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Featured What would you do?

Discussion in 'Education and Employment' started by shysnail, May 15, 2019 at 6:17 AM.

  1. shysnail

    shysnail Active Member

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    I hope this is the right section, as it's a housing situation rather than an employment one.

    I'm in the super lucky position where I could potentially buy a house or an apartment with my partner. The issue is that I am really sensitive to noise from neighbours. I don't know if this is a sensory processing issue (I have some other issues in this regard, but I don't really struggle with it.), or if I've just had bad experiences that have made me hyper aware and hyper anxious.

    Right now, I live in my partner's mum's house. The neighbours are pretty noisy. Not LOUD most of the time, but you can almost always hear them, whether it's their talking, laughing, playing music. Occasionally they have parties, and I have a base level of anxiety every day that they will have a party that night.

    I would say this anxiety really lowers my life quality. I've been through periods with it where I couldn't work (I work from home, so no escape from the noise) and just generally have been miserable, although I had a better period after I went to the doctor and was prescribed some anti-anxiety meds. Right now, though, I'm back having a hard time (I'm still on the meds, so not sure what has changed).

    My issue is, although I can buy a house/apartment, I can't afford anything detached and I can't afford particularly nice areas. I'm really scared to spend a ton of money, only to be miserable when the neighbours are noisy again!

    So although financially it makes the most sense to buy a property, I'm considering other options like living in a van. I don't think this is a "smart" move, but the idea of being able to drive away from people and sounds whenever I want is really appealing.

    Sorry this has been really long. I'm just curious if other people have had issues with noise as it relates to where they live/just any general input or comments. I guess I'd just like to hear from outsiders also on the spectrum who might be able to see where I'm coming from (or tell me I'm being ridiculous, I guess. Although I'd prefer not that!).
     
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  2. Major Tom

    Major Tom Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    I had similar issues with apartment living. I say go with a house that isn't even close to other houses if possible.
     
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  3. Progster

    Progster Gone sideways to the sun V.I.P Member

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    I've lived in apartment blocks before, and the biggest issue for me was when I lived with someone above me - I could hear them moving about all the time. When I lived on the top floor, it was always a lot quieter - no one above me and further away from the street. New buildings tend to have better insulation and soundproofing, so if you have to live in a block, then choose a new one. In the house where I live now, there is a room between me and the wall with the neighbours, but I can still hear their kids running around, shouting and practising the keyboards. Not good.
     
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  4. Mia

    Mia Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    My entire life, I've had difficulty with noise. Grew up in a quiet home with a father who also had difficulty with noise. Moved to a city eventually to work and it was even worse.

    "Some people, however, are more sensitive to particular aspects of sound.
    "We do have people we refer to as 'golden ears'," he says, "people who have much better hearing than others, but they can be very sensitive to some aspects of sound but not necessarily to others." *


    Lived in lots of apartments, homes, as Progster mentioned have lived on the 'top floor' of every apartment I've rented. So that no-one lived above me and made noise. Noise was what eventually chased me out of the cities I've lived in. And helped me make the decision with my spouse to move to a more rural setting, along with other considerations as well.

    Unless you move to a truly remote and quiet property, without other dwellings around there is little you can do to control the noise levels and that would be true in a city too. Own a home in a rural area, yet there is especially in summer lots of noise. Trucks and motorcycles, construction, barking dogs, badly maintained cars, at the moment a neighbor is putting in flooring, and a nearby store has an alarm system that is faulty and trips all the time.

    One of the things we did when we moved here is rip down ceilings, and put in layers of sound insulation everywhere. At the moment I'm using my computer in a room with eight windows, all of which leak sound from outside. We didn't consider the windows at the time.

    Your concern is how noisy your potential neighbours might be. We thought we were smart in choosing this area, as all the neighbours are elderly and rather quiet. Two homes occupants nearby have moved to assisted living facilities, and their homes are now rented. First it was a woman with two pugs who barked constantly, then it was a family with four young children, who had parties twice a week. Loud talk radio and pop music all day long. They've left, and the two homes are now rented to quiet people. Yet next year it could change and become noisy again.

