Post # 1
My fiancé and I live in a garden style apartment above a couple who are about our same age. (27-28) She lived there alone at first and I would see her from time to time and say hello and thought maybe we could be friends. She had mentioned one day she didn’t know anyone in the area and I only have a few friends here. We exchanged numbers and made plans to go to a happy hour soon. We never actually did and then he moved in. I’ve never actually seen her boyfriend so I don’t know what looks like.. All I know is that he sounds like a loser and is unemployed with no job plans and relies on her for everything based on what she’s told me in passing.
Over the past 4-6 weeks, they’ve began to fight. Really bad. He yells and yells at the top of his lungs the most awful things you can imagine at her. It’s really terrible to hear. She’s really soft spoken so I can never her what she says. But it just keeps getting more frequent and louder and nastier. I don’t know how she takes it….but up until this week, I just figured as long as he isn’t hitting her, I am staying out of it. Luckily the way her place is setup, you can’t really hear them from our bedroom so it hasn’t affected our sleep, etc. but it definitely sucks when you are having a nice dinner and that’s all you hear.
So this week it got so bad (glass breaking, her crying, him screaming) that I couldn’t just let this continue. So I called her and just let her know that we can hear everything that’s been going on and I asked if she was okay. She apologized profusely saying how embarrassed she was and that they would keep it down. I just said again that I hoped the situation improved and that if she needed some girl time that I was here and we made plans to go to happy hour later that week . I know I know, at this point it was reason enough to call the police. But I just didn’t want to go there.
So the next day, I get home from work to hear it the worst ever and I hear him say “and now you’ve got that b*tch neighbor in our business, she needs to mind her own business or I am going to go up there.” And I hear her crying and saying “no no I just made that up, don’t do that” So this alarms me and frankly scared me. Suddenly I hear what sounds like him hitting her. I’m not for sure but she was saying “stop. ” I get my phone to call police and i hear him slam door and start yelling outside. before i can dial out, shes calling me. She says she wants to warn me that hes outside. that scared me. why are you warning me? did he say more things about me? is he pissed that I talked to her? then she basically asks me not to call the cops and how she loves him, etc. I realize quickly from this conversation she has no intentions of bettering her situation.(not blaming her, I know its hard to get out of due to fear, etc) She was really afraid of the cops coming and her getting in trouble with the law which I didn’t understand. I don’t know if she’s hiding something or afraid or cops or what.
I agreed but told her the next incident I was calling. After this I thought about it and just got really nervous. Now he will know its me who called the cops whenever we do and what if he gets really mad? Mad enough to come up to our apt? Fiancé wasn’t home during this and is going to be traveling a lot in the next few weeks leaving me alone here. I suddenly wished I never called her so I could at least call the cops and not get blamed but its pretty obvious now it Would be me. I don’t want to sit and listen to this anymore but it really makes me scared of him. I have a golden retriever and I love to walk her a lot. again I don’t know what he looks like so if I saw him in passing outside I wouldn’t know but I know that he knows our dog so he would figure out its me. Scary.
I just canceled happy hour with her and said that I felt it wasn’t a good idea right now because I didn’t want to cause more problems and make them fight over it. I feel bad….I don’t want to just avoid someone who might need help and knows no one here but don’t want to risk my safety. This guy could be crazy, he sure sounds it. She wants to try again to hang out soon. Should I? Should I call cops on them next time? This sucks….
Post # 3
Yes, call the Cops next time. You probably should have called a while ago (not giving you a hardr time, but I never hesitate in situations like this). From what it sounds like, he is most likely hitting her. She is a typical victim of domestic abuse and will tell you until her face is blue that she loves him and doesn’t want to get him in trouble. This does not mean it is the answer.
Please call the police next time. And don’t hesitate to tell them what you heard him say about YOU either.
