What’s the Best Way to Handle a Toxic Neighbor in Montana?
It's important to get along with your neighbors, but that isn't always easy. What happens when your neighbor is impossible to get along with? Should you make an effort to be nice if the effort is one-sided?
I'm not a big fan of social media, but as a result of my job, I visit various social media sites on a regular basis. I've noticed a lot of people in the Bozeman area sharing stories about unruly neighbors and asking other people for advice on what to do about it.
Personally, I do my best to maintain a good relationship with most of my neighbors, but just like anyone, I make a few mistakes on occasion.
Here's an example. Last Thursday, I was watching the latest episode of Halo on Paramount+. My roommate works early, so when I'm watching movies at night, I use headphones to avoid waking him up. At 11:33 p.m., there were about five minutes left in the episode, so I let my dogs out in the backyard to do their business before I went to bed.
At exactly 11:38 p.m., I heard someone pounding on my front door. When I opened the door, there was a man that I'd never seen before standing on my front porch. He had his chest puffed out and was yelling and screaming about one of my dogs barking in the backyard. Using words that I won't use in this article, he clearly told me how he felt about it.
I explained that the dogs had only been outside for five minutes and that I was about to bring them back inside. I didn't try to escalate the situation.
If it happens again, I'm going to call the cops!
Since then, I've been more mindful of my dogs barking in the backyard, and immediately stop it if I hear it happening. I talked to my roommate the next day, and he told me that I should've answered the front door holding a pistol and told the guy to get off my property.
How do you handle a toxic neighbor? Do you think the guy overreacted or was pounding on my front door justified?