    There is little you can do when it comes to being 'put upon' by others. It's so unpredictable.

    Is there such a thing as a super hearer? › Ask an Expert (ABC Science)
     
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  5. shysnail

    shysnail Active Member

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    I would love this. Sadly, I live in the UK where rural properties are really expensive so it's not currently an option. Maybe one day!

    I've heard this about the soundproofing in newer builds. It's definitely something to consider. I feel like even hearing just a bit of noise bothers me though, so unless the soundproofing is 100% (obviously not possible) I think I'd still be liable to get anxious. The house where you're living sounds stressful, especially since there's technically space between you and your neighbours but you can still hear them. The house I'm living in is kind of similar. One room between me and the noisy neighbours yet noise still makes it way through. Thanks for sharing your experience. It's comforting to hear from others with similar predicaments.

    This is really the crux of what bothers me. There's not an option where I can say, "I'll live here and then it will be a quiet life," because, as you have experienced, the neighbours could change or someone could start having building work, or just suddenly decide they're going to start having a party lifestyle. It gets to a point of me thinking that a cabin in the woods is the only solution, but alas, the planning permission in my country won't let me. Thanks for sharing your experience. It's really helpful for me to hear from others. Thanks for linking the article, too. It's interesting stuff and maybe explains why I notice some sounds much more sensitively than those around me, but others, not at all.
     
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  6. Tom

    Tom Well-Known Member

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    I live in something like that situation, a house inbeded in a nature park. But you can get neighbors whose dogs bark incessently, kids and teenagers come in summer to swim or drink by the creek not too far from the house, motorcyclists drive by in hundreds for the scenic road...

    There is also a lot of quiet times. I have found it best to try and not let noise get under my skin. Not dwell on it. And if it does, to just make a bigger noise to drown out the intrusive one, like play music, watch a movie with headphones, run the air conditioner or fan as backround noise.
     
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  7. Progster

    Progster Gone sideways to the sun V.I.P Member

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    I think it's impossible to find a place with no noise at all. Unless you lived on the Moon :) Even if you had a cabin in the woods, you would still have nature sounds, or as @Tom says above, people out walking with their dogs and kids or on motorbikes. I have music on for much of the day to drown out unwanted sounds and that's how I cope with it. I can't control the environment outside my house, but I can control my immediate environment in the room I am using.
     
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  8. H-Kath

    H-Kath Member

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    Have you looked into doing some soundproofing yourself?

    My partner uses the same technique as Progster during the day and loud fans at night.
     
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  9. Aspychata

    Aspychata Applying for the here and now....

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    Headphones, earplugs can help. l have learned to focus less on noise, or l play music loud, this is excellent for covering up other noise. Water ear plugs mold to your ears, and that will help you on those days you really seek relief.
     
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  10. tlc

    tlc Well-Known Member

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    My last house was in a mostly quiet neighborhood, but once one dog started barking, they all started in. And snowmobilers created a trail next to (and sometimes through) my yard which made a lot of noise in winter.

    The house I live in now is much quieter. It's in an area of 10+ acre plots. It's also not on the road to anywhere worthwhile, so no dirt bike or snowmobile trails or much of any traffic. On the downside I don't have high speed internet available.

    If you have to have neighbors, I would suggest a place with a usable basement, and spend your time down there. It cuts down on so much surrounding noise. It's also like free air conditioning in the summer.

    I've spent plenty of time in upstairs apartments. True I wasn't bothered by the noise of others, but I had others always banging on their ceiling telling me to quiet down, just from something simple as walking across the room with my boots on, or rocking in a recliner. I also had to constantly smell their cigarette/pot/whatever smoke that would rise up into my window if I ever wanted to open it in the summer. Which was almost always, since heat rises and the upstairs is the hottest floor.

    Also, I don't know your relationship or life, but I would really think about it and be sure of things before buying a place with a partner. I did that, and when the relationship failed a few years down the road, it was a very difficult and expensive situation to get out of.
     
