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What to do if Neighbours are Spreading Rumours About you

By: Jeff Durham - Updated: 22 Jul 2022 | comments*Discuss
Dealing With Neighbour Rumours Coping

Unfortunately, we live in a world where gossip and rumour-mongering is prevalent throughout the whole of society. Often, it comes about as a result of the person who is spreading the rumours about you being very insecure, and may even be jealous or envious of you for whatever reason.

Try To Rise Above It

Firstly, although nobody enjoys being gossiped about, it’s important to realise that most gossip and any rumours that are spread about you will probably be pretty harmless. Wherever possible, you should try to keep a cool head and let it rise above you.

Much of the time, the person(s) who is spreading rumours are hoping that they can provoke you into some kind of retaliatory action so the more you can ignore them the better. Laugh things off if another neighbour approaches you with some gossip, and the likelihood is that they will lose interest, too. The rumour ‘spreader’ is more likely to start to feel that they're the one that other neighbours are starting to pity.

What if it Starts Becoming Malicious?

Although most gossip and rumours are pretty harmless, even if they can be a bit hurtful, sometimes they can start to get out of control and, before long, you can feel quite victimised, especially if the person spreading the rumours have been able to coerce other neighbours to ‘jump on board’. This can sometimes be very damaging to the mental health of the victim.

You might start feeling as though everyone is laughing at you or condemning you and this can lead to you feeling paranoid or suffer symptoms of anxiety and depression. If this happens, there is a real case of harassment taking place now and you are Protected By Law Against Harassment. You may wish to approach the police or, perhaps a better course of action would be to contact your local authority’s anti-social behaviour team, if they have one, and explain the issue to them.

Confronting the Rumour Monger

Before considering taking any of the actions above, it may well be worth contacting the rumour monger first to discuss the situation. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll end up becoming friends with them but sometimes rumours originate as a result of complete misunderstandings, so it might help to ask them why they have been spreading rumours about you and on what grounds are they basing their assumptions.

It’s also useful to tell the person how their actions have affected you, especially if there are no grounds for the rumours in the first place. Even if you don’t get the desired response, it may be worth asking your neighbour if they’d be prepared to Speak To A Mediator with you to help reach some kind of agreement.

Taking Legal Action

Unless the rumours can be proven to constitute some kind of harassment, taking the person to court is fraught with danger. Firstly, you’ll need to be able to provide proof that their comments are slanderous and have caused defamation to your character, and that’s often quite difficult to prove. Also, not only will legal action be costly, a defamation lawsuit may not necessarily result in any restoration of your character, and may even damage your reputation further.

Therefore, simply ignoring or laughing off rumours are usually the best way to go about dealing with them and people will soon get bored. However, if they do start to cause you harassment and make you feel that you’re being wrongly persecuted, then the threat of involving the police or actually involving them is perfectly acceptable under laws to deal with harassment.

