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Do you talk to your neighbours?

66Mustang
66Mustang Community Co-Production Group Posts: 5,570 Disability Gamechanger
There was a bit of debate on another forum I read about talking to your neighbours. One side says it is normal to exchange pleasantries with your neighbours, even just a "hello"; the other side says, why would you want to talk to your neighbours, you likely share nothing in common except living on the same street.

I'm going to stick my neck out and say I'm in the former camp. I think it is common courtesy to say "hello" or even just nod or smile. I would consider it odd behaviour to pass a neighbour in the street and completely blank them (putting aside genuine reasons like social anxiety) but I'm happy for someone to have an opposing view.

What is your opinion?

Comments

  • leeCal
    leeCal Member Posts: 4,226 Disability Gamechanger
    I agree that it’s perfectly normal to exchange pleasantries with your neighbours. I’m quite good friends with on neighbour, not so much with the other but then she is housebound so I don’t see her much. 
  • janer1967
    janer1967 Member Posts: 12,234 Disability Gamechanger
    I have in the past and had really nice neighbours and had lots chats in garden and stuff 

    But I don't my current neighbours as when I moved in he helped me get sorted doing odd jobs till I realised he was robbing me taken cash,  clothes , food , ipads 

    Had to be him as only me and him in house but I did confront him he didnt admit it . I was daft my word against his and thought he was being kind when he was taking advantage 

    So no I don't talk to neighbours and lessons  learnt I pay for any help now 

    Here to help with my experience in hunan resources and employment rights 
  • woodbine
    woodbine Community Co-Production Group Posts: 5,266 Disability Gamechanger
    We have half a dozen immediate neighbours, one of which we fell out with last year (long story) the others are all great and we are good friends with all of them.
    We have others that live on our mobile home site that we are friends with and some we are just on hello etc terms with.

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  • Tori_Scope
    Tori_Scope Posts: 5,996

    Scope community team

    Good topic :)

    I tried smiling and saying hello to one of my neighbours for a few months after I moved in, but they totally ignored me. I did return a parcel to them that had accidentally been delivered to our house, but they weren't really up for conversation. I've never even seen my neighbours on the other side! I've said hello to a couple of other people on the street though. 
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  • lisathomas50
    lisathomas50 Posts: 4,584 Disability Gamechanger
    I have good neighbors that support each other thry do the front lawn when they are doing there's if they have made cakes or anything they bring some round 

    We have had garden parties  pre covid  we had v day celebrations  in the our front gardens  we always speak to each other  the neighbor who lived on one side of me used to do my back lawn until he brought his own house 

    They all rallied round when I was in desperate need  including the landlord that lives at the end of the lane  so I am quite lucky 
  • Sandy_123
    Sandy_123 Member Posts: 1,969 Pioneering
    I have 2 sets of newish neighbours, to the left is a couple that I try to keep things basic, because he wants to know too much , plus he grows weed and sells it to dealers.
    On the right is a big family, who always say hello and ask how we are, when I bump into them. Usually at bins etc. 
    We all respect each other really.
  • BunnyBabs
    BunnyBabs Member Posts: 13 Connected
    Always had nice nieghbors until I moved here,Unfortunatly now I live nxt door to a Witch...
    Her voice makes the crows sound like sweet songbirds...Imagine 5 crows crowing in Unison and you're getting close...
    Makes the most innocent things sound pure evil.
    Top it all a total control freak... !!
  • OverlyAnxious
    OverlyAnxious Member Posts: 1,642 Disability Gamechanger
    edited May 5
    I had a new neighbour move in at the end of last summer...  Pretty sure we have a few things in common, including social anxiety & awkwardness!  :D

    Honestly, I'd rather neighbours didn't speak, I just want to be left alone and get on with whatever I'm doing (emptying bins, carrying shopping etc) but will attempt a reply if any of them speak to me first.  I fully appreciate other people want more human interaction than I do.
  • Caz_Alumni
    Caz_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 624 Pioneering
    edited May 5
    Wow! It's definitely a pretty mixed bag when it comes to everybody's interactions with our neighbours. 

    @OverlyAnxious I have to admit I'm in the same camp as you when it comes to my neighbours. Despite the fact that I'm often quite happy speaking to strangers, I always seem to struggle when it comes to my next-door neighbours - strangely!
    But I think I'm a bit like you. I like to be left alone to get on with what I'm doing as well. 

    What about your new neighbour though? It sounds like you might have something in common there? Have you tried having a chat? Or have you got the stage where you're both comfortable just being on nodding terms?

