Aging parents, neighborhood gone down hill

This is a discussion on Aging parents, neighborhood gone down hill within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I get frustrated with my parents. They are in their mid 70s and they're really good Christian people who help others, but they are too ...

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Thread: Aging parents, neighborhood gone down hill

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    VIP Member Array BugDude's Avatar
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    Aging parents, neighborhood gone down hill

    I get frustrated with my parents. They are in their mid 70s and they're really good Christian people who help others, but they are too trusting and somewhat naive to what some people are capable of. They're not anti and they know I carry (my Dad has always had guns and still does, but doesn't carry anymore and doesn't keep one handy at home anymore either).

    We visited our families in NC this weekend and I took my 2 year old son to my parents for several hours to visit. I was going to take a quick nap and I noticed my Mom took my son outside to the swingset in their side yard (it was a very nice day out and he loves to be outside). I went out there and had my full size 1911 on my hip OWB. It had been concealed, but when I removed my outer shirt (warm in the sun) it was exposed OC (legal).

    My Mom said, "I thought you were going to take a nap?" and I replied, "I decided to come out with yall." She said, "Why, and why did you bring that?" I replied (calmly and respectfully), "I'm always armed, and besides, as I pulled in your driveway I saw the homeless alcoholic guy that lives in a tent in the woods behind your house walk up your alcoholic drug addict and dealer next door neighbor's driveway and stagger down the street. The same neighbor I witnessed beat a man nearly to death with his walking stick one night in his yard at 1:00 am and then a month later killed his own brother doing the same thing. The same one that broke into Dad's truck one night in your driveway. Since I've been standing here I've since seen another person of questionable appearance duck into the woods behind the house next door on the other side and you told me 10 minutes ago that the house full of questionable neighbors two houses down now have 2 pitbulls and they got loose the day before yesterday. And don't get me started on 'Crazy Brenda' 3 houses down who set her own mother's house on fire with her in it."

    Needless to say, she was looking at me like I had 3 heads by this time. I then went on to say, "This isn't the same neighborhood as it was when I grew up here. It used to be families that built these houses in the 30s and 40s living here. Now it's a bunch of alcoholics and druggies and you don't know what these people are capable of doing. I do, and yall might choose to continue to live here and take those chances, but I'm not letting my son out of my sight while I'm here."

    And they get mad and wonder why we don't stay at their house nearly as often as we do my in-laws. It has nothing to do with them...it's what's going on in the neighborhood. I've begged my Dad to keep his .44 Magnum loaded and handy and to get his permit and carry his .32 revolver. He refuses. He thinks these people are harmless. I just can't seem to get through to them that addicts get jacked up and will do anything.

    Sorry for the long rant...thank you for letting me vent.
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    Ex Member Array BikerRN's Avatar
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    I know how frustrating parents can be. You have my sympathies.

    This reminds me of the old saying, "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink."

    You've given them information about their neighbors, but they refuse to drink from the trogh of knowledge. Good luck to you and your parents.

    Biker

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    VIP Member Array BugDude's Avatar
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    Thanks. The frustrating part is they are the ones that tell me all of the stuff that is going on around there so I know that they are fully aware. I've just tried to keep them aware of the fact that these people are dangerous and you just never know what they are capable of doing. And they wonder why we don't stay there much. I've got a wife and two young children and the neighborhood just isn't safe anymore.
    Know Guns, Know Safety, Know Peace.
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    Guns are like sex and air...its no big deal until YOU can't get any.

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    Senior Member Array AlexHassin's Avatar
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    People get an impression that a hood is safe or dangerous, and it never really leaves them. there are many areas in NYC that where dangerous a decade or two ago that no longer are, and some that have become dangerous. However most people still see them as they where years ago. I find this is most true among the older generations.

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    My elderly FIL has lived with us for about two years. He is in full-time permanent condition white.........not a clue about anything going on around him. I'm always worried he'll answer/open the door and let the "wrong" person inside our house.
    Turn the election's in 2014 to a "2A Revolution". It will serve as a 1994 refresher not to "infringe" on our Second Amendment. We know who they are now.........SEND 'EM HOME. Our success in this will be proportional to how hard we work to make it happen.

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    Can I provide a counter thought here. From my vantage at 67 ++ being 70 something isn't that far away. If your parents are mentally well it is their decision to live where they want. They have been on earth long enough to know lots more than you think they do. They know their neighborhood and they interact with the people in it.

    Children can be snatched or harmed even in very nice neighborhoods with private playgrounds, and they are. The alcoholic druggie living in the tent might actually be a gentle soul.

    If you are not prepared to help your parents live in a nicer place--including the financial help they might need-- stop complaining and do right by them by continuing to visit. Watch your kids when they play outside; which you would do or should do anyway.