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I’ve been bullied, had disgusting malicious and dangerous gossip spread about me by an elderly neighbour for the last 2 yrs or so, I’ve told the housing association, the police, he’s even got other neighbours to be nasty to me, every thing he’s said is a lie, it’s everything you could think of and more, I’ve done nothing to warrant this, and he has been known to do it to other neighbours so they move, or just pass away with age. I have put in for a transfer and asked the police to tell hi to stop and that he’s won, I’m moving on, but it’s so hurtful as I suffer anxiety anyway, it’s as though everyone hates me and for what? Jealousy perhaps? I do think jealousy has a lot to,do with it. How can an elderly man get away with it, and as I said, I’m not the first, and I don’t retaliate, I’ve done nothing to him,
Georgey - 22-Jul-22 @ 1:15 AM
Gossiping neighbours are nasty-when new neighbours move into our estate I always wave and say hello then they stop waving after the gossiping neighbours spread lies about us it’s really upsetting it’s sad people can’t make their own opinions of people.
Bella - 20-Jul-22 @ 11:39 AM
It's True people do that for the following reasons 1. They are Jealous 2. You have something they want 3. They want you're friendship of what they will never get 4. They do the same job as you and they can't understand why you have it and not them when they are Good but they didn't work on their character so it didn't happen for them Jesus saves The Lost and celebrates them
Kerry Louise Taylor - 3-Jun-22 @ 9:56 AM
I've have read a lot of the comments made,and the similarities are so sad.I certainly can relate to Moe's comment,back in April of last year.Im going through the very same thing but the frustrating part is it doesn't seem to end,I've been to hell & back,but it would appear one person or more are hell bent on keeping this vicious cycle running,The main culprit who started the hate campaign was my ex partner but he's long gone.This problem is preventing me from making new friends,and when I do they seem to change in a very short space of time!!..They become very distant,I am very out spoken & maybe too honest at times.But that shouldn't be a problem for forming new friendships,The reason I am on here now is a new neighbour I befriended last year had just moved in,I took pity on her because of the things she told me,however due to her behaviour etc I chose to call it a day.Only recently we have met up again,but sadly she clearly doesn't handle confrontation.I did try to talk with her without success,then she sent me a few nasty texts,not threatening but never the less very hurtful,I didn't bite I remained calm, the thing is one of the comments she made,had to have come from somewhere else,it's not the first as when I chose to walk away last year,one of her text read that she had been warned about me,she later told me that she had lied & had made it up to get at me.Ive blocked her from my phone but kept these recent texts.I no longer want her in my life,am I being unreasonable?
Justice - 18-Apr-22 @ 11:46 AM
I have a pair of paradise gourami fish 2 dwarf algea eaters and 1 single male Empire gudgeon fish named {mr. eddgors} I got him single on purpose to cause him to be envious and aggressive against my pair of paradise gourami fish he live in a cave and overtime he will be an aggressive grumpy old man.IM LAUGHING MINIACALLY
Xmegatron10 - 31-Jul-21 @ 4:07 AM
The question marks was supposed to belaughing face emojis.But like I said IM LAUGHING MINIACALLY
Xmegatron10 - 31-Jul-21 @ 4:05 AM
I have a pair of paradise gourami fish 2 dwarf algea eaters and 1 single male Empire gudgeon fish named {mr. eddgors} I got him single on purpose to cause him to be envious and aggressive against my pair of paradise gourami fish he live in a cave and overtime he will be an aggressive grumpy old man.IM LAUGHING MINIACALLY ???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? i
Xmegatron10 - 31-Jul-21 @ 4:03 AM
In May I confronted a neighbor when a Saturday funday included a sprinkler in front of our driveway. We live on a culdesac.( Our tensions had built a bit after driving in a couple days earlier and seeing parents who did not even look up let alone ask their kids to clear.) In response to my conversation, the neighbor stated that the cul.de.sac had been like this for15 years, then ran in house and sobbed and her husband came out to berate me. A bit later she came over and asked if I called the police when a fellow neighbor who was throwing a party was called by us. The party was not objectionable to us at all and we had never considered such action! I have attempted unsuccessfully to reconcile. It’s discouraging but only one neighbor and her husband remain on a friendly basis. The truth of the matter is that we both love children. We are ages 70 and 69 and retired and moved in less than a year ago.
Jan - 26-Jul-21 @ 6:04 PM
