The Nasty Neighbour Narcissist

 

 

THE NASTYNEIGHBOURNARCISSIST.jpg

Neighbours. Unless you operate a sheep farm in Australia or man a lighthouse, chances are you will have some neighbours. For the most part, people may not know who their neighbours are, particularly in busy multi-occupancy properties in cities or they recognise them, but the interaction is a little more than a “Hello” and “Turned out nice again” as they pass in the street, lobby or lift. For others a neighbour has become a long-standing friend, a person who is spoken to every day, who is always welcome to pop in or who a conversation is engaged with over the garden fence. There is never a problem borrowing a cup of sugar, watching the cat whilst on holiday or taking in a parcel.

From the unknown, to the amiable to the hearty friendship, neighbours proliferate across the planet and largely there is no issue. However, there then comes the individual (although sometimes it is a couple or family) who earns the epitaph of neighbour from hell. This individual makes life for their neighbours or perhaps one in particular, irritating, annoying or complete misery. I daresay you have your own experiences of this, either something that has happened to you or you have witnessed or heard about having happened to a friend or family member. The variety of behaviours engaged in by this inconsiderate and unpleasant individual is endless but here are some examples:-

  1. The neighbour who plays loud music every night until the early hours of the morning.
  2. The neighbour who complains if one of your visitors parks their car outside his house even if it is not blocking the driveway.
  3. A neighbour whose garden and house is an eyesore and nothing is done to keep it tidy or well-maintained.
  4. A neighbour who commences a boundary dispute because the new ornament atop the pillar at the end of your drive appears to encroach one inch onto his land.
  5. The neighbour who kicks over your wheelie bins because they say you are leaving them on their property.
  6. The neighbour who erects a huge fence blocking out your natural light.
  7. The neighbour who leaves mountains of rubbish lying around, attracting rodents and causing a stench.
  8. The neighbour who has an animal which causes a problem through noise, droppings, biting or damaging property.
  9. The neighbour who will not return footballs and the like which go over the fence.
  10. The neighbour who repeatedly complains about you and your family over non-existent or trivial complaints.
  11. Sending anonymous notes to other neighbours suggesting that the targeted neighbour is a paedophile or serial womaniser.
  12. The neighbour who always borrows possessions and never returns them

It may be the case that a particular neighbour engages in one or several of these anti-social behaviours. It may be the case that a neighbour engages in a vendetta whereby the behaviour goes beyond that of being anti-social and amounts to a concerted campaign of harassment, criminal damage and even criminal assault. This unpleasant neighbour may embark on a series of behaviours such as poisoning animals, pouring weed killer on flowers or ripping up the garden turf, posting faeces through the letterbox, smashing windows, erecting barriers to prevent access and physically attacking the long-suffering neighbour.

Many people are either unwilling or unable to move away from this particularly problematic person. Naturally, the innocent party will try to reason with the difficult neighbour, trying to reach a compromise over parking arrangements, or asking the neighbour to show more consideration with regards to making noise at night. The innocent neighbour recognises that the behaviour is anti-social but is unable to understand :-

  1. Why the neighbour behaves like this in the first place;
  2. Fails to recognise he or she is doing anything wrong;
  3. Refuses to change their behaviours;
  4. Get so worked-up over trivial matters; and
  5. Increases the aggravation when reasonably approached.

The innocent person is completely at a loss as to what they could have done to invite such treatment. They are unable to grasp why it cannot be sorted out. They may escalate matters by making a complaint to the relevant authority about noise, refuse and behaviour, involve the police or commence their own legal proceedings to resolve a boundary dispute where significant money is spent arguing about a strip of land three inches in width and makes no real difference to anybody. Even such escalation fails to cause the nasty neighbour to correct their ways, often resulting in the unpleasant behaviour continuing or if the neighbour complies with a court order or notice, they engage in an alternative form of nuisance and harassment, leaving the innocent party exasperated. They cannot understand why this person behaves this way.

The reason they behave like this is that in all likelihood this is a nasty neighbour narcissist.

