Love thy neighbor; is it really possible?

@blueskies (1186)
United States
March 13, 2007 9:31am CST
In today’s world, open spaces are rapidly disappearing. More and more, people find themselves living in neighborhoods with small yards. This puts everyone in very close proximity to their neighbors. When your neighbor is a nice person with similar values, this can be a mutually satisfying relationship. However, oftentimes, we find ourselves living next to someone that we would never socialize with in casual society. That person may be simply annoying, slovenly, or outright rude and offensive. Whichever the case, we commonly find ourselves at odds with our neighbors. There are several types of neighbors that everyone can relate to. I’ll just list a few of them here. The Busybody: every neighborhood has one of these. The Busybody feels that it is their job to keep an eye on the neighborhood and to tell everyone about the daily goings-on. She is never out of the loop and is the gossip queen. She will spread her “knowledge” far and wide and defend it to the death. Just because you mind your own business and keep your nose clean does not mean you are safe. She will regale everyone on the block with her story of how she saw a car that looked “just like Jim Smith’s” parked outside of Milly Somes’ home until midnight the other night. She’ll also tell you how she always knew that Milly was a woman of loose virtue and that she has heard the Smith’s arguing on many occasions. The simple fact that Milly had a relative visiting from out of town on that evening just doesn’t make a good story. No one is safe from her conjecture. The Slob: This person usually has several slovenly children, all dressed in dirty clothing, that run amok, causing mayhem throughout the neighborhood. The Slob can usually be found sitting in a lawn chair on his front yard, beer can in hand, peering out at the street through all the broken toys, car parts and furniture that are strewn about his lot. The Slob sees nothing wrong with the way that he keeps his house. If you don’t like it, mind your own business. His kids have full bellies and that’s all that matters. He could care less about your property values. The Dog Owner: I’m not talking about the conscientious dog owner. I’m referring to the person who feels that owning a dog is his right and that you should mind your own business. He may or may not feed the dog, but it is most certainly not taken to the vet for its immunizations. These dog owners leave their dogs outside all day and all night. The dogs are usually tied to trees or dilapidated dog houses, where they beat muddy circles in the grass to mark the edges of their prison cells. These dogs are not used to human contact and usually bark constantly. Efforts to speak to the Dog Owner about his animals will be met with hostility. Calls to animal control are usually more productive, as the owner will then take necessary measures to avoid being fined. The Dog Owner is no friend to man or beast. As you can tell, this is one of those days when the negative aspects of close neighbors are glaringly obvious to me. The dogs barking in the next yard are driving me insane. The busybody neighbor is spreading the rumor that my truck has been repossessed (it’s actually in the shop for engine repairs). The neighbor on my other side has more garbage sitting on his front porch than one garbage truck could haul away. Where are the nice neighbors that bake cookies and invite your children over to play? I miss the country on days like these.
14 people like this
42 responses
@cassidy22 (2975)
• United States
13 Mar 07
it depends on the neighbors and on you. I had wonderful neighbors in my last neighborhood. We still keep in touch and I miss them alot. They were the kind of folks you could borrow tools from and such. We took turns shoveling each other's drives in the snow, and helped each other rake leaves. I really liked them. On the other hand, I had neighbors who sued me for "emotional distress" because they said my dogs barked too much. NO, I am NOT the dog owner described above. It wasn't even MY DOGS that were doing the barking, but a pair that lived behind me They lost the case, but were rude and intolerable for 3 years. They were the kind of neighbors that got mad if leaves from a tree growing in my yard landed on their lawn. my lord, the trees on my street were 50 years old or more, I can't control where the leaves fell!! It goes both ways...
3 people like this
@TerryZ (22085)
• United States
13 Mar 07
I dont even talk to my neighbores they are so rude and I couldnt be borthed with them. I have said hi to them many times now I just ignore them. Where I live the houses are not real close together which Im gratefull for. so if you dont talk to your neighbor its no big deal.
@yanjiaren (9050)
13 Mar 07
I remember when I was young and used to visit my parent's country..Greece..In those days around 35 years ago..when i was around six years old..the people were very friendly and giving and every one in the villages especially were very hospitable..even ifthey were poor. Unfortunately with Mass urbanisation every where..this has been lost as the families get smaller and every one is a stranger toeach other. I donot like the concrete jungle myslef either and my dream one day is to go to my Hubby's provinve of Henan and buil,d my wu ji pavilion..every thing lovely and old fashioned ..where every one can come and have a traditional cup of tea..served in a traditional way and can chill..