I am new to the community and I have a neighbor that is telling everyone business owners n everyone that I have broken into houses that my family is on drugs that we dont have water it's to the point it's getting told to my minor grandkids. If one thing happens in our community everyone looks at us n starts saying stuff too I want to punch her in her mouth but I'm a good person and it's all lies. It's so bad that we had one come in our yard hit my husband n spit in my face while our grandkids we standing there. We called police but nothing ever happened. It's to the point I dont even go outside anymore.
Tami - 22-Jul-21 @ 12:21 PM
My neighbor talked all over the neighborhood about me, saying I am nosey. From there she moved on to breaking into my house, leaving bloody fingerprints and messages written inside my shower door. That wasn't enough so she got a hold of my SSI number and submitted a false claim of cheating to them. The local police are aware of everything but are friends with that family. No arrest, nothing. One officer comes by her house daily to give a report on my complaints with the department's negative view. Ssa found no corruption on my part but the local police have decided to file a criminal complaint against me anyway. Meanwhile, that officer just keeps updating her. The worst is, I was drugged and raped by her friend but the police aren't arresting anyone. The perpetrator told them I begged for it. Unbelievable. Being 68 is no reason to discount the validity of a report.
Juls - 21-Jul-21 @ 8:52 AM
People act like this for a number of reasons; however, the ones which are substantiated the most are (i) jealousy; and (ii) they're trying to hide something about themselves; or (iii) rejection. I have this male neighbor who has been spreading malicious gossip about me.Long story short, I was never interested in him (gee, I wonder why) and he couldn't handle the rejection.He puts on quite the performance when I run into him in our building...running away from me, acting scared, like the idiot he is.You really see someone's true colors, when things don't go their way. As the story goes, if you can rise above it, then do so.Remember, when someone stabs you in the back, there's a reason why they're behind you.
Sandy - 20-Jul-21 @ 11:53 AM
My neighbour slagged off another neighbour then she tried to turn that neighbour against me said I said things and that I wasn't well liked and I'm two faced they try to intimidate me also I get threatened im 65 and they are 50 and 25
Marsa - 8-Jul-21 @ 1:04 PM
I am having the same problem with a group of neighbours spreading malicious gossip this has been going on for many years and got worse after I called the Police after one neighbour continued to park over my driveway even when there was parking elsewhere in cul de sac. Police were helpful and spoke to him about it. Now my family have lies and gossip spread about us. The part I find difficult to deal with is having no right of reply as nothing is said directly to us and our reputation is being trashed I get they don’t like us that’s fine but why the gossiping.
Teddy - 2-Jul-21 @ 5:16 PM
I live in a row of bungelows, of which the majority of neighbours are earldy women.Infact i call them the 3 witches of eastwick.They are so catty, gossip about me, my son, who is disabled, and my father.The constantly watch everything we do and moan. God do they moan.THe old bag next door, i even heard tell my son to shut up under her breath, as he stims, because he cant talk. The main one next door is the one who strated all the trouble and turned the rest against us.The other side of us are a family of 4 adults who have constantly looked for trouble, the daughter whom is a adult, is vile.SHe is always out looking to start an argument, giving vile looks, making remarks, making sniddy giggles and remarks from behind there garden fence.We just want to be left alone, but im on egg shells all the time, anxious to even go out in to the garden, No one should be made to feel like this.I feel like im the only one, why do we worry so much about the neighbours and what they think?.Infact this family, are vile.They tried to con BT by claiming our phone bill was theres and vice versa, as they had huge bills, we didnt.BT had been watching them in there previous address, so when my dad complained to BT about recieving wrong bills they said, they knew and were watching the family.So because my dad complainted, that made BT take action against them, and the mother, got sent to prison for fraud.They try and nick things, my brother once caught the grandon (again, a adult) snooping round my parents , then caravan, on their driveway.The grandson smokes weed, and threaten myself and my father - to which the police were called and they were done for harrasement. So they then tryed to wind us up by blurung the loudest music out possible, every day.This went on for about 5 months, then we had enough so they then got warned by the local council to keep it down. So basically now, its so unpleasent, just stepping out your door. If its not the family one side from hell, its the 3 old, bitter, jealous, nasty old women the other side. I wont stop my son from enjoying the garden, and even though they moan about his stimming noise, which he can not help at all. I still try to teach him not to make these sounds for his benifit - not the nasty neighbours (as his school have agreed, that im doing the right thing, and not to let the neighbours bother me).But its easier said than done when you have it day in and day out, never ending. Does anyone eles have this sort of harrasment?
