When She Approached Her Neighbors About Their Crying Baby, They Refused to Listen and Responded by Shutting the Door on Her

A woman recently asked her neighbor to stop letting her baby cry in the room right next to her office because the baby could be heard over Zoom. Here is what she had to say:

The terrace house

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In the United Kingdom, terraced housing is prevalent. Often sound carries through the adjoining walls and neighbors can hear noises like telephones ringing, doorbells or even the TV. When the woman first moved into her property, the house next door was vacant as it was undergoing renovations. However, about six weeks ago, a couple with a newborn baby moved into that house.

She was nice to her new neighbors

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The woman said hello and exchanged a few pleasantries with them. She is neighborly, but she and the couple are not friends. “I live alone and am a quiet neighbor. However, next door is not,” she said.

The couple is loud

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“I hear everything! I don’t know what the owners did when they were renovating, but there is no sound insulation at all. I don’t hear conversations at a normal level, but that’s it.” With it being terraced housing, the woman accepts that her neighbors will say some things she will hear.

She rarely hears anything from the otherside

Peace and Quiet
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On the other side, she has a neighbor whom she rarely hears anything from,  apart from when she is in her front room, she can hear the sound of their front door.

The baby cries a lot

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This is understandable, given that it is an infant. However, it nearly always cries, and sometimes it screams and cries for much of the day. She usually puts up with it and often wears headphones around her house to drown out the noise. She also works from home twice a week, which her neighbors know, as she has taken packages for them when they have been out.

Her job requires a quiet environment

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Her job means that she is often on the phone when working or in Zoom meetings. When working from home, the woman is based in her back bedroom upstairs, as it is the only room that cancels out all noise from the nearby road. From what she has heard, the woman assumes the baby’s room is on the other side of her wall.

Her colleagues are complaining about the crying baby

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“It cries so loudly that I can hear it like it’s in the room with me, and clients and colleagues can hear it crying through my headphones, and I’m getting lots of comments from people about it,” she said. “It’s also very distracting for me to try and work with.”

She confronted her neighbors

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Recently, after the woman finished work, she knocked on her neighbor’s door to explain what had been happening. She tried to be polite and apologetic while saying this. She asked if the baby could be moved to a different room for a bit if they failed to calm it down.

Her neighbor was furious

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In response, the baby’s mother “exploded” at the woman, swearing at her and calling her entitled and selfish. She said that the woman had no idea what it was like to be a mother or how hard it can be, and that she left the baby upstairs so she could have a break from it crying. She then slammed the door in the woman’s face.

She felt conflicted

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She knows babies cry, and it can be difficult for them to settle. She also knows that her neighbors must be exhausted from all the crying. However, she makes little to no noise as a neighbor, and the sounds from their home affect her concentration and work to the point where her colleagues have complained.

She asked the internet for advice

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Worried that she had done the wrong thing, she asked for advice. She wanted to know whether or not she should have just put up with the crying baby instead of angering her neighbors. 

People responded

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Someone said, “It was okay for you to ask. The fact that the mother exploded at you was also understandable, particularly as they may have heard your request as ‘your baby cries too much in your house. Fix it’. Which is the sort of thing that can sound like a judgment of her parenting and a threat.”

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