20 Sep
My New Neighbor is Making Herself at Home…In My House!

Mornin’, Mouthy Minions! Another Guest Mouthy Thursday is upon us and this week, we’re hosting the very funny Kim from the blog Let Me Start By Saying. You may love her for her inspiring posts or funny parental anecdotes, but I love her for saying things like, “Get your vulva off my throw pillow.” (It should be noted, however, that she wasn’t saying that TO ME. Ahem.)

Take it away, Kim! –Kristine, TMH

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

I am married with two kids (5 and 10). We live on a small dirt road in the country. My husband and I are private people. Due to the nature of our jobs, we have unlisted numbers, are careful about our friends and are not super social. Add to this that I can be OCD and view my home as my escape, I am not a fan of guests unless I invite them, and I tend to want a criminal background check before I let you in my home.

Recently, a woman moved in behind us with her 12 year old son and he started coming over uninvited. This has escalated, however, and one morning I came downstairs in my robe to find him and my kids in the living room eating breakfast. Now, he’s usually here all day, coming with us on every outing, and eating all my food.

What has really pushed me over the edge, though, is that his mother is now doing the same! She has started coming over almost daily, unannounced, through the gate, in the yard, on my porch and in my house. No knock, no nothin’. Then it’s – can I have ride here, can I use your phone long-distance to call there, can I use some garlic, Motrin, band-aid, butter… borrow a movie, etc. I come downstairs and she is there! One day she needed butter while I was not home, and just walked in and helped herself!

I have never locked my door during the day, but we do now. I feel invaded. My sanctuary and privacy are gone. I am stressed. She has not taken any of my not so subtle hints (like, ‘look, we have guns and things upstairs, so please don’t go up there without one of us; my bedroom is really private; we’re leaving/eating/sleeping soon; I’m working right now, etc.) I don’t want to burn bridges, but JHC I am at my wit’s end with this woman! Obviously she was not raised with the same manners as I was, and she just does not get it. I am an introvert who is all but anti-social and super private. Which I have told her. Three damn times. I am ready to serve her with a no trespass order, or cite her for felony burglary over the butter! Help!

Signed,

Fed Up & Fired Up

______________________________________________

Dear Fed Up & Fired Up,

Ahhh . . . the country. So beautiful. So quiet.

So full of crazy-ass neighbors with boundary issues.

Finding the right balance between politely excusing yourself from such an intimate friendship and causing the kind of rift with a Nut Job Neighbor that will make it hard for the police to find where your body is hidden can be quite tricky.

But do not lose hope, my peculiarly private pet, for I have a few ideas.

The next time she comes a-plunderin’, answer the door while scratching your head violently, declaring a massive lice infestation. This should buy you 48 hours to hang blackout curtains over every window of your home, thereby making dodging her approaches much easier.

Rush-order customized Welcome mats for your front and back doors that say, “Nope, Still Not Home” and hang seasonal wreaths with delightful arrows pointing to freshly installed deadbolts, cheerfully declaring, “This Lock’s For You!”

If finances are tight due to your super-secret job, a less costly approach would be to (wo)man up and say, “I believe I haven’t been clear. I am a boring, practically mute, butter-hoarding Agoraphobic who hates people and knows how to use the many guns stashed around my home. Please stop coming over.”

If none of these work? Taser that freak sandwich and call the cops.

Someone who’s that determined to borrow your Band-Aids can only be interested in one thing: creating a life-sized doll version of you out of the dryer lint and stray hairs she steals from your home whenever she pops by. I can’t imagine you’ll sleep well knowing the woman bagging your butter by day is lovingly spooning your linty Doppelgänger at night. So be strong, sister. Be strong.

Best of luck exorcising the Demons,

Kim, Guest TMH

25 Responses to “My New Neighbor is Making Herself at Home…In My House!”

09.20.12#1

Comment by Desperate Dietwives.

OMG, I can’t believe people like your neighbour exist!!!! O_O
This woman is clearly very used to being shrugged off, so she purposely ignores polite hints and goes on invading other people’s privacy until they positively turn her off.

You might try the same behaviour towards her: go into her house, enter unexpectedly, help yourself with her butter, sugar, eggs, band-aids and whatever else you feel like taking when she’s absent; go make phone calls from her home and see how she takes it. But this might make her think that you are friendly towards her.

Perhaps the best thing is to tell her plainly, when you open the door, “Not right now please, I’m pretty busy and I need to concentrate”, then politely but firmly lock the door to her face. The same goes with her boy, of course.
If she persists, tell her “Please, go away. You are not welcome here”.

These are the first steps, before going to the police and putting a restrictive order on her.

Good luck!

09.20.12#2

Comment by Momma Be Thy Name.

Ah, neighbors. Disturbingly hilarious.

09.20.12#3

Comment by I’m a Mouthy Housewife Today! | Let Me Start By Saying….

[...] I’m doing just that today over on The Mouthy Housewives. [...]

09.20.12#4

Comment by Evil Joy.

Answer the door stark naked. Tell her she interrupted something and to leave. Tell her it’s not the first time she interrupted ‘private time’ and you’re not into swinging so get the hell out!!!

09.20.12#5

Comment by li.

ROTFLLLLL Oh my God awesome! But how horrible for her that these people keep coming over. Sheesh. Wishing her the best of luck in creating boundaries around her home… like fences.

Kim at Let Me Start By Saying Reply:

Tall barbed wire fences with tasers built in.