Busymum - 15-Jun-21 @ 1:27 PM
Neighbour two doors down came to my door and accused my partner of abusing his 21yr old son.The accusation was unsubstantiated and the CCTV footage proved my partner had not done what he was so vehemently accused of.It was the son who in fact abused my partner and lied to his father.Makes you wonder why a 21yr old man would lie to his father, because the son had driven his vehicle onto my private property, to do an illegal/unlawful U-turn ( one on many many times). I live in a cul-de-sac, as does the 21yr old.He did so, after both his father and I told him to please stop as his actions are that of trespass and if I should have my Grandchildren playing inside my boundary, they could be potentiallystruck by a selfish driver.The father wanted nothing to do with reason, charging at us with the intent to harm, verbally threatened our lives and then started abusing me, an offer to go the Police Station to view footage, was ignored.We never once raised our voice, spoke to him with civility and walked away when he started to verbally label me.The father (neighbour) (a.k.a Mr Macho Psychopath) has now slandered my name on his private online neighbourhood group.Unfortunately, I am unable to prove I got the information from someone in in his group chat,but they won't verify it for me to the Police.So now, the neighbours are gossiping about me and I feel upset and lost.Please note, this is the second time in about 3 years he's tried to intimidate me.I have made a formal report to Police, but the gossip and fowl looks I receive now, hurt me deeply, as well as I am afraid of this neighbour.Really sucks when you're wrongfully accused and unsubstantiated gossip is spread.Hurts really bad.
Mindy - 29-May-21 @ 6:13 AM
I had a told a neighbour no as she was wanting to take us out a drive she didn't like this and had fell out with me my garden was getting destroyed so I got a ring door bell and a cctv camera up out the front she had rang the police to complain about a neighbour next to me and neighbour had told me wat she has done she has been going round telling other neighbours that I rang the police she stands and takes pictures all the time of my house she has threatened me with her son and she is now telling everyone that yes I did ring the police I have kept a dairy of everything that she has said n done its come to the point that I want to get this dealt with but we're to go
Angel - 28-May-21 @ 9:58 AM
Our neighbours upstairs have put us through hell Noise vibrations interference. My husband fell thought the floor was moving. Paramedics couldn’t do ecg because of interference. Bass noise only drove me daft so many side effects.Said he hadn’t got anything also he told police I have dementia. Twice they come round with dementia matron. No I haven’t got a letter off doctor stateing no dementia. On my records.
Anna Lea - 18-May-21 @ 7:57 PM
What if you don't know who started the rumour? And everybody who believes it and spreads it doesn't tell you who started it or why? If you confront them they will just lie and say you are being paranoid. It is disgusting and these people will be in the lowest place in hell.
Moe - 25-Apr-21 @ 11:53 PM
For over a year things have got worse. First it was about my garden which i sorted then it was about noise and me watching tv all day. I have recently sorted the noise problem out buying headphones. After about 21.00 or 22.00 i put my tv on subtitles. On my days off i hear them complaining and making fun of me all day and until late at night. They listen to my conversations i have with my mother on the phone. They are now talking about what i do or rather whst i don't do in my house. Do they have the right to tell me what i can do in my own house?. I suffer from depression and anxiety. I am always feeling guilty about being or what I'm doing in my house. Can someone please help me?
Depressed - 3-Apr-21 @ 11:35 PM
The neighbour we live by has totally destroyed our life.Shes lied to the police about us when we rang them they said they'd never said a word about us lied to environmental health again proven it was lies. Spreading malicious gossip and turningpeople against us.We want to move but can't afford. We are living in fear every day and do not know what to do.
Sunshine - 2-Apr-21 @ 1:24 PM