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    VIP Member Array Hiram25's Avatar
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    My mom's house has been broken into a couple times long ago (We caught them, it was kids who lived in the next neighborhood over). Now my mom is 86, still spry and her mind is a quick as ever, only thing really loosing ground is her hearing. She never locks her doors, it makes no difference if she's home or away from home. When asked why she does not lock her doors she says that if they want to break in they will do so, and she can't afford to fix a broken door anymore. We tell her she has three sons that will repair her door if needed, but she just leaves them unlocked. Drives us nuts!
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    I understand exactly how you feel; I have been/still am there . Unfortunately there is not much I can do about it; they just believe what they want to believe.
    "The Second Amendment: America's Original Homeland Security"

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    I am lucky that my parents understand and support my owning and carrying wherever I can. Even my mom who lives in a quiet, safe neighborhood will be the first to tell you the bad guys aren't going to rob the poor homes and it can happen anywhere at anytime. While she doesn't have a firearm she is pretty diligent with home security and listens to any advice I can give.

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    It's not so much that addicts get jacked up and do crazy things, but that the desperation for the large amount fo money needed for their next hit can lead them to do some terrible things to et that money.

    I can empathize with your situation. My parents really don't take security seriously either, even after someone breaking into our (occupied) home. They still don't understand... I guess they never will.

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    RKM
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    I live with my parents. We live in a low crime area. But lately there has been car break-in's and the other night a pumpkin was thrown at our mailbox and hit and dented my dads nice car. It's just kids. Annoying, but nothing a gun would solve. But the fact is, anything can happen. It's only a matter of time before these guys breaking into cars get brave and break into houses. I can't hear a THING in my room. My mom will occasionally hear something in the middle of the night or the dogs bark and she may go see what the noise is and let the dogs out, whatever. She's 100% pro-gun and likes guns in the house, but is reluctant to come to the range with my dad and I. My dad owns and loves shooting his G19. I bugged him to get his PA LTCF. He finally did, but never carries. He thinks the idea of carrying a gun is "odd". He knows I do daily, anytime I leave the house. He's not against it, I guess he just feels odd doing it himself. He keeps it stored in his range bag, in the case, buried in ammo boxes, gloves and other range stuff, unloaded with a mag full of Golden Sabers beside it in the case. Hell, I had to go buy the Golden Sabers FOR HIM. I feel like I'm ready for the house to be raided by storm troopers. All my guns, accept my AR, can be grabbed from bed and are loaded +1. The shotgun is kept with an empty chamber, safety off. But, apparently I'm a deep sleeper. I don't feel like I am, but I never hear a thing when I'm in a deep sleep. So this basically renders me and my weapons as utterly useless in a home invasion. I'd probably even sleep through shots being fired (well, maybe not, haha). It's up to them to keep the G19, loaded, ready and easy to grab. But..... they don't.

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    VIP Member Array BugDude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hopyard View Post
    Can I provide a counter thought here. From my vantage at 67 ++ being 70 something isn't that far away. If your parents are mentally well it is their decision to live where they want. They have been on earth long enough to know lots more than you think they do. They know their neighborhood and they interact with the people in it.

    Children can be snatched or harmed even in very nice neighborhoods with private playgrounds, and they are. The alcoholic druggie living in the tent might actually be a gentle soul.

    If you are not prepared to help your parents live in a nicer place--including the financial help they might need-- stop complaining and do right by them by continuing to visit. Watch your kids when they play outside; which you would do or should do anyway.
    I appreciate their perspective and you also providing the counter-point to the discussion. They are indeed mentally well, although my Dad has been showing early signs of not being quite the same sharpness level he used to be. His Mom had Alzheimer's bad when I was growing up, so that is a concern. They do interact with these people every day and I only see it once a month or so or hear what they tell me. That can also work the other way and skew their objectivity and lull them into a false sense of security. Either way, it is their choice and their right. We do visit as often as we do with anyone else, but we do not spend the night at their house as often (we still do occasionally) mostly visit while we are in town.