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  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community Co-Production Group Posts: 5,570 Disability Gamechanger
    edited May 5
    Thanks for all the responses so far, definitely very mixed.

    @janer1967 I can understand not talking to that neighbour if he stole from you. A question: has that make you stop talking to all neighbours or just him? Would you consider talking to neighbours if you had new ones in future or has that experience damaged your view of people in general?

    @OverlyAnxious I can understand that - I have social anxiety and prefer to not enter into full on conversations, in fact am very uncomfortable doing so, - but I am happy with a "hello" or a smile. If it proceeds on to "how are you" I get nervous. I guess I am a bit weird in that I want to share a simple acknowledgement but don't feel comfortable going into a full conversation (except with a couple of people on the street who know me and my issues well). :D
  • cazza6565
    cazza6565 Member Posts: 81 Courageous
    i don't talk to any of my neighbours. i moved here last August and have no idea who even lives next door
  • janer1967
    janer1967 Member Posts: 12,234 Disability Gamechanger
    @66Mustang

    I don't really talk to any neighbours they are not very community spirited round here.  I must admit the experience has made me very untrusting of people now and makes you realise your vulnerability as a disabled person  
    Here to help with my experience in hunan resources and employment rights 
  • OverlyAnxious
    OverlyAnxious Member Posts: 1,642 Disability Gamechanger
    Caz_Scope said:

    What about your new neighbour though? It sounds like you might have something in common there? Have you tried having a chat? Or have you got the stage where you're both comfortable just being on nodding terms?
    We both avoid each other if we see/hear the other leaving or returning.  :D


  • OverlyAnxious
    OverlyAnxious Member Posts: 1,642 Disability Gamechanger
    66Mustang said:

    @OverlyAnxious I can understand that - I have social anxiety and prefer to not enter into full on conversations, in fact am very uncomfortable doing so, - but I am happy with a "hello" or a smile. If it proceeds on to "how are you" I get nervous. I guess I am a bit weird in that I want to share a simple acknowledgement but don't feel comfortable going into a full conversation (except with a couple of people on the street who know me and my issues well). :D
    I feel really uncomfortable having to walk near anyone as I never know whether they'll speak, smile or ignore...and I don't have time to plan my response to whatever they do!  If I have to speak, should it be hi?  Hey?  Hello? Alright?  S'up?  (Ok, so I've never used S'up...  :p )  Can't repeat whatever they've said but also need to find something that's appropriate to each individual.

    Then with carpark interactions, chances are you have to pass them again in a few seconds.  I never know the protocol there either...say something different?  Smile?  Ignore?  It's a total minefield!  I generally keep watch out of the windows until the coast is clear.  Can't see the whole car park though so that's not failsafe.


  • BunnyBabs
    BunnyBabs Member Posts: 13 Connected
    I totally understand the "pleasantries"aspect...to exchange or not to exchange...I have a daughter that I care for, as well as having my own physical debilitating painful condition..my daughter just hugs EverY 1 !! Then is known to say things that makes me want to be swallowed up whole !! ie. told a Jehovahs witness Lady that we'd invited in 4 a cup of tea and a prayer..That "Your daughter is the Devil "..!! So that nieghbourly cup of tea didn't go down too well...
    Where we used to live I knew all the nieghbors  had seen all the children grow up and shared a lot of good will with them all..I still kept myself to myself.to a degree..but generally I was happy there...I've been here a decade and still dont feel at home..
    Never experienced a bad neighbour b4..I used to wonder "Why dont people just get on' ? I could never understand...Until I landed nxt door to the evil crow !! For the first 3-4yrs , tried to drive me nuts !! I'm a bit stronger than I thought...'cos my marbles are still all there at the last count !! 
    Just ! Maybe there's a few that are in a hard to reach place ,but they're there...!!


  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community Co-Production Group Posts: 5,570 Disability Gamechanger
    66Mustang said:

    @OverlyAnxious I can understand that - I have social anxiety and prefer to not enter into full on conversations, in fact am very uncomfortable doing so, - but I am happy with a "hello" or a smile. If it proceeds on to "how are you" I get nervous. I guess I am a bit weird in that I want to share a simple acknowledgement but don't feel comfortable going into a full conversation (except with a couple of people on the street who know me and my issues well). :D
    I feel really uncomfortable having to walk near anyone as I never know whether they'll speak, smile or ignore...and I don't have time to plan my response to whatever they do!  If I have to speak, should it be hi?  Hey?  Hello? Alright?  S'up?  (Ok, so I've never used S'up...  :p )  Can't repeat whatever they've said but also need to find something that's appropriate to each individual.

