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ask: My neighbour has Paranoid Schizophrenia what can i do to stay safe?

By Anonymous

My neighbour with Paranoid Schizophrenia has been threatening me through verbal abuse. He believes that I am making too much noise in my unit above him. I am not making much noise except for those that may be associated with everyday living. I think that he is having delusions and is hearing the noises that aren't there. what can I d to stay safe, and is this common?

Add a Comment13 Comments

EmpowHER Guest

Normal hysteria for a blog like this? Haha, I am adult paranoid schizophrenic, and I am with ability to collect University Credits, without a delusion belief other than, the normal will not harm me. Risk or Threat am I? Good Question. I know the grand answer, but merely I am a mouse with enlarged ventricles. Now who is the threat, possible those experimental doctors that come from the normalcy of every average joe, but they are not average, they are educated, and some care for us, others like priests molest. I know Risk Assessment and Threat Management, and I focus on those of you that endanger my life with insult, ridicule, and fantastic great distaste, so really, you are afraid of us, we are afraid of people like you. Do us a favour, let us grow, and don't do what they did to the mentally retarded with sterilization, because you may want to warrant a lobotomy that once was, thank god there are kooks like you, or you would make us normal.

November 12, 2013 - 4:24pm
EmpowHER Guest

Hi, We(my Wife and I) have been having problems with a paranoid neighbor for about 1.5 years now that has escalated to a physical attack recently.
If the person seems dangerous, then, they are. Listen to the hairs on the back of your neck. Most "crazy" people are not dangerous or threatening, they're just crazy. However, paranoid people (with or without schizophrenia) often can be quite violent and disruptive to your life. When they become a threat, throw compassion out the window and be proactive or you'll just be tip-toeing around them and they'll be free to impinge on you and your life as long as you let them. Only when you put some legal teeth into their butts will they behave themselves. Sorry if that offends anyone, but I'll bet that anyone offended by this has not lived near a truly aggressive paranoid delusional and hallucinating person who hears "your" voice and then gets mad at you about what you "said" and/or "did" in their heads and targets you and possibly(likely) others as well.
What you need to do:
1) Know all the neighbors you can, just don't be a pain to them.
2) Find out if other neighbors have had problems with that person. If you have a landlord or whatever, let them know and/or ask them about the person.
3) Keep detailed notes on this person with time, dates, what happened and very important to list witnesses if there are any.
4) You and your neighbors need to call the police when your neighbor becomes threatening, GET A CALL REPORT NUMBER from the police. Keep that call report number listed on your notes about that person for that event. If you don't document things, then legally they didn't happen. When and if it goes to court, you'll be better off if you have information and look organized and high functioning.
5) If needed, file a " Non-Stalking Order"(many states a "restraining order" is only valid on family members, spouses, ex-spouses, domestic/sex partners).
6) If you own your house, install a video surveillance system, and get a REAL one, not a fake, a fake video camera can't be your friend in court. Learn how to use it, play with it for at least a week before you install it.
7) Don't go talking to that person when you absolutely don't need to. When they make accusations and you try to explain what "really" is happening or not-happening, they'll predictably just get mad and accuse you of denying what they think (delusionally or hallucination) you did and accuse you of "backpedalling". This only empowers them in their mind.
8) Avoid interactions or even looking at them, the more you are in their awareness, the more you'll become involved in their delusional process in a negative way.
9) Unfortunately, it will likely in many cases require some sort of physical attack on you or your property before the police can put charges on them. Be ready for it, seriously, learn to physically defend yourself - You'll be glad you did and you'll increase your chances of coming out unscathed, less damaged and/or alive.
10) Don't just call "your friend the cop", it won't be official and all they can do is the occassional random drive-by which may not do any good. You can call "your friend the cop" but make sure you and your neighbors call "THE" cops with a formal complaint of a threatening, scary or actual event.
11) Go to the Police or Sherriff's Dept and ask for a police history on that person, you may find some good useful information you can use in court.
Good Luck

March 15, 2013 - 7:33pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

This is the best advice in the comments section. I'm currently dealing with an escalating situation with a neighbor who is probably schizophrenic. Especially the self-defense classes. Unfortunately I own my apartment, so it may take me months to get out. Since she's escalating things, I took one class and I will be taking more. I've also hired a lawyer.

June 13, 2013 - 10:24am
EmpowHER Guest

If your truely afraid, contact the local police etc, & file a restraining order with the notation that you are afraid for your life & may use deadly force, lead injections make them go away & help you sleep better at night. If not they go to court & get off because because of some medical/mental excuse & you are dead.

August 25, 2012 - 9:41am
EmpowHER Guest

Learn the art of using firearms safely & protect yourself

August 25, 2012 - 9:31am
EmpowHER Guest

The same thing happened to me many years ago. Appartment above the paranoid sch. who in turn thought I was making noise, etc. where it got so bad I too could not walk around my apt. w/out being uncomfortable as well. Eventually, long story short, the apt. complex management wanted her kicked out and lucky for them her contract was up, because they legally could not get her removed. However prior to her leaving she escalated in angry moods and DID "attack" my car one day when I pulled in. She walked right up to the front hood and starting slamming her fists on it, screaming at me. When I got out of the car w/out thinking and yelled at her she cowered and walked away. I however doubt this would be the case w/ my new neighbor. I knew her years prior before she "out of it." Nobody had a clue since she acted like most people w/ "some" issues, but nothing that gave anyone suspician of schizophrenia. YES, 15 years later I am dealing w/ it again!!! REALLY!? Good luck to everyone.

