Gransnet forums


Accused of being nosey

(40 Posts)
LyndaW Fri 18-Aug-17 11:50:12

I've been living in the same house for about 15 years. I've been on good terms with most of my neighbours, we'll take in post for each other (me doing most of the taking in mostly!), water each other's plants when we're away and keep an eye out for anything suspicious - that kind of thing. My newish neighbour's (a year maybe) car wasn't in the drive yesterday and I heard banging and a shout from next door. So I went into the garden to see if I could see if all was ok. The neighbour (who was in after all) saw me poking my head over the fence and told me to 'bugger off' and not be so nosey (polite version). I was a bit taken aback and probably didn't defend myself very well but I did try to explain that I was only seeing if everything was ok. Now I feel like we're on a bad footing and as we're neighbours this is making me feel a bit out of sorts.

Ziggy62 Fri 18-Aug-17 12:36:19

I guess if they were having an argument your neighbour wasn't in the best of moods.

judypark Fri 18-Aug-17 12:42:23

I would have done exactly the same thing as you Lynda, in fact being nosey earlier this year I disturbed a burglar who had forced my neighbours back door open, he fled empty handed.
I would ignore your rude neighbour. I wonder what he was doing that he didn't want you to see or is he normally so hostile?

nanaK54 Fri 18-Aug-17 12:50:39

How horrible for you, wonder if he/she might apologise at some point.......

LyndaW Fri 18-Aug-17 12:50:45

Yes, that's exactly what I was looking out for judypark! And quite honestly I'd hope my neighbours would equally keep an eye out for my house if I wasn't likely in. He was very rude though. I'm tempted to go apologise just to keep things civil although really I think the apology should be from him. Should I go over do you think? hmm

nanaK54 Fri 18-Aug-17 12:51:54

Oh we crossed posts there - no I would wait for him to approach you.....

jollyg Fri 18-Aug-17 13:33:20

@ Lynda you seem to be expecting more of your neighbour than he is willing to give.

You are a longtime resident and sorry there are no rules in sharing. IE parking cars, helping neighbours etc.

The times they are a changing

Think of selfish drivers/ cyclists / pedestrians.

Sorry to say this but its true, would the word MAN ring a bell!

LadyGracie Fri 18-Aug-17 13:45:49

I would have done exactly the same as you and I wouldn't apologise. I would shout good morning/afternoon or hallo next time I saw him as if nothing had happened.

Ana Fri 18-Aug-17 13:54:44

I can see it from both sides.

Of course you were concerned, and rightly so, but if your neighbour was having a private rant to himself about something or other, the last think he'd want is an audience!

Norah Fri 18-Aug-17 13:56:13

I would file the incident to my brain and go on nice as always. Saying 'good morning' would be lovely. And I would watch and listen, just in case he was up to no good.

Starlady Sat 19-Aug-17 03:19:48

Your intentions were good, obviously, but he misunderstood. He may be a very private person - or just a grump. And he probably didn't make the connection in his mind between the noise and the absent car.

I wouldn't go out of my way to apologize to him. Your heart doesn't seem to be in it, and he may just take it as you "intruding" on his privacy again. Besides, you already explained your intentions. Either he gets it or he doesn't.
Maybe if you run into him you can apologize for this misunderstanding. But I don't think you should go to his house to do it.

Also, in the future, I wouldn't concern myself with his home or his wellbeing, unless something clearly bad is happening right in front of you. Imo, you should look out for your other neighbors, as ever, but not so much for him unless he says sorry for his rude reaction. Either he had an "off" day or he just doesn't appreciate it.

Synonymous Sat 19-Aug-17 04:12:26

I would put a note through his door to say how glad you are that he is clearly ok, that he is now living in a neighbourhood where it has been the custom to look out for each other, and therefore your actions are not nosiness but genuine caring and his mistaken view on the matter is most regrettable. hmm

BlueBelle Sat 19-Aug-17 06:32:20

Let it go .... I definitely wouldn't go putting notes in the door or sending apologies Different folk, different ways whilst I can understand your concern it would take more than that for me to go and look... if I went to my neighbours eveytime I heard loud noises (or swearing) I would take up residency ?
He may never have lived in a neighbourly area ( I don't) he may have been pulling furniture around, hurt himself hence the yelling then saw you looking at him and had a very unneighbourly reaction
However if he has a wife or child and you heard screaming begging or crying then it IS always necessary to intervene

You may become good neighbours in time so just stay cool put it out your mind and see what happens next time you bump into him just act as you always would with a smile and a 'good morning'

radicalnan Sat 19-Aug-17 09:17:24

Leave him to it.

Some people don't want to be observed however well meaning the observer is.

I live next door to people who go out of their way to be friendly and some days it gets right on my wick, they pop their head over the fence when I am in the back garden in my pyjamas, or just keep asking me how I am. They mean well and I am grateful but ggggggggggrrrrrrrrrr there are times when I feel like a bloody peep show.

Carry on being cheery but stay your side of the fence.