09.20.12#6

Comment by renee.

oh yes they are out there, welive on a farm and i have very bad stranger anxietys yet we will have people drive right up to the backyard or the barn out back and just walk into my backyard like we are a tuorits attraction! they pick up our animals and make my daughter come screaming into the house! my husband has gotten so tired of telling people over hte phone that if they dont get the f**k off our private property he will call the cops (who are also tired of being called out) that we have HUGE signs in spanish and english stating its private property and to stay away…who taught these people it was ok to do crap like this?

N and Em's mom Reply:

My 80 year old grandmother used to greet strangers who pulled into the driveway with a shotgun. She would go out and say, “I’m going out to shoot racoons. Are you fellows lost?” Cracks me up every time I think about it. And yes the gun was loaded.

Kelly Reply:

I love this story so much!

09.20.12#7

Comment by Danielle.

Can’t say I’ve ever had this problem. Of course when you’ve got a great pyrenees roaming about people tend not to come over. Add a St Bernard, Weiemeraner and a viszla and you get 0 visitors ever. God bless huge, unfriendly, protective dogs!

09.20.12#8

Comment by Cy.

I just want to know what the woman and her husband do for a living that is so top secret/hush-hush. Inquiring minds and all that!

Kim at Let Me Start By Saying Reply:

Seriously. Is she rocking a secret identity? Witness protection program? Some cool job and she knows where are the nuke launch buttons are? I’m so curious.

09.20.12#9

Comment by Suburban Snapshots.

“Linty doppelganger” is priceless. I second the big dog approach.

09.20.12#10

Comment by patrick.

I’d forget about the big, nasty dogs (I can’t imagine THAT would be an acceptable trade off for you), the guns, coming to the door naked, etc. Why not just be direct and say something like:

“My husband and I do not want visitors, even from neighbors, who don’t call first to find out if a visit is convenient. In the future, please call before coming over, and please instruct your son to do the same. I may or may not answer the phone, depending on how busy I am. And if I don’t, please don’t come over.”

Then, FOLLOW THROUGH and LOCK YOUR DOORS and DO NOT ANSWER YOUR DOOR when your neighbor comes knockin’, which she will in the beginning. . . before she stops.

09.21.12#11

Comment by gina valley.

I think she lives next door to me!

09.21.12#12

Comment by Aceta.

I would lock and quit answering the door, but I am kind of immature.

09.21.12#13

Comment by Moira.

Yes, this neighbor lady needs buttering DOWN, i.e. firm boundaries. But don’t burn all bridges. Do the kids get along? I grew up isolated in the country and always wished I had kids to play with after school, on weekends, on snow days, etc!

09.21.12#14

Comment by vodka tonic.

Eeesh, am I the only one that thinks “guns laying around upstairs” and kids don’t mix?

09.21.12#15

Comment by Kelly.

I think this neighbor lady is only going to respond to direct statements, made repeatedly. “I’m sorry it doesn’t work for us to visit today. You’ll have to go home.” Maybe after repeated instances of this, they will get the hint. If it’s hard to enforce the “Please go away” broke-record routine, maybe you can set up time to visit with them weekly/monthly/whatever, so you can say, “Now’s not good for us, but can’t wait to see you next week/month/etc.” I will say that this lady and her kid sound lonely. Not that it’s your job to take care of them, just that maybe their lack of boundaries is driven by something other than rude-ness. As someone who places high value on alone-time, I totally feel for you.

09.23.12#16

Comment by Summing Up My Week… (9/16-9/23/12) | Let Me Start By Saying….

[...] The Mouthy Housewives trusted me to give advice to one of their unsuspecting inquisitors. Poor thing.  [...]

09.23.12#17

Comment by Leslie.

“. . . linty Doppelgänger”!!! You complete me, Kim.

Kim at Let Me Start By Saying Reply:

I do what I can, my dear. I do what I can.

09.29.12#18

Comment by sisterfunkhaus.

If you have a fence, get a lock for the gate. Lock your doors. Put a sign on each door that says that says “Please respect our desire for a quiet life and plenty of privacy and call before you come. We don’t answer the door for unexpected guests.” Then don’t answer the door. Make sure it is locked at all times. Or,if anyone comes over uninvited, stick your head out of a window and tell them it isn’t a good time, then close the window and walk away. You have to be very consistent and train them. I do think you need to speak up for yourself. Tell the kid when you go places that it is a family outing and that friends aren’t invited this time.

Honestly, the first time I saw the child in my living room I would have told him that you don’t allow your children to have company until you get up in the morning and have had time to have your breakfast, coffee etc…, and even then, he must call first and get permission. I would have also have said something about anyone just walking in to my home. I would have told whoever walked in that they not only do the need to knock first, but they need to call first.

If you are rude, cold, or unpleasant enough, they will stop coming over.

09.30.12#19

Comment by Deedee.

I could tell you 100 stories of being taken advantage of in our 30-miles-from-anywhere rural life. Twenty years of it. But although I won’t bore you with the stories, I will tell you this: Most of the most outrageous invading, clueless, spongeing people do not last long out there. They are probably renters who are not paying rent and will soon be kicked out. Or if they bought their home they will soon be foreclosed on. So be as rude as you need to be to get them out of your life. Because chances are, six months from now they will be gone!

11.22.12#20

Comment by Thankful & Shmoopy | Let Me Start By Saying….

[...] I’m thankful that Lovely Leslie believed in me enough to give me my first professional writing gig. I believe the chance she took in me helped lead to other writing opportunities that mean a lot to me, like this & this. Not to mention all the people who then let me gust post on their awesome blogs after that, like here & here & here. [...]

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