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AIBU to think this is Cyber Stalking?

(86 Posts)
seastar Thu 08-Apr-21 21:08:43

Just want to run this past you all in case I'm being over sensitive.

The man next door has always been a bit creepy. He watches me when I'm in the garden weeding from behind a curtain in his upstairs window. He'll do this all the time I'm in the garden and it makes me feel uneasy. His wife watches me from behind the front room curtains. They are intensely private and they hate it when someone knows what they are doing. I can't confront them as they have become extremely aggressive in the past and they don't talk to anyone. If they see me they hide until I have gone. My husband died about 2 years ago and the lady next door gave me a big hug but now it has gone back to normal.

I received a message from Linkedin which said that my profile had been looked at. Usually it is people I don't know but yesterday I discovered that it was the bloke next door. I've deleted my profile now. I feel invaded especially as the man is very creepy and watches what I am doing. He has always done this and his wife has always watched from the front. I find it creepy. Am I being over sensitive?

Shinamae Thu 08-Apr-21 21:10:41

No, I don’t think you’re being over sensitive at all, it is very creepy behaviour......

Grannybags Thu 08-Apr-21 21:13:20

I don' think you are being over sensitive it all sounds rather weird

Kamiso Thu 08-Apr-21 21:22:39

Sounds weird. Can you afford to have a higher fence or buy a tree that blocks or impedes their view? Have you considered moving?

Esspee Thu 08-Apr-21 21:23:40

An elderly gentleman across the road used to watch me and it creeped me out. He died recently and I still find myself feeling uncomfortable working in the front garden.
You are not being over sensitive but I have no idea what you can do.

EllanVannin Thu 08-Apr-21 21:34:25

They sound as though they need something to do. Life must be so boring for them.
I'd get a tailors dummy and stick it in the garden----with its bare behind facing them grin

Sara1954 Thu 08-Apr-21 21:46:38

No not at all, I think it would make me very uneasy. They sound like a right pair of weirdos, somehow creepier because the woman watches you as well, I don’t know what to suggest, but I would keep your distance.

M0nica Thu 08-Apr-21 21:47:21

This isn't cyber stalking - yet, but it is harrassment and intimidating. Why not keep a diary of his movements and then, perhaps, speak to Citizen's Advice or talk to Age UK. They should be able to advise you what to do.

TrendyNannie6 Thu 08-Apr-21 22:05:06

Oh it does sound very weird, no good putting a higher fence up if he’s watching you from an upstairs window,you have very strange neighbours, you are not being sensitive

NotSpaghetti Thu 08-Apr-21 22:17:58

Looking at a profile isn't cyber stalking.

I admit the watching from windows is a bit odd though!

DillytheGardener Thu 08-Apr-21 22:22:40

I would keep a diary of these incidents and their impact on you in case they escalate. You have my sympathy, sounds awful.

Callistemon Thu 08-Apr-21 22:26:36

LinkedIn is there to be looked at - I've been invited to join but there hardly seems a point now as I'm retired.

However, watching neighbours from behind curtains is very creepy and odd and will make you feel uncomfortable.

You could try waving at them; they could react by waving back or by retreating as they know you've seen them staring.

Redhead56 Thu 08-Apr-21 22:43:31

I would take a pair of binoculars in the garden when you know they are watching. Make it look as if you are bird watching but then point the binoculars straight at them. If there is an ounce of sense in them they might realise how hideous they are. I am sorry you are going through this we had a very difficult time with neighbours in the past. If you try this tactic and it fails seek advice from a solicitor. Keep in touch by letting us grans know how you get on.?

BlueBelle Thu 08-Apr-21 22:57:18

Like Callistermom I d wave at them if they carry on they will be pretty thick skinned if they carried on
perhaps they could just be bored and curious perhaps they are lonely Perhaps they are very introverted she gave you a hug when your husband died so she has a heart and as it’s both of them looking it’s not like it’s the man being sneaky and watching you behind his wife’s back
The LinkedIn thing is perfectly normal I ve looked up people using that surely that’s what it’s for

V3ra Thu 08-Apr-21 23:02:34

Oh yes definitely wave back if you see them watching you!
Some people just don't have enough to occupy their own lives and take a disproportionate interest in other people's.

