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Childrearing

Ridiculous Neighbor Writes Anonymous Letter In An Attempt To Silence The Screams Of Playing Children

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Ridiculous Neighbor Writes Anonymous Letter In An Attempt To Silence The Screams Of Playing Children children playing outside 275x200 jpgThe parents of three young kids in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Quebec received an anonymous letter from a neighbor last week who claims to be “exasperated by the screams” of their offspring. Apparently the kids get loud when they play outside, and it’s driving this neighbor to write passive-aggressive notes. Next, the neighbor plans to outlaw sidewalk chalk and the laughter of small children.

Sarah Cloutier and Guy Doré say their kids aren’t perfect and do scream from time to time, but the couple thinks they mostly play like all other kids. From CBC.ca:

The letter was penned by a single author but alleged “many” neighbours found the children spend most of their time outdoors screaming and yelling.

“Many of us are exasperated by the screams of your children. We even think your children can only express themselves by yelling and don’t know how to talk,” the letter reads.

It said the situation was becoming “unliveable.”

Unliveable? Really? How much time can these kids possibly spend outside? I hope it’s a lot. I’m dying to see kids playing in the streets, as it just doesn’t seem to happen as much as when I was a child. Kids laugh. They scream. They play. And if they are outside, I think you just need to deal with it, neighbor.

I’m not sure exactly when it happened, but all of a sudden people seem to think they are entitled to live quiet, undisturbed lives. Good for you if you have the resources to build yourself a cabin in the woods or something, but if you live amongst the rest of us you generally have no control over the sounds that are happening outside the walls of your home if they are at a legal decibel level.

I work from home in Florida, where people need to cut their lawns once a week because the incessant rain makes every thing grow like mad. I listen to leaf blowers and electric mowers essentially all day long. It’s annoying. It’s also a part of my existence here. Should I write letters imploring my neighbors to force their gardeners to use old-timey rotary mowers with no motor so I can live in undisturbed silence? I could. But I would be ridiculous.

Cloutier and Doré visited the homes of their nearest neighbors to see if they could get anyone to confess to writing the letter. No one did. The couple claims some neighbors were very disturbed by what they read. Cloutier confesses to crying when she first read it: “I thought, ‘Everybody hates us. They hate our kids.’ It was sad.”

The family explains that two of their three children have ADHD, which I’m mentioning because it was in the news story, but I think that’s really here nor there. I don’t think screaming is a side effect of ADHD, I think it’s a side effect of the abandon you feel in childhood. And I don’t want it silenced, no matter how annoying it is.

(photo: Zurijeta/ Shutterstock)

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