2 people like this
• India
14 Mar 07
Well, loving your neighbour or getting loved by your neighbour does not depend on the interests you have. It depends how much helpful you are to each other in the time of need.
@godhand (38)
• Italy
13 Mar 07
I tell only a story...When i was a little child i had a old women for neighbor and she was a third grandmother for me... she help me to do a lot of works and she attend to me when my parents are away... now i have her daughter, she is really rude and she use a part of our courtyard like if it were hers...
2 people like this
@mujtab20 (434)
• Nigeria
13 Mar 07
Actually, whether you are christian or Muslim or whatever religion, you suppose to love your thy neighbour. For you dont know one day what help he/she might give you, but remember the good neighbours only.
@AskAlly (3627)
• Canada
13 Mar 07
How utopian that would be! I always considered myself so blessed to be living in the middle of nowhere. I feel so sorry for you. I really don't know how I would cope living in a town or city under the circumstances that you describe. I would be a mad woman.
2 people like this
@vikasintl (267)
• India
13 Mar 07
when jesus said Love neighbors ...he was enlightened. And only enlightened ones can have such compassion. So you have to reach to that state of mind.
2 people like this
• Romania
13 Mar 07
My neighbor's are so bad that actually we don't say hello.They poison my cats for two times.I believe it's a dream to find real nice neighbor's.Dream on dear people's.
2 people like this
• United States
13 Mar 07
Yep, I can relate. Have had "the neighbors from hell" living on both sides. Had one neighbor who called the health dept on me for whatever struck her fancy that particular day, usually it was because my grass was 3" high or heaven forbid a tree branch fell on the ground. She had this bird feeder outside and seeds all over the ground.. well all of a sudden we got mice. She blamed me for it and called them. When they showed up at my door I politely pointed out the seeds all over the ground in her yard and they had a little talk with her.. this was the beginning of the endless nightmare. Every few days she would harrass me, yell at me, and call the police on me. One confused young police officer came to the door one day and asked me who's van was parked in front of MY garage. I told him it belonged to my fiance. He said he got a call that there was a van parked in a handicapped zone? This is in the middle of the neighborhood mind you, the nearest business is a block away. I told him that I had a neighbor who was a little off her rocker and enjoyed calling every city authority available to come and harrass me. The poor cop just shook his head and left. Boy what a huge relief it was when she moved. In the house on the other side, 2 adults and 13 kids were living in 1/2 a duplex with 1 bathroom. So when we'd go out to go to work in the mornings there were numerous bare little bottoms staring at us thru our chain link fence while several children took their morning constitutional... it was pretty disgusting. Though I don't blame the kids. After all the young ones left for school, then it was the teenage dropouts turn. They'd back their station wagon in between the houses and would crank up the stereo with Mariachi music blaring. If it was just a regular old car stereo it wouldn't have been too bad but in the back of this wagon they had an 18" subwoofer pointed right at my kitchen window. It would literally shake my walls and I couldn't even talk on my own phone in my own house. I started calling the police because it got intolerable and then I was called a racist every time I walked out of my house! Jeez c'mon! Thank heaven they are gone now too. Hope you can find a way to cope with your neighbors. I will love my neighbors as long as they're quiet and act like decent human beings!
2 people like this
@polachicago (19077)
• United States
13 Mar 07
The Busybody and The Dog Owner are my neighbors. It was so sad to see big dog outside during snow storm and extreme cold. Leash it to short and mess is all around. My next door neighbor is watching my house 24/7 and I am happy about it :)
2 people like this
@stephcjh (32328)
• United States
13 Mar 07
In this day and age it is very hard to love thy neighbor. sometimes thy neighbor is our worst enemy. We moved to this are about 9 years ago and the builders that were buidling our home said that we would have to live here about 10 years before we would be accepted here. As time has passed it has gotten really bad here in the subdivision we live in. We have done everything here to make things better but the workers and the owner of the sudivision, just keeps making things harder and worse for us. I do have one neighbor and we used to be friends. Well, I was his friend. We still associate but we do not hang out alot. You just cannot trust people these days. We want to move out of this area really bad, but we love our home and the land here. It is the people who live around here in the country who just won't accept us for who we are. If you are not from this area, they really don't want you to be here.
