Ever since I started listening to true crime podcasts I became more freaked out about being by myself in our house. I heard the story of the East Area Rapist (aka “The Original Nightstalker”), and ever since then I’ve found myself locking all of our doors and looking around when the garage door closes. One of the women had pulled up in her car at home, when he grabbed her in the driveway. How scary! Admittedly it was in America, but still. It could happen anywhere.
It’s fair to say I’m taking a lot more care now.
The girls from “My Favourite Murder” (whom I saw live last year) have a catch phrase “Stay sexy, don’t get murdered” which I’ve implanted into my hubby’s mind too. In fact, they have so many freaking great catch phrases:
- Stay out of the forest
- You’re in a cult, call your dad
- Carry that pepper spray until you see the sunrise
Whenever I yell to my hubby to lock the door he replies “I know, stay sexy and don’t get murdered!”
Anyway, I digress. Go listen to their podcast. It’s amazing.
Back to my point.
In the past 24 hours I’ve gone from being aware but uncomfortable, to full blown “no one should be able to get into our house at all, much less even see into it”. There were two specific incidents that have caused it.
- My local community has a Facebook page where we discuss anything and everything related to the area. In the middle of the night while breastfeeding my bub, I jumped onto FB to check the updates. On there, a person had discussed only a couple of hours earlier finding a random stranger in their backyard peering into their daughter’s bedroom. They yelled and scared the guy off (after the urging of everyone else they ended up phoning the police the next day to report it). This happened literally a 5min walk away from my house.
- Later that day, another friend on Facebook shared a story from what happened to her that day. She had just put her bub down to sleep, when she walked out into the living room. A man had opened the door and come into the house, and said he was looking for a certain guy. She yelled at him and told him to get out, slammed and locked the door after him. He was carrying a bag with him at the time. This was during daylight hours.
Both of those stories scare the s**t out of me.
On another occasion last year one of my friend’s mother’s was the unfortunate victim of a violent bashing when people followed her inside, beating her up and robbing her. She was hospitalised with some very serious injuries, not to mention the mental trauma.
I remember the days of being a kid and running in and out of the house. I’d visit the neighbours, run home and grab something and take off again. I can’t even imagine that being possible anymore! Now, I feel like my doors need to be locked at all times. How is that going to affect my child as he grows up? If he’s playing in the backyard, is someone just going to come into the backyard and confront him? Help themselves to the house? Do I have to lock the door after my child and make sure he’s always got a key? Am I affecting his childhood by taking these precautions?
All I can say is that for right now I’m revisiting our setup at home. I’ve already identified a couple of areas that need to be improved already. They’re things that I had been mildly uncomfortable about before now now that I’ve heard these stories it’s gone beyond mildly uncomfortable.
I want these things fixed now.
I’d like to feel safe in my own home and not have to lock every single door. Sadly, I think we’re beyond that now. I don’t think it’s possible. I probably am going to affect my child. I’d much prefer that than have him traumatised by a peeping Tom or a robber. What a shame.
What has life become?