Post # 4
Personally, I would call the cops next time. I have been a victim of abuse myself, and I know she doesn’t seem to want to help herself. However, I don’t think you are out of line to call the cops if you believe that their fights are out of control. Maybe they will realize that everyone in the world can hear them. You need to find a way to feel secure though, because what happens if someone else calls the cops on them, and you don’t know, and suddenly you are at risk? Because he will surely think it was you. I’d advise arming yourself with pepper spray, at the very least. Make sure you know how to use it before you start carrying it around.
Make sure your FI knows about this. If you do call the cops, tell them that you are afraid. Never underestimate an abuser.
I don’t have any advice on what you should do about your friendship though.
Post # 5
I would have called the cops long ago.
Post # 6
Call the cops. I doubt it will do any good, but I would call them.
I would also call the apartment manager and let him know what is going on. It sucks that her life is a mess, but you pay rent and have your own life and shouldn’t have to suffer because of your neighbors.
ETA: As for the friendship, I would probably keep my distance. I wouldn’t turn her away if she came to me, but I wouldn’t be seeking her out.
Post # 7
You need to call the cops next time. Seriously you do not want to see her face on a milk carton and have to deal with questions from the cops. Perhaps you could explain the situation to apartment management and ask them to inform her that several neigbhors have complained. That way it looks like it’s not just you.
Post # 8
Call the police and talk to the apartment manager. And I agree that you need to express concern for your own safety as well.
Post # 9
My heart breaks for your neighbor! Even if you call the cops and they come, chances are that she won’t press charges. What an awful situation!
Post # 10
@blushpink10: I am begging you to call the police now and explain the situation. Tell them you are afraid for her safety and tour own and they will make it so he has to leave and stay away, pending a hearing in court. I was your neighbor once upon a time and the guy was my ex husband. If you call now you may save her life.
Post # 11
What an awful situation for you to be in. Calling the cops may make the abuse worse but I think it has to be done. she clearly is in no position to be able to help herself right now as I couldnt live with myself if I didn’t try to help should something terrible happen to her.
eta – maybe it’s better if you call now while he is gone and something isn’t actively happening?
Post # 12
I would have called the cops already and if I were you I would definitely call next time. PP who suggested to call anyway and explain what’s going on has a good idea. I would keep my distance from her as you don’t want to get more involved, ESP if she is not planning on leaving him- and to tell you not to call the cops! You have to do what’s right for your safety.
Post # 13
@blushpink10: let me also add that I didn’t leave my abusive ex husband until the police were called and I realized how dangerous the situation was for me and my son
Post # 14
I am like you. When dealing with neighbor situations I hesitate to call the cops, but you are scared for your own safety. I would call the non emergency line and inform the cops about the situation and state it’s not only her safety your worried about.
Post # 15
@blushpink10: Call the cops next and every time after that. The thing about a woman in that situation is, although she will probably lie for him and not press charges, the state most likely will (depending on where you live) if you call them enough times over the same guy. Someday (which will only come when she’s literally “had enough”) she will be brave enough to press charges, get a restraining order (for which she will need proof of his actions) or call that hotline number and get herself some help. Not calling the cops only reinforces her fantasy inside her head that it’s really not that bad. And then there’s the worst case scenario, that one of those times when you call the cops it might actually save her life.
ETA: If you even hear him threatening you, even without seeing him or having him at your door, you can in fact call the police and report that too. Any verbal threat to harm you.
Post # 16
I’d call your local police department and give your story to them now so that you don’t have to explain the situation when you hear him screaming at her when you do call. The thing that would bother me is that he said he’s going to come to your apartment. If he’s hitting her, what would stop him from hitting and belittling you? What if he does it when your FI isn’t around? It’s not like you can run away or avoid it since you live there. You pay money to be in your home. You should feel safe at home. I personally would have called a long time ago. Like PP said, you just might save her life.
I’ve been with an emotional abuser before and they know how to turn the tables and make you feel like you’re at fault for everything when they are the guilty party. She’s too weak to defend herself and she’s stuck. Now if he is physically violent, he could potentially kill her. It’s really crappy and I am sorry you somehow got caught in the middle. You need to talk to FI and tell him everything before you do anything else. If I were in your shoes, I would go down to the police department and tell them why you’re concerned.