What would you do if you received an anonymous letter accusing your children of “terrorising the neighbourhood” simply for being kids?

Mum Kristen Munsell Tripp decided to respond to a poison pen letter with a note of her own. And we are LOVING what she has to say.

Newsflash. Kids make noise. But some people haven’t figured that out just yet. One such person has made his or her objection to children having fun known in a letter (stamped with a heart, of all things) that has since gone viral.

The letter was penned last year, but recently resurfaced on social media. It accuses the children of holding the neighbourhood to ransom with their wild, shrieking ways. It claims the kiddoes make it impossible for other neighbours be to outside, to enjoy the “mild weather’. Or even “play games outdoors”.

And it’s all because of the children, terrorising the neighbourhood with their playful games.

War of the words

Attention, well meaning neighbours. Send a mama a passive aggressive letter about her kids and you’re bound to be hit with an angry letter back. Or a shoe, even. 

Kristen opts for the former and pens her own response to the anonymous neighbour. But because she doesn’t know who it is, she takes her response to social media instead.

Dear Neighbour… 

“I’ve always thought it is important to have the respect to deal with people directly when there is a problem that needs to be solved; unfortunately the lack of name or return address on your letter doesn’t allow me to do so,” Kristen writes.

“First, as far as who is in charge at this address, that would be my husband and myself. Trust me, if it were the children or the dog, you’d have a much worse situation to complain about.

“As far as who is teaching them respect and consideration for others, again, that would be my husband and myself. For example, we tell them to treat one another the way they would want to be treated, and that if they have a problem with another person to go to that person and resolve it together.”

Mum of Shrieking Children: 1. Passive Aggressive Letter Writing Neighbour: 0 

Next on the list of concerns. Noisy children.

“Well, that is a bit of a dilemma. Between our family and the other immediate neighbours, there are 12 children between the ages of 15 and 6. As you noted, children make noise, joyful and otherwise. Thankfully for both your and my sakes, none of my children have any interest in accordion or drum lessons.” 

That’s another point for Mum of Shrieking Children. 

The sounds of summer 

Kristen then outlines what she has aimed for this summer: “We have made it our goal to be a safe, welcoming place for our children and all the children of the neighbourhood to play, be creative, get exercise, and enjoy the outdoors instead of being addicted to screens.”

What does this look like? Kids riding bikes, climbing trees, swimming in the pool, playing tiggy in the yard, building forts in the woods, playing pretty much every ball sport invented and using their imaginations to make up games.

In other words, kids being kids. In summer. Outside. Oh. The. Horror.

I’m giving Mum of Shrieking Children 12 points for this one. A point for each child in the neighbourhood (and for each child who has probably, at one stage or another, peed in her backyard pool). 

September 1, 2016Dear Anonymous Neighbor,I’ve always thought it is important to have the respect to deal with people…

Publicado por Kristin Munsell Tripp em Quinta-feira, 1 de setembro de 2016

Kristen doesn’t end there. In fact, she continues for several more paragraphs (you can read the full letter above).

Those goshdarned terrorising tots 

But, there is one massive issue that has yet to be raised. And she, like the rest of her points, nails it:

“I also object to your use of the word “terrorising”, a word which connotes intentionally striking fear into the hearts of others, because I believe it to be inaccurate, though kudos on making an impression with the bold italics.

“I’m afraid that my above response is unlikely to bring you much satisfaction, as I am not willing to muzzle my children or keep them indoors all summer.

“But take hope, dear anonymous neighbour- school and sports are almost back in session and you won’t have to put up with these little terrorists for much longer.”


Need more passive aggressive letters? Check out this angry neighbour’s letter suggesting mother keeps her child inside. Or how about the time this Mum was left stunned when Grandma sent a hefty bill for granddaughter’s visit? 


Born and raised in Canada, Jenna now lives in Far North Queensland with her tribe, including her son, daughter, cat, dog, partner and baby #3 who is currently taking up residence on her bladder. When she's not writing, you can find her floating in the pool, watching princess movies, frolicking on the beach or nagging her kids to put on their pants.


  1. considerate_mom Reply

    Asking them to be quiet after 9pