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Plastic Guilt – How are you dealing with it?

Plastic guilt is crippling my conscience right now. It’s obviously something that’s been very prominent in the news and media of late.  But how are you dealing with it?

Before we go any further, this post is an introduction to a new series I shall be embarking on. I’m learning slowly, how to live with less plastic and how to be more conscientious in the purchases I make. I’m not a “hippy” or an eco warrior and I’m not about to embark on a vegan diet. What I am trying to do is share with people how to make cheap and effective changes to our lives. Changes that make a positive impact on the environment and how to teach your child the same.

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For me , hearing the crippling effects plastic is having on the planet, (notice I said THE and not OUR) and the creatures we share it with is too much of a daily weight to bear. I feel helpless. Whilst it’s important to realise we can all play a part in battling the war against plastic, it’s so hard when you are bombarded with the stuff on a minute by minute basis. Even this was typed on plastic keys on my keyboard.

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Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Now I am by no means an eco warrior but that’s the whole point, you don’t need to be. We are all capable of reducing how much plastic we use and how we dispose of it. It doesn’t have to take a lot of time and effort and often it can be more cost effective to buy plastic alternatives.

If you have made it this far then great. This isn’t an article to preach, this is a genuine cry for help. This is so deeply on my conscience I am living with the pointless feeling of guilt and despair every day. Shuddering daily at the amount of plastic that gets sent our way. Even if I myself choose a plastic free option, we are still bombarded with plastic from other sources.

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Take Christmas just gone for example. I ordered George a book advent. He eats enough sugary foods as it is and last year I got bored with explaining it was only one chocolate a day. So this year I opted for  a book advent and none of us had a chocolate advent calendar. That was until one of the mums at preschool very kindly decided to purchase all 70+ an advent calendar.

Don’t get me wrong, I thought this was an incredibly kind gesture and we accepted it gratefully. Then we took George’s Nana out for dinner to a chinese restaurant in honour of her birthday.  Whilst we were waiting for our food, the manager came over and gave George a chocolate advent calendar. Again very kind, but despite my best efforts, he now had 2. I wasn’t asked in advance, she just presented him with it. I could never have taken it away and I wouldn’t. It was a gift. But to me it was now a responsibility. A responsibility to dispose of the plastic conscientiously.

The third chocolate advent was given to hubs by one of his accounts clients. And there it was, the unavoidable truth that no matter how hard we try to ignore it, plastic will find a way into your life.

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This is merely a drop in our plastic filled ocean. We all know we are now consuming plastic particles that have been eaten by members of the food chain. “Become a vegetarian or a vegan I hear you cry.” But I don’t want to. I enjoy eating meat and fish.

Of course there’s also the subject of company advertising. Myself and George sit and watch children’s television and then the adverts start.

“Look at this plastic thing in a plastic shell that you can open and it’s filled with plastic accessories wrapped in plastic with a plastic box to sit on.”

“Collect them all” I hear George repeat. My soul shudders. His poor little heart doesn’t realise that by the time he’s 50, the planet will be struggling to be livable yet him and all his peers will have consumed and discarded more plastic than any generation before him to contribute to its demise.

So I found and joined a Facebook group on Ecobriking and got started on my first few bricks. I have also looked into Terracycle. Check them out. Terracycle in particular, is something I’m really excited to delve into more once we have completed this poxy house move and settled in.

To be fair my local council is pretty exceptional with the varying degrees of plastic they recycle. But the media would lead us to believe the councils can’t process the amount of plastic we produce quick enough so quite often sell it to other countries who dump it. It’s exasperating. And I often don’t know who to trust. My plan is to contact the local council, again after our move and ask for a tour of the recycling plant, that I can hopefully share with you all. We shall see.

So that is where I am at. Struggling daily with literally everything. Even seeing a character on Eastenders throw a perfectly good toy in the general waste because “they didn’t like it”! There are so many alternatives. Charity shops, school tombolas. Very little actually needs to go into your general waste now.

So I hope I have whet your appetite to join me as I embark on this mission to live with a healthier and happier conscience, with less plastic. ♥

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Wanna share?

19 thoughts on “Plastic Guilt – How are you dealing with it?

  1. It’s only a small step but I’ve switched to ‘period pants’ instead of using throwaway towels & tampons. As well as helping the planet it’s actually quite liberating! #KCACOLS

    1. Ooh who did you buy yours from? I looked into them but the initial outlay is quite a lot. I think that’s the route I need. Otherwise I’ve been considering washable pads. I couldn’t get on with a mooncup.