    Then with carpark interactions, chances are you have to pass them again in a few seconds.  I never know the protocol there either...say something different?  Smile?  Ignore?  It's a total minefield!  I generally keep watch out of the windows until the coast is clear.  Can't see the whole car park though so that's not failsafe.


    I had a similar issue at school age with the greeting everyone used which was "alright?". As it was just a greeting and I wasn't sure whether they were actually asking if I was OK, I never used to know whether I was supposed to say "hello" or "yes thanks" or just say "alright?" myself. Only when I got to about 23ish did I realise it just doesn't matter haha.

    Why can't you repeat what they said, is that an OCD thing or is it just something you don't think you should do? I my be wrong myself but my thinking is if someone said something a bit complex like "good afternoon, lovely day" and you said the exact same thing it might come across as a bit weird but if it's just "hi", "hi" I don't think that's a big issue.

    I know what you mean about meeting people a second time in a short space of time, I feel a bit odd saying "hi" again but feels a bit rude to ignore them so it's an awkward moment.
  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community Co-Production Group Posts: 5,570 Disability Gamechanger
    @BunnyBabs

    Sorry to hear you have a bad neighbour next door. I'm afraid I don't have any suggestions for that one as I am really lucky to have not been in that position. I guess, though, ignoring is the best approach to take based on how you describe her!!!
  • Cher_Inactive
    Cher_Inactive Posts: 4,414

    Scope community team

    @bunnybob You have my empathy too, maybe keeping contact to a minimum as much as possible will make your life easier - I know that can be tricky mind you.  

    The neighbours on my street are a bag of mashings (a mish mash for those outside Yorkshire  :D ).  On one side I have a neighbour who never really goes beyond hello, while on the other side I have an older lady who really likes to talk.  So much so, I can be just nipping to the post box and I'm still waiting to 'break free from the convo' an hour later.  Over lockdown we did her shopping and I think that's built her rapport with us so I don't mind too much and I know she is otherwise quite isolated.  But yes, this street is very Coronation St. - always plenty of drama!
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  • BunnyBabs
    BunnyBabs Member Posts: 13 Connected
    I was born in2 a coronation street type place so I can relate..Guess I've gone through life expecting people to be nice..Until this one...
    This is the one exception where Covid has a Silver lining... The neighbour Has to wear a mask..
    .Bliss ,the sky is blue again..
    I almost go out the door in disguise ,mask on ,Sun shades on,hat on, One quick shuffle down the garden path and I'm away in to the get away vehicle...I simply have to avoid..
    I remember that poem 'desiderata'
    "Avoid loud & agressive people they are a vexation to the soul " 
    This poem used to be on posters in every old hippy's dwelling years ago..often pinned up in the Lav !!
    At least I took notice !! 
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  • Georgiana_Alumni
    Georgiana_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 47 Connected
    @woodbine

    i am interested in mobile homes can you tell me more if you dont mind, what are they like? I am looking for new place to live and looking at all the options 
  • BunnyBabs
    BunnyBabs Member Posts: 13 Connected
    Thankyou from your support,It means a lot...I'm hoping One day  there will be a massive ceremony and I shall recieve a medal of bravery 4 living nxt door to...Well ,youknowwho !!
    I bunderstand...that minefield...Ifeel when our anxieties are tweaked all this "Greetings from my Planet " starts carving out our uniqueness from the norm !!.
    I hope at least some of what I've just said makes sense !!
    "Keep on keeping on."..(That's something to say to them !!
  • OverlyAnxious
    OverlyAnxious Member Posts: 1,642 Disability Gamechanger
    66Mustang said:
    Why can't you repeat what they said, is that an OCD thing or is it just something you don't think you should do? I my be wrong myself but my thinking is if someone said something a bit complex like "good afternoon, lovely day" and you said the exact same thing it might come across as a bit weird but if it's just "hi", "hi" I don't think that's a big issue.

    I just thought it seems a bit weird or like you're mocking them a bit.  Probably over-thinking it though! 
  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community Co-Production Group Posts: 5,570 Disability Gamechanger
    66Mustang said:
    Why can't you repeat what they said, is that an OCD thing or is it just something you don't think you should do? I my be wrong myself but my thinking is if someone said something a bit complex like "good afternoon, lovely day" and you said the exact same thing it might come across as a bit weird but if it's just "hi", "hi" I don't think that's a big issue.

    I just thought it seems a bit weird or like you're mocking them a bit.  Probably over-thinking it though! 
    I've seen people do it and don't think it's weird unless like I say it's a more complex sentence, then you could get into a situation like this!


