In a now-viral post, a single mum said she’d put a “dent” in her neighbors’ marriage after making “condemning” comments about being “unmarried.”
Speaking on Reddit’s Petty Revenge forums under the username u/SiSoJones, the mom wrote, “Shame I’m a single mom in front of my kids. I’ll show you how much your marriage is make-believe.” The post received over 15,000 upvotes and more than 800 comments of support. You can read the full post here.
Of course, u/SiSoJones wouldn’t be the first to become involved in a neighborly dispute. A Homes.com poll found that 36 percent of people have fallen out with a neighbor and that 25 percent of neighborhood fights have turned into long-term feuds.
Aaron B. Rochlen, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin, recounted news week that there are several methods people can use to avoid feuds and “keep the peace” with rude or judgmental neighbors, such as B. Sending an honest letter or email. However, u/SiSoJones decided to seek revenge.
In their post, u/SiSoJones said their neighbors Mike and Sharon were “rubbing [her] the wrong way” for years.
“[Mike] felt a little grubby, and [Sharon] seemed curious as hell and judgmental. But I know myself; I know I’m quick to judge and hold certain opinions about people,” the mother wrote. “My daughter is about the same age as hers (let’s call her Maria) and she’s having a bit of trouble making friends, so when Sharon suggested they have weekly playdates[…]I pushed aside my dislike for her and agreed.”
Game dates went well for a while; However, u/SiSoJones’ daughter eventually stopped hanging around with Mike and Sharon.
“Apparently Sharon [watched the girls] play and [directed] them how to play, and they often [asked] my daughter’s intrusive questions about our family, particularly the paternity of my children,” among other things, told u/SiSoJones.
“My daughter still wanted to play with Maria so we decided the playdates could go ahead but only if they were with us,” u/SiSoJones wrote.
Sharon agreed to the new arrangement, but when she arrived at the u/SiSoJones home for the girls’ first play date, she announced that she didn’t want to leave Maria with an “unmarried mother.” According to u/SiSoJones, Sharon and Mike felt their relationship status proved she “couldn’t make good decisions,” and they feared she would make Maria “make bad decisions.”
Annoyed, u/SiSoJones decided to see if she was right about Mike being “sleazy”. So she created fake social media accounts “posing as an attractive young lady with lots of local friends, I followed him on Instagram, he followed back.
“He messaged me right away, and the messages ranged from vaguely flirtatious to an apparent attempt to get something.”
u/SiSoJones took screenshots of these messages and sent them to Sharon via Facebook. And a few days later, Mike stormed out of the house, suitcase in hand.
“He came back a few days later, so I didn’t destroy their marriage or anything, but I definitely put a dent in it,” she concluded.
Dealing with judgmental neighbors
Rochlen tells news week that there are multiple paths a person can take after being “judged” by a neighbor, and no – revenge is not a recommended path.
“What I can recommend [in a situation like u/SiSoJones’s] is to take some time away from the precise moment when the perceived judgment is happening,” said Rochlen. “It can be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to handle this smoothly at this moment. With that in mind, I think emails or letters can be useful.
“When [reaching out], try not to “attack” the other person. Even though it’s extremely difficult, try to understand what their ‘fear’ is,” Rochlen continued. “After acknowledging the fear, you can then try to say how it affected you.”
If that doesn’t work, Rochlen said, it might be time to “throw in the towel.”
“Some broken or never-developed relationships cannot be repaired or remade. But it’s the key to weakening your defenses [and] Try to find some common, neighborly ground before you throw in the towel,” he said.
Redditors, on the other hand, loved that u/SiSoJones decided to get revenge on Mike and Sharon.
“Good for you. People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. I’m glad you exposed this chick and this guy,” said u/Bright-Durian-501.
u/brianfantastic wrote: “In their eyes you’re already going to hell. You might as well put on an act!”
Some commenters also encouraged u/SiSoJones to post the screenshots publicly on Nextdoor or any other social media platform, but she refuses to go that far.
“While it would definitely make a good story, I think it’s going too far and could have unforeseen effects on your daughter, so I’ll leave her alone for now,” said u/SiSoJones news week.
More viral posts
In July, Redditors threw their support behind a woman who said she was deliberately rude to her new neighbor.
In the same month, Mumsnet users slammed a woman who accused her of being “curious, pushy and controlling”.
Having a fight with your neighbor? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org. We can ask experts for advice, and your story could be featured on Newsweek.