Opinion / 首页Blog

Arguments on toddlers' crotchless pants

By Judy_Zhu (blog.chinadaily.com.cn) Updated: 2014-12-24 14:45

A pair of crotchless pants that have a split in the crotch for Chinese toddlers has become since last month a contentious issue in the United States. It was reported that some onlookers in Monterey Park, California, seeing a boy with his little butt exposed, were so shocked, that an American woman reported the run-in to the local police. When police arrived and learned that the pants are mainly to enable the kid to do his business easier and faster, the police just couldn’t believe what they heard.

As to my knowledge, the pants are ubiquitous in China. Maybe there is the historical reason. In the old times we didn’t have disposable diapers for kids while frequent washing of soiled cloth nappies was so troublesome, that some smart person invented this special ‘open-crotch pants’ for toddlers to save time and energy. It is considered to be so convenient that it has been used for generations.

Chinese traditional toilet training involves wearing the special crotchless pants. And the same pants are available for both boys and girls. The toilet training starts as early as when the baby is born. A parent or grandparent sits on a chair with their legs spread apart a little bit, and holds the child between their legs (their hands under the child's knees). The parent makes a gentle "xuxu" sound to try to encourage the child to go. The two of them sit there and wait until the child does his business. We are all familiar with the scene because we were trained like this. I think it is a wise training only if it is performed in your private household or in the wash room, but not in public.

There have been intensive arguments about Chinese parents dressing a baby with crotchless pants only, and letting him or her urinate and defecate wherever he or she pleases. Undoubtedly it is not a socially acceptable behavior. Besides, children also have their privacy, even they are too young to realize this. As for children having their lower body exposed, people see it as ‘disorderly conduct’ on the part of the child’s parents.

I saw on the Internet some supporters commenting that this is because of cultural differences. But I personally can’t find any cultural connection. I feel it’s more like an inappropriate traditional experience.

For the sake of safety, the exposure is unhygienic and makes the child vulnerable to cold and accidents such as from boiling water, animal bites, or sharp knives. Even worse, this outfit might draw pedophiles. Once the kids get hurt, you won’t even have time to cry. Besides, it will encourage the kids to do their business anytime and anywhere they want, which are not socially acceptable.

However, the design of toddler’s crotchless pants is a somewhat wise invention if you can make use of it accordingly. The combination of a pair of open-crotch short pants and a disposable diaper is a perfect summer pick in Nicole’s closet. The disposable diapers protect the kid from exposure while the opening design of the pants lets more fresh air go in to the nappy area and helps expel the wetness, which can help diminish the kid’s diaper rash significantly. I don’t want to see kids with crotchless pants only, neither do I want to see them with disposable diapers only (these easily loosen up). With one more piece of dress, what a perfect mix-match it will turn out to be!

The original blog is: http://bbs.chinadaily.com.cn/blog-309597-25514.html

Most Viewed Today's Top News