  • MarkM88
    MarkM88 Member Posts: 1,798 Pioneering
    I’ll say hello and alright. 

    I keep myself to myself and that’s the way I have always been. 

    I don’t know if that comes across as ignorant to others but it’s just not my style. 
  • Pixie51
    Pixie51 Member Posts: 66 Courageous
    We live in a hamlet so our neighbours are in view but we don't pass each other as such. We chat now and then and exchange pleasantries and we would certainly help out any of the hamlet inhabitants in times of trouble or need and have. But I guess it's more the society we live in now that there isn't that sense of community in a lot of places now. People move a lot more, I am one of them, and so there isn't that familial knowledge or having grown up locally thing in common. It is a shame, although I am quite a shy person so find small talk face to face or on the telephone difficult, but will always try a smile!!

    Pix  :) (my smile!)
    Yoga heals the soul 🙏💖
  • Ross_Scope
    Ross_Scope Posts: 4,912

    Scope community team

    I feel bad that we've never spoken to ours since moving here 6 months ago. It's mainly due to us both being shy people. 

    I have a question, how long can you leave it until introducing yourself to someone becomes odd? Is it acceptable after a year? :D 
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  • vikingqueen
    vikingqueen Member Posts: 548 Pioneering
         Across the road from me lives a man that went out to work at the exact time I did, every morning I said the obligatory "Good Morning" and every morning I was ignored. I tried for at least 20 years but to no avail.. There's nowt as strange as folk.  :/
  • Pixie51
    Pixie51 Member Posts: 66 Courageous
    @Ross_Scope I think lots of people feel the same way so introducing yourself at anytime can help them too! 
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  • BunnyBabs
    BunnyBabs Member Posts: 13 Connected
    It's funny that, there are actually some nieghbourhoods where they're all like that !!
    Haha! I used to blame it on the War..
    Some people are very contrite,and you know..maybe emotionally stifled.
    That old saying "you cant choose your nieghbours..
  • davet
    davet Member Posts: 77 Courageous
    having moved a considerable number of times with work, I have experienced both good and bad neighbours I was born and raised in yorkshire and had always found myself with good neighbours always friendly and ready to chat and help, impromptu bbq's , visits to the pub invites to parties etc, as a child mum and dad would often'pop' into neighbours homes and vice versa and as I grew up I thought this was the norm I have always found it easy to talk to people and make friends, I have however found through experience that the general make up of those living in the area will determine what type of neighbours you will have for instance we moved to what could have been called a bit of a select neighbourhood when I was in my late 30's and working as a general manager for a manufacturing and distribution company and found that our neighbours were made up largely of what could be described as 'yuppies' in their mid to late 20's 2 of which owned their own companies there was a solicitor an accountant, a vet with his own practise, a bank manager all of whichwere constantly trying to out do each other, it was quite amusing to watch, if one of them got something new such as a new burglar alarm, within a month they all had new burglar alarms, we felt very excluded from day one, and the only interaction we had was the curtsory 'good morning'e.t.c. yet another move we had put us in the middle of a family, next door one way were the parents, the other side was a daughter and her family,almost directly opposite was another daughter and her family all of which were very friendly. the strangest was when we moved to a village in cambridgeshire, we patronised the local pub  shop and market went to all the fete'syet initially despite our attempts to make friends we felt we were being ignored, which we simply put down to village mentality eventually however our close neighbours began to interact with us followed by others and we eventually began to feel accepted although a few were still a little stand offish. after about 10 years we had to move again because of my  work and I got chatting with my next door neighbour about people being reticent to interact with us and he simply said we had to remember even after 10 years we are still 'the new people'
  • 66Mustang
    66Mustang Community Co-Production Group Posts: 5,570 Disability Gamechanger
    Very interesting post @davet thanks for sharing your experiences


