Not So Fabulous- Whose swing is it anyway?


Okay, Maybe I am from another planet, but last time I checked if there's a swing hanging on a tree, in my yard, then it's MY SWING. Apparently not. I have a neighbor who seems to think otherwise. Don't get me wrong, I am all for sharing and having neighborhood kids play together. All for it! But after asking if they could use the swing one time, they now come EVERYDAY TWICE A DAY.
Maybe you didn't read that right. EVERYDAY TWICE.....A.....DAY!
Her nanny even comes over when the mother doesn't come. It's a shame because the little girl is adorable and Landons age. I have TRIED to help the problem by A) saying "hey, knock on the door next time! We'll come out and play too!"
and then by saying B) "here's my phone number, call and we'll have a play date!"
No calls. No knocks. Just her on the swing, twice a day, for at least a half an hour while I'm in my house seeing her through my kitchen window.
My sister was ready to murder this woman, I tried to keep my cool, but after coming home a million times and seeing her there, and her still STAYING a half hour after I am home, I had to say something. It was her fault really, she gave me the window of saying "if it's too much tell me". This prompted my quick reply of "well, actually now that you mention it..."
I tried to explain that it's awkward, and I'd love the kids to play together, but it's too much. She gave some lame excuse about not wanting to bother me (SERIOUSLY? BECAUSE YOU ARE BOTHERING ME AND INVADING MY SPACE), and not knowing Landon's nap schedule etc. Good Golly Gumdrops I thought I would lose it.
She spun her stroller around and said she would call next time but it's clear she's not coming back. I tried I swear.
I feel a little better for drawing a boundary and a little bad for telling her. I just kept thinking I would NEVER do what she was doing and I just could not understand. I need a glass of wine. I guess not all my neighbors are lovable.

26 comments:

Lauren said...

I would feel really strange going into a neighbors yard to use their swing. Why didn't she just say hello?

I hope you have a nice day!

Melissa said...

Your neighbor had a lot of nerve! Why can't she get her own swing for her child? I don't blame you for saying something! She was totally taking advantage!

The Wife said...

You are TOTALLY NOT over-reacting. This is teaching that child that it is OK to use the toys in your yard without permission. When she is older, she will feel free to trot on over and help herself. This is a MAJOR liability issue. I had the same problem in our old neighborhood - except the five and three year old would be there WITHOUT supervision. I would look out the window and there they would be on the slides or swing.

I wouldn't worry too much about no more playdates with these people. Frankly, if they behave this way now, think of what they will expect if you become good friends! Reclaim your swing!

Stylinmama said...

Seriously??? That is SO strange. Why can't she get her own swing, or why does she not want to talk to you? I think it is awesome you said something, I would have been too much of a wimp!

Impoverished Preppy said...

Ugh. That would have peeved me to no end. That actually really surprises me, because when we lived in California, there was VERY little interaction between neighbors that wasn't pre-arranged. I can't imagine anyone just coming into our yard and availing themselves of our toys.

You did your best and it sounds as if you were very polite about the whole thing. Seriously though, if they were clueless enough to be using the swing without asking in the first place, you probably didn't have much of a chance of being able to communicate with them in a normal fashion.

PS - Thanks for using the phrase "good golly gumdrops" - it made me smile!

Etiquettely Correct said...

You shouldn't feel bad, everyone needs boundaries. Thats so weird. Doesn't she have a park she can go to? Its kind of funny though.

lizziefitz said...

I feel your pain sista!

Always Organizing said...

It was really nice of you to extend the use of the swing, but what made her think she could come into your yard whenever she felt like it? People with no boundaries annoy me.

Kate said...

Weird! That would drive me nuts!

Pink in a sea of blue said...

So it's ok for her to use your swing and not ok to call you or have a play date with the swing's owner? Makes no sense. We have a rule. You don't play in others yards if they aren't outside playing. Period. Way to go about saying something!

Hillcrest Acres said...

