City dwellers sometimes have to deal with neighbors staring into our apartments.
They’re not always being creepy, but sometimes it feels like you need to draw the curtains for a bit. However, when the weather is nice, who wants to be stuck inside a dark box?
What if there was a compromise that took into consideration your privacy and what your neighbors have to stare at when they want to get some sun or smoke on the fire escape?
One Redditor is quarreling with a Peeping Tom neighbor about the “ugly” window covers she got to protect her privacy and wants to know if she went too far.
“I live in an apartment on the ground floor of a house that was converted to apartments. My neighbors (one street over but the back of their house faces the back of the house I live in) can see my whole backyard and vice versa. My apartment has a whole wall of windows that are on the back of the house. It’s gorgeous and is a big reason I picked the place, I love keeping plants and it let in a lot of light. Looking out, there is the neighbors backyard which is large and comes up close to my place, the property line is maybe 10 or 15 feet from my windows.”
“Once it has gotten to be warm out I’ve noticed the husband of the family who owns that house looking into my apartment a lot. Even sometimes I’ll look up and see him, look away then look back minutes later and he’s still looking. So I started shutting the shades during the day but that was kind of annoying, my place is a dark cramped shoebox without the windows open. And I can’t do that for too long because the plants were struggling without light. So I bought these window coverings that make windows into one way mirrors. During the day when it is light out, my windows look just like mirrors now.”
She explains that it looks the same on the inside, but on the outside, it looks like mirrors, and you can’t see inside the apartment. Problem solved? Not quite.
After a week, the neighbors came by to complain about the windows. They said that they were ugly, it made pool parties uncomfortable for their teenagers and friends, and it reflected extra sunlight into their backyard and now they couldn’t enjoy eating dinner outside because of the sun in their eyes.
“I said sorry about the inconvenience but I wanted it for privacy. They both pushed back on that some and I said that I needed privacy because of the husband’s staring.”
“He started denying it in front of his wife and so I took out my phone where I’d taken pictures and sent it to my group of friends, and showed her a couple pictures of him gaping at my apartment and the texts from that time. He got mad and said he incidentally looked over, and the 8-foot by 20-foot mirror was a crazy overreaction. I said that I’d like to keep it, and that I was sorry but frankly this was avoidable. I think they’re both mad because they called my landlord, who brushed them off.”
No one wants a Peeping Tom nearby. What do Redditors think the OP should do?
“NTA. You proved that you needed the privacy because her husband is a creep and they’re upset for being called out. You don’t owe them anything and if your landlord hasn’t contact you about it then you don’t need to do anything that you don’t want to,” said Thr0w4w4y_96.
“You only put it up because he was staring into your window. Whatever his reason, that’s pretty creepy, especially since it seems to be happening a lot. Tell them you’ll only consider taking it down if they put up covers on their property which stop the husband from being able to see in your window. If they don’t like it then too bad. Any complaints from any other party who doesn’t like it should also be directed to the peeping husband,” advised Hazeru1001.
“NTA because of why you did it, but mirrored blinds that increase heat and confuse wildlife don’t sound ideal. Have you tried Magical Blinds? They are also one way but don’t give off a reflection. I would argue that since the neighbors are the ones being bothered they can pay for your new blinds but that would obviously escalate the situation,” suggested EmpressJainaSolo.
“You had a privacy issue, you have proof, you took steps to protect your privacy in a temporary, non damaging way to the apartment you’re renting (in my experience privacy film on windows literally just peels off, please correct me if this is not the case). The above makes you NTA. I would have done the same,” said gemskiy.
“Eh, I can see the mirrors being a nuisance to the neighbours, and I don’t think the neighbours were in the wrong for bringing it up (the tone, however, totally wrong). The glare when it is sunny outside can be pretty blinding. Now, I am 100% on the OPs side here, since the staring was incredibly creepy, but perhaps she can see if there are filters that are non-glaring/ non-mirrors that do the same trick. Blinding your neighbours through mirrors is kinda sh**ty as well,” said HabitatGreen.
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