It’s hard not to listen in when you hear something going down next door, but sometimes shoddy soundproofing means you don’t get a choice. Everybody’s got a bit of weirdness in them, especially in the sanctum of their own home.
Here, people reveal the strange, hilarious and creepy things they’ve learned about their neighbours through their walls. Enjoy! And make sure to check out the sources at the bottom for even more!
1. Taking domesticated to a whole new level.
The woman next door has a relationship with her cat that’s… interesting. She’s a recluse in her mid forties. Nuthin’ wrong with that, but she doesn’t seem to be handling it well.
She treats it like a human, and I’m not talking about how much she loves it. Her relationship with it plays out as if he were an actual family member, dynamics and all. They have fights. A lot. Mostly, she feels that he neglects her feelings and doesn’t appreciate how much time she puts into being at work and doing all of the housework. She wishes he would at least help take the trash out. And she doesn’t understand why he complains about having to go outside.
Last night they had another fight, but I got home late, so I don’t know what it was about. She spent about an hour throwing things, and eventually kicked him out for awhile. It’s weird.
2. Practice makes perfect.
My neighbour has been learning to play guitar for almost a year now, he’s gotten a lot better!
3. Long-distance crooner.
My neighbour sings to someone in Mandarin through the phone about 3 nights a week. I don’t know what he is saying but it sounds like he really loves whoever it is he is singing to. I don’t really get annoyed by it because I think it’s a pretty sweet thing to do. It’s to the point now that if I don’t hear singing for a while I get a little worried about him.
4. A friend in need is a friend indeed.
I learned that my neighbour’s husband was beating her. like…straight up beating her. They had a 2 year old at the time and I knew she was a stay at home mom.
I didn’t call the police as I was young and scared and didn’t know what to do. I was 18 at the time and had just move to the city. One of the most dangerous cities in the country. I was worried that their kid would get taken away, or that he would know it was me and try to beat me up. (Story continues…)
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So…one day I had a week day off work, went over with a cake. At the time she had a broken arm and two huge black eyes. It seemed like she didn’t have any friends either as she wasn’t from the area. I figured it would be easier for her for me to just be someone to talk to and she could decide if she wanted to call the police or not. When I went over that day I was just the new neighbor wanting to make friends, I didn’t even mention her eyes or cast that day. We just sat around and giggled and compared Archie Comic collections. We legit became best friends in the matter of hours.
I helped her with her kid, I helped her dump him, I helped her move back to her home province and we’re still best friend to this day.
5. Big brother is auditioning you.
The guy next door is an entrepreneur and aspiring reality tv star. Seriously what kind of person actually wants to be on a reality show? I know everything about him because he paces around and talks on the phone literally all day long. I work from home, so I hear him all day. Pretty much all he does is complain and talks in a loud, whiney voice and sounds like he’s about to start crying like a little kid. He never stops talking, so I really want to know who he’s talking to because there’s never a break where another person could respond and who wants to hear this whiny shit all day anyway. Maybe he’s just talking into a tape recorder.
It’s always about people who wronged him, and about how hard he works. He gets all sassy. “I said ‘ohhhh nooo, I am NOT giving you a ride when I’m busy working so hard!'”
I found him on Facebook and he lists his location as Manhattan. I do not live in Manhattan.
I’m tempted to Facebook message him with a live transcription of what he’s saying.
I heard my neighbour give birth when I was a kid. It was planned, there were a bunch of people there and she did it in a bathtub or something.
7. The adventures of young Indiana Jones.
I learned that my old neighbor’s kid is… an adventurer in the body of a nine-year-old boy. The first conversation I ever heard between mother and son was something akin to her shrieking, “WHAT ARE YOU DOING TO THE CARPET?”
“I’M DIGGING A HOLE, MOM!”
I often heard her crying and one time asking him if he’d prefer to live with his dad, because he seemed miserable with her. She thought that was why he was acting out. (Story continues…)
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He ended up crying, too, and begging her to let him stay. So he did, and at least they seemed to get on better after that.
To not end on a sour note, the funniest thing I think I heard was her shrieking, “OH MY GOD, WHERE DID YOUR CLOTHES GO?”
“WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!”
“I’M FREE, MOM! I’M FREE!”
She scolded him, but after I heard him stomp off, I heard her laughing pretty hard on the other side of the wall.
8. You’re gonna go far kid.
My last apartment neighbor had a really weird fixation with the song Hit That by The Offspring. He listened to it on repeat. And I don’t mean once or twice I mean usually for three or four hours at a time. I would’ve thought he was being a jerk and putting his stereo on repeat and then leaving for work, but I could hear him singing to it. Badly.
I talked to him a few times when I’d see him in the parking lot or doing laundry and he was a nice enough guy. Seemed totally normal. I never asked him about the song though so I have no idea if it was some kind of compulsion or if he just reeeeeally loved The Offspring.
I had cops called on me for suspected domestic abuse when I was fresh out of college. I lived alone at the time and what happened was I beat the heck out of my box fan after a 5 game losing streak in Starcraft 2.
10. You did the right thing.
Last Christmas, I heard my neighbor beating her son violently. The little boy was screaming, begging his mom to stop. She just kept yelling, “It’s your daddy’s fault. Go tell him to pay his child support!”