      It’s so weird isn’t it that we are now challenging the ideas and products we have been used to. Totally liberating.

      Thanks for stopping by #KCACOLS

  2. I definitely know what you mean about the plastic guilt. I especially feel it when our shopping delivery arrives and there is plastic EVERYWHERE. We’re trying to make small changes such as using recycled toilet paper which comes in a box rather than plastic wrap. I hope that each tiny change will make a difference and when all those little changes happen they’ll make a big change for the planet.

  3. I spent 13+ years working in recycling, both curbside and textile, and I am so shattered by what we are doing to this planet of ours and how our numbnut in chief doesn’t even acknowledge the problem. It’s real. I am a vegetarian and gave up fish because their tummies are filled with plastic. Frightened, concerned, and still caring! #KCACOLS xoxo

  4. It is almost impossible to get away from plastic. As you say making those small changes where you can will make a difference. We are trying to make sure we pass on old plastic toys and recycle everything we can. At least we are all more plastic aware than we were. Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next time

    1. Thank you. It really is. The companies and governments allowing the production are ultimately responsible. But if we as consumers stop purchasing it, surely supply and demand will prevail and production will slow. Sadly I don’t think there is anywhere near enough of the world’s population on board with making the change. Thanks for stopping by. #KCACOLS

  5. Its tough. I’ve been trying to make an effort but until you really start paying attention its hard to believe just how prevalent the problem is. I fear that we have dug ourselves a pretty sizeable hole to try and climb out of #KCACOLS

    1. I fear you may be right. Things seem a little damned if you do/damned if you don’t right now. Things are improving slowly but it’s going to be a long road and I wonder if we have the time. Thanks for stopping by #kcacols

  6. The funny thing about this is that while companies replace plastics with more “eco-friendly” options, they turn around and make more plastics for us as well. Starbucks is a fun one that comes to mind because they are taking away the straw, replacing it with a sippy cup lid and still selling us K-pods that are made with…PLASTIC! Honestly, you have to take this day-by-day and slowly make the changes to living a more plastic free life. Plus knowing how you can recycle certain plastics is a big one because they are not all created equal and they can’t all be reused. Great post though and don’t beat yourself up about it.

  7. Those “surprise toys” should be banned! My son has been learning about plastic and the harm we are doing to wildlife and our planet and has decided to stop buying them. He has learning disabilities but is more able to think about things than a lot of out current politicians! We are recycling more things and are currently collecting crisp packets from our friends since finding a local place which accepts them for recycling. We are also taking on a weekly litter pick. We all need to take action. #KCACOLS

    1. We really do. I’m following some fab people on Instagram and Facebook and always learning better ways to improve how we live more eco friendly.
      Well done to you and Adam x
      Thanks for stopping by #kcacols

  8. Our supermarket gives out these little plastic collectables (junk) and I refuse to get them – I just tell my daughter I don’t shop there. And I’m good with the bags and the lids instead of gladwrap but the bottles and food wrapped in plastic still haunts me. I’m reducing it, but if you buy meat unwrapped, they still grab a tray and wrap it!! But def reduced way more than even 12 months ago. #KCACOLS

    1. I know people in my local town they have to insist the meat is put in there own reusable containers and it almost becomes confrontational. Supermarkets should be introducing waste reduction as part of their training. Thanks for stopping by #kcacols

  9. I think we’re the first generation to actually realise what we’re doing to the environment, but the question is what are we doing about it? Well, we’ve all switched to bamboo toothbrushes since I found out the toothbrushes I used in my childhood will still be around when my grandchildren are grandparents. I’ve cut down on plastic even though plastic bottles really irk me. I’ve gone to taking my bamboo cup with me to work so I can pop that with me to Costa. I don’t wrap things like I used to either. It’s brown paper bags for lunchboxes and I stick everything I can in the recycling. It’s cheaper to make new plastic than it is to recycle – the old excuse. I don’t mind paying a wee bit more for a bottle I can actually use again.

  10. it’s really tough isn’t it. i find the amount just from doing the food shop is horrific. i particularly hate the bags that satsumas come in. I think we can all do more but we need a lot of help too from the big companies and supermarkets etc.

    1. We really do. The groups I have joined encourage one another to all bombard one company at a time with contact urging them to take action. This is a subject I could talk about forever but it’s very disheartening to focus on all the time sadly. Thanks for stopping by. ☺️

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