DEAR SOMEONE ELSE’S MOM: There is an older woman who lives in the house across the street from my boyfriend. I know I’m not being paranoid, because my boyfriend and a lot of other people have commented on how this woman is always peeking out the window to see who is coming and going. She waits until she sees my boyfriend or one of the other neighbors heading out to get their mail and she nearly runs out of her house to “get her mail” too. Then she starts a conversation with whoever was really getting their mail, asking all kinds of questions about what’s happening in their house or with their family, or in our case, between my boyfriend and me.
I don’t want to sound like a crank myself, but how do we get this woman to butt out? --- NEED SOME PRIVACY
DEAR NEED SOME PRIVACY: There have always been and always will be plenty of what my mother used to politely refer to as “curious” neighbors in this world. In some cases, it isn’t so bad having someone keeping an eye on the neighborhood, but when it begins to feel creepy or intrusive, that’s another story.
The next time your boyfriend is approached, he could try changing the to a less personal, safe subject that doesn’t give her any openings to pry. If that doesn’t work, the next step would be to flat out, but politely, tell her he likes to keep his private life private. And if he’s still getting the third degree, he might want to turn the tables on her and come up with a very personal question to ask her about her own private matters.