I'm having trouble with a few friends (I see on a regular basis) to take me, and what I say seriously. They sometimes straight up just ignore me. Also, it's not like I'm telling them to do stuff they can't do or things that are unreasonable, they're simple requests.

Example:

This weekend, me and 3 friends went out, got some drinks (only one for me because I had to drive home afterwards) and had a lot of fun. At the end we went to McDonald's to grab some food and we also took some of these balloons for kids with us. On my way home, I dropped 2 of the friends off, because they both live maybe a few hundred meters away from the McDonald's and the point where I dropped them off was on my way driving home anyways. So no big deal for me.

However, after I told them to pick up their trash and the balloons and they told me they'd do so, but after I arrived home I noticed they left it on the back seats and the floor. The next day I confronted them with that via text, both said it wasn't them. (Obviously it was one of them though...)

Question:

How can I make them respect what I say in order to take what I said serious?

  • 2
    Since they were both intoxicates at that point, you did not stand much chance (other than not driving them). Do you also have examples where there was no alcoholic influence? – Lot Oct 15 at 10:53
  • @Lot None of us was drunk (intoxicated). They "only" had like 2-3 drinks over the course of several hours. – Suimon Oct 15 at 11:16
  • Do you have a car that would allow you to spot check the back seat/floor as they're getting out, or is there anything that would block your vision? I ask because this may go along with an interpersonal solution. – Jess K. Oct 15 at 14:53
  • @JessK. Sure, I'd be able to check if they picked everything up. I just wasn't paying attention to the back seats when I dropped them off. – Suimon Oct 15 at 15:47
up vote 5 down vote accepted

Since you are able to see your backseats/floors from your position in your car, I'd highly recommend turning around as they are getting out to see if they are forgetting to take any trash with them and, if so, saying:

"Oh hey - don't forget to take your _____ (bag, trash, fry container, etc.) with you, please."

Reminding them on their way out of the car is crucial because you are just reiterating your earlier request, and you are very kindly putting them in a position where if they still leave trash they would be blatantly disrespecting you (which virtually no one would do in this situation).

This is the most non-confrontational way to remind people to take their trash, so long as you stay casual and non-chalant as you say it, and after a few rounds of this, it's likely they'll start to do it on their own out of habit.


If for some reason this doesn't work, or things are still getting left in the car, the next time someone mentions wanting to grab food, I'd recommend saying:

"The last couple times I've drove us to food, I have to clean the trash out of my car later. If we go, will everyone please throw away their own trash when they get out?"

This shows that you are getting hesitant about driving them to food, and may stop if the behavior continues. If they value the privilege of getting to ride around and eat while you drive, they'll probably be a little more cautious about cleaning up because they don't want to lose that benefit.

If it's something that you wouldn't really stop giving them a lift for then say something along the lines of

"Listen, I like my car to be clean and tidy so could you take the rubbish with you otherwise we'll eat in"

Basically your two options are, don't give them lifts, or stop them eating in the car if neither of the methods above work. If you don't want rubbish and crumbs in your car the easy method would be to just eat inside the restaurant.

If you want to be really firm with it then you can always say that if they don't take their rubbish then they won't get lifts again.

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