Just bear with me while I finish up this last order of scripts. I think the entire world has lost its mind right now – including my boss. Have you guys been noticing all the hostility to women in the news lately? I feel like someone is trying to shove me back into 1952. Newsflash: I ain’t going. Just get me through these next three weeks, that’s all I ask. Let me get through these next three weeks with a few active cells of sanity left.
P.S. what do you do about a neighbor who constantly comes to your house uninvited? As in daily. And calls you and texts you two to five times per day? (For the record, more frequently than my hubby calls.) I don’t mean they show up at the door. I mean they show up and then open the door and walk into your house. One time when she showed up, I was actually naked, getting ready to hop in the shower and was sitting on the toilet. I heard her open the door and call my name. But being naked and in the middle of a bowel movement, I thought if I didn’t answer she’d go away. Wrong. She walked into my kitchen and I heard her open the refrigerator door. Then she started walking up the stairs. The bathroom door was open and I couldn’t close it because I was (foolishly) worried about how I’d explain not having answered when she called my name. So I tip-toed into the bathroom closet (which has a lock on its door) and locked myself in the closet (trying not to make any noise.) I hid there for… I dunno. Half an hour maybe? Until I was certain she was gone. And even then I wasn’t certain. I was half convinced I’d open the door and find her sleeping in my bed or sitting on my sofa eating my roasted almonds or something.
This “showing up” is now happening daily. If I remember, I lock all my doors and close all the drapes so that she can’t get in or see inside. I hear her try the doorknob, and when she can’t get in she walks around the outside of the house looking in the windows. So I, being so mature, hide behind the back of the sofa until I hear her go away.
This is insane, right?
Have I told you guys this before? I forget.
And you know, we sometimes rent out our house to help pay the mortgage. I’m terrified she’s going to pull this stunt while there are renters there. In fact, she did. But the renters were at breakfast and didn’t see her. She calls me on my cell (the weekend the renters are there), and says, “I just stopped by your house, but you weren’t there.”
I went ballistic. (Because I have told her repeatedly she cannot just “show up” at my house. Her response? “What kind of car do you drive?” (I’m assuming her thought is, “If I see a car that isn’t your car, then I won’t go up to the door.”) I don’t remember what I said, but I there was yelling involved. Something along the lines of “It doesn’t matter what kind of car I drive! You shouldn’t just be showing up uninvited!” I said something about how people pay a lot of money to stay at my place, she cannot just stop by. Blah blah blah. Her response? “Well, if you’d answer your phone when I call, I wouldn’t have to stop by.”
Does this count as being stalked? Should I file a police complaint? Help!
The past two weeks, this behavior has been escalating. And since she paid absolutely no attention to my screaming fit on the telephone two Mondays ago — when she’d called and said she’d stopped by when the renters weren’t there — which is when I started locking doors, closing drapes, and diving behind sofas.
So today, I heard her try my doorknob (which was locked) and then knock on the door. And I thought, I have to settle this once and for all. Because the five phone calls, two text messages, and one uninvited drop-by per day are driving me insane.
So I go to the door in my underwear (didn’t even bother to dress, that’s how mad I was!), shaking my head, threw open the door and said, “You CANNOT keep doing this! What part of “Don’t drop by” do you not understand?”
And then more excuses from her:
Rude Neighbor (RN): “There’s no renters here. I thought you said not to drop by when renters are here.”
Me: “It doesn’t matter. I’m working. I’m trying to WORK! I work from home and I can’t do it with you interrupting me all the time.”
RN: “But you said you were coming up for air.”
NOTE: I’d texted her in response to the four days worth of phone calls and texts that I’d ignored that I was still swamped with work, but had a second to talk. I meant on the phone. I didn’t mean for her to just show up on the door.
