I finally called Children’s Aid on the horrible screaming neighbours downstairs. I did not embellish. I told them only the truth: that they scream at each other horribly in front of the kid and that with her terrible temper there’s no way in the world that she won’t end up screaming directly at her kid, too. And in fact I’ve heard her scream at the kid a couple of times already. It can only get worse once he’s big enough to be walking around and talking and otherwise giving her things to be pissed off about.
Apparently, instead of dropping by unexpectedly or even just giving a vague “we got a call and we want to check you out” heads up to the neighbours, Children’s Aid called them and told them exactly what I said about them. They didn’t give my name (because I didn’t give it to them, when I called). But yeah.
And now the terrible neighbour is either calling my bluff or has genuinely pieced together that it was me who called. She emailed me this morning, stating the specific anecdotes that I had told the Children’s Aid guy and saying that Children’s Aid wants to meet with me and “eliminate the possibility that it was me who made the call” – and that they would bring animal control with them. This was a clever little jibe about the times I’ve been lazy about scooping the cat litter and they could smell it from the hallway, you see.
Now, I’m not terribly worried about Children’s Aid coming by. I don’t think figuring out who called via process of elimination is actually a thing they do (I may call and ask just in case, but I mean…if it were that important to know who made the call, they would just not let you report anonymously). And they damn sure wouldn’t bring animal control with them, for fuck’s sake. Children’s Aid isn’t gonna give a fuck how I treat my pets. Pets are not children.
But I do worry that the neighbour will make a separate call to animal control or the humane society or whoever, just to try to get me in trouble as a means of revenge. And my apartment is a bit out of control right now mess-wise so if someone dropped by maybe a really picky person would think this was an unfit place for pets? I don’t know.
Also, I am now even more on her bad side. And I know what a temper she has. So I’m kinda scared. I wonder a lot what I should do if I run into her in person and she point-blank asks me if I reported her.
She has a lot more at stake here than I do, and I think her vaguely threatening email was a gesture of panic, so honestly I guess instead of being all flighty and trying to avoid the question I should look her right in the eyes and go “Yup. I did call. Because you regularly have screaming fights in front of your baby to a point where he cries, and that’s fucked up, and I want you to get help.”
The important thing is to always, always make this about the health and safety of her baby, and not let it slip that the yelling also annoys me. Because then she’ll assume I only called Children’s Aid because I was feeling petty about being woken up by their screaming so many times, and that’s not it. I am genuinely worried about the baby, and I have cried when I heard the baby start wailing in fear during her tantrums. I hate this. It has to end.