Ive endured attacks by a village community overtime. Humiliated publicly by a councillor, excluded in my endeavours to help in my community by parish members, laughed at, listened to childish sarcastic remarks. Luckily, Im used to such behaviour having worked in mental health and identified the instigator to be controlling, manipulative and show signs of NPD. Immediately, I stopped that person getting too close to me. When I did this that person went to great lengths to near myself and my husband. Using powers of their standing in he community to breach our human rights. That was the only way to stop the problems. Thereafter, I identified more and more people joining forces with this individual that to include officials. People in a community subtly attacking you each time you make a comment, each time you share something nice on social media, its all evidence which should be collected. Any opportunity someone could complain about you this person would engage in thebusiness to form haters. Persons with contacts and seen to be abusing powers to assist communities myst be removed. They cause harm to people and peoples lives. If you starve them of power supply they will go to great lengths to ruin the reputation of all those they involve to self serve the control they so desperately need to exist. They do bot take responsibility for their actions and will never admit to their crimes, cleverly acting though they are the injured party when they are the perpetrators. Always go through the legal channels to complain never rise to the triggers, this is done to provoke you into negative retaliation so you will become the problem. You must bring this to the attention of the police and record everything. People who attack you subtly, gang bullying, exclusion,intentional attempts to harm are crimes of harassment. The police will help if you give them enough collated data evidence to pursue it to court and stop it!
Goldie - 26-Mar-21 @ 7:27 AM
I had a heated conversation with two different sub committee members. Both are very controlling and manipulative. When I responded calmly and refused to engage in arguing the way they expected they both became angry and insulting. Before of the conversationended both attempted to put a. dagger in me by telling me that other group members were angry with me or that they were talking about me. I calmly told them both that I don’t care to hear it because it wasn’t meant for me to hear,so it’s none of my business. I also told them that if someone has something they need to say to me that they could definitely come and speak to me about their concern. I also asked them why did theyfeel comfortable enough to bring me gossip, about me. I told them that I was concerned that they took the time to listen to this gossip about me because to hear it they had to participate in the gossip, This is my regular way of dealing with gossip that people bring me about me. When I confront them in this way they usually stop in their tracks. I never hear another word about the gossip.These mysterypeople never come to me with concerns.I truly believe did that they are the source of the gossip.What do you think about my strategy.Thanksyou. 1 Luv
deborah gary - 19-Feb-21 @ 10:09 AM
My dad's neighbor enjoys talking about other neighbors on a regular basis. He also always answers his cell amongst people and talks to the caller on speaker phone so everyone can hear both conversations. It's like he's screaming for attention. He also brought his new Rottt Weller into my dad's back gated yard without any permission or notice when my senior pit bull was enjoying the sun back there because he said he wanted me to see his dog. I packed up my senior dog and left.
Kelsie Rae - 27-Jan-21 @ 3:31 PM
I had people spread rumors about me all you can do is raise above it don't let them see your upset just walk away real friends don't gossip. I had my ex partner for 4 and half years spread the most hurtful and hateful gossip and rumors about me I was in a relationship with him for some years before splitting up. It still hurts now I believe in karma what comes around goes around.
Lil - 26-Jan-21 @ 6:35 PM
IF you need urgent help to fix your relationship or Marriage?? check on Google about _______ [ Robinson. buckler ]]]]]]..... My ex who left me came back after with his help This is absolutely wonderful, i cant thank him enough...
Lisa - 30-Dec-20 @ 6:45 PM
She stabbed her husband with a sword (SHOULD HAVE BEEN ATTEMPTED MURDER OR ATTEMPTED MANSLAUGHTER AT LEAST)and went to jail for like two years. For some INSANE reason he took her back, CODEPENDENCY MUCH? Ironically when she was gone we were friends with him. Got along great!She gets along with literally NO ONE. Everyone literally HATES HER. If anything I am the rumor spreader, but she threatens everyone. She practically attacked one old man neighbor for moving her garbage cans which blocked HIS parking spot. She was SCREAMING AT HIM. She is terrifying. I am so afraid of confrontation that I cant go on one entire side of my house and am afraid to leave my house. Three kids cant play in their yard for fear they encounter HER or her son who has behavior problems as well. I don't look forward to years as them being my neighbors and I hope they realize that they have worn out their welcome here...
move bitch - 13-Dec-20 @ 6:26 AM