Me: “I meant I could talk on the phone. I said to call me back, I was available until — (LOUD GROAN) — What do I have to say to get you to understand that you CAN’T do this?!! (Now I’m almost in tears.) You are driving me crazy! This doesn’t work for me. I’m not that social a person. You have called me more in the past five days than my own husband. The balance of things is off when I’m having to explain my whereabouts more to you than I do to him. I’m am not a “drop by” kind of person. And this has nothing to do with you. It’s not that I don’t like you. I don’t like this dropping by. I sit down to try to write, and in the back of my head I think, “when is [RN] going to show up today?” I know I’m going to be interrupted. So it’s like I can’t do anything, I can’t focus at all, until that interruption is over.”
RN: (hugs me) “I’m sorry. I won’t do it anymore.”
And then — she shoves past me into my house and sits on my sofa and blabs at me for 30 minutes. And because I feel so badly about yelling and I worry so much about hurting anyone’s feelings, I can’t say what I really want to say, “Get the F**K out of my house and offa my yard!”
So when RN gets ready to leave, she say, “Don’t worry. I won’t drop by anymore. But you’re always welcome to come in my door anytime you want.”
Me: “Okay. Thanks.”
And part of me gets the feeling that she still doesn’t get it. So I add:
Me: ”[RN], I’m not kidding you. You walk into my house when my hubby is here, and he is going to chew you a new a**hole.”
RN: (indignant) “I’ll chew him one back!”
And I’m thinking: on what grounds? You still don’t get it! He has every right to scream at you for trespassing. But I don’t say that. Instead I say:
Me: “I’m serious. You come in this house or drop by uninvited while he’s here, and he is calling the police.”
RN: (waves her hand dismissively) “He will not.”
Me: ”He will! I’m serious, he will!”
Off she goes with a dismissive wave of her hand.
So I go upstairs and try to call the hubby to tell him what happened. NOTE: I am not wearing my hearing aids while all this is going on and I don’t put them in after she’s gone because I can turn up the volume on the cellphone and hear okay. The rude neighbor talks so loudly, I don’t need my hearing aids when conversing with her.
Anyway, I go upstairs, get my cell and call hubby, but hubby isn’t home so I leave a brief message on the voicemail. And then I try his cell. but don’t get him there either, so I leave another brief message on his cell. And then I call my friend, Vicki, who is very concerned about this situation and keeps urging me to go to the police. I call Vicki, and I’m retelling the entire conversation (much as I’ve done on this blog), and I’m just YELLING in frustration. And I veer from recounting what I said to Rude Neighbor to just a general venting about the neighbor.
Then I hear this sound (I don’t have my hearing aids in) that sounds like the dog is scratching at the door to get in. So I walk downstairs to let the dog inside. Only she’s already inside. She’s hiding under the table (because she doesn’t like it when I yell.) I look out the little windows in the front door and see Rude Neighbor making her way to the drivers’ side door of her car. And I think, that’s weird. She left ages ago. Why is she still here? Momentary worry that she heard me yelling, but then I think, “She’s outside. She just heard generalized yelling, probably not specifics of what I was saying.”
In retrospect, I realize the sound I thought was my dog’s nails on the glass door was actually the door latch opening. My neighbor must’ve let herself in my house again without knocking. I’d neglected to lock the door behind her when she left because… well… after all that had been said, I thought she’d gotten the message. More than likely, she thought of one more stupid thing she wanted to tell me and figured there was no harm in letter herself in again, since she’d just left.
I feel badly that she probably overheard me talking so vehemently about her. But another part of me thinks she deserves it for (yet again) not honoring my wishes.
So what do I do? (And I don’t mean, do I apologize. I don’t think I owe an eavesdropping trespasser an apology.)
I mean, I still don’t think she’s gotten the message that she can’t barge into my house or into my life. Do I go to the police? (Which seems extreme. I don’t thinks she’s going to stab me or shoot me. I think she’s just going to bore me to tears.)
I guess what’s so disturbing about the situation is that you get a house in a remote location so that you can escape the noise and people of the city, only to have some person show up and you can’t escape them. I’m tempted to never come up here again.
Boy. I didn’t mean to talk about that. I guess it’s kind of on my mind (understatement). Anyone ever had a similar situation?