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Fall out with neighbours

25 replies

ForeverHopeful21 · 13/11/2017 15:23

My next door neighbours are currently having work done on their house. We live on a very small country lane and so the workmen have been parking opposite my house in a small lay-by. However last week when one of them was trying to turn around he drove over the grass verge outside my front garden leaving deep muddy tyre marks through it.
Then at the weekend there was a car pulled over on to my grass verge. I went out to ask him to move when my neighbour appeared, so I asked my neighbour if he could tell the work guys not to drive over the grass or park there as it was getting ruined. I didn't think this was a huge ask but to my surprise he was very defensive and said it was nothing to do with him.

Seconds later I receive a text message from his wife saying how dare I blame them for ruining the grass and that I had no right to have a go at her husband. I was so shocked! I replied saying there had been a misunderstanding and that I wasn't blaming them and was very sorry if he felt that I was having a go - which I honestly wasn't. She replied saying that they have no control over when the workmen park and that she 'could do without me adding to her hassle'. The text messages where huge paragraphs of bold text and exclamation marks. They were extremely hostile, aggressive, over the top and unnecessary. I felt so upset because I had no idea how it had turned in to this and I absolutely hate confrontation. My husband wanted to defuse the situation so he went went round to speak to them. He apologised for the misunderstanding and said he didn't want us to fall out. They all agreed that they had no control over where the workmen parked and my husband said that he'll buy some boulders to stop it from happening (even though we can't afford to do this).

To my husband this is now done and dusted. However the more I've thought about it the more angered I've felt at how they treated me and have just gotten away with it - in the sense that my husband didn't say anything to them about their awful behaviour. The wife is a right gossip and I can just imagine her telling everyone in the village that I had a go at them. We're not close friends or anything but I work from home (as do they) and I see them most days when out walking the dogs. I have no idea how to act when I next see them. I feel like I deserve an apology and I also want to point out that I was only asking them to pass on a request to the workmen - that is all. My husband says I need to let it go and just be polite in order to all live here harmoniously.
What would you do?

OP posts:
TrojansAreSmegheads · 13/11/2017 15:25

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

springydaffs · 13/11/2017 15:37

Well, you can hold on to your grievance or you can let it go.

Holding on to it will mean you are constantly aware of them, when they're in or out, when they go on holiday (bcs you will be relieved they're not there). In short, your life will be entirely dominated by your grievance.

Or you can let their pig ignorant behaviour go. YOU know they're ignorant as fuck, let that be enough.

If they went to the trouble to behave so outrageously ignorantly in the first place there is NO WAY they will intelligently discuss their behaviour with a means to reconciliation. You'd just get more pig ignorant shit.

How do I know all this?

ForeverHopeful21 · 13/11/2017 18:26

Thank you, after writing the post and getting it off my chest - I can definitely see that I need to let it go. I think the whole thing just shocked me but you're right springy trying to have a discussion about it would be pointless.

OP posts:
MinervaSaidThar · 13/11/2017 18:57

in the sense that my husband didn't say anything to them about their awful behaviour.

There's your problem. You're relying on someone else to speak for you.

You have to learn to stand up for yourself.

You were right to be annoyed and I would have texted back to gove the bitch a few home truths!

It's done now so ignore them both and don't do them any neighbourly favours.

springydaffs · 13/11/2017 23:22

Minera. Love. That's not helpful advice.

Don't be making the op feel she's responsible eh.

It's all very well standing there saying there's no way you'd let anyone treat you like that /you'd give her a mouthful. It doesn't always pan out like that. So don't be making the op feels she's crap and handled it badly.

Cricrichan · 14/11/2017 01:55

Just behave as if nothings happened from now on. You're not friends therefore better for you this way. If you know she's a gossip then everyone will know this so don't worry.

ThisTimeItsTrue · 14/11/2017 02:03

Let it go but never forget. ...and maybe think up a suitable nickname for them. We had Nieghbours called the FuckShitBollox Family. ( The FSBs for short) I don't know if I ever knew their real name.

If you see them I'd say hello but not much more. They sound very unpleasant and dramatic.

Chottie · 14/11/2017 02:10

I'm another one of the let it go school of thought...

You live in a small village, these are your neighbours, you work from home, you will see them regularly.......

Don't worry about your neighbour being a gossip, if she does say anything, it will be a five minute wonder, gossips always need fresh fuel to stoke their fires.

Smile, wish them good morning etc when you see them and let it go.

BBCK · 14/11/2017 02:12

If they’re normally good neighbours try to let it go. They’re obviously very stressed and have behaved badly but one indiscretion is forgiveable for the sake of harmony. We had similar with our neighbours and it really upset me at the time, but life’s too short to hold grudges so I chalked it up to experience and tried to forget it.

