Posting for traffic really because I need some advice.
My neighbour is completely bonkers and totally paranoid and we have had many incidents over the years that have been reported to the relevant people such as environmental health, noise abbaitment, pcso's and the police. Just for background really, we have been accused of running an engine in our lounge that she can hear constantly ( it was found she has tinnitus) she has had the police knock us out of bed at 3 am for knocking on her patio doors in the back garden ( we live near a railway and they were working on the tracks, we were asleep !) she has threatened to burn our house down, stab us, shoot us and eventually she was sectioned under the mental health act. While I am very sympathetic, it has made our lives hell, so much so that I had a kind of breakdown and was signed off work for 3 months with stress and anxiety, which didn't help as I was then a captive audience in my own house, when all I wanted to do was run away. At one point we put our house up for sale, however we had to tell prospective buyers the issues experienced with next door so it was impossible to sell. She screams constantly at us, plays music at all hours, holds a rape alarm to the bedroom wall for hours on end and numerous other incidents too unbelievable to explain. When we have reported her she makes a counter accusation and then we end up being investigated and end up in a vicious circle.
The new issue is that she has started to video us on her phone, leaving the house. She stands in front of our lounge window and videos us in the house. When she stands there she then makes the dogs bark, then screams at us for them barking. I shut the curtains but am now living in darkness with them closed all the time. If I could afford to have blinds fitted so that I could tilt them shut I would, but I really don't have the money. I am not prepared to challenge her as this results in endless nights of noise, music, banging, screaming and really just escalates everything. No one can help us and I don't know what to do. She has made me contemplate suicide to escape this, but I love my kids too much. Please give me some advice. She is as I type stood outside my house playing music and chanting.
Bloody hell, i have no words of advice. That's sounds horrendous. Can't even imagine it. Hopefully someone will come along with some good advice
Can you contact the police or social services?
She sounds as if she is very mentally unwell.
Standing outside your window and filming inside your house has to be unlawful.
I am so sorry OP, this sound utterly awful.
I think it might help if you could build the past events into a body of evidence that constitutes a new complaint, and then add every new event to that as a new complaint.
Do ASBOs still exist? What happens once they are issued and broken, does anyone know? It sounds to me like the way forward will be complex and require co-ordination of police and social care services.
Laws covering harassment and stalking spring to mind, could they be useful?
What happened as a result of her being sectioned?
This is just horrendous.
Cant the police keep coming out to her.
Record all incidents. Can you video her outbursts and compile enough evidence to make them take notice
They should be able to get the mental health service involved again. She needs to be in a secure enviroment and getting the right treatment. Would a solicitor have any advice to offer?
Is it easier to sell your house through an auction ? or move out and rent it out (preferably to a group of noisy students who will give as good as they get and not care about the noise etc )
I am so sorry you and your family are enduring this and send you lots of love but please dont risk your future mental wellbeing and contemplate suicide for a house.
It is simply not worth it x
Have you approached adult care services before? This certainly sounds to me as if she needs care and medical help rather than legal intervention (although that may also be necessary).
You have my sympathy, it honestly sounds horrific.
This isn't great advice but there will be some arsehole who will buy your house to rent out even if it's next to a crazy lady.
Is there any possible way you could afford to sell it for much cheaper than it's value just so you can move? You could move somewhere cheaper I am guessing even if it involves relocating several counties away?
It really does sound absolutely intolerable and you're amazing for sticking it all out for the sake of your children. I'm not surprised if you're suicidal - if you can't afford to move you're going to have to FIGHT.
I know you're saying when you fight it gets worse but it's already at it's worst. You're going to have to fight to get her evicted. You're doing well because you have so much evidence already so your road is much shorter than others.
Start a computer log, find out who owns her home, make an appointment with the police station to discuss your problems so far. Report report report to everybody - council, environmental health, police, local papers etc.
Either you go or she does so make it happen.
See a solicitor. You might be able to apply for an injunction under the protection from harassment act. You'll need to take along details of dates when things have happened so you can prepare a statement for court.
Do you video her / record the noise she makes? That will give anyone who investigates a clear understanding that she is the one causing the problem as you can identify the times and dates of events accurately.
