To be grumpy old woman re retrieving footballs

(35 Posts)
T0R1 Sat 23-May-15 20:23:16

Neighbours lad and his mate are always getting footballs in my garden. Just told the lad who was perched on the 6ft fence to jump in to my garden 'no, get down' through the living room window. They rang the doorbell and I ignored it as I was watching ninja warrior. So they just came in over the fence from the empty house next door and helped themselves.

I'm already nearly in double figures for the amount of balls I've thrown back over to them and we've not had that many nice/outdoor days. I've already yelled once because a ball neary hit me.

Am I being unreasonable that I don't want them in my garden. They have over 10 balls in the football net so they're not deprived by leaving it in my garden until I get round to throwing it back. I have no idea why I'm so grumpy about this. Would it be unreasonable to put a note in my neighbours door saying I don't want the boys in my garden?

crustsaway Sat 23-May-15 20:28:09

Throwing a ball back is no big deal at all at "your" convenience. Disturbing you and expecting you to do so when they want is rude. Climbing over your wall is also not on. I'd be right over there and telling the parents this.

UANBU

StillStayingClassySanDiego Sat 23-May-15 20:33:09

I have had lots of football in my garden ans occasionally balls have gone next door.

Under no circumstances have the boys ever jumped the fence to retrieve stray balls, that's not on.

T0R1 Sat 23-May-15 20:42:17

If I'm out there I'll throw it back but I have to admit even that is starting to test my patience!! And I consider myself quite patient.

MissDuke Sat 23-May-15 20:44:37

Must be very annoying. My ds is getting bad for this, once the ball is returned once, I make him stop playing for the day. Its just not fair to expect people to be chucking them back over all day. YANBU!

T0R1 Sat 23-May-15 22:32:46

Thanks, I'm going to pop a note through their door asking for no retrievals.

I'll ignore the fact there is only one net and it's into my garden (thair neighbouring house is empty too) and the kids insist on wellying every ball so I get at least 1 ball minimum on any dry day!!!! Breath.......

AlternativeTentacles Sat 23-May-15 22:35:54

Id suggest to the parents that if they come over your fence just once more, you will start putting them in the bin. And to position the play so that they arent kicking them into your garden all the time, or go to a bloody park.

Topseyt Sat 23-May-15 23:09:21

Them climbing over your fence is absolutely not on. They don't have your permission, so they are trespassing. Your fence is your boundary, and your garden is not a public right of way.

I live on a corner plot. Footballs coming over can be a problem, although I have never had children actually scaling my fence to get them. They always just knock my door and ask for it, which I must admit that I prefer. I often do let them through to retrieve it, or I say that I will chuck it back over myself in the next few minutes because I have let the dogs into the garden.

I try not to make too much of an issue of it, and realise that as my own children at times also like joining in with the games it does cut both ways.

So I try to be patient, but sometimes when you get the knock at the door for the dozenth time in 5 minutes it does become rather a nuisance. On occasion, I have actually had to say that look, it has really happened enough for now, and that if it comes over again then they will have to wait until it suits me to send it back.

I would be saying in the note that you appreciate a ball may accidentally stray into a neighbouring garden, and that you will try to be reasonable about this, but it is happening too often, becoming a problem now and you are unhappy about them scaling your fence, which is after all there to denote your private space.

Fatmomma99 Sun 24-May-15 00:32:00

I was a bit stunned at how invaded I felt when this happened to me. (and no climbing over fences, lad just opened our back gate and came in to retrieve).

DH told me I was being unreasonable, and kids had the right to be kids (grrr).

Try and hang onto, it's not the child - if it upsets you, then you need to talk to the parents.

Topseyt Sun 24-May-15 00:43:34

I'd padlock the back gate. Letting yourself into someone else's garden without permission is not on, kids or not.

T0R1 Sun 24-May-15 11:05:31

My husband is saying I'm like the grumpy old man next door to him when he was a kid. I'm not surprised he had a grumpy old man as he backed on to the rugby field when he was a kid - how was he still hitting his neighbours garden with ball bombs!!

I'm going to write exactly what Topseyt has suggested. I just want someone to tell the lad it's not acceptable to go in my garden

LarrytheCucumber Sun 24-May-15 11:30:15

We had this problem some years ago, with the neighbours at the bottom of the garden. I had friends over for lunch so did not throw the ball back and the mother yelled at me over the fence for stealing their ball!!!
Hope you have more joy OP.

claraschu Sun 24-May-15 11:39:44

Throwing a ball back over a fence takes 3 seconds. Why is this such a big deal? Doing this about ten times ("almost double figures") seems like absolutely no problem, unless these 10 times were all in the course of one afternoon.

