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Some of you may recall the post I made in January titled <a href="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/showthread.php?t=1187302" target="_blank">"Need to vent about my psychotic friend experience... "</a>. I appreciated everyone's advice and felt really empowered.<br><br>
Well, I told you she would start contacting me again as if nothing had happened. So far I've received a text message (that I didn't read), a phone call, she said she was sending me an e-mail but I changed my e-mail address, and I just got another text message. The one voicemail I got she sounded totally nice, calm, and like nothing could possibly be wrong... actually, I think it sounded overly nice, like someone who knows there's something wrong and is trying to say their sorry without saying their sorry.<br><br>
Anyway, thankfully I saw Gavin de Becker on Oprah a couple weeks ago and it was very empowering saying things like "Any time you say "no" and the other person doesn't accept that answer they're trying to control you." And that there are signs of psychotic tendencies (my words) before something drastic happens, most people just tend to ignore the signs. I totally got it and realized this person really has never been my friend.<br><br>
So setting that aside... I'm not sure how I should proceed… should I keep ignoring her? Part of me fears she's going to show up at my door one day, and I don't know what she's going to do. I received some really good responses for if she does show up, but I imagine in reality I would be in shock and probably wouldn't answer the door but call my husband instead, or take my son and head out the backdoor instead. Which, doesn’t that just sound crazy? Like why do I even have to do that???? Who would do that? Something is wrong if you have to consider doing that!<br><br>
I just got the text message yesterday, so if there’s a response I should probably make a firm one now or just ignore her. Any ideas? One thought is to write her an e-mail that says I felt really uncomfortable the last time we were together and I think it’s best that we no longer are friends. And that’s it. But then, I know that will set her off, so it’s sort of like playing with fire either way… saying nothing or saying something. I know some of you have said restraining order, but honestly, how do you go that route when this person hasn’t physically done anything to you? I don't know... what should I do? Obviously I lean toward ignoring her, at least for now because the contact she's made hasn't been anything too crazy.
 

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Ignore it. Don't respond. Responding to her in any way is not going to go well.
 

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If she shows up at the door. .... don't answer. If she stands there banging or yelling... you can call the police on her.
 

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I agree with the other posters. Don't respond. Call the police if she doesn't go away when you don't answer the door.
 

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Sorry, but the advice you are getting to just ignore her is wrong. If anything ever happens where you will need to get a restraining order against her or anything of that nature, you will need proof that you told her to stop contacting you before any of her subsequent behavior can be classified as harassment. Send her ONE firmly worded email that you do not wish to have any further contact with her and do not wish to be contacted by her again in any way, and call the police and make a report if she shows up at your home or place of business. Do not go into any kind of detail in the email about her behavior- that will just give her talking points to want to argue with you about.<br><br>
PM me if you want to hear about my personal experience with this issue, if not we can keep chatting on this thread, but please don't think that ignoring her is going to give you a leg to stand on if things have to get legal. Hopefully it won't get to that point, but it does happen with some people, and it's not always people who look or act stereotypically crazy in their day to day lives.<br><br>
ETA: I do fully agree with the PPs on your other thread that stalkers thrive off the negative attention of being told to leave you alone. Unfortunately, if you want to have a LEGAL precedent to take action against them if their behavior escalates, you still have to do it.
 

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Honestly? I think you should write an email so you have proof (should you need to get a restraining order as the judge will ask you for this) and explain that you do not wish to be friends with her and why. Just ignoring her is both childish and hurtful to both of you. Feel free to cut all contact after you email her but please at least tell her WHY. She can't change her behavior in future relationships if she doesn't know WHY she's losing friends. I am speaking from experience when good friends just up and stopped talking to me and no explanation given. It left me feeling abandoned and wondering WTF did I do that was so horrible? As far as I knew there were no problems so it was pretty shocking the few times its happened. Its been almost 10 years since but the pain remains and left me with fear of what if I do it again when I don't even know what I did if I did anything! (I had a stalker who was causing a lot of problems for me including pretending to be me online so I can't help but wonder if he had something to do with it).<br><br>
Anyway, you could be the wake up call she needs to get therapy or be more aware of her behavior in relationships, sometimes we don't realize what were doing is considered abnormal until its pointed out. You have 12 years invested in this relationship, the least you can do is tell her why your ending it.
 

