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to think neighbours shouldn't call police???

(58 Posts)
elle23 Fri 19-Sep-08 11:32:54

youngest child of three has just turned one but still only got 3 teeth. top one at front proving a bit difficult at moment and obviously DD2 in a lot of pain. Last night she woke and nothing I did seemed to soothe her or help in any way. In fact, she seemed worse with a bit of attention. It was about 5am so I was exhausted and dreading having to get up at 6.30 to look after DS & 5.20am I heard knocking on door. Ignored it at first-decided it must be my exhausted brain playing tricks on me. DH then woke up to tell me "someone's knocking on door, take the baby with you to see who it is" wow. Anyway, it was the police-as you'd expect at that time of the morning. Young female officer said she just wanted to make sure there was someone with the baby...! Now I haven't lived in area long, maybe 7 months, but DD2 has always been a little vocal. She's had trouble sleeping through the night and even seems to like screaming and bawling during the day quite a lot. But no one has ever bothered to ask if anything's wrong or even call police before!! DD2 has been known to cry for up to 3 hours in the night. Why would someone call the police?? I've never left DCs on own bfore so it's not like it could be expected. The whole experience left me feeling like I'd done something wrong. I was angry and upset. And DH had to leave for work at 5.30am so I was-and am still-alone to ponder the madness of my neighbours...

elle23 Fri 19-Sep-08 11:35:08

I don't know who actually called police and it's as if someone who knows me suspects me to be capable of leaving a one year old alone all night to scream....

Lauriefairycake Fri 19-Sep-08 11:35:44

You have done nothing wrong.

Neither have they, they just wanted someone to check that the baby wasn't on it's own.

If I didn't know my neighbours and I heard a baby crying all night I would go over and knock on the door or call the police if I was worried the baby was alone.

they are not mad and you are exhausted.

WigWamBam Fri 19-Sep-08 11:36:09

Maybe the police officer was just passing, heard the crying, and wanted to check that everything was OK?

MamaG Fri 19-Sep-08 11:36:23

It may have been a bit of an overreaction on their part, but take heart that they were just doing what they thought was best for your little girl. You know she's teething but they don't and to them, it may have sounded as if she'd been left alone.

Don't be too upset, maybe say to them "sorry if DD2 disturbed you last night, she's teething and in a lot of pain as I explained to the police" (even though you may not be sorry, lol) - I think its quite nice they give a shit, in a world where neighbours turn a blind eye.

MorningTownRide Fri 19-Sep-08 11:36:28

They should be charged with wasting police time ffs.

If the police were called every time ds screamed bloody murder they'd have to move in.

Are you Ok?

StellaDallas Fri 19-Sep-08 11:37:36

You poor thing. I had this problem with DD1 who between colic, teething and night terrors must have kept the street awake for the first couple of years of her life. I did get some spuriously concerned comments from my neighbours, but calling the police - that is mad.

PavlovtheCat Fri 19-Sep-08 11:38:38

elle23 I am sorry for a horrid experience. It sounds like you have a busybody in the street.

I know it is difficult not to think you have done something wrong, it is not often you get the police knocking on your door for a teething baby hmm, but please do not think it is YOU. It is clearly someone who cannot sleep and wanted to take matters into their own hands, which is awful for you.

MamaG Fri 19-Sep-08 11:38:40

Reminds me of hwne I lived in a flat - I heard my female neighbour crying hysterically and screaming "not again, don't do it to me again" and weeping and wailing. DH was out and I was, frankly, scared of what the hell was happening, her DP was a big bloke! I didn't have any reason to think he'd hurt her, we'd lived next door for a few months but were only on nodding terms.

I phoned hte police and it turned out her washing machine had broken and she'd got in a state shock - silly bitch sounded as though she was being killed! I cringed afterwards thinking the police must have thought I was a freak, that nobody could have made so much fuss over a washer and that I must have over reacted, but I'd never have forgiven myself if her DP HAD been hitting her and I did nothing.

mrspnut Fri 19-Sep-08 11:39:12

There could have been an accident that meant you were incapacitated, not that you had deliberately left your child alone. Who ever called them only had your child's best interests at heart and that to me is what matters.

It seems mortifying at the time but when you are feeling better and your kids are older, you will look back at it differently.

