My husband loves hiking, polar bears, native plants, and organic cherry tomatoes. We met on Earth Day at an eco-friendly volunteer event and share a deep appreciation for the natural world.  Why then does he turn the thermostat up to 71 degrees while loafing around the house in shorts and a t-shirt?   Why does he drive to the park with our son when he, an avid marathoner, could push the stroller there in a mere ten minutes?  Sadly, I think I know the answer to my own questions.  My husband, the love of my life, is a lazy environmentalist. 

The good news is that although he is highly resistant to change, once he’s on the bandwagon, he’s there to stay.  He wasn’t sure about cloth diapering but now he’s the one who launders them more than anyone.  Composting seemed a bit messy to him but now he happily takes out our potato peels and radish tops on a daily basis. 

He’s always slow to embrace changes in our lifestyle (especially ones that entail cutting back a bit on comfort) but after the initial resistance, he usually joins right in.  So, I’ve found it’s best to endure the grumbling and forge ahead with small changes until he becomes more of a leader than a follower.

I still sometimes wish that he would internalize the impact of carbon emissions and make changes without my prompting but after knowing and loving him for a long time, I realize that he’s a status quo kind of guy–which is why he married a spontaneous woman who loves to initiate change!   The truth is, he’s a fabulous father and partner, which is why I have patience for his lack of action.  

Have any of you struggled with a spouse who flat out refuses to use cloth diapers or turn down the thermostat?  How have you handled your eco-spats?  Thanks for sharing your experiences!