If there is one thing that really grinds my gears, it’s arrogancy. When people think they are entitled to something because they have decided they need, want, deserve, or should just have it. And the most terrible type of arrogant person is arrogant parents. They think their child deserves the world on a silver platter. No one can get in the way of little Jimmy getting what he wants or chaos ensues. Have you ever seen a privileged parent get mad? It always takes me by surprise. How can a person be so self-absorbed?
Unfortunately, it never stops there. Privileged parents and their entitled children go above and beyond to make sure it is their way or the highway. “Emma” could have easily rolled over when her neighbors make a crazy request, but she knew it was worth the fight. Even if it meant making enemies out of them.
Emma lives in a “nice, quiet neighborhood at the end of a cul-de-sac.” She lives there alone with her two teenage sons. However, they only have her one car and she parks in the garage. This is different from every other house on the street, as they have multiple cars and use their driveways, and even park on the street. This was no problem.
Emma is a homebody and rarely seeks out the company of her neighbors. She is courteous with waves and hello’s but she never really spends any time with her neighbors. Then “about six months ago, the house to [her] right was sold to a larger family that consisted of Dad, Mom, and three teenagers.” Emma made sure to greet them in order to be welcoming. They seemed like a great fit for the neighborhood. Them and their four vehicles parked in the driveway. Soon to be five, which would cause a whole lot of trouble.
Everything was fine until a few months later when their youngest son turned 16. And on a Tuesday evening, there was a knock on Emma’s door. Who was there? “Tim” the dad living next door.
“Good evening, how are you?” Tim asked when she opened her front door.
Emma left the screen door closed between them and said, “We’re okay. I’m sorry I can’t open the door, but my youngest came home from school with a sore throat today, and so I’m not sure what’s going on with him. How are you and how can I help?”
Tim replied, “I’m sorry to hear that. I hope it isn’t anything serious. We are okay. My son just turned 16 a few weeks ago, and I’m sure you saw the new truck we bought him.”
“Yes, I did. It’s such a pretty truck and big! Does he like it?” Emma responded, trying to be neighborly.
Tim cheerily said, “Yes, he does! It’s what he wanted, so we got it for him. It is very big, and that’s what I wanted to talk to you about.”
“I don’t understand,” Emma said to him.
“We have been having complaints from some other neighbors, his truck is so big they can’t get around it when they are driving through and we’re afraid it might get sideswiped if he continues to park it in the street,” Tim said.
Emma quickly said, “Yeah, I’ve had some intense moments trying to get around it myself, but I’m sure he will get better at parking as he gets more experienced. I’m not sure what this has to do with me. I haven’t complained.”
Then Tim said, “Oh, I know you haven’t complained, which is why I was going to ask if he could use your driveway to park since you don’t use it.”
Emma was almost stunned silent, but she said, “Um, I do use my driveway when I leave and come home. I can’t get to my garage without using my driveway. Besides, I have issues with depth perception and your son’s truck is so big it will take up most of my driveway and I don’t want to be responsible for any damage that might happen while it is on my property.”
“Well, we will make sure he parks so it will allow you to come and go without any issues,” Tim said matter-of-factly.
Emma was still shocked, but able to counter with, “That isn’t possible. The only way he can park to allow me to get around him is if he parks halfway on my lawn, and then he would damage my lawn. If you are concerned about his truck getting damaged, then why don’t you let him park in your driveway, and then one of your other smaller cars can park in the street.”
Tim tried to explain this would mean moving two of their cars into the street because of the truck’s size. He tried to justify his idea by telling Emma she wasn’t using her driveway, so obviously it wouldn’t be a big deal. Emma was not giving in and said no.
Tim was not happy and said, “You are not being very neighborly. I thought you were a nice woman. You don’t use your driveway, and this would benefit the whole neighborhood.”
Now Emma was past confused, she was angry, and she snapped at him, “Listen, I told you no and I DO use my driveway every time I pull into my garage and every time I leave. I’m sorry you don’t have enough parking for all your vehicles, I’m sure it's frustrating, but it's not my problem you decided to buy a vehicle that didn’t fit your property. Now, while I also find it irritating to try to navigate the road with the truck in the way, it is public parking and so I deal with it. I will not have anyone else’s vehicle parking on my property. Now, if you don’t mind, I have a sick kid and need to get back to him! Have a good day.”
Emma had bigger things to worry about than her neighbor's parking issues. But they were not about to let this go so easily.
It had been a tiring couple of days with the crazy neighbors and her son being sick. The next day Emma went to work and shared the story about the previous evening with her co-workers. They all had a similar reaction of surprise. How could someone act so arrogant?
Then, Emma wrote up an email for her HOA stating the events of the night before, keeping in mind it wasn't a complaint, just simply a record of what had happened.
Over two days had now passed and it was Friday. Emma’s son was sick and seemed to be getting worse when she came home from work. She decided she would take him back to see what urgent care could do for him.
She went to go out of the garage and she was shocked to see a ginormous F350 parked in her driveway. She was beyond angry and immediately went to the neighbor’s door to get an explanation.
“Chrissy” the mother answered the door in a huff, “Can I help you? You are interrupting our dinner!”
“Your son is parked in my driveway after I told your husband he couldn’t. I need to take my son to [urgent care] and your truck is blocking me in!” Emma said as she saw Tim walk towards them.
Tim said she would be able to pull around the truck with no problem.
Emma was not playing around and snapped at him, “No I can’t. You need to move the truck or I’m going to call the police AND a tow truck! I need to get my son in to see a doctor!”
