Friday, September 26, 2008

X Meets the Neighbors

Once again, we went back to visits with me chaperoning. Most of the time, he would just come by the complex, and hang out with the girls outside in the courtyard. Sometimes they walked to the store next door and pick up some pastries.

Then he became friends with my neighbors. Not the good neighbors. The more questionable ones. The ones below me who were really, really loud. (Isn't it usually the upstairs neighbors that are the problem? I could hear conversations through my floor!)

X started showing up more often to see his new buddies. Sometimes, the girls saw him, sometimes they didn't. It was starting to get bad. I was beginning to feel less and less comfortable in our apartment. I never knew when he'd be there. One time, he came in without my knowing it and scared the crap out of me. After that, I was checking the lock constantly. Another morning, I went outside our front door and he was out in the hallway. I don't know how long he'd been there.

Soon after that, I got a call that X had been arrested. Part of me was relieved. He'd be out of my hair for a while. The other part of me wondered how the girls would take it.

I know that some of you will question whether or not I should be telling the girls. I have come to accept my decision. There were problems associated with it, of course.

After the first time I told them, I heard later that there was quite a scene at the school when Sylvia told some friends. However, when he would call from jail, it showed up on the caller i.d. as "LA Prison" so they would've found out somehow.

Meanwhile, my neighbors started talking to me about him. They knew about his arrest - he had been with a friend of theirs. They started talking about money he owed them, and how he was doing too many drugs. They didn't seem to get that this was why I was divorcing him. It was just all getting really weird.

And then I got another call. From someone who claimed X owed him money. And that he knew X had kids. It wasn't so much a direct threat exactly, but it was all very creepy. And I totally started freaking out.

I knew this guy had to have gotten my number from one of the neighbors, and I let her know that this was totally unacceptable, that they are to leave my kids out of it.

And I started looking for a new place to live.


Anonymous said...

The single best thing I did in my divorce was to fight to move out of state with the kids. It was hard, and it cost A LOT of $$ but having a 6 state buffer between me and him is wonderful.

I say all this because I can't imagine being in the same small New England town with him -- let alone having him hanging out where I lived.

Kori said...

Have a called him a freaking asshole yet? Really?

Anonymous said...

What a horror. Another man in the slime chain.

Don't let anyone second guess you and how you deal with your daughters: you are the only one who knows them well enough and the situation well enough to know what to do and say.

FreedomFirst said...

What a bitch! Who did she think she was? That is just disgusting.

And I don't believe in sheltering kids from reality either. Just helping to ease the chill of the cold hard truth. It's all in how you present it.

Tara R. said...

That is just plain scary. I would have totally freaked out.

OHmommy said...

Wow, THAT must have be so scary, April. I can't even imagine anyone mentioning my children's names in that context.

Anonymous said...

Yeah. Wow, I agree with OHMommy. I would've been so incredibly freaked out by that phone call--I wouldn't eat until I moved!

X sounds like a real piece of work, but unfortunately, I've known *too* many men like him.

Anonymous said...

What. an. ASSHOLE.

That is all.

Unknown said...

WOW. How scary for you as a mother and woman..really. I'll have to read back as it sounds like this story is a bit of a series. I'm glad you're posting it.

Shiona said...

Oh my gosh. That is so scary. They would have found out one way or another so I think you made a good decision even though you weren't asking my opinion.

Yes it is not normal for the downstairs neighbor to be causing all of the noise. What a messed up thing to do on the part of the neighbor.