Now, many of our kind have pleasant interactions with our neighbours. The neighbour, either a tertiary or secondary (sometimes intimate) source is treated well enough because

a. Positive fuel is provided on an intermittent basis so there is no risk of that fuel going stale or the narcissist shifting stance owing to a reduction in quantity or frequency;

b. Façade management is key. It is often important to the narcissist that they are regarded as a pleasant person, well-regarded in the community etc by their neighbours and therefore it pays to remain courteous and pleasant to them as part of the façade;

c. Neighbours may form part of the narcissist’s coterie;

d. The neighbours form the contrast (through façade and coterie) compared to the treatment of the IPPS.

Accordingly, it usually suits the narcissist to have convivial relations with neighbours.

Yet, when problems arise in the manner described above, it will invariably be a narcissist who is generating the nasty behaviour and prolonging the campaign of harassment. Why is this?

  1. The sense of entitlement. The narcissist is entitled to sleep without your noisy kids making a racket even though it is a family neighbourhood, the middle of the afternoon and the school holidays. The narcissist can park his car blocking your drive if he wishes. He does not have to remove the refuse just because you ask. If he wants to park a large van so it blocks your light, he can do that. Those footballs which keep landing in his garden belong to him now and in fact, how dare your offspring invade his territory.
  2. No boundary recognition. In some instances this actually becomes literal when the narcissist builds an extension to the property encroaching on a boundary line. Having no recognition and respect for boundaries, the narcissist neighbour will remove anything of yours if he thinks it is in the way, tell you to change the colour of your front door is she does not approve with the shade you have painted it, walk across your front lawn rather than around it because it is easier to do that and a hundred other examples.
  3. No concept of accountability. This links in with the sense of entitlement. The narcissist does not have to do something just because you ask nor do they have to act just because the local authority has said as such.
  4. Victim mentality. Utilising the narcissistic perspective and the Toxic Logic that prevails, each situation will be twisted around so that the innocent person is the one who will be regarded as the one who has caused the problem, the narcissist is the individual who has been put upon and badly treated.
  5. Split thinking. The neighbour may well have been painted ‘white’ to begin with and then inadvertently does something which results in them being seen as ‘black’. No matter what this person does, they are always viewed as being in the wrong. For instance, the narcissist may have been hosting a party and the neighbour politely asks them to turn the music down as it is after midnight and they have young children. This offends the narcissist’s sense of entitlement and they are wounded by this request. The narcissist sees it as a demand, an order and plays the victim “all I was doing was celebrating my birthday but they had to spoil it”, fury is ignited so the music is turned up and thereafter the neighbour remains painted black and becomes a scapegoat in the neighbourhood.
  6. Inability to resolve the dispute. This arises out of the differing perspectives and because the innocent person does not know what they are dealing with. They think it is enough to ask their neighbour not to keep moving their rubbish bins when they have been left out for collection and that is a reasonable request. They do not realise how this request wounds the narcissist, that their fury ignites and they lash out in order to seek fuel. They do not realise that the narcissist has different aims to them which means that resolving any issue (trivial as it seems to the innocent party) becomes impossible as the potential outcomes desired by each party are completely different (to understand more about this mentality which extends to all manner of disputes with a narcissist see Why Are The Arguments Never Resolved?
  7. Why does the nasty neighbour narcissist keep on going, seemingly hell-bent on revenge over something minor such as the innocent neighbour accidentally knocking over a garden gnome? This incessant attack by the narcissist neighbour leaves the innocent party bewildered and flabbergasted. Who on earth keeps on going over such a minor matter? The answer; a narcissist. Why? One huge problem for a neighbour who has found themselves painted black by a narcissist neighbour is that they are always going to be hoovered and they will be malign. Why is this? Firstly, the Hoover Trigger ( see The Spheres of Influence ). You, as the innocent neighbour will activate a hoover trigger every single day because you enter the narcissist neighbour’s sphere of influence either because they see you or they see your house. Next, what about the Hoover Execution Criteria? Are they met ? (see It’s Hoover Time). It is usually the case that the Hoover Bar on these criteria will be low because

a. The narcissist knows fuel will be readily obtained from you, because you will be angry, upset, pleading etc;

b. The hoover will be easy to execute – the narcissist knows where you are, does not have to travel far at all to effect the hoover, has a vast array of ways of hoovering you to draw fuel, there is no romantic Formal Relationship to try to resurrect, it is a straight forward grab for fuel and the criteria are nearly always going to be met.