Determined to have the last pathetic word, Tim called his son’s name and said to Emma, “He’s not blocking you, but I will have him move it.”
She was enraged and responded with, “It doesn’t matter whether you believe he is blocking me in or not. He is not allowed to park in my driveway. No one is allowed to park in my driveway and if I find an unauthorized vehicle parked in my driveway again, I’m not going to bother to knock on your door. I’m going to have it towed!”
The entitled son walked out of the doorway and called her some awful names, but Emma tried to keep calm. Finally, after he struggled a bit, she was able to leave to go to the doctor with her son.
Emma made sure to send another email to the HOA as an update. They had told her, her property was her own, so she could decide who could be on it or not. She knew she was in the right, but she still updated them to have a record.
Well then came the weekend and it was all going to hit the fan.
It was now Sunday evening and Emma’s oldest son was now feeling ill. They had to find a 24-hour pharmacy and by the time they got back home, it was close to midnight.
Emma was “exhausted and feeling drained and having coughing fits [herself]” and they were both ready to get some sleep. But it seemed like a far-off idea when she saw what was waiting for her in the driveway.
It was the truck again. She wasn’t able to access her driveway whatsoever and he was not even fully on the driveway, so he was damaging the grass. Emma was furious, and she stayed true to her word. She found a tow company online and called them to report the truck on her property. They would take about half an hour to come to get the truck, but she used those minutes to make sure her sons were settled in for the night and to take some pictures. She was so angry and wanted to make sure she had plenty of evidence just in case.
After the tow truck came, Emma sent another email to the HOA describing the scene and the towing. She even included the pictures. And then she went to bed. However, she had a rude awakening Monday morning.
The sick household was woken up to loud slamming on the front door. Emma wasn’t surprised to see Tim and his arrogant son standing there with terrible looks on their faces. She decided to record the event with her phone just in case.
Immediately, Tim started yelling, “Where is the truck?!”
Emma, who was feeling quite ill herself at this point, coughed as she said, “It was towed. You can call [the towing company] to make arrangements to get it back.”
Tim was fuming, “You didn’t have the right to tow it. You’re going to pay to get it back!”
“I had every right to tow an unauthorized vehicle on my property. I told you not to park on my property and you did it anyway. It blocked me from getting in my driveway last night. I told you I was going to have it towed after the last time you parked without my permission. And I won’t be paying anything to get it back,” Emma said, still staying calm.
Tim began shouting she had stolen the truck and he would be getting the police involved. He even threatened legal action.
Emma just shrugged him off and shut the door in his face, going back to bed. Emma and her sons went back into their beds, hoping it was the last they would hear from the maniac. But they hoped too soon.
There was another knock soon after, and this time Emma opened the door to see a police officer.
“Good morning ma’am. Sorry to bother you, but we had a report from your neighbor. He is stating you stole his son’s truck by having it towed from the street and we need to talk to you about this issue,” the kind officer said.
Emma responded, still coughing, “Good morning officer. My neighbor is only telling you half the story. I had his truck towed this morning from MY driveway when I returned home. I couldn’t get into my driveway, and I have already told him twice he and his family can’t park on my property. This issue started last week and I have emails to my HOA, pictures of his truck parked in my driveway this morning, and a video of my neighbor’s visit this morning where he called me names and told me he was going to sue me and call the police. I can show you if you would like?”
The officer said, “Yes. So, you are saying the truck in question was on your property without your permission and you had it towed?”
Emma clarified even more, “Yes. Last Tuesday, he asked if I would allow his son to park in my driveway. I told him no, and he got mad at me and flipped me off before leaving. Then Friday evening, I discovered his son had parked in my driveway and I couldn’t leave my garage. I went over and demanded they remove the vehicle, and I told them I would have the truck towed if they parked on my property again. I came home late this morning and the truck was in my driveway, so I had it towed.”
She showed the emails, the pictures, and even the recording she had. She even went as far as to print out copies of everything for him. And she sent everything, including the audio recording, to the email he provided for his records.
He said, “I have enough information for my files to determine the vehicle was not on public property and was in fact on your property. I’ve made a note you did not give permission for the vehicle to be parked on the property. Based on the emails you gave me with dates and times, it appears you did in fact advise your neighbor not to park on your property. Would you like to file a trespassing report for this incident?”
Emma agreed to file a report online. He reassured her the entitled neighbor could sue if he wanted, but she had all the evidence she would need to combat any of his legal advances. The officer made sure Emma knew everything she needed to know and also wished her a speedy recovery before going to speak with the neighbor.
Emma tried to go back to sleep but she just couldn’t rest, so she decided to file the trespassing report right then. She found out later the report would have to be filed on the minor son since he was the responsible party and at worst it would be a misdemeanor. They didn’t think he meant any harm so Emma wasn’t sure if anything would come out of it. However, she didn’t have to talk to the arrogant pricks again and it made her bond with the other neighbors a bit more. They tried to comfort her. One even said they would change the angle of their cameras to include her driveway just in case she would need more evidence and the pricks did it again. They all rallied behind her, and the whole street had problems with the family.
She was grateful for the support and the dirty looks she got from them weren’t too bad.
Although she knew some people would probably wonder, why didn’t she just ask them to move it again? Do you think Emma was being dramatic by having the truck towed? How about how those parents are raising their children? Was this enough to deter them from crossing the line in the future? Only time would tell. And for now, Emma knew she had won and had nothing more to worry about.