I been living with my mum in a one bed flat before I move in March my mum can't walk and she was shouting for help neighbours where calling police and ambiance I been staying with my mum because off my mum shouting all the time with can't be helped because she as mental health issues and as carers every day and on meds I telling my mum to stop shouting or when I cook dinner or tea she want eat so I shouting so it looks like to the neighbours I am drunk all the time I just lied panic all the neighbours now have complete about me and watching what I buy from shopping which I hear my mum's neighbours talk about they just want me out I started the gym just for my metal health but because off lockdown I couldn't go it now open so I be going I have tryed to explained the situation to my mum not understanding I want to stay with my mum and support her I have a sister she comes down as well I have the support why do my mum's neighbours think this about me
Green - 5-Dec-20 @ 3:03 AM
I’m a single parent and moved into a council estate beginning of the year there was a couple who was overly friendly towards my daughter saying they will look after her when I’m a work and giving her sweets and I thought they was being nice however a few months I had a council phone call saying they had a complaint I was not living at my property. I am an agency care worker and I also do senior shifts so I can afford a comfortable life and provide the things my little one would like so I work quite a bit purely for this reason my rent is always paid.I have a feeling I knew who it was but never approached this. I see them now and they won’t even say hello which is why I’m surethey was the one who reported me. They have now given me anxiety as I’m feeling they are watching me and I’m worried they will report me for other things. They don’t know anything about me or what I do/ the times I work or the routine I have in place. Any advice? Thanks
DD95 - 2-Dec-20 @ 8:47 PM
We are out in the country on a 10 acre. One house looks down at our property. They watch us with binoculars. This elderly couple has bible studies, wine parties, and constant visitors. She was the clerk to the small-town judge for 35 years. May be used to drama. We share a 279 linear foot gravel easement with them and one other. They were the first to befriend us. We did not join their bible studies.We woke up and saw the Mr. in our back yard. There was a bong in the window. This is Oregon. We are light some timers.Hubby earns a six-digit income, has no criminal history, and carries a top security clearance on his resume. Many times an unsung hero to our country. Also served during 2 wars. Is low end on the spectrum. Communication skills are not on top of the accomplish list. I am a stay at home wife, grandma, and mother. Currently, I am raising 2 grandsons 6 and 7 due to Covid 19. Neighbors and our previous tenants told us they are spreading fear. They watch us and any personal drama goes out to the community. In the first 6 years, they would come over and said the t-post was their's, I said take what you think is yours. Then they came for the cast iron tub, 15 2x5x20' cedar boards, then gates. Then they took our front gate when we were gone. Always saying it was theirs before we bought the house. We have an easement crossing our property an acre above the shop. One of their bible attendants dug up a water pipe and faced it toward the shop so winter water floods the shop now. They also clear-cut, toxic chemicals ran off into the creek and killed over a dozen 40 to 60-foot trees. These tree's died within months. Foam in the creek increases after the rains when the water table goes up. Neighbors from another side sprayed pesticides on a windy day and killed our half-acre food garden after we put in several months of labor. None of my livestock reproduces and I have rabbits. We are very sick. Just checked well water. It's toxic, not drinkable. These are just a few examples. My husband has a lump on his face and his lymph node is swollen. I am paralyzed with fear and rage. My husband can not deal with this.The water company owner who is friends with the threatening neighbors knows our well and equipment, tested the water, knew it was bad, and waited 5 days to tell us. This is just a sample of the horror stories. I have been dealing with this in addition to a pandemic, evacuation, daughter on death's door, family drama, death of a friend, heart attack from dad, and almost thrown into a cargo van by two drugged out bad guys. I was looking for my lost rooster at dark thirty, in the city. (evacuation) I was saved by the non-emergency cop while looking for my bird. I am done. The monster mode is coming out of me on my husband and grandkids. I am now studying anger management on the internet. I am grateful for being able to tell you this.Good news we now can afford insulin and food. My husband just got re-employed after a year. If you feel an
Grandma Dianna - 1-Dec-20 @ 1:57 PM
My neighbour said in local pub I was a peodo as a so called joke.it went viral over nite,I been attacked spat on,lost out on Alot of gardening work,can't go out unless door to door taxi to take me shopping,advice am now a dead man walking now.some people in town are intent of killing me , seriously.cant move due to finances but wld be no point anyway as whole South Lanarkshire plus Glasgow all have my pic which neighbour put online also have ppl thinking there secretly taking my pic when out.i do see them but can't do a thing abtit as I'd be battered once again or worse.
Stu - 22-Nov-20 @ 7:24 PM
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