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  11. the_tortoise

    the_tortoise Lost Soul V.I.P Member

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    I would choose to live in a van (or even just a car) over an apartment.

    The noises and smells that are inescapable in apartments make me insane because of sensory sensitivities.
     
  12. Fino

    Fino Alex V.I.P Member

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    I assume noise-cancelling headphones didn't work out?

    What likely happened with the anxiety medication, depending on what it was, was what initially helped was the high from the drug and once your body adjusted it became itself. Maybe a higher dose?
     
  13. Gracey

    Gracey Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    The amount of noise other residents make is out of our control.

    The only thing we can control is how we make it easier for ourselves.

    I can choose the noise I want to hear with Bluetooth headphones,
    Or not - I like wax ear plugs. Soften to shape, insert and instant silence follows.
    (excluding the sound of own swallowing and breathing)
    Shrieking children, yapping terriers and partying students fade into the background.

    I refuse to spend time and energy feeling helpless and getting anxious over noise I have no control over.
    Of course, the more anxious I become, the better my hearing...
    ...chasing my own tail around in circles.

    I can't expect neighbours to be silent, but I can choose how much I wish to hear.
    (putting me back in control thus reducing anxiety)
     
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  14. H-Kath

    H-Kath Member

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    Not trying to tell anyone what to put in their body, but I have had luck with a beta blocker/tricyclic antidepressant combination. They cleared up most of the acrophobia. I'm calm most of the time and can handle approaching people for things I need. I was on Buspar before that but it made me very cold quick to anger. I had lorazepam as a rescue for a while, but I had the same problem. I was going through something awful and the drugs made it too easy to blow up. The current meds help in general and I've been able to use rocking and swings as rescues.
     
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  15. shysnail

    shysnail Active Member

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    I use white noise and earplugs at night, partly to block out noise and partly to feel "safe" from noise, if that makes sense. It definitely makes me feel less anxious than I otherwise would.

    This is interesting info. Places with basements aren't all that common here (I'm from the UK) but they do exist. I had no real idea what they'd be like for noise, but having even one room to get away from it would be great.

    I didn't say in my original post amount smells because they bother me somewhat less than sounds, but right now I live in a house between two other houses, with chain smokers on one side and heavy pot smokers on the other. I get woken up by the smells often. Living around other people really feels impossible sometimes.

    I actually haven't tried noise-cancelling headphones, but they are definitely something to consider.

    I've heard this about the meds. My doctor seemed pretty surprised that I was doing as well as I was on the dosage I was on since it's basically the lowest dose. So yeah, I will have to go and talk about upping my dose. Thanks for the advice!

    Haha, this is really great and definitely the attitude I want to cultivate. I'm still at the chasing my tail in anxious circles stage, but the idea of controlling your environment to put you back in control of what actually reaches your ears is great. Thank you :)
     
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  16. tducey

    tducey Well-Known Member

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    If I lived on my own I'd like to be in a small apartment complex, maybe about 7 or 8 other apartments there.
     
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  17. Fino

    Fino Alex V.I.P Member

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    I don't know about the level of noise you're dealing with, but I would go mad without noise-cancelling headphones!

    And the same thing happened with me with anxiety meds and stimulants, because anything short-acting will have this problem. A higher dose for me returned the benefits, but in a more subtle manner. The fact that a lower dose was so beneficial should give you much hope for the higher doses, in my opinion.
     
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  18. Gracey

    Gracey Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Finding your combination of meds, noise blockers and ways to deal with, should help with that :)

    It might not matter where you live or how many parties are had if you can feel more confident in your ability to employ methods and strategies to tolerate or reduce what you can hear,
    when it happens.
     
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  19. VAW

    VAW New Member

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    How about investing in a travel trailer? That way you could live in it comfortably and park it where ever you want too? Somewhere quiet. I live in the country, not a lot of noise... I came from the city so I was used to noise, when I moved to the country it was so QUIET... all except for a whip-poor-will bird who insisted on sitting on my deck rail and sing his song half the night and early morning. Sometimes you just can't win! lol
     
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