make Sure You Have Enough Space for Flailing
I don’t know about your toddler, but mine likes to flail. A lot. So much so, our diaper changing station on the dresser in his room has nothing on it, since anything near him during diaper changes will go flying. Diaper changes are so much easier when you are not worried about a leg knocking off the cream here or a hand grabbing the wipes there. Put a diaper change pad on the floor and Bob’s your Uncle.
Keep Everything On-Hand
The last thing you will want to deal with when you baby is head to toe in fecal matter and acting like he’s getting branded with a hot poker, is to be one wipe away from a clean bum. Always make sure you have plenty of wipes on hand, cream if you need it, and of course the diaper. Don’t forget the diaper! Unless of course if you have a dog like this… Then you’re basically set for life.
Use Distraction to Your Advantage
It goes something like this: “Hey, what’s on your feet? Are those monkey’s on your feet? Where’s your toes? Where’s your belly button? Can you clap your hands? What does a dinosaur say? Roar Roar that’s right!” Yep, you’ll feel like an idiot, but if you don’t have to listen to any more ear-piercing crying it will be worth it! Distraction at its finest.
Give Them What They Want
I don’t know about you all, but my parenting style has changed a lot since my second child. Instead of always following the book on “what is best” for baby, my husband and I follow more of a “what helps us survive” approach. It seems to be working thus far – We are both relatively sane and the kids are unscathed. So, if your toddler LOVES holding the remote and it is usually out-of-bounds, then for the love of all things holy, use that remote to its full advantage during diaper changes!
If All Else Fails, Change Them Standing Up
Now that my son is up and running, we often have to do diaper changes standing up. He tolerates them much more, but it can be tricky after bowel movements. Try it sometime – It takes a bit of practice but once you get the hang of it it’s actually easier because they’re not screaming and kicking at you the entire time! It’s a lot easier too if you have a second pair of hands.
Pray For Early Potty Training
I absolutely CAN’T wait until my son is potty trained! While it’s important to follow your child’s cues, teaching them early about toilet training can’t hurt, right? Here’s hoping that this special breed of babies we have that HATE diaper changes, will LOVE being out of diapers and go in a toilet (but hopefully not all the way in)!
I will take any prayers you have.
There you have it – 8 ways to survive diaper changes when your baby hates them! From a fellow mom with a toddler who thinks we are killing him slowly with each and every wipe, I feel your pain. Please know that you’re not alone and (hopefully) it will get better!