Accordingly, whilst the innocent party cannot fathom out why the narcissist keeps engaging in the harassment and dirty tricks, the simple fact that that person has been painted black in the eyes of the narcissist and then the Hoover Triggers are repeatedly activated and the hoovers effected means that an ongoing, sustained and repeated campaign of harassment and nastiness is waged against the individual. Reasoning with the neighbour does not work, upping the ante will not work (it is just fuel and/or allows the narcissist to smear the innocent victim) and even in some instances repeated court orders will be flouted by the narcissist who rejects the attempt to shackle their entitlement and continues their stance of being unaccountable.

8. No empathy. Lacking empathy, the narcissist neighbour feels no need to stop with their behaviour, does not appreciate the plight of the innocent neighbour or consider how it would feel if it were acted out against them in a similar way. Instead, the narcissist will turn the matter around to explain how they are the one who is hard done to and engage in all of the familiar manipulations in order to maintain the upper hand and control with their neighbour.

9. The scapegoated neighbour is used for the purposes of triangulation with other neighbours or more often the brainwashed members of the narcissist’s family so that more lines of fuel are opened up.

10. There may well have been no warning signs either because the narcissist, at first, will have presented a façade to the new neighbours and in effect been subjected to a form of ‘seduction’ by the narcissist neighbour. Those other neighbours who tried to warn you were ignored since “oh he has been ever so friendly since we moved in” – sound familiar to the romantic dynamic?

Accordingly, if you have a repeatedly anti-social, unreasonable and harassing neighbour it is highly likely you are dealing with a narcissist.

What to do?

  1. Do not react so little or no fuel is provided. This may well result in an increase in malign hoovers for a while but if there is no response, eventually the lack of fuel will mean the narcissist looks elsewhere or at least reduces the frequency of the behaviour.
  2. Log all incidences of anti-social behaviour with relevant authorities, install CCTV as a must so you have evidence, write down in a journal incidences of anti-social behaviour so you build a solid evidential foundation which can be used by

a The police if criminal charges are to be pursued;

b. Environmental agencies where they have jurisdiction – noise, nuisance, refuse.

c. Relevant local authority if the individual is a social tenant who could be evicted.

d. You, if you bring private court proceedings for an injunction to stop trespass, harassment, or to seek an appropriate order relating to a boundary dispute

3. Recognise that asking the neighbour narcissist is not going to succeed. Ask once, politely, in writing (so you have a record) and then recognise that you have to escalate the matter through the appropriate channel with a solid evidential basis.

4. Understand that even formal escalation will take time and with certain neighbour narcissists they will ignore court orders, flout notices and so on until enforcement action is taken by the relevant body and/or  the neighbour narcissist is sent to prison for failure to obey the court order or notice.

5. Go no contact and find a damn good estate agent to sell your home.

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59 thoughts on “The Nasty Neighbour Narcissist”

  1. I’d like to share the story of my narc as a neighbour , just in case anyone has one of these types as a neighbour . He is actually the perfect neighbour , lives alone , out at work all day , does his garden weekly and out drinking all weekend . He makes no noise at all. He has a huge issue with any noise what so ever . It would seem a pin dropping to him sounds like a window breaking . He is also hyper vigilant and generally wound up like a spring at a moments notice . Any noise what so ever for example
    The neighbour hoovering
    The neighbours TV being on after his bedtime mid week which is the time only a toddler would go to bed
    The neighbour closing their car door
    The list goes on but you get the picture , humans living a normal life
    He bangs on the wall , bellows out of the window threats abuse and swearing and has now managed to create a hostile relationship with them.
    It started off well but then went down hill as it did with the people who lived in the house previously
    He’s had a problem with every neighbour and he is the victim everytime
    He also seems to be aware of all neighbours movements and noise levels in the street
    If anyone ever parks outside his house he goes absolutely mental lol
    HG does any of this sound like a narcissist ?
    He cannot stand any noise , is this a common thing with narcissists or is it just him ?