OMG, I can't even begin to tell you all the tales we've encountered with our yard. The next door neighbors helped themselves to our backyard all the time because we had a swingset. (I should have known we were in trouble when we first moved in and they wanted us to go in on a swingset with them.) They even had parties and would use our yard for entertainment for the kiddies in attendance. And I was the "BITCH" because I would get a little annoyed with tons of toddlers running through my yard. One day I said something because they were planning on having a big neighborhood party with tons of kids. My family was coming over to meet my sister's boyfriend for a nice quiet family dinner. I asked them very politely if they could change the party and explained the situation. And to my disbelief, they still had the party and my mom ended up being the chaperone at our swingset because there were so many kids. Many, many times they would be out there on our swingset when we were eating dinner. Do you know how hard it is to keep kids at the dinner table when there are kids playing in our backyard? Then we got a trampoline and the same day I see their three daughters coming into our backyard with three friends. I just said that's it, walked out there and said sorry girls, I don't know their parents so I can't let them jump. Their mother had the nerve to come over and confront me about it. I explained to her that there is a big liability with a trampoline and it falls on us. She wasn't to happy. I had to deal with this kind of shit for ten years. This made for a very difficult situation. And to top it off, she took it out on my duaghter. Very, very sad. And she wasn't the only neighbor to pull this on us (she was the worst by far though). Needless to say (and again to my disbelief), neighbors were very rude.

I could go on and on and on. I still get so angry even thinking about it to this day. Sorry for all the rambling. Your story just hit a "big nerve" with me and to many awful memories. SO GOOD FOR YOU, STAND YOUR GROUND!!! Do it in the beginning so the nieghbors know their boundaries. Do it now before it gets out of hand like our situation. Good Luck.

WSU Laura said...

Good for you for drawing boundaries. Shame on her for taking advantage of your kindness, you went way beyond being gracious. I just cannot imagine playing in someone's yard without them being there.

Mom x 2 said...

Was this your front yard or back yard? I'm not excusing her behavior, especially since it doesn't sound like you were friends to begin with. Our block is full of families and we're all friends. We have a deck box on our front porch with a ball tee and balls and bats and my neighbors avail themselves of it all the time, even when we're home and inside. It sometimes ticks me off because then my kid begs to go out there even if we have something else planned. But my only request of my neighbors is if their kids get our toys out, they should put them back when they're done. I really hate it when I come home and balls and bats are all over my front yard.

Self Confessed Lamp Tramp said...

Wow what nerve she had. Proud of you for standing up to her, if she never comes back, you are probably better off.

magnolia mama said...

Good for you for standing up to her. Has she thought about going to Target and buying her own damn swing?

Ladybug's Picnic said...

Wow, that is so weird. Around here, nobody would go into anyone else's yard unaccompanied/unasked (maybe a New England thing? I don't know...) I'm super glad you stood your ground.

Liz said...

Wow your neighbor has some nerve. I can not imagine going into my neighbors yard everyday...twice a day using something of theirs w/o asking.
You were so in the right to say something. I would not be able to stand looking out my window seeing her out there doing that.

Amber Lee said...

I grew up in a community setting where going to and from each other's was encouraged. My friends know they can come over without asking and don't even have to knock. My mother is quite happy with it, and it's always been that way. In college, our profs (small college) would leave their houses unlocked during the day and encourage us to come over, even when they were gone, to use their washers and kitches. They taught us that by making things communal and destroying the barriers of "mine is mine" created a relationship to teach Christ.
So it wouldn't phase me at all. Communal property is pretty common for me.

But that's just me and my odd Christian upbringing.

Pigtails and Pacifiers said...

I think it was very sweet of you to offer your swing. But, I think you did the smart thing. You never know the little girl could get hurt and then you would have a huge issue on your hands.

Tickled Pink & Green said...

Wow - that is nervy of her. Especially when you would come home, she would see you, and not even knock on the door or say something about the kids playing together. You gave plenty of hints too.

How far away does she live? Do you run into her? Oh that would be so awkward!

Steel Magnolia said...

what nerve...

SnappyCasualGifts said...

I think you did the right thing by saying something. They could have knocked or called or something rather than assuming they can use the swing anytime they want. Plus what if the child falls out of the swing or something happens, they might sue. People are lawsuit crazy in this world.

Preppy Mama said...

Wow you are super nice. Good for you drawing a line because it seems like this woman would just keep taking advantage of you. We are hopefully moving soon and my request to my husband is my yard completely fenced in with a gate and lock! I don't have patience for nervy neighbors. Good Luck!

workinthatpreppy said...

wow...you did the right thing...i like my privacy. my neighbors do use our swing and trampoline and we use their pool in the summer. but...it's not the same as in..we couldn't just go to their pool when we wanted and when we use it, there are so many rules...so i'm just saying...

The Chic Chauffeur said...

No, you should definitely set boundries! Would you go over to her house, fire up her grill and cook a steak? Heck no! She was in the wrong for taking advantage, and you called her on it! Good for you!

Belle-ah said...

Maybe I am anti-social, but THAT would drive me nutso. You did the right thing and I am impressed that you spoke up.