Right away when I went to the coffees on Monday mornings, I noted that some of the seniors were always saying mean things to me. I tried to ignore it and do things that I thought might make a change in their attitude toward me. I volunteered to do the park newsletter, which no one else wanted to do. I started taking care of the rose garden near the clubhouse which also no one else wanted to do and which was dying from the lack of care and proper watering. Around the same time, I joined Citizens Patrol and also volunteered as a City Commissioner for Public Works and Safety. I became aware that the comments grew meaner and there were other things too like everyone sitting at the tables so that there was no place left for me to sit and I would have to sit by myself.
Each week a man would bring free food and it would be distributed, but some people took everything for themselves and left nothing for others of us unless it was something no one wanted.
Over time, the rejection of me grew. People seemed to hate me because I was an artist and because I worked at as a substitute instructional aide with special needs children. I began to stop going to the clubhouse and the pool, and began to just pretty much stay in my own home. I did have two friends who were artists in the park, and I began to spend time with them. But when we would have picnics at my friends' homes in their yards or porches, the people who were harassing me seemed to be stalking me. They would follow me everywhere in the park.
We had neighborhood watch meetings in the park at the clubhouse about a year ago in July, and I went to one. This senior woman who had bullied a lot of other people in the neighborhood was there and she began to act crazy in front of the deputy, who basically did nothing. She began calling me a bitch in front of everyone, and it was as if the people were cheering her on. Then she called me even worse sexual names and came across the room, threatening to hit me again in front of the deputy. Again, he did nothing. I got up and went home and I was in tears once I got there. She had written two notes about me that were untrue to Citizens Patrol and to City Hall. It was horrible. A friend of mine who was on the Council got me copies of the letters which were unsigned. The allegations were a nightmare and totally untrue. I became extremely depressed and concerned that this might also affect my ability to work.
I was afraid I was being stalked going to work so it put a lot of extra stress on me. In November of 2013, I had a stroke, and I still remember how it affected me - I had been so depressed and stressed, I could hardly carry on. The people living around me were so obvious in their bullying, and I had called the sheriff's deputies, the Adult Protective Services, Social Services, and every other organization I could think of to get help. In the end result, no one offered any real help. Social Services tried to get counseling or a support group for me, but because I have Medicare, they could not get me anything. They told me I had to go through Medicare. I am low-income, so could not afford the $25 weekly co-pay, and did not get anything.
This year (2014) has been the worst. I have almost been assaulted some 5 times totally here, the people next to me (and these are ALL seniors) have been selling and dealing drugs since I have lived here. People have come on my property even though I put up no trespassing signs and they have damaged and destroyed my property. I have reported it to the external management and they have done nothing about it.
On June 25, I was suddenly assaulted by a woman in the park when I was on park property. The woman has major mental problems and I know it. She is a major hoarder, and can't even sleep in her own home, nor does she have any utilities on there. She believes that she owns the properties adjoining hers and has hit other people in the park and threatened one of my friends that she has a gun and would use it. But although I reported it to the sheriff's deputy, they could not file a report, so I had to sign a Citizen's Arrest. They did not take her in, but a court date was set. I had to go to ER and my glasses were broken, But when I showed up on the day that the court date was set, I found that it has been dropped because they said there were no witnesses.
The night that happened, the man across the street from me and his girlfriend, two of the major bullies, put nails in my driveway and those of my two friends. One of my friends called the police and the nails were removed. Nothing happened to the bullies.
Shortly after that, one night I was having a major asthma attack, and around 8:15 I knew I had to go to the drugstore to get some medicine since I could barely breathe. At precisely the time I went out the door and got down the stairs, the drug dealing neighbors had loosed their two dogs, who came running and barking at me, scaring me very badly. I yelled at them, and as I did, I became aware that the neighbors across the street were video taping me. They began to taunt me, calling me horrible names, and the man, who was drunk, kept coming closer and closer to me, trying to do everything he could to get me to react. I was having such a difficult time trying to think as all I could think of was that I could not breathe and needed to get into the car and get out of there, which I did. As I was trying really hard to get my stick shift out (which is difficult for me as I have spinal stenosis and osteoarthritis), the man kept getting in front of me and I could not seem to get him out of the way. All of this time, he was throwing fingers at me, and his girlfriend was yelling obscenities at me and still filming me.
I did manage to get out of the park, and immediately called the police. They came, but got called away on a more important call. They said they would come back. So I left with a little relief to go and get my medicine. When I came back, I went into my home, but that man and the woman were still out there. When the police came back, they ran over to them and told them I tried to run him over. And this man took out a restraining order against me, lying and and also telling them I was always yelling at him and trying to hurt them.
Their friend who came to serve the papers scared me, running up to me yelling and shouting and trying to come on my porch. I was terrified, thinking she was going to hurt me. She shot her girlfriend in the stomach, and the girlfriend would not report her because she knew the woman would finish the job. This is the kind of people we have here. Anyway, she was pushing on my porch and I was trying to stop her from coming on it because of the way she was yelling and pushing everything. Instead of just telling me she had papers to serve, she continued to act, and the people across the street had again filmed it all, so it was another staged event. They had planned for her to do it this way to scare me. Now she too is trying to take out a restraining order on me.'
In the end, I have had to file some 5 Elder Abuse restraining orders, but I have to deal with all those bullies and drive nearly 100 miles to go to court out in the desert three days in a row. It is hugely stressful and I have no attorney, so I am trying to be brave, knowing I will have to face these bullies under the worst of circumstances.
For awhile, I felt as though I wanted to end it all. I have pets and would never leave them without anyone to care for them. But I am still pretty majorly depressed and just doing the best I can to keep going. I am attending an online university to become a freelance paralegal and I do go to church and volunteer in several online positions.
I just wanted everyone to know that bullying isn't just something that happens to children or young people. I am definitely not the only one in my park being bullied. We just wish most sincerely that someone could help us to get this stopped. Most of us cannot afford physically or financially to move. With my animals, it is very difficult to find a place to go. Thank you kindly for reading this. It is making the last years of our lives very sad indeed. Peace and many blessings always