Neighbor constantly looking into my yard

Hello Everyone,
I was diagnosed with PTSD at 18 and I self diagnosed CPTSD a few years ago, because my PTSD comes from my violent upbringing and not one isolated event.

So based on my trauma, one of my very big triggers is having a man constantly surveying me. I was abused in my home as a child by my step father, Who was constantly watching me and it really set me on edge for life.

My current living situation is an Inlaw unit behind a larger house which I share with my husband and my baby. It makes more sense for us to have him work and you stay at home with the baby at this time.

And we chose to live in this location because of its peaceful atmosphere. We have a small garden for vegetables and a porch for playing. But I feel really uncomfortable using them because there is a neighbor (we live next door to a 3 story apartment building) that is constantly off of his balcony and drinking in the day and talking loudly on the phone and looking into our yard. It’s pretty awkward. I always say hi and he always acts nice but I see him spit into our vegetable garden when he thinks no one‘s looking and he also has filmed people on his phone when they’re walking by…

It’s really creeping me out and I feel very triggered. Just the sound of his voice makes me feel like a scared little pig waiting for the big bad wolf to blow my house down. I know that my PTSD Will never completely go away and I have to figure out new ways to cope with it. One of those ways was to find a home environment that made me feel safe and that’s what I thought I found in this place but you know, such is life.

Recently I have installed a camera in my front window so it makes me feel a little safer. Ive even recorded some of his strange behavior like humping the fence of the balcony and drinking in the day with weird gestures. But I haven’t caught him throwing his alcohol bottles into the yard because he does it outside of the camera. There’s a huge pile of liquor bottles under one of the trees he likes to hide behind.

Anyway I’m feeling very creeped out and I don’t necessarily want to make it a police issue. It’s causing me to go into dysregulation and I’ve had a couple resulting panic attacks because of it. Of course I’m a little bit shame spiraling because I feel so embarrassed that this affects me so much when I could just mind my own business and get over it. But honestly like I don’t know what to do, I feel horrible and unsafe and I feel vulnerable and like I don’t have a leg to stand on in defending myself. The triggers are so real, and I honestly just want to be happy and be a good mom to my little baby and not be a freak about what everyone else is doing. Does anyone have any advice? Thank you for reading <3
 

joeylittle

Administrator
Of course I’m a little bit shame spiraling because I feel so embarrassed that this affects me so much when I could just mind my own business and get over it.
Based on what you're describing - I think it's pretty reasonable to find the neighbor's behavior upsetting.

I'm not meaning to minimize your experience of it as being triggering - because I can see how it would be. My point is only that your reaction isn't that far way from what any other human being might experience under the same circumstances (IMO).

Do you have options for some sort of privacy screen on your porch?
 
Based on what you're describing - I think it's pretty reasonable to find the neighbor's behavior upsetting.

I'm not meaning to minimize your experience of it as being triggering - because I can see how it would be. My point is only that your reaction isn't that far way from what any other human being might experience under the same circumstances (IMO).

Do you have options for some sort of privacy screen on your porch?
That’s a good point. Thank you for saying that:) at times it’s easy to lose sight of what a “normal” response would be.

I like your idea, but unfortunately the angles of the neighbors balcony and the garden that I share with the front house doesn’t allow for a privacy screen.
I think in most cases that is a great solution. I had a screen up for the side porch which was cool, but had to take it down because of weather.
We plan to move out of this area next summer, so I’m sure I can figure out how to live with this one way or another until it’s time to go.
It’s just at times very painful
 
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