Wednesday, February 27, 2008

how well do you know your neighbours?

Yesterday I heard shouting and bad words from across the road. I looked out trying to see what was going on. Someone called out "Call an ambulance!". So I ran outside, dialling 111 as I went.

The man across the road had tried to hang himself. Some other neighbours, myself and his son tried to help. I was so glad to see the ambulance. He did not look very good at all.

Later, a policeman knocked on my door. I spent an hour with him giving a statement about what had happened. It seems there is more to it than an attempted suicide. I don't know exactly what, but I have some ideas. The constable told me he understood the man had survived but he didn't know what condition he was in.

A number of things spring to mind:

1) I need to update my First Aid certificate. I've done 2 courses and I knew what I could do, but being on the phone to the emergency services meant I couldn't physically do a lot except convey messages.
2) I need to get to know my neighbours better. Particularly the new folks next door.
3) I don't feel very safe at present and I want to get a fence for our front yard. Hopefully if I get this job I'm applying for, we can afford to do that. And afford to move house.

and 4) if you know someone who may be depressed, talk to them. Don't shut them out or stop visiting even if it is a chore and seems to be a wasted effort.

If they express thoughts of wanting to hurt themselves - GET HELP!

Ring Lifeline:
24 Hour telephone counselling
(09) 5222 999 within Auckland
0800 111 777 outside Auckland


  1. Wow Penny, what a day!! Pretty scary stuff for all those involved. Hey fingers crossed you get that job, you can get the fence and move. Depression, yes I have just had some dealings with this over the last few days (family member needing some help).
    Hugs Penny.

  2. This scary - you're the 2nd blogger I read that has helped a stranger who attempted suicide in the past week! What is going on?

  3. That's a pretty scary thing to have happen Penny! It sounds like everyone did the right things at the time though. Wishing you lots of luck with the possible job :) If it's any help the kids in my class are really enjoying Roald Dahl at the moment :D

  4. oh thats scary. Good on you for being alert and willing to help.

    We know our neighbours a bit to well! We live in a very social cul-de-sac and often get together for drinks! lol

  5. Very scary Penny, but so good that you were able to do what you did to help.

  6. Oh golly what a time for you. Yep I think we need to make more of an effort at getting to know people and then make an effort at keeping in touch.
    Hope you get the job too.

  7. Wow - scary stuff. Hope he is OK (and you are too).

  8. What a heart pounding moment that was for you. Good on you for helping

  9. Penny, what a time for you! Sounds like you did everything you could to make a horrific situation better. WTG girl! Good luck with the job hunting!

  10. I'm glad you were able to help...This is a good reminder to me that I should update my CPR as well. It's so ironic that sometimes we think we know people so well (neighbors etc.) but really have no idea what goes on behind closed doors.