Don't apologise, he may well feel a chump and want to forget about it.

suzied Sat 19-Aug-17 09:18:03

Maybe he was having a row/ had a bad day for some other reason and was acting out of character. If this was the case I would expect him to apologise when he's calmed down. If no apology is forthcoming I would just assume he is a rude person and keep my distance but say hello/good morning as usual.

Kerenhappuch Sat 19-Aug-17 09:28:31

I'd just leave it and write it off to (unpleasant) experience. I'd think twice about taking in mail or doing any other favours for him if he wants privacy. In fact, personally, I wouldn't do it. It's always best to keep on good terms with neighbours if possible, if that means not getting involved in his life in any way, that's his choice.

Mt street has a similar tradition, but it doesn't always work out. One of our next door neighbours died, and his wife didn't tell us, as far as I could make out it was because she disliked us. The first we knew of his death was when someone further down the road knocked on our door and shouted at US for not telling HER! She found it hard to believe we hadn't known, and I found it hard to believe I hadn't noticed them having a funeral myself!

JanaNana Sat 19-Aug-17 09:35:33

Seems like they might have been having a row over something and you looked over the fence just at the wrong time. She may well feel embarrassed once it's all calm again. I would,nt do anything ....let it blow over. Some people are simply more private than others and like more space.

meandashy Sat 19-Aug-17 09:37:39

I wouldn't bother apologising. Some people just aren't neighbourly.
As for intervening if you here women crying etc it can be the case that it fuels the situation..... personal experience tells me that ?

Teetime Sat 19-Aug-17 09:48:39

I think I would just forget it, a note or an apology might make things worse. Be the bigger person and carry on as you always have looking out for others (but perhaps not him). smile

Jaycee5 Sat 19-Aug-17 09:54:16

It is difficult to get the balance right but I can't see that you went too far. Just ignore them if that is what they want. They may have thought that you were going to be checking on them all the time and wanted to nip it in the bud but it is unfortunate.
I have written before about my neighbour. She is currently in hospital under Section and the Council rang me and asked me to keep a watch on her flat and said that no one should be there except her family.
When I hear a noise, if I open my door I am likely to be staring at her family (who seem to blame the neighbours for her illness despite them having ignored her problems until the Council asked them to be more involved with her - after I made them aware of how bad she was getting) so I don't like to do that and I can't see much out of my window so I decided to keep to myself.
On Saturday I heard banging and smashing noises from her flat so I called the Police who spent ten minutes telling me that there was no point them coming out as she wasn't there to tell her that there shouldn't be anyone in her flat and that they couldn't break in (her ex boyfriend who she has a court order against was also trying to get in the security door at the same time). He (the operator) was very passive aggressive and unhelpful and at the end of the ten minutes he said 'why are you panicking, you sound like you're panicking'. I wasn't I was just getting frustrated with him. The police did come out but by the time he sent them and they got here of course everyone had gone. This is because when I give her address and they look it up, what comes up is a formal complain I made against the Police for not taking the situation here seriously. The Police did change but the operators are always unhelpful so I am reluctant to call the Police.
I feel sorry for her because she is attracted to criminal types but I think it could be part of her condition to make poor judgments. The trouble is that we can't cope with them. The council needs to move her from a ground floor flat but they say that she has to apply for a transfer and that they cannot suggest it or help it with it. She wants to move but she can't organise it. We had 7 months with virtually no sleep and now we are finally able to sleep at night (for me, after quite a while for my sleep pattern to get back to normal) so she is not going to be welcomed back very warmly. The woman in the flat above her is 84 or 85 and she visibly aged in that 7 months. After just a couple of weeks she looks healthy again. The people next door to her are also in their 80s and he is partially sighted and has said that he wants nothing to do with her and her problems, so I am the only one here that can do anything.
Estates and neighbourhoods need a few nosey neighbours but I would prefer it to be someone else.

dizzygran Sat 19-Aug-17 09:56:26

Always difficult dealing with neighbours. Things have changed and some neighbours never both to speak at all .... You checked because you were concerned but surprised your neighbour at what could have been a very awkward time for him/her and the response was really not nice. I would ignore the situation - carry on saying hello but do not risk putting your head over the parapet again!! If they are burgled it will not be your fault but it looks as though you will not get any support from that quarter.

Hm999 Sat 19-Aug-17 10:01:22

I woke up one night hearing someone walking around on the laminated floor next door. I didn't think anything of it until following day, I found out she'd been burgled. I felt so bad

Jaycee5 Sat 19-Aug-17 10:08:49

Hm999. My office got burgled some years ago. The next day all the neighbours from the flats upstairs came down to complain about the alarm. No one called the Police.
You couldn't have known.

Jane43 Sat 19-Aug-17 10:33:14

Just let it go. He has set the boundaries now so just do the minimum, i.e say Good Morning etc. It is one less neighbour you will have to look out for.

GillT57 Sat 19-Aug-17 10:37:00

Just leave it be, he probably had a bad day and you popping your head over the fence was the last straw, however well meaning. Just be polite, say good morning and leave it at that. Forcing humiliating apologies out of people never works out well. Don't be spiteful though by refusing to take in parcels and such, this is how situations escalate, just carry on as before, but perhaps a bit more formal and polite rather than friendly.