Thanks for all the support. She also owns her house. I have videos of the abuse, I have filmed her filming us, I have recorded the noise in the middle of the night and called the police, who go and give her a warning. It goes quiet for a few days and then starts again. This behaviour has been witnessed by many of the other neighbours and the police, in our small cul-de-sac, who sympathise with us for living next door but generally think it quite funny. The last time that any authorities were involved resulted in her locking the pcso's in her house and the police being called to let them out ! This was around the time that she was sectioned (28 days) but then she came home again. Carers do come in 3 times a day, but these are not mental health workers, they take her shopping or clean for her. Her daughter sent me a long email apologising for her behaviour and says in it that she knows we are innocent of all of the accusations her mother makes about us and she doesn't know how to handle her either. (She has moved hundreds of miles away). I feel anxious all the time and on edge in my own home. I can't afford to sell my house for any less than its worth and really don't want to move ! We live in a lovely area and have lived here for 20 years, she has lived in her house about 10 years. This has been going on for about 9 years, with quiet spells in between months of harassment.
Just do whatever you can to get out of there.
Rent the house out and rent somewhere else maybe.
Try to rent to young people sharing (not a family). They won't care what she says/ does.
"I can't afford to sell my house for any less than its worth and really don't want to move !"
Well then, that lives you with one option - to get her removed.
Just a couple of pages of advice from Google. Start saving now and selling what you can to pay for solicitors fees.
Find places you can go to for a break - the library with a thermos flask so you can sit and have a nice coffee. Find a local cheap coffee shop. Start going for long walks in picturesque areas. Use your Tesco Clubcard tokens to pay for meals out.
Change your mindset.
Do you have free legal services with your home insurance? If not is your policy due for renewal soon? Pay more for a top notch policy with great legal support.
This looks like it might be a useful forum www.nfh.org.uk/hints-and-tips-for-coping-with-a-neighbour-from-hell/
You could contact the CAB before you pay for a solicitor if needs be
I really don't think a solicitor is the answer here. This is not a civil dispute that requires litigation, which is what a solicitor can offer.
This is a mentally unstable woman, engaging in a sustained campaign of harassment and anti-social behaviour, that is distressing an innocent party so much that she has contemplated suicide.
It needs to be dealt with via public services, since it involves criminal behaviour with a mental health root cause.
I don't think renting yours out and renting somewhere else will work. You'll end up with an empty house and rent to pay on top of your mortgage.
Im presuming police will be the best course of action with harassment. Keep filming (go pro for you?) and keep your diary up to date.
I really feel for you
My initial thoughts are that I would have cctv installed and every time she approaches the house call the police, she is abusing, harassing and stalking you, which there are laws against and the police can and should do something about it.
Record and film her whenever she approaches you or your house, whenever she is making noise at antisocial hours.
Call the environment health and make noise complaints every single time.
Basically make such a fuss about this abuse, harassment and stalking that the police and council have to do something about her.
You shouldn't have to live like this, make those with the authority to do something about it take action.
I strongly suspect that at the moment they think she is a headache and it's easier to push you so that you let it go and they don't have to deal with her, they basically just want to leave her to be your problem and not theirs, not let that happen, I imagine it'll be a fight but it'll be worth it in the end.
MN will be here to support you.
God that's awful. Sorry I didn't want to read and run but I don't have much in the way of advice.
Only thing I can suggest is getting hold of one of the Pcos to talk the whole saga through. Perhaps one of the ones she locked in her house? As they might understand.
Can you talk to her daughter? She might be able to put some pressure on to get much needed help
Sorry can't help more. I'll have a think.
I really feel for you. Take care and always come back here if you need to vent/talk
WhatweareEternal said basically.
I would consult two or three people to get correct advice.
2. A security firm - to install cameras in your house
Between the three of them you should be able to get some kind of case against her. Don't give up. I don't know the "legalities" of what happens with anti-social neighbours and harrassment, but there must be some laws in this field to protect you. Find out what they are, and then do whatevers necessary to get the evidence.
You have nothing to lose.
I wonder if this lady has some form of dementia.
Could you ask her daughter if she thinks this is possible, and ask if she could take her Mum to the GP for tests?
My DH had lots of problems with neighbours when she first started to show signs of dementia -- they were kind and sometimes reasonable to her, sometimes not. It wasn't anybody's fault, because of the nature of the disease but it was very difficult for everyone to deal with.
Eventually she went into a care home -- much relief all around , not least for me because at least then she was safe and not standing in the middle of the road at 1 a.m.
If there is a settled diagnosis of dementia , perhaps with other MH issues too, it might be easier to get SS involved and/or a mental health care team.
I'm so sorry you're going through this - I do feel for you, having been in the position of your neighbour's daughter and tearing my hair out about it. Although my Mum did not harass her neighbours directly, there were often shouting and screaming rows, she'd leave both the TV and radio on loud all night and then deny it/blame them for the rows because she'd forgotten. etc etc.
The best advice I can offer is to try to get a settled diagnosis (through the daughter, of course) and then involve the appropriate professional agencies. Best of luck.
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