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    1. The exhibited hyper vigilance you initially describe might have been as a consequence of something else but it is the reaction to the perceived ‘breaches of the peace’ by way of the ignited fury, when coupled with the sense of entitlement exhibited and attempts at control which highlight several narcissistic indicators.

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      1. Are you hyper vigilant? There’s so much to unpack in trying to make sense of the relationship with my narcissist (and it’s clearly the same for the others on your blog based on the comments). I hadn’t really contemplated the hyper vigilance in his home until now.

        Mine slept with a hatchet under his bed, and twice within my my year long relationship with him, he heard noises that no other human could have heard and jumped up out of bed and stormed his home nude with hatchet in hand.

        Scary in retrospect because mine had fury. What was I doing with him????

        Anyway, he was a dream neighbor, polite, charming and helpful to all. But, occasionally he would go off on the neighbors down the road, tertiary neighbors, so to speak. These people were usually annoying but in no way ever in any universe deserved his unleashed fury.

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      2. I am always aware of my environment, who is in it and the choices it presents. This is to do with gathering fuel and also professional reasons. I would not regard myself as being hyper vigilant through,no.

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      3. This thing with noise is it a narc thing ? He seems to have zero tolerance for any noise , this is everywhere but mostly when he’s in his home and I mean any noise . Many times he would tell me to stop talking so loudly when I was not at all speaking loudly , this could happen anywhere.
        He claims to be hyper vigilant which there may be some truth in as I know narcs tend to be very perceptive and study people but half the time his perceptions were wrong and he would always see slights and negativity that did not exist so I would tell him this isn’t hyper vigilant this is paranoia.
        He Googled hyper vigilant and noises which led him to covert narcissist and phoned me and told me that he thought I was right after all as covert narcissist fitted him But not the abusive aspect of it. Now there’s a surprise 🙄🙄🙄🙄

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  2. Great article HG! It highlights the abundance of Narcissists throughout our neighborhoods. I’ve read reports estimating that Narcissists comprise ~2-7% of the population. I believe that is a grossly underestimated percentage of the population. What do you estimate the percentage of Narcissists to be in the human population?

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      1. It is absolutely staggering to me that the root of all this nasty, cruel behavior is the result of lack of or missing the empathy gene or development in the brain.
        I find it scary as hell and still think there has to be other mental issues at play if your neighbor is going to the extremes of poisoning animals, pouring weed killer on flowers, smashing windows or physical attacking.
        After all this learning, I would probably label a neighbor always complaining about noise levels with kids, for example, as just ornery and if they’re doing harassing acts verging on criminal behavior, I would think they’re a crazy felon or killer. Narcissist would probably be an afterthought.
        Otherwise you could probably dwindle your Narc ratio to 1 in 3.

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      2. MLA,

        I never dreamed those nasty neighbors might be Narcs or that they were so numerous in the population!

        I believe the forming of a Narcissist starts in early infancy & childhood development and relies on 2 factors:

        1. A genetic predisposition in the brain
        2. Failure to learn empathy

        Trauma, abuse and neglect during early infancy/childhood or primary parenting by a Narc could certainly disrupt the learned behavior of empathy in a child. Psychology states that empathy is a learned behavior, not an inherent one and is usually taught by the primary parent.

        I know my ex-Narc-husband of 15 years was both traumatized and neglected during his childhood. I also suspect his Mother may have been a Narc. He must have also had the genetic predisposition of Narcissism because he certainly was effective!

        I’d appreciate anyone’s further input on Narc development!

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    1. Hi Clarece,

      From my own experience, socio-economic and cultural differences play a very important role.

      There is at least one adult narcissist in every home (at least in the small town where I live) and I am not speaking about children who learn their malignant behaviour from their sadistic narcissistic mothers and become full-blown narcissists before they reach puberty.

      In the country where I live, narcissistic women are far more cruel, cunning and skilled than men when it comes to destroying other people’s property, reputation or life without leaving traces. Spraying weed killer on plants is one of my neighbour’s hoover tactics. This one is *benign* compared to other things she does. She would destroy my car if I did not keep it in the garage. Her contribution to making other people ill or to eventually accelerating their death is just *collateral damage*. She would attack my children or poison my pet, if I had one. She also has her Coterie and Lieutenants to do the dirty work.