    Once we spent the night there and my wife and I were awoken (young child in the room with us) at the wee hours of the morn to drunken screaming and cussing watching through my old bedroom window at one brother hold a man face down in the snow in the front yard with outside lights shining while the other one beat him with a stick, and they left him laying there until the police arrived (no shirt, no shoes, unconscious in the snow face down). I thought they had killed him. I don't know what story they told the police, but they hauled the guy off and he was in the hospital over a week. Almost died. He was completely defenseless and being brutally beaten. I saw the ruthlessness for myself with no rationalization or justification. It was what it was. My parents were afraid to call the police on them (that's what they told me) so I did it from my cell phone. About a month later, the older brother did the same thing to his younger brother and killed him. My parents said, "Well, he didn't mean to kill his brother...they were drunk and got into it." That's fine and dandy...that doesn't make him any less dead.My Mom has talked to my Dad about alternative living arrangements and he will have no part of it at all. I understand why, and I respect why...but at what point does your principle become a liability outweighed by the realities of the situation? From a financial perspective, they certainly don't need my help to change their living situation if they so chose. We will continue to visit, and I will continue to keep a close eye on my kids regardless of where we are, and I will continue to be armed where legal regardless of where we are...but I struggle with having my wife and small children spend the night there. The front porch wraps around my old bedroom with 3 windows just a couple feet from floor level. The room isn't big enough for 4 of us anymore, so they sleep in the room and I on the den floor next to my old room. That makes me nervous after seeing the savage beating with my own eyes and knowing he did the same thing to his own brother that lived with him. That image will never leave my mind...the most brutal thing I've ever seen one human do to another in person for myself.I understand and appreciate your perspective, but I also feel that ignoring the issues and pretending these people are "ok neighborly folks" is not doing them any favors. I believe that my continuing to remind them of my objective concerns for their own well being and that of my wife and kids is also doing right by them. That's not complaining, that's just being honest. That's situational awareness and avoiding unnecessary risks.

    My concerns:
    - homeless tent alcoholic, my Dad let him sleep in his basement some last winter. My Mom insisted he put a lock on the door from upstairs or she was going to a hotel (he wasn't going to). He saw a bottle of Rum on the table and aggravated him about getting a drink of it for a week until my Dad finally poured it out and told him it was gone. My Dad has helped him get into rehab twice and he is now back to square one.
    - semi-homeless guy wandering the neighborhood everytime his girlfriend gets mad at him and kicks him out (frequent occurance). He's the one that actually tells my parents a lot of the deal since he hangs with these people when he is in the doghouse (literally, an out building). He's actually an ok guy.
    - alcoholic, drug dealing, brother killing, friend beating, broke into my Dad's truck neighbor that the town PD knows all too well on a first name basis.
    - certified mentally ill woman whose husband died and my parents help her. She steals from them when they aren't home (stealing and hoarding are part of her illness). She is currently mad at my Dad because he refused to continue to mow her grass anymore (like he has done for years) until she returned his favorite garden tool that she admitted stealing. She said she couldn't find it. He got it back when she asked him to reset a breaker in her house and it was hanging on the wall like a trophy. She has now declared a feud. She set her mom's house on fire while she was in it.
    - pitbulls getting loose two houses down in a house that is occupied by a large group of men...not a family. Strange situation there. This is the same house that my wife and I lived in when we first got married and I was attacked by two pitbulls in that yard a week before our wedding (just a coincidence, completely different people now).


    I compare these issues to living in a Paper Mill town (the smell is horendous throughout the entire area). When you live there, you don't notice the smell because you're used to it. You experience it everyday. When you visit there from out of town, it's overwhelming.

    I do apprecaite and respect your sentiments. I'm just providing a little more color around the situation. I'm concerned and feel helpless, but they are adults and it is their decision. I'm responsible for my kid's safety because they can't make their own decisions. I have to make my decisions about where my kids will spend the night based on my concerns and their safety.
    Know Guns, Know Safety, Know Peace.
    No Guns, No Safety, No Peace.


    Guns are like sex and air...its no big deal until YOU can't get any.

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    Most of my family is just like your 'out-laws'. They all think that I'm a gun nut, but they have suffered break-in's, robberies, and one rape (that I know of...).
    Slow learners...all of them. I'll be responsible for me and mine...they can all cover themselves...whatever happens, happens.
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    Member Array OldLincoln's Avatar
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    I'm still a little younger than your folks but my neighborhood is slipping quickly. There have been several foreclosures and most if not all of them have gone to folks who could never afford them 3 years ago. Some properties are already showing the wear with broken things not being repaired, landscaping not maintained, etc. This was a very high end neighborhood a few years ago, but even the realitor who sold the foreclosed house 2 doors down told me to move, that it's going downhill fast.

    That sounds like good advice bit after 35 years here we like the place. It's on 1/2 acre with lots of space between houses, and the newer houses are built 10' from the neighbor. They cost more than we'd get for this one and we don't want to add to debt with medical and Social Security changing. So we feel "stuck" here. Options are not so good as the only housing we would be able to afford is a foreclosure in another neighborhood going through the same thing. So why move?

    I agree with the one who said if you are serious about getting them out help them financially. But you are likely more strapped than they, so what to do.

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    They don't need help financially to move. I talked to my sister and she indicates my Mom is concerned about it and has discussed alternatives with my Dad but he's not budging. Not much anyone can do but hope and pray.

    One new development. The neighbor that beat the guy and killed his brother is now less mobile than he was. Due to an amputation, he is now confined to a wheelchair. I hate that for anyone and I'm not making light of it at all, but from the safety standpoint of my parents his limited mobility is in their favor.
    Know Guns, Know Safety, Know Peace.
    No Guns, No Safety, No Peace.


    Guns are like sex and air...its no big deal until YOU can't get any.

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