StellaDallas Fri 19-Sep-08 11:39:13

I have to say, if the neighbours were that concerned rather than upsetting and frightening Elle by calling the police they could have knocked on the door themselves.

littleducks Fri 19-Sep-08 11:39:54

i dont know here honestly, what if something had happened to you and your baby had screamed all night and nobody had said or done anything?

do you have a car parked outside or a clear sign you are home?

elle23 Fri 19-Sep-08 11:40:28

I'm still quite upset. I agree they thought they were doing the right thing, BUT...if they were so concerned, why did nobody bother to take action sooner?? As I said before, DD2 is prone to long bouts of crying and wailing, and we've lived here for 7 months...what if it was another family? what if someone had left their baby alone? would you wait for so long before you went to the police??? I really hate that people could think that way about me but I have heard of parents leaving children alone...if I suspected such a thing I wouldn't wait 7 months before alerting someone to the fact.

PavlovtheCat Fri 19-Sep-08 11:41:03

Agree with Stella.

Mrsput - ' Who ever called them only had your child's best interests at heart' - how do you know that? hmm. There are some vindictive people in this world, and if they are sleep deprived, might well call the police to sort it.

Lauriefairycake Fri 19-Sep-08 11:41:49

The person who reported it may have been out the other times/may not have noticed/the wind could have been blowing in a different direction and they could be in the next street

elle23 Fri 19-Sep-08 11:42:40

I don't drive. Unless I go to the end of the road to the shops I'm pretty much always at home. I have three DC under 4yrs and not many friends since I've moved. I'm always in... sad

Overmydeadbody Fri 19-Sep-08 11:42:52


Better to have the police turn up even though there was nothing wrong than to have neighbors that don't give a shit.

I would call the police if I was worried, I wouldn't be able to live with myself if I didn't and it turned out something was wrong.

mrspnut Fri 19-Sep-08 11:43:46

If they didn't have the child's best interests at heart then they'd be more likely to come banging on the door scaring the mother and child even more, or contact environmental health about noise nuisance, or social services and make a complaint about neglect.

Calling the police is actually the best thing to do, because they can come out straight away to check that all is well.

nervousal Fri 19-Sep-08 11:44:29

So are you pissed off that they phoned the police, or pissed off that it took them so long to do it?

elle23 Fri 19-Sep-08 11:44:51

DD2 wasn't crying for that long last night, maybe 30-40 minutes. If anyone was concerned maybe they should have come and knocked on door themselves to see if anyone was in, any of the other 150 times she's been up ALL night screaming

tiggerlovestobounce Fri 19-Sep-08 11:46:51

IMO its good that someone cared enough to make the call.

elle23 Fri 19-Sep-08 11:47:11

I'm angry that the police were called in the 1st place but if someone called them because they were worried, well, why wait til last night? There have been ample opportunities to get involved before now. I can't help wondering if maybe someone just couldn't get back to sleep and was annoyed rather than being concerned

Overmydeadbody Fri 19-Sep-08 11:48:05

They might not have thought you where out though Elle, just neglecting your baby.

How would they know? I would think ti is better to call the police then come knocking on your door.

I called the police once, when a neighbor was shouting and screaming at 3am at her 5 yr old. No way was I going to go round there and knock on the door myself.

This had happened many times before, it was the last straw for me and I finally realised there was a serious problem going on.

I don't think you should be upselt or take it personally.

Overmydeadbody Fri 19-Sep-08 11:51:49

elle you are just speculating though, you don't know their motives any more than they know whether or not you are a good mother.

wannaBe Fri 19-Sep-08 11:51:52

I think it's one of those damned if they do, damned if they don't senarios.

Firstly, did the police officer actually say that they'd been called? It's possible she was a community officer who might have passed by your house earlier in the night and heard dd crying and then again later and heard the same and decided she'd be cautious and check it out.

If I thought a baby might be being neglected/abused/left alone I honestly don't know what I would do. If I knocked on the door and there was no-one home then what? or what if there was someone home and they didn't take kindly to my intrusion? If someone is capable of abusing their own child, then God knows what they might be capable of doing to a well-meaning neighbour who got involved.

Maybe these neighbours have heard your dd screaming every night for 7 months and have agonized over whether to get the authorities involved. Maybe they've been through similar so wanted to give it time before jumping to conclusions.

There are so many what-ifs here really that it's impossible to say that anyone was right or wrong IMO.

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