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Neighbours four year old coming in back garden when we are out and causing damage.

(35 Posts)
yearningforthesun Mon 11-Jul-11 19:57:14

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RuthChan Mon 11-Jul-11 20:02:28

That's awful.
Would it be possible to lock the gate with a chain and padlock or anything to prevent him getting in?

fastweb Mon 11-Jul-11 20:04:33

Is there any way you can stick a padlock on it ? A chain and a padlock has saved me loads of grief in the last 2 years. Even though I have to keep buying new padlocks cos they appear to rust at the first sign of rain.

Pain in the bum I know, but if damage is being caused that you end up paying for or being blamed for it might be the fastest way to grind the wandering to a halt.

Does nothing to resolve the issue of a 4yo wandering about like this though, sounds like he could get hurt if he is shifting heavy objects and leaping on cars.

yearningforthesun Mon 11-Jul-11 20:05:41

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

YellowDinosaur Mon 11-Jul-11 20:06:07

Lock the gate (put a lock on if there isn't one). I appreciate that the mum is trying to control this but she isn't managing to is she? I'd go round and have a polite but firm word and I'd also ask for money for the damage.

fastweb Mon 11-Jul-11 20:06:50

I mean grind the wandering into your garden to a halt..not the wandering in general.

Hassled Mon 11-Jul-11 20:08:38

I agree that asking for money for the damage might focus the mother's mind a bit re the fact she has to manage her son's behaviour a bit more effectively than she is.

fastweb Mon 11-Jul-11 20:09:36

Ive been looking at the gate and I cant figure out a way to lock it

Ask your landlord ?

Explain the problem and the damage and maybe he can fix a lock on.

I'd be loath to start drilling holes to bolt fixings on anything that was part of a rental property off my own back. Even if it was an improvement some will be inclined to see it as damage and knock something off the deposit.

MissMiaowington Mon 11-Jul-11 20:12:49

I'm going to sound really extremem here but if the mother cannot stop him, I would honestly contemplate the police. I know its not an ideal solution - but it sounds like a. the child is in danger if it wandering around on its own at 4 years old
b.if the landlord thinks you have done this damage, it may affect your housing options in the future, ie no reference
c. it is breaking and entering

If other kids see he is doing it, how long before they copy, and you get bigger kids doing more damage? I would tell the mother if it doesnt stop straight away that the police will be involved, as you are worried about the child and your property.

How awful would you feel if something happened to the child...

yearningforthesun Mon 11-Jul-11 20:25:46

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

RitaMorgan Mon 11-Jul-11 20:28:35

The mum sounds useless - her 4 year old sneaks out without her noticing? Is there some neglect going on there?

MoonGirl1981 Mon 11-Jul-11 20:51:29

You need to call the police and report the damage.

a) it may help the mother look after him better

b) it may put the child off doing it if the police speak to him

c) you can prove to your landlord that your kids didn't do it because you'll have a police report

fastweb Mon 11-Jul-11 20:52:38

her 4 year old sneaks out without her noticing?

I've caught my NDN's 3 year old wandering off down the track three times in the last couple of months. Little sod clocked me each time and then tried to run off into the fields as fast as his little legs would carry him. I might not be up for running, but my legs are longer than his, thank god.

He is a totally different to his slightly older brother and his poor (lovely, not at all neglectful) mum is beside herself trying to stay on top of his antics.

The gate is locked at all times, but he keeps his beady eye on the remote control they use to open it and a moments distraction when anybody has just left (meaning it doesn't get put back in its hidey place immediately), he grabs it and lets himself out as soon as the coast is clear.

So in the Op's NDN might not be demonstrating pure neglect, she might just have a very determined, mini Houdini on her hands and still be struggling with the learning curve that comes with a kid so very different from the ones that preceded it.

Having said that a solution to the wandering off does need to be found because the risks to the tiny escape artist are not insignificant. Even here out in the sticks it is scary what could happen to child that didn't get spotted ASAP. In a place with lots of cars and roads about I think the stakes are even higher.

thisisyesterday Mon 11-Jul-11 20:55:53

i think your first port of call needs to be the landlord.
explain what is happening and ask if he can fit a lock to the gate, or if he can reimburse you if you go and buy one and have it fitted.

i am not convinced this will stop him though, as he sounds pretty determined and may find a way over sad

yearningforthesun Mon 11-Jul-11 21:04:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TheFrogs Mon 11-Jul-11 21:13:03

Agree, have a word with landlord. You're being upfront about the problem and asking for help with a solution.

Is the mum reasonable? Perhaps try and have a word with her too in a non confrontational manner.

I feel for you, my neighbour's kids are a nightmare. I'm on my second fence, they climb it, boot footballs at it, spit over it and swear at my kids. Polite requests had no effect..we eventually had a row and neighbour accused me of lying confused

AuntiePickleBottom Mon 11-Jul-11 21:16:19

i would make the mother pay for the damage.

pehaps she will then keep a proper eye on him

yearningforthesun Tue 12-Jul-11 10:01:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

WyrdMother Tue 12-Jul-11 10:16:27

I would ring the police on the non-emergency number and ask for advice, a padlock may keep him out of your garden but if he's throwing bottles and being generally destructive this needs nipping in the bud and a stern word from someone official can't hurt. As I can't imagine that you are the only person he's annoying it should be possible to remain anonymous but personally I'd tell her (unless she habitually carries knuckle dusters or a switchblade or similar), very politely that you're sorry, it's got to stop, anymore trouble anywhere and you'll report him.

fastweb Tue 12-Jul-11 10:42:22

more wood broke off and a smashed glass bottle

Please tell me the gate is very, very low and he isn't scaling great height in relation to his size with the potential to land head first on concrete.

Is it possible that while you have seen this little one, he is not the only culprit and the older ones are just more adept at running away before being seen ?

At this point I would complain to both the landlord and the agent that the property is being targeted by vandals, tell them what you know and ask them to take whatever steps they consider appropriate. That at least should cover your back.

If you start getting involved in talking to the mum or the authorities to a certain extent in the eyes of the landlord\agent you are making yourself responsible for stopping the vandalism and risk being blamed when you are unable to.

You have taken reasonable steps, now it is up to the actual owner\manger of the property to take matters further.

clam Tue 12-Jul-11 11:02:39

Your neighbour needs help in managing this child now. After all, he's not going to get easier as he gets older! So maybe a quiet visit from the police might help???
<naive?>

StayingNearlyHeadlessNicksGirl Tue 12-Jul-11 11:26:24

WyrdMother is right - ring your local police station and see if an officer will come and have a stern word with the boy about this behaviour. It needs nipping in the bud now, for his own good.

yearningforthesun Tue 12-Jul-11 11:31:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

yearningforthesun Tue 12-Jul-11 11:32:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ihavenewsockson Tue 12-Jul-11 11:38:55

Get it on video. Take it to the police or social services.
I'm sorry but he is 4.
It needs to be nipped in the bud, the mum may well be exasperated with a houdini, but if she can't control his social behavior at 4, how will she cope when he is 10, 12, 16?

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