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Gavin de Becker's advice is to keep ignoring.<br><br>
He has found that with stalker types, they learn how persistent they need to be. So if you ignore them for 5 weeks and then finally blow up and tell them to F off, they learn it takes 5 weeks of persistence to get a response from you.<br><br>
You should really just read his book and decide what to do from there. I don't recall if he says that it's necessary to clearly close the book first or not. Of course it's better if you have the chance, but you have already moved into Ignore, and I really don't know if it's better to break out of Ignore or not. Obviously a normal person would just drop it after some non-response from you OR being told to leave you alone but clearly you're not dealing with a normal person.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>laohaire</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15391039"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Gavin de Becker's advice is to keep ignoring.<br><br>
He has found that with stalker types, they learn how persistent they need to be. So if you ignore them for 5 weeks and then finally blow up and tell them to F off, they learn it takes 5 weeks of persistence to get a response from you.<br></div>
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Yeah, and then when you call the police because the stalker showed up at your home or office, and the police advise you to get a restraining order at that point, you won't get your petition for the order granted because you have no proof to show a judge that the stalker knows the contact is unwanted. You would have to contact the stalker at that point, after their behavior had already escalated to a threatening level, and establish that you don't want any further contact from them, and then wait for them to do it again before you could go back to the judge. I'm sorry, I'm sure Gavin De Becker is a very smart guy when it comes to personal interactions, but legally he is dead wrong and that advice is dangerous. With someone who is a true stalker and not just a pushy jerk, ignoring them will only make them escalate the behavior to a level that can't be ignored, such as showing up where you live or work, and when that happens you will need a record of past incidents with that person in order to be able to take action from there.<br><br>
OP, if you are going to read this guy's book, PLEASE also read the stalking laws in your state, including what you would need to do to establish precedent that the contact is unwanted, and some information about how to deal with stalking and harassment from some other sources as well.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lynsage</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15391105"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Yeah, and then when you call the police because the stalker showed up at your home or office, and the police advise you to get a restraining order at that point, you won't get your petition for the order granted because you have no proof to show a judge that the stalker knows the contact is unwanted. You would have to contact the stalker at that point, after their behavior had already escalated to a threatening level, and establish that you don't want any further contact from them, and then wait for them to do it again before you could go back to the judge. I'm sorry, I'm sure Gavin De Becker is a very smart guy when it comes to personal interactions, but legally he is dead wrong and that advice is dangerous. With someone who is a true stalker and not just a pushy jerk, ignoring them will only make them escalate the behavior to a level that can't be ignored, such as showing up where you live or work, and when that happens you will need a record of past incidents with that person in order to be able to take action from there.<br><br>
OP, if you are going to read this guy's book, PLEASE also read the stalking laws in your state, including what you would need to do to establish precedent that the contact is unwanted, and some information about how to deal with stalking and harassment from some other sources as well.</div>
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Its been a few years since I read his book but I'm pretty sure he says to make it clear you no longer want contact and then stop contact but you need that proof. As for everything else, your post is accurate. When I went before the judge the 1st thing he asked was for proof that I told him I wanted no further contact and I was able to give him several emails in english and spanish (stalkers 1st lang was spanish) showing very clearly I did not want contact. I ended up having him convicted of stalking several times and the last time it was supposed to get him 5 years in prison which he didn't get thanks to a plea bargain.<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eyesroll.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="roll">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Satori</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15391157"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Its been a few years since I read his book but I'm pretty sure he says to make it clear you no longer want contact and then stop contact but you need that proof.</div>
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Whew, OK then! That makes a lot more sense.<br><br>
I am sorry you had that experience with your stalker. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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I'm definitely in the "Be clear and firm that you want no more contact and that she should stop emailing, texting, calling and should not visit. Ever." group.<br><br>
Then ignoring her is fine, but as PPs have said, in order to be able to proceed legally you need proof you gave a clear, definite "Stop contacting me" order.<br><br>
I am also in with the few PPs who said it's worth saying that her behavior the last times you were together was inappropriate and you are concerned about safety when you're around her. You can leave it at that or say specifically your son and your safety, but I do think that some statement about where this is coming from is fair, since you considered her a "friend" and treated her as such before. Also, since you never said during the last mtg exactly what was upsetting to you, it is time to at least say *something* about the fact that it was her behavior that led to this ceasing of contact.<br><br>
But I agree with everyone who says you don't owe her any explanation beyond that, and that a detailed recounting of what happened and what you didn't like is just fodder for more harassment.<br><br>
Short and sweet, but I'd make sure I give a clear statement that she should not be in touch anymore before you totally cut off contact.<br><br>
And one more suggestion... having had my own limited experience with stalkers, I would also say "Whether you disagree with this or don't understand it, it is crucial that you respect it. If you attempt any further contact with me at all, I will contact the police. Please understand I'm very serious about this."<br><br>
And last last suggestion... if you haven't already written down all the most recent "encounters" with this person that bothered you so much, in great detail with dates etc, you should. Hopefully you'll never need it. But in case you ever do have to make your case legally, especially if it's down the line, you will want this info easily available withouthaving to rack your memory for the details.<br><br>
Best of luck!
 

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I'm also in the camp of those who suggest you communicate one time, unambiguously, that further contact is not wanted. You really do need proof as a legal protection for yourself. I don't know that any explanation is really necessary (because, frankly, I think if she doesn't already know that her behavior was entirely inappropriate, any explanation by you will fall on deaf ears), but there might be a legal advantage to saying that her behavior made you feel uncomfortable/threatened/etc. I don't think you need to detail any specifics, though.
 
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