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My family has been driving me nuts lately. I live with my mom, her boyfriend, and my sister, and about a month ago I approached them all and asked them if they could try to conserve energy (turn off lights, not waste water, etc). I realize I can't force them to care about anything, but to me it seems like a reasonable request. Why wouldn't my mom want to save money on electricity and water? Why wouldn't we all appreciate having to deal with less trash (plastic bags, utensils, all that junk)?

At any rate, they all agreed. My mum and her boyfriend got better about conservation for about a week. Now they've reverted to their old habits. My sister never made any kind of effort at all, but I'm used to that. She doesn't care about much, period.

But yeah. I run around after them turning off lights constantly. If I turn off a light when I leave a room, I'll come back five minutes later to find that it's on and there's no one even in the room. It's like I never turned it off in the first place. Every night before I go to bed, I go through every room and make sure all the lights are off. Wake up to pee in the middle of the night, there are at least two lights on.

Now granted, we have changed almost every bulb in the house to CF's (my mom went out and bought a ton of them when she realized how bright they were), but that doesn't mean we have to leave the lights running constantly.

I bought a bunch of reusable shopping bags for the family. They're in the backseat of the car, not exactly hard to get at...yet nobody uses them except my sister...she just steals them to use as lunch bags. I'm almost always the one who puts away groceries when they come home, and I've stopped throwing out the bags. It's unbelievable how many bags have accumulated in just one month. Our bag dispenser is so full that if I stuffed one more bag in it, it would burst. But my mum just keeps using plastic.

I also bought a Method all purpose-cleaner for the kitchen and such. My mum admitted that she didn't mind it and that it worked fairly well...and then went out and bought the extremely corrosive and harmful Bam! cleaner. Wow, that makes so much sense...

It's starting to feel like I have to move out just to implement environmentally friendly practices in my life. How the hell do I get a family addicted to the words 'I want' to start giving a damn about something other than themselves?



July 2008

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