Oh my -- wow.
I had some initial criticism as I read through the poem but the ending certainly made up for it. The idea behind the poem is absolutely fabulous. I didn't see that coming. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
For starters, I really liked the whole idea of the poem. The title and the first two stanzas made me think the poem was dark. But as you went through the three examples of the family members, I saw the poem taking a humorous direction and was almost convinced it'd stay that way. Until the end... it was an amazing ending that tied all the concepts together that I didn't see coming. I didn't expect the narrator to target him/herself as the final person who should be switched off. More on that later...
While I loved the concept, I felt that the 3 middle stanzas were a little messy in terms of wording. I liked the first stanza about the brother. I had some trouble reading this line in the second stanza:
"When my mother reminds me of everything I have to do with my life."
The object 'everything I have to do with my life' has odd syntax. We don't know what kinds of things in life you are referring to. I assume you are talking about chores, obligations, or duty, but its a little unclear.
"When my father
tries to take
the only thing giving me purpose away"
could have been better said as:
"When my father
tries to take away
the only thing that gives me purpose"
It may be even better to say something like "the only thing that gives me joy" or "the only thing that gives me freedom."
Basically, insert [feeling] that the object gives you. We don't know what kind of purpose the thing had. Rather, by saying it gives you a specific feeling, we can infer that that feeling keeps you alive.
And this is where the poem started taking a darker turn, though I still didn't expect the narrator to target him/herself in the ending lines. THAT was heart-wrenching. People who are depressed or don't want to live often blame themselves for the problem, but rarely do they realize that its their environment that is the problem and not them. Rather than resolving to "switch off everyone else," the narrator prefers to switch off themselves.
I'd like to add that this is the impression I got about the switches: The 'switch off' isn't a metaphor for death when it comes to the other people. When the narrator wants to switch off other people, its more like "I wish these people in my life would stop bothering me, I wish I could shut off their 'processes' that get in the way of my life. When they bully me, when they control me, when they abuse me." Yet... when it came to switching their own switch off, I saw that as a metaphor for not wanting to live, even if it wasn't necessarily suicide.
Overall, that was an incredible poem and well executed. I loved the meaning behind it... it filled me with some sorrow and concern for those in a situation like this.