WhoWants2Know · 14/11/2017 04:08

I think they’re getting off a bit lightly, to be honest. A worker they contracted caused damage to your property, so to claim it’s nothing to do with them is nonsense. They can certainly tell their workers where to park, and whoever drove over the grass should have been sent over to apologise.

Worriedobsessive · 14/11/2017 04:51

Actually Minerva’s post is really useful and spot on. The problem isn’t the neighbours or builders, it’s that the OP can’t deal with confrontation in a productive way. That’s not a criticism, it’s identifying where to start to fix things. Have you thought about an assertiveness course?
Sometimes people who struggle with confrontation and assertion may think they’re making a reasonable point but actually they’ve stewed about it for so long that it comes out as being far more critical and attacking than was intended originally and I wonder if that’s what might have happened here.

Melony6 · 14/11/2017 06:15

Imv it is important to stay on good terms with your neighbours even if they are selfish dickheads. Because you see them v regularly and it is not pleasant to have people you see regularly giving you dagger looks, blanking you or whatever else 'punishment' they think you deserve so I would say definitely suck it up for a peaceful life.

But their behaviour to me seemed like the complaint about the workmen was the last straw, most likely because having alterations done and workmen in your home is very stressful. They can't shout at the ignorant mannered workmen so unfortunately took it out on you.
Do the workmen have a head office you can complain to.

AJPTaylor · 14/11/2017 06:20

If its a one off, ignore and pretend it never happened

CakesRUs · 14/11/2017 06:34

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, you might have had a better outcome regarding you being left angry, if you had have gone yourself. But it’s done now and you’ve got 3 choices a) let it go b) simmer with rage c) go and have your say.

I’d say, let it go, but if you can’t, don’t let it fester, go and talk to them about it, not in a confrontational way though, you might feel better for it.

VivaLeBeaver · 14/11/2017 06:35

Is the verge your land? If not and it's part of the public highway don't put boulders on it.....someone near me got sued for damage to their car after they drove on a verge with boulders. They sued the house owner who put the boulders there and the council had a fit and said people aren't allowed to do it.

I would carry on being polite but as little contact as possible with the neighbours.

BrandNewHouse · 14/11/2017 06:43

This reply has been deleted

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HipToBeSquare · 14/11/2017 07:01

Good post springy

I'd be seething the more I thought about OP too. But I'd take comfort in knowing it sounds like it's going shit for your neighbours Smile

ForeverHopeful21 · 14/11/2017 09:54

The reason I didn't go round and speak to them myself was because I was waiting for a client to arrive as I was working, although tbh I don't think she would have listened to anything I had to say anyway. They fell out with my old next door neighbours and for 3 years we were sandwiched in the middle of them both. It was a horrible situation having both sides despise each other - that's not I way I want to live. So definitely just going to let it go. Thanks for all the advice.

OP posts:
thecatneuterer · 14/11/2017 10:06

I also want to know if the verge is on your land. To me the grass verge at the bottom of my front garden means there is a pavement in between and the verge is tended by the Council.

Is that not the case here?

Popchyk · 14/11/2017 10:19

I think they handled it badly, both of them. Of course you can tell workmen who are doing work for you where it is okay to park and where it isn't.

But I'd let it go. I suspect that they are super-stressed with the building works and I'd put it down to that. I'd imagine that they already have a delicate relationship with the builders if they can't even say "Bob, don't park your van on the neighbour's verge please".

I'd be a bit wary of the neighbours in future but would continue to be civil.

ravenmum · 14/11/2017 10:46

A couple of sticks or garden chairs with some string between should do the trick if it is only temporary and you don't want to buy boulders.

MinervaSaidThar · 14/11/2017 10:59


Minera. Love. That's not helpful advice.

Was there really any need to be patronising, Springy?

As worriedobsessive says, I wasn't criticising OP or trying to make her feel bad. And I did tell her she should ignore them now rather than give them a 'mouthful', as you call it.

My only advice to OP was to stand up for herself in future.

Evilstepmum01 · 14/11/2017 11:10

Definitely let it go and try to laugh about it.
Giving them a silly name is a good way of dealing with it. We had a falling out with our back neighbour this summer which I dealt with promptly and we agreed to let it go and now we are polite.

You dont have to like them, but if you meet them out walking the dogs, be polite and friendly. If they ignore you, you know you've tried (and just speak to the dogs!)
I do tend to go passive aggressive and be super polite, but thats just how I cope! (Better than calling them fuckwits anyway)

DarkPeakScouter · 14/11/2017 11:11

Is the verge council land? If it is nothing you can do really. Re the neighbours - ignore the buggers from now on.

FairfaxAikman · 14/11/2017 11:21

Off topic, but rather than buying boulders I’d speak to a friendly farmer.
They are always digging large stones out of the fields. It’s where I got mine when I had to do similar.

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