I called the cops who contacted CPS and now I am public enemy #1 in my apartment complex. Everyone hates me for going to the police.
11. No accounting for taste.
It isn’t a secret since the whole apartment can hear it, but apparently my next door neighbour likes to watch Michael Bay movies at full volume.
12. Don’t need to listen close.
Lived in a four apartment strip back in the 90’s. Quiet, peaceful, perfect.
One Saturday afternoon, I’m sitting on the couch watching tv and hear a gunshot. Second later, another. I run next door and pound on the door, can’t get in. (Story continues…)
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So I call 911, tell them this and cops show up pretty quick.
Turns out the elderly couple next door did a murder-suicide pact.
13. Earning that #1 Dad mug.
My neighbor is the perfect the neighbor, single guy in his 40s, he makes no noise and is rarely home; I see him leaving sometimes in the morning always in a suit and tie, hair perfectly combed, and he drives a M6.
But one weekend each month his two sons come to visit him.
They’re both pretty young, and the week before they come I have heard him on the balcony talking with someone on the phone about the plans he’s made to do with his boys once they’re there.
Also once they’re at his apartment I can hear him read to them every night before bed.
14. Yeah, I don’t think that counts either.
Some guy who lives right above me is a lot louder than he seems to think he is. Just the other night, I learned he’s quitting alcohol and switching to wine.
15. That one friend.
Guy next door is chronically late and lies to his friends about it every time. Like at least once a week.
[Shouting over loud dubstep]: Yeah man I’m almost there! Traffic’s terrible. Just gimme a few minutes.
Buddy, you are not in a car. You appear to be sitting around in your bedroom listening to horrible music, waiting for someone to ask where you are.
16. Waiting for Gilligan.
So this one is kind of strange. First it technically wasn’t an apartment but military accomodation. We each had a room to ourselves and the walls were pretty thin as it was an old building. Anyway the guy in the room next to me would for some reason keep saying “Gilligan” randomly when he was alone in his room. Just every now and again he’d say “Gilligan” kind of loud. Even heard him saying it in tune with a Skrillex song at one point. (Story continues…)
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I didn’t know him well enough to say “Why do you occasionally shout Gilligan when you’re alone in your room?”. I asked a couple of the other guys in my unit about it but they didn’t know what I was talking about. He never did it outside of his room or around other people.So it was like this weird thing that only I knew about.
One morning I was walking out of my room and the guy from the other room next to mine was also walking out of his room. At that moment Gilligan guy shouts “Gilligan” from his room and this other guy hears it too. It was a relief to have someone else hear it. I wasn’t alone in this weird thing anymore but we were still none the wiser as to the why.
And we never found out. Gilligan guy got promoted and assigned to another camp and I didn’t see him again. On a positive note I was kind of glad he left as he used to leave his tv on all night and during the weekends even if he wasn’t there.
17. S-now thanks please.
When I stayed at a ski lodge about a month ago I found out that my neighbour was a white supremacist with a very shouty solo podcast.
18. I wanna rock n’ roll every night.
I used to live in an apartment where the downstairs neighbor played the bass. He was a nice guy and if I ever asked him to knock it off for a while he’d happily accommodate me. I didn’t recognize most of the stuff he played, he was in a ska band. But one afternoon he started playing Metallica. I was in a Metallica cover band myself at the time, but I used headphones for practicing my guitar and I don’t think he was aware I played.
So I cranked up my amp and started belting out the solo over his bass riff. The girl in the apartment next door to me yelled “rock ‘n roll” and started banging on pots and pans in a close approximation of the drum beat. It was probably the best impromptu jam session I’ve ever had.
19. Front row seats to the human drama.
Years ago I lived in an apartment with the thinnest walls I’ve ever encountered. I could hear everything and my neighbor and his girlfriend were quite active to say the least. One day I started thinking, “Her voice sounds different. Uh-oh.” (Story continues…)
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Sure enough, the next day the girlfriend comes over and they had a huge fight. I don’t know how she found out, but she found out pretty quickly.
20. Karaoke superstar.
I used to hear my downstairs neighbors have karaoke parties on weeknights. Not really a secret, but I assume that the football player one of them was dating wouldn’t really have wanted the team to find out that he was really good at singing pop hits from the early 90s.
21. Sometimes, YOU’RE that neighbour.
Here’s a fun story. Husband and I moved into a townhouse. Old building from 1920, brick walls between units. We didn’t hear a thing from the neighbors. Like literally no sounds at all. We weren’t even sure anyone was living next door until we met them because it was so quiet. So, we figured the soundproofing was excellent. Husband and I were never quiet. We had no reason to be! We have 2am dance parties in our kitchen screaming to Outkast as loud as we possibly could!
Then, the neighbors moved out and a new couple moved in. The second the showed up, we heard EVERYTHING they did. Every single quiet conversation, every time someone closed a cabinet, every tiny sound we heard.
It was not soundproof. The first couple was just incredibly quiet and we were huge, gigantic jerks. It’s been years and I still feel bad.
22. An alarm clock for everyone.
My wife and I used to live next to a single mother. We learned her son, Marvin, is not a morning person.
“Marvin! MARVIN! Get your butt out of bed RIGHT NOW! You gonna miss the bus!!!”