Imagine yourself happily walking three dogs with your two children down a beautiful sidewalk path on a warm, Spring day. You pass a woman collecting her mail about twenty feet away and you hear her yelling, but can't quite make out what she is saying. You ignore her and continue to walk down the pathway, enjoying the warm sun. About a block away, you hear the woman again, sounding a bit closer, and you turn around. She swears at you, walks towards you, and tells you to stop calling her a fat b****.
That's what happened today on our walk. I asked the woman if she was talking to us. I told her we weren't talking to her, and that my daughter just asked me why I was walking so fast. The woman continued to yell and swear at us, Ms. D started to swear back, and Mr. I was panicking. I asked her nicely to stop swearing at the kids. I tried to walk away, but she kept following us and yelling even more. It became clear very quickly that this woman was either mentally ill or on drugs, and I needed to stop her from frightening the kids. I finally asked the woman if she needed any help, and I would gladly call the police if she wanted. When I pulled out my phone, she quickly ran back to her home. I realized then that drugs were probably more likely at work here, so I made a police report when I got back. I hope someone checks up on her. My kids now don't feel safe in our neighborhood in the middle of the day.
This has been a bit of a lesson for the kids. I hope that they learn to never take drugs. The kids also need to learn to quietly get away from a heated situation, rather than fight back physically or verbally. It may not stick, since the kids need a lot of reinforcement and don't learn as well when they are frightened. That crazed woman was frightening!