Just tell the kids not to come in your garden, but be good humoured about chucking their ball back.

LarrytheCucumber Sun 24-May-15 11:46:50

claraschu in our case it was probably ten times a day, every day, during holidays. This gets very wearing and you don't want to interrupt what you are doing to go outside and throw a ball back. Once or twice is fine, but in the end even the most patient of us get irritated.
Incidentally we had a neighbour who would keep any balls thrown over, by anyone, and refuse to answer the door to anyone who went to get them. By comparison the OP is a saint.

Plumpeduppillows Sun 24-May-15 11:52:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

soverylucky Sun 24-May-15 11:57:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MissDuke Sun 24-May-15 12:00:15

Clara, my ds kicks his ball into our neighbours garden regularly, and I get really cross with him and no longer allow him to knock more than once in one day. It isn't a few seconds - you have to stop to answer the door, then go out the back to chuck it over, then back into whatever you were doing. Doing this repeatedly all afternoon must be incredibly annoying! At the same time, he isn't doing it on purpose, and I would rather he was outside playing than sitting at the tv, so I do take him out to the playing fields as much as I can.

I still think though that parents shouldn't underestimate how annoying it is to have these constant interruptions. We had it in my old house, before we had children, but our dog had the balls burst before we could get them back - that did put a stop to the problem though I felt awful about it!!

Costacoffeeplease Sun 24-May-15 12:05:22

It is bloody annoying, I had this in my previous house, thankfully it's not too much of an issue where we are now, but balls get returned if and when it suits me, and what a shame if they happen to land in some dog poowink

Rascalls3 Sun 24-May-15 12:10:43

We back on to a cricket green / playing fields and get the occasional ball over. I don't have a problem at all with the boys coming through our back gate to retrieve it, but I wouldn't be at all impressed if they tried to scale a fence to do so. I would be very concerned about damage to the fence. If balls are coming over daily then plants and shrubs are going to get damaged too. Definitely insist that they don't climb over the fence.

SideOrderofChips Sun 24-May-15 12:14:43

I have it alot where i live. The kids also like to play knock and run. So i've started to refuse to answer the door to them (my sofa is right by the window so i can see who is coming down the path). I've told them now, if they want to play knock and run fine, but dont expect me to run around answering the door to them whilst pregnant or otherwise because they want to play football on the road rather than the park, or to play knock and run!

AutumnFades Sun 24-May-15 12:20:57

DS sometimes accidentally kicks his ball into next door's garden. He has several footballs and he plays with another one if that happens, eventually the neighbours throw it over the fence.

Psippsina Sun 24-May-15 12:29:22

Put a note through or just knock and speak to the parents. Say you are happy to throw the balls over and will do so once a day, when you are out there anyway. Tell them you really don't want the boys to climb over, it isn't safe for a start (make up that you have a dog or something if you like)

This should be fine.

Btw I had a thread about our balls going over the other week - almost unanimously told to GO and ASK for the ball every single time.

So I am pleased to read this: Disturbing you and expecting you to do so when they want is rude.

That was my point! Once a day at your convenience is fine. Or ask them to put up some big nets on top of the fence or take balls to a park, etc...I have banned football from our garden for this reason. It's just not practical.

claraschu Sun 24-May-15 14:25:46

I didn't say 10 times a day was ok. It sounds like this has been 10 total in the recent past. I think retrieving balls once a day is really no big deal. It's nice that kids are playing outside.

Why don't you give the neighbours the house phone number and get them to call, (not more than a few times a week) when balls need to be sent back. That way you avoid the intrusiveness of the knocking on the door.

Perfectlypurple Sun 24-May-15 14:36:03

I think it is nice kids play outside but it is annoying when it happens all the time. We live next to a green area, the kids play football and the ball often comes over. At first I don't mind but when it is a few times in quick succession I tell them to play further up the field. The other day this happened and I had asked them to not play so near the house and the ball came over again, I could see them talking, probably figuring out who was going to ask. When they knocked they told a story of a teenager doing it and running away!

My dad caught one trying to climb up the gate to open it which annoyed me, and also we have a lovely garden with loads of plants that have taken time to cultivate and a fair few have been broken by the balls.

PatsyNoPasta Sun 24-May-15 14:47:22

Puncturing any unwelcome footballs before throwing them back seems to cure the problem.

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