Button It Up

Do baby clothes companies and button companies have some sort of back alley deal that the rest of the public is not privy to?

Why? Why?!?
Why? Why?!?

Why else to explain the teeny tiny metal buttons that are at the underside of a onesie, or that run up the legs of a full-footed onesie that make it nearly impossible to nail it on the first try. I have a college degree, yet for some reason I have a difficult time snapping buttons on a squirming child in a timely manner.

Color coding buttons and even numbering them probably wouldn’t work because dressing a small human is like shooting a moving target. It takes precision, practice and a steady hand. I have none of those.

I used to think that velcro offered the best solution, but after watching my daughter easily Houdini herself out of a velcro-based swaddle blanket when she was just a few months old, the last thing you want to be encouraging a young female is to easily get out of her clothes.

I know that I’m not the only male who has trouble with buttons, too. The Pussycat Dolls sang about men having trouble undoing their buttons. I’m on the other end, trying to fasten my daughter away from becoming a Pussycat Doll but with minimal results.

Honestly, it’s not that hard to secure three buttons on your child’s undercarriage. It’s almost like blackjack — the odds are in your favor if you play your cards right. But when you start to get cocky is when you’ll run into trouble.

It’s the 17-button mindfuck of a full onesie that is just a super pain in the ass. Not only are there buttons running from underneath the neck all the way down to both feet, but somehow you’ve got to line them up in the middle of the crotchal region while keeping a pair of kicking feet inside the damned outfit.

Umm ... no.
Umm … no.

Today, for instance, I thought that I had my daughter dressed correctly after a mid-day diaper change. All the buttons were eventually accounted for and she stayed clothed as she crawled around and gummed things on the floor, taste-testing various objects in our house. When the inevitable next diaper change came along, I got the pity smile from my wife.

Ahh, honey, you didn’t get the buttons exactly right, but it’s OK, she said to me as if I had just dropped my lunch while stepping off the short bus.

Umm, how about I got all the buttons buttoned and unless the very top one was somehow secured to the very bottom one, then we’re in pretty fucking awesome shape?!? What about that line of thinking?

And this diaper change came in the daylight. Not a middle of the night Holy crap you’ve pissed so much we’ve got to change you into a whole other onesie and now I’ve got to button you up correctly while my eyes are half-shut in the pitch black darkness because God forbid I turn on a light to see what I’m doing or else I’ll wake you and then you’ll cry for two hours, so fuck it, I’m just going for it to try and get some sleep type of situation.

Maybe this is somehow related to the reason buttonfly jeans never took off. It’s some deep-rooted therapy session that no one is able to admit to.

So when my wife came home from Babies R Us with two bags filled with jars of food, she was almost as happy as I was to deliver some new full-footed onesie pajamas.

Look! she exclaimed as if she had just been the first human on the moon they have ZIPPERS!

Now I realize I’m not the only one experiencing button hatred issues.


  1. Ah, but zippers mean undoing the whole onesie, letting in cold air. Buttons can just be undone and (poorly) redone at the only end that matters during a diaper change, keeping the rest of the baby warm and sleepy. My big problem with onesies is the fact that some come undone all down one leg, but not the other, so one leg comes free easily, while the other has to be tugged and de-tangled—another difficult feat in the middle of the night.

  2. Oh my dear and fluffy lord!!! Yes!! While I have developed some skill with those damned buttons, it is my fervent belief that buttons should be banned in favor of the zipper.

    Vote yes, Button Ban!!
    (It should also be noted for those who have not encountered them, there are onesies that zip down. These are good for night time diaper changes because you don’t have to unzip the whole outfit to accomplish the mission).

  3. My boys are a bit older, so this does not impact me. I wish it did. Those buttons could drive me crazy even in the middle of the day. My wife likes to tell the story how she remembers hearing me yell out and seeing a onesie flying through the air as she walking by. No, a child was not even partially in it.

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