Our busybody neighbour has, over the years, written to the council with various complaints about all of us at our end of the cul-de-sac.
Even his wife says, "Oh god he's off again" ?
When I was made aware (by another neighbour) that I was the subject of his latest grievance, I decided to treat him as my "new best friend" and smile and wave at him every time I drove past.
His face was a picture ?

Maggiemaybe Thu 08-Apr-21 23:39:56

In answer to your question, seastar, no, it’s not cyber stalking. LinkedIn profiles are online to be looked at, so you can’t blame anyone for doing just that. The other behaviour is distinctly odd, and must make you feel uncomfortable. Perhaps your neighbours just lead very boring lives, but it’s unfortunate that you seem to be their only hobby.

OnwardandUpward Fri 09-Apr-21 08:34:19

"smile and wave" has been a technique we have used when needed to front out something not nice, as well.

So sorry about your stalky neighbours. They don't sound happy! I mean, if their lives were so great they would not need to watch other people's. They also might be paranoid? One might want to be friendly and the other might be controlling them? I'd avoid them both and make things as private as possible. In the past I've done the "smile and wave" thing, but its success probably depends on what's causing the behaviour and it might be best to completely ignore.

Iam64 Fri 09-Apr-21 08:40:55

MOnica’s advice is good.
I wouldn’t be waving or using binocs, that doesn’t reflect how uneasy you feel. This isn’t a game. I’d keep a diary but avoid them, including looking back at them. It’s intimidation IMO and yes weird

Sara1954 Fri 09-Apr-21 09:34:18

We once had some weird neighbors, I never ever saw the wife, but the husband would be up at the crack of dawn, making his garden perfect, and then scuttle back inside if he saw anyone.
In two years we never spoke a word, then on the morning we were leaving, he came out, shook my husband’s hand, and said he hoped we’d keep in touch!
Very strange.

eazybee Fri 09-Apr-21 09:44:40

Is it just you that they watch or do they watch anyone else? This couple sound as though they have slight mental problems, very insular and withdrawn, and covid isolation will have made it worse. I would be inclined to wave every time you see them watching so they know you know you are being observed, and also keep a log of the number of times. If other neighbours are being watched as well it might defuse your anxiety, because I don't think it is an offence to stare at someone from your window, creepy though it is.

nanna8 Fri 09-Apr-21 10:08:53

They are obviously very bored and isolated with few friends by the sound of things. I would be feeling sorry for them more than anything else.

DiscoDancer1975 Fri 09-Apr-21 10:23:21

Monica’s advice is good...but not as a first response. Treat it as a ‘game’ to start with, and wave. If it doesn’t stop, or they’re simply not fazed by it, then get more serious. I think they’re just bored. I’d be inclined not to show it worries you to start with, as this may be their objective, and trying to report them or whatever, may be harder than you think. You’d need to keep logs, and get evidence etc. Do let us know how it pans out.

Squiffy Fri 09-Apr-21 10:28:01

Looking at your Linkedin page on its own may seem normal, but coupled with the neighbours' other behaviour, it does seem a bit odd. As others have said, keep a log. Do they watch neighbours on the other side of them?

jaylucy Fri 09-Apr-21 10:40:42

It might feel a bit creepy but not really stalking, just someone being nosy!
With LinkedIn profiles are suggested to you that have things in common to you (same as on suggested friends on FB) . No doubt your neighbour saw yours and couldn't resist having a look !
I feel a bit sorry for them , that they are obviously living their lives through others. If they don't go anywhere, they are bound to be watching others!
What you see as being nosy, they probably just think they are interested in what is happening around them!
Next time you see them looking, give them a wave and shout out "hello"then get on with what you are doing. If it is possible, you could put up some trellis and grow plants over it or have a pergola built so there will be at least part of your garden that you can feel is private - at least you have your own Neighbourhood Watch!

Natasha76 Fri 09-Apr-21 10:41:42

I think for your own sanity you have to try to get on with life and ignore the fact that they are watching you.
If you feel you need to do something I wouldn't wave or point binoculars at them in case they take offence. You could go into the garden with or without binoculars and look at something in the distance as if tehre is something interesting there. If you do this same thing every day for a couple of weeks you may find they also start looking where you are looking trying to see what they have missed.
Don't let it ruin your life though especially as they may have mental problems.