Expert claims parents should ask babies for permission before changing diapers

An expert has claimed that parents should seek permission from their babies before changing their diapers in order to set up a culture of consent.

Parenting can be a pretty tough venture, and through all the love and laughs there is of course a mountain of dirty diapers that need dealing with.

There’s nothing glamorous about that aspect of the job, but it’s a necessity and we were all babies once – but one thing that babies aren’t capable of doing is speaking.

So one expert saying that parents should ask their babies permission before changing them is raising some eyebrows.

Deanne Carson, a self-proclaimed “sexuality educator, speaker, and author,” has sparked a conversation about consent culture right from infancy.


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During an appearance on ABC in 2018, Carson shared her insights on fostering a culture of consent in early childhood. While she typically engages with children aged three and above on issues related to consent, she emphasized the significance of introducing these concepts even earlier.

Obviously, newborns can’t verbally respond, but Carson highlighted the importance of non-verbal communication, particularly eye contact, in conveying the message that a child’s response matters.

In a segment focused on consent laws, she explained: “We work with children from three years old. We work with parents from birth.”

This unconventional approach led a reporter to inquire: “From birth?”


Carson firmly responded: “Yes, just about how to set up a culture of consent in their homes so ‘I’m going to change your nappy now, is that OK?'”

She acknowledged that expecting a verbal response from a baby is unrealistic, adding humorously: “Of course, a baby is not going to respond ‘Yes, mum, that’s awesome, I’d love to have my nappy changed.'”

Carson elaborated on the practice, explaining that by allowing a brief moment of anticipation and waiting for non-verbal cues and eye contact, parents can communicate to their infants that their reactions hold value.

It’s safe to say that this claim raised eyebrows online, with many questioning the purpose of asking for permission from a baby who doesn’t really know what’s going on.

One person questioned: “And what happens when baby says no? Do it anyway? Whoa now there is the real problem.”


A second said: “Either she has never wrestled a toddler during a change or worse, she just left hers in a s****y nappy until it was ready to consent.”

A third person added: “For sanity’s sake – if a baby’s nappy needs changing, you change it. You are the adult & in charge of the baby – the baby isn’t in charge of you. Although it feels like it sometimes.”

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If this isn’t strange enough, back in October a weekly parenting columnist at the Omaha World-Herald said that parents shouldn’t high-five their kids.

According to John Rosemond, parents that dish out high-fives are less likely to be respected by their children when they get older.

“I will not slap the upraised palm of a person who is not my peer, and a peer is someone over age 21, emancipated, employed, and paying their own way,” Rosemond wrote, adding: “The child who is allowed to high-five an adult has tacit permission to talk to said adult as if they are peers.

“The high-five is not compatible with respect,” he argued.

Who knew that parenting had so many layers to it?


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