• United States
13 Mar 07
I would rather deal with those conditions than what I do now with a neighbor that finds it fine to revve his truck at all hours of the day and late at night. They constantly have people over and have been rather loud at times. The cops have been called many times, not just by me, but by others who also live near him, and not a darn thing has been done to solve this problem. I have lost many hours of sleep because of this neighbor of mine and I do live in, in the country. I would rather hear a dog bark constantly than a really loud truck being revved. There are times he pounds on the gas pedal so much that it actually shakes things in my house and have had things fallen off the shelves and walls because of it. Rather annoying yes.
@blueskies (1186)
• United States
13 Mar 07
I forgot to mention that the dog owner neighbor also has a motorcycle. I feel your pain.
• United States
14 Mar 07
I have had my fair share of good neighbors and bad. I have only been at my current home for a few months. My biggest problem has been the issue of someone not liking my husband's beat up 73 Dodge Pickup. First they called code enforcement. The vehicle is legal and it wasn't towed. I agree it is UGLY but it's something my husband loves. A few nights ago, someone, I am assuming the person who called the code enforcement, sparayed painted the windows, license plates and profanity on the driver's side panel. I told my husband to leave it on there! LOL That's my busybody. Than of course I have another neighbor who is always running errands. She has a son in my son's class. Of course, the kid always forgets his keys and can't get in. She trusts me to WATCH her kid until late at night but not enough to leave me a key to give to her son when he forgets his. It's getting ugly because I stop allowing her son to come in afterschool everyday. She was a little annoyed, I couldn't do her a favor.
@kgwat70 (13398)
• United States
14 Mar 07
It definitely is possible to still love your neighbor as I love my neighbors very much and we get along great. We look after each others places when we go away. My next door neighbor has cooked me food before and has done numerous things for me and I have helped her as well. Maybe it just depends on what neighborhood you live in or city or state. I can not complain about my neighbors.
@Pekachu (1114)
• United States
14 Mar 07
I can relate to days like that.I am the neighbor that never comes out i can imagine what all the noisy nieghbors must say about me but i dont care i just mind my own business i dont care for the neighborhood and dont care to socialize with the neighbors dont see any good coming from doing so
1 person likes this
@shoelover (1573)
• Australia
11 Apr 07
We have just recently moved. One of the reasons was a neighbours dog. It's continual barking was driving my hubby insane. We were surrounded by 4 neighbours. The ones at the back had a child molesterer for a son so we had to be extremely careful when our children were young. The ones at the side had the annoying dog and you could always hear them swearing at their young children. The lady at the other side was deaf but a lovely old dear. The ones at the front were feral pigs who reckon they didn't live there but were only house sitting. They would leave their lawn get to 1 metre high and were the cause of rats, mice and snakes. Now we have moved we cheated. We put up neighbourhood friendly fencing so our neighbours cannot see us when we up up the back yard. We have not had a chance to really get to know these new neighbours but really are not interested :).
• India
10 Apr 07
hi blue, thats a nice research that you have managed to do. reading your message, it looks like most of the neighbours are the same. but sure, some neighbours can be managed and loved too. its dependant on situations, you see.
@patootie (3593)
17 Mar 07
Well I must be extraordinarily lucky ... I don't think I have ever had any of these kinds of neighbours in the whole of my life .. So ... it looks like I have all the 'nice' neighbours living near me ... and I'm sorry .. but you just can't have them ... they are mine ... mine I say ... laughs hysterically ... aaaaaaaalllllllll mine ...
@zuri25 (2128)
• United States
14 Mar 07
It is possible to love thy neighbors. My family is proof of this. We live in a neighborhood like the ones you describe where we are in close proximity to our neighbors. In the 16 years that my family have lived here there has only ever been one neighbor that none of us got along with and that's because the woman had nothing better to do than to pick fights and be mean. Other than her, all of my neighbors get along very well. So well in fact that we have an annual neighborhood camping trip every summer. Some of the families that attend are former neighbors who have since moved away but remain close friends. So, it definitely is possible to get along with ones neighbors.
• India
14 Mar 07
if you love your neighbour,then you will be loved by someone..hence love someone to be loved by someone..