  • BunnyBabs
    BunnyBabs Member Posts: 13 Connected
    Yep ,That was truly interesting ,It's
    Nice to have an online community such as this to be able to share our thoughts.& experiences..I love programmes that show us communities from around the globe..They all seem to have strong feelings of "belonging"..It really is a blessing when you've got nice neighbours..It was one of the most profound Christain beliefs "Love thy neighbour.."Well if your not hating them,thats good egnough..but that true sense of belonging has evaded me 4 a long time.. 
    I witnessed a terrible feud once when my old neighbours took a dislike to new neighbours...it had an awfully tragic ending..I felt quite helpless..They used to scheme and spy and deploy tactics to hurt and upset each others lifes...Court case after court case, It was thier whole lifes..,reporting scandulous lies about each other..I mean WHAT IS THAT ALL ABOUT...??It truly was like WW3..I'd go out to water the Roses,and they'd be like "hold me back " straining at the leash !!waiting to rip into each other...What can we do Ay ?? Keep shining,stay safe
  • Padraig
    Padraig Member Posts: 4 Listener
    I live in a small cul de sac of eight houses backing onto nature reserve and four on each side facing each other over car park and then the road in. We all have secluded back gardens. We are a little community! Some have been there 15 years some ten some five. We have seen eacothers children grow up and move on, looked. After each others pets and sadly seen some depart. We used to put our wheelie bins across the dive to make a safe playground for the kids. They were all wee back then now there all late teens. We’re not just neighbours but friends too, maybe not best friends but friends never the less. Apart from one guy on the end who gets very angry and rude, I’m afraid he has mental health issues. Anyway one day a couple of us laid down the law to him after a couple of outbursts not a peep in five years, keeps to himself, lives on end so can just come and go. The rest of us are two couples, two single guys and four single women all in the fifty up bracket now! With eight late teen kids six live away or come and go and two still live at home with mum. All work apart from me and one lady, three disabled including me we have, my other half an icu nurse, a hairdresser, a gardener, a computer guy, a cleaner, a handyman, a care assistant, and a special needs school driver. Both myself and my neighbour have Fybromygelia and I have diabeties, spinal problems, RLS and peripheral neuropathy. We all get on well and know eacothers business without being intrusive. The postie and delivery drivers all know I’m always in and I’ve become a mini sorting office for all and neighbourhood watch. We see lots of eacothers in summer especially when kids were young not so much in winter. We surprisingly never have issues with parking as there is enough and we just block eacothers in if need be. There is always somone to ask for a hand or to listen to a little moan! I think we are very lucky that we get on, one lady I was at the same school as and our kids went to a different school together, Maintenance men are let in for each other, money, cars and booze borrowed!  and hellos always turn into long chats were extremely lucky. I know people who have lived next door to each other don’t know each others names, avoid eye contact and don’t even say hello. What made it work is the kids growing up together, the way the houses are positioned and that people are friendly not nosey. If my bedroom curtains don’t open they know I’m having a bad day and leave me alone but might ask my wife how I’m doing. It’s magic, only living in a village in Ireland can I compare it, except everyone there was nosey even with binoculars! Lol. Life’s to short hust say hello what’s their to lose and everything to gain
  • csno01
    csno01 Member Posts: 226 Pioneering
    What an interesting topic.

    I am shy too and despite this, I always say hello to my neighbours. It makes me feel good about myself. I find if you have a bit more to say, it sometimes helps to have it cued up ready. I appreciate that, this does not always work though.
     Of course, you are going to get the odd time when, you approach your neighbour and they do not want to talk, for whatever reason.

    CSno01
  • WestHam06
    WestHam06 Member, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,380 Pioneering
    This is a great thread @66Mustang I think that it is respectful to exchange pleasantries where possible. We used to with our neighbours but now we don't. I think as long as your respectful of one another people should be able to live side by side, it gets tricky when the respect is not there. Thank you. 
  • Ross_Scope
    Ross_Scope Posts: 4,912

    Scope community team

    WestHam06 said:
    This is a great thread @66Mustang I think that it is respectful to exchange pleasantries where possible. We used to with our neighbours but now we don't. I think as long as your respectful of one another people should be able to live side by side, it gets tricky when the respect is not there. Thank you. 
    Totally agree with this. I don't think there needs to be a deep relationship there, of course it's great if you have that but as long as there's mutual respect then things should be okay
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  • Dragonslayer
    Dragonslayer Community Co-Production Group Posts: 1,529 Pioneering
    When I moved to where I am now, all the neighbours talked to and helped each other, Now a great deal have moved on and it's just hello now and then with the new ones. I hardly know who lives around me anymore. but I always try to be friendly to whoever I see around.
    Back in the day, everyone talked and we had a real community, people moved from one house to another and everyone knew each other's business. Nowadays people seem to keep to themselves. We really do live in boxes, or so it seems. 
  • BunnyBabs
    BunnyBabs Member Posts: 13 Connected
    Yep, I sense that too , It seems like we're harping on about the good old days..;but we used to know everyone in our street...and they used to join together for many things..Now ,It's a bit unnerving to not know who your neighbours are,and they may not meet eye to eye on many things..I was uprooted about 12yrs ago...and have never felt settled since.

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