August 24, 2012 - 10:55pm
EmpowHER Guest

Thank you so much for this information, I recently moved into an apartment on the second floor. I met my neighbor about two weeks after I moved in. She talked alot about the previous tenant and how he would" follow her around from room to room and come and go at the same times she did to torment her" She told me there was such strife that the previous tenant decided to terminate their lease early. She seemed nice enough to me and told me I was very quiet.
Soon after that, I would notice sounds like beating on her ceiling when I would walk into the kitchen and in the bedroom. I didn't put two and two together as I thought we were on good terms.
One night she beat on my door and asked me to " stop running around" I live alone and had been in bed for two hours?? This incident confused and upset me.
Then in the middle of the night as I got up to use the bathroom, she came and beat on the door. When I went to confront her, she told me " I knew what I had been doing" and that I was a nuisance to the entire community. That she was friends with everyone there except me and she would get her boyfriend or brother to come talk to me. When I tried to reason with her, she would not accept that I was not doing it out of spite. She terrified me so much that I fled that night.
When my landlord called to question her, she told her the same story as she had told me of the previous tenant. That I was following her and would mimic her every move such as dropping a spoon in a bowl when she did?? That's when I realized that she had a serious problem and this forum made me realize what it was.
Now I just want her to go. She is constantly late on rent ( I see late notices in the door ) and has had her car towed by the office. Yet she remains. All I can do is pray that she is evicted or her lease runs out SOON!!

September 10, 2011 - 5:54am

Diane Porter,
Thank you for your response. I have already called her landlord, he owned all the units until he sold them off as condos but he still rents the ones he owns. He seems to have control over the Board. I know its not kosher and he is probably breaking the law but that is the way it is here. He said there is nothing he can do about the situation as she has not done anything as of yet except scream at me and call the police. I also called the police and they of course said they could do nothing as no crime has been commited as of yet. But I can come down to the station and place a complaint against her for harassment. I guess that is what I will have to do as it is my only option. Today I met someone who said she used to live in the development years ago. His mother remembers her clearly. He said she caused a great deal of trouble at that time but he doesn't think she would physically harm me. I'm not so sure about that. I have never seen anyone so angry and so sure of the irrational claims she is making. I don't know much about this disease she has but as a anymous said above, she may be capable of physically assaulting me. I believe that if paranoia is not treated, it just gets worse. It would be hard to access my unit as I am on the second floor but I have to go in and out and who knows what is going on in her warped mind. Even though this is a bad time for me as I have to have spine surgery somewhere in the near future, I will just have to deal with it by filing a complaint with the police. Forget the Board, they are usless!

May 20, 2010 - 12:39pm

The situation of the neighbor who thinks you are making noise is identical to the problem I am facing. I have lived in my condo for almost 20 years. About 8 month ago a woman moved in below me and she has been harassing me about my making too much noise. Like the commentor has said, I only make the noise of daily living such as walking from room to room. this woman has called the police on me, has made a complaint and requested a Mediation Hearing which I had to attend twice and there was no resolution because it was her word against mine. She claims I follow her around her apartment from room to room, (she is below me and I can't hear where she is), intentionally stomping my feet to to torment her. Like the writer of the post this could not be further from the truth. I have never had any complaints from anyone who lived in her apartment before. She is so angry at me, she scares me. Last night as I was leaving my condo she throughs open her window and starts screaming at me telling me that I am still making too much noise and it is worse than ever. I try to reason with her on a rational level in a calm voice that this is what she thinks is happening but it is just not true. I live alone and am very quiet and now I can't walk around in my home because she becomes crazy. At first it was annoying, now it is frightening. Whenever she approaches me she is so angry that I am afraid that she is going to harm me. I know going to the police won't help because they don't do anything until a crime is commited. I am really afraid that this woman is going to hurt or even kill me. What can I do. I can't move, I own my unit and altlhough she only rents I know she will not even consider moving. What began as a situation which annoyed and made me angry has become as situation where I am scared to death. Can someone help me?

May 19, 2010 - 9:38pm
Diane Porter (reply to meg29)


Wow. This is a really difficult situation.

Is there someone you can talk to on your condo board? Someone who knows you, perhaps, since you have lived there for a while with no previous complaints? Is there anyone there who you feel would be sympathetic to what you're going through?

It seems to me that the first thing you need to do is to get this problem on the record in your words. Can you write a letter to the board explaining that you feel harassed and in danger due to the actions of another tenant? Telling them in detail, for instance, the things she says to you when she approaches you?

Is there anything in your condo association's rules about harassing another tenant?

Has she ever done anything besides yelling that makes you think she may be violent?

Do you know the neighbors who might live on either side of her? Might they support you or be experiencing something similar?

Could you ask a member of the condo board (or the entire mediation group, for that matter) to be in her apartment while you do things like walk across the floor, turn water on an off, turn the television on to normal volume? In order to judge for themselves and to help them tell her that that level of noise is acceptable? (I realize that won't stop her later from saying you got even louder, but I'm also looking for ways to get the condo board to understand what you're going through.)

I think if I were you, every time she approaches you angrily, yells at you out the window, or says something to you that I would write it down exactly and get the condo board to keep it in my file, so they have a record of the fact that this woman is, indeed, acting in a harassing manner. Is there any possibility of this?

May 20, 2010 - 9:17am
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