      Reading about what holocaust survivors’ went through help me understand what kind of people I am dealing with.

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      1. Whaaaatttt E.B?! I am speechless. I…I just have no words for this. Mind fully blown that this is your normal day-to-day existence with your neighbors down your street.

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  3. My ex narc was unemployed and had nothing better to do than watch our neighbor go about his life. When I came home from work, I had to endure a litany of our neighbors actions, wrong doings and weirdness. My ex thought everything this man did was stupid or strange. My ex used to shoot the neighbors dog with a bb gun and he actually defecated on the neighbors front porch. Who’s the weirdo here???

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    1. You just mentioned hurting animals …

      That drives me completely crazy…

      You should have shot him with a bebe gun in the balls.

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    2. Hi cindy…my brother did this to dogs as well yet puts up a facade of being an animal lover. Him and his wife own a horse ranch and it makes me roll my eyes back in my head when my mother brags about how broken up he is over an animal whose sick. Pffttt…thats just why he loved trapping cats, shelling out his dead turtle to use as an ashtray and shot animals with bb guns. Hes no animal lover at all.

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    1. Hi k…i wish my local garden center would sell these. Actually its not a bad idea and could make a ton of money….custom made toparies 😂 they could sell middle finger ones too for the really despised neighbor 😄 i see a new moneymaking idea on the horizon…🤔

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      1. Hello narc affair

        Superb idea! I see money on the horizon too. When I saw the topiary, the first thing I thought was: Damn! I wish I had that in my yard! Giving the finger to the really despised neighbor would be a really fine how-do-you-do! Hysterical, thanks for the laugh!

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  4. Love this article! We had a neighbor move in behind us last year that was wreacking havoc. My next door neighbor on the left almost fought with him, I’d hear them shouting all the time. The one on my right got in shouting matches daily also, and wound up selling her condo & moving away. Funny thing – as soon as she moved away – he quieted down and is no longer a problem to anybody.

    Thanks to all the information I’ve learned from you, HG. I realized this new neighbor was probably a sociopath, thus ignored him & his noise completely.
    I kept thinking … what would HG say about all of this? Almost booked a session with you, then realized you’d say “No contact.”
    So, I never got involved in any of it.
    Have never had a moment’s problem with him and don’t expect to.

    Your knowledge helps us in ways you’ve never imagined! 🙂

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  5. I love the thought of buying myself a sheep station out here & creating an ‘N’ free zone. Maybe even make it into an Empath Sanctuary. 🤔 Sadly though, most of them are now foreign owned… 🤣

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  6. My sons neighbor complained to the HOA that his dog is off leash when they are playing frisbee with him. Sooo his brilliant roommate, who is an engineer for NASA working on the Mars shuttle, bought Rufus an 100 foot dog leash. LOL
    The odd thing is her kids come knocking at my sons door to play with his dog.

    Hot guys in the house and not one looks her way. Could this be the problem?

    My son went and knocked on the door to tell her he was sorry.

    LOL 100 ft leash. Can’t get any funnier than this.

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  7. Dear Mr Tudor,
    Your opening line I found most amusing! My mother had sheep, on a farm, in Australia.
    The somewhat distant neighbours had two dogs who mauled some of mother’s sheep ….so she put a “spell” on them and a protective spell on her property fence … they were gone within two weeks quite suddenly!
    Great article! 🐑

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  8. I could write a novel on our last neighbors and we did just that…called our real estate agent and hightailed it away from there.
    Wed built a beautiful home from the ground up in a new area not ever envisioning problems. Fast forward to a year after wed moved in. We got a young couple who were wild and threw parties move in next door. The first party they were jumping from the roof of the house onto their daughters trampoline. The whole time drinking and doing drugs as well as cursing profusely. We called the cops anonymously. They knew by the way we avoided them and didnt like them that it was us.
    Fast forward a few years after multiple calls to the police. Strange things started happening like beer cans and garbage on our vehicles. Salmon in the exhaust pipe to create corrosion. Trees died. Eventually a kicked in side mirror. We couldnt even take a vacation without setting a video surveillance up.
    They knew we didnt agree with their lifestyle or like them and they made life a living hell for us.

