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Driven out of my hobby by a stalker(40 Posts)
Earlier this year, I decided to pick up an old hobby again.
There are several local meetups that occur each week in different venues for this particular hobby, and through a friend I met a man who I thought was nice and normal.
We decided to work together on an activity and went to a couple of the groups together, also I went to his house and met his wife.
He then started sending me strange emails, asking for sex, saying he was in love with me and that we should be together...I rebuffed him as gently as I could, and told him I only wanted a friend and a hobby partner (I am married with 2 young children).
He then started sending abusive emails, facebook messages, accusing me of sleeping with all the other men in the group (it is a male-dominated hobby). I cut him off, blocked him and haven't responded to his messages for several weeks now.
Now he has gone from only being an occasional participant, to attending every single meetup, going to any new group meet that crops up, and also sending messages about me to my friends. He has been warned off by three separate well-meaning friends, and my DH! But he still persists with this behaviour.
Now I can't go to my hobby groups at all, it's really important to me and I feel I've been hounded out for being female. I've never met a man who has had to deal with this type of intimidation.
Don't know what I want out of this post really.
Just want to vent about it. If you read this, thank you.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Well, we're all laughing at you offal, does that count?
Aha, I'm not so easily distracted, you scamp!
<ruffles offal's hair in a patronising manner>
It's far more important to exchange reasoned arguments with your good self on an anonymous internet forum. How else will we learn and grow and create the wonderful, tolerant society that I know we're both working for?
Buffy Well played there.
I agree with those who have advised involving the police, just so it's logged and they can warn him off.
Yet another vote for informing the police. It's quite likely that this man already has form for stalking/harassment: people don't suddenly start behaving like this after having lived ordinary harmless lives.
And do talk to whoever's in charge of the hobby group, as it's also possible that you are not the only woman within the group who has had trouble with him.
Unfortunately it is possible that the group leaders will be unhelpful; there is, sadly, a culture in some groups of defending predatory men and telling women to stop making a fuss. However, if he has not been involved with this group for very long they might decide it's not worth the hassle of allowing him to remain a member. Or, of course, they might be lovely people who kick him out immediately.
Best of luck and remember none of it is your fault.
What a strange, and very frightening, man
he sounds unstable, OP, and I second (or twentieth) the suggestion that you speak to the police
What he is doing has finally been acknowledged as a crime and he deserves to be punished for it
"It's quite likely that this man already has form for stalking/harassment: people don't suddenly start behaving like this after having lived ordinary harmless lives."
If anyone is interested or has this problem Gavin De Becker's Gift of Fear is very good on stalkers and what to do about them. It is mainly US based but the same principles apply.
SolidGoldBrass, you've hit the nail upon the head there. He does have form for this as it turns out.
I have spoken to some of the others and there are at least 2 meetings at which he's persona non grata. So I'll be attending those and will give serious consideration to contacting the police.
Will check out that book, thanks for the tip.
Can you get a restraining order so he can't go to the activity and you can? He has tried to drive you out. Maybe a warning will be enough but I would involve the police.
I would as well, even if just ringing the 101 number to ask for their advice. Because:
1. They might have some good advice that we haven't thought of that would help and reassure you
2. If he does continue to harass you, you are starting to build up evidence of his behaviour. Which you might need.
Oh so someone who is known to harass people is allowed to attend all bar two meetings per week/month? I really don't think this is on. You need to make it clear to all leaders that you have been subjected to continued harassment at these events. You should be able to attend free of harassment so what are they going to do about it? Your probably not the only person to be subjected to this mans behaviour but speaking up about it as a reasonable request may help other people.
I second the strong suggestion that you speak to the organisers of your meetings to be sure they know what is happening and see if they have given adequate thought to policies that should be in place for this sort of harassment.
An organisation I have an association with had a problem of this sort and although individuals there were very well intentioned indeed, the impression I got was that they had never got themselves together to face the issue decisively. People knew as individuals there was a problem but hadn't approached it as a group. The poor woman felt driven away from the organisation, and lost something that was of great value to her. With hindsight, the group felt devastated by its failures.
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