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  9. While this article was informative, I cannot stop laughing about the picture you put up to go with it!!!! A head sculpture of somebody bending over with their butt sticking out!!!! Epic!!!!!!

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      1. Oh yes! For sure! Humor is so very important. You explain things that help me make sense of what I’ve been through (and sadly still deal with)….but the humor involved does help!

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  10. Great article HG… I just read it to my friend going through this now. Her neighbor is trying to move a wall between the two of them a foot and 3/4! There are more things we now see are narcissist red flags, one being he is still living with his ex-wife he divorced twice! Thank you for pointing out what should have been obvious to us! She plans to sell in November….

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  11. This horrendous experience happened to me when the neighbours from hell moved in next door; two middle aged grandparents both separated from their spouses.
    The man seemed very nice at first even doing things for us around the house. “It is nice to be nice”, he said.
    However I was out shopping one day and he completely ignored me which I found weird.
    Years passed without event.
    Then one summer he started doing work outdoors. He dug up the garden to put down a patio. While this was going on they had a parasol which was coming over the adjoining fence.
    A few weeks later they started painting the fence. The woman climbed up on a stepladder and was leaning over the fence painting it.
    When we went out into the garden abuse was hurled at us and we were told to get in out of our own garden.
    Then they started getting police involved saying they were being abused and they were sympathetic towards them. They told me to go to a doctor.
    Then the man started going up on the fence on a regular basis by standing on a wheelie bin. One day he shook it violently he was in such a temper.
    This went on for years, being up on the fence and abuse.
    Sometimes they were up all night making noise.
    Then he got 3 dogs which were locked in all day barking.
    One day he even drove his car at me.
    One Christmas he was at it non-stop; up on the bin the whole time.
    One day he was standing at the door waiting for us to come out and staring.
    When we came back he was pacing up and down and we had to stay in the car.
    Another time he was going around with a camera taking photos and laughing.
    He even wrote a long letter to the solicitor himself saying things like his human right were being violated. The solicitor said it was laughable.
    Every time we went out he used come out with a paintbrush to paint our side of the fence black he was that crazy.
    I eventually had a nervous breakdown from it all but sold the house a few weeks later to immigrants. I hope this upset them.

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    1. Eva
      “paint our side of the fence black” is a fine example of the narcissistic dynamic IRL, and I have added the phrase “It is nice to be nice” to my “Beware: potential narcissist in the vicinity” list. Thank you.

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  12. My aunt lives in Tennessee and they have the Stand Your Ground Defense Law, which gives you the right to kill someone who is on your property and perceived to be a threat. Sure enough, her neighbor shot and killed a man who was on his property threatening to kill his wife. The man had a gun. The police came, took a report and left. No arrest. I bet he killed a narc.

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    1. Those violent Lesser N’s… *shakes head* When will they ever learn? Sounds like that threatening Narc deserved what he got!

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      1. Dark Angel
        Now, when I read the newspaper, I have a whole new perspective on crime! Suicide by cop is another thing I look at differently.

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    2. We have similar laws in Kentucky, There is no real law enforcement. Every where I’ve ever lived, you were expected to have loaded weapons to defend your own property. Also it is just expected that everyone has the right to do whatever they want on their own property. If I wanted to raise hogs in my front yard, no one would say or do anything.

      So there is loud music, kids drag racing up the roads at 2 am, vicious pit bulls loose and people yelling and partying all night and day, and roosters crowing at all hours. No one says or does anything, because it is their right as a home owner.

      I have thought many times that people raising hell at all hours were narcissists, but as long as they leave me alone, that is their right. If they come on my land or harass me, I have the right to shoot them. As an old, grey-haired grandma, I can easily claim I was afraid for my life. No jury would convict me. Knowing this, everyone leaves me alone. I know it sounds barbaric to you all that live in cities. But it works here.

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  13. HG your at it again!…Another good article that sounds like the story of my life with my narcs who live in back of me and now I have one next door to me who just moved in a couple of months ago.

    The things that you mentioned are eerily accurate when it comes to their behavior. This article truly hit home with me…

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  14. Cannot love this enough Thankyou so much for posting. It all makes sense. 5 years I have been neighbours with one. Living hell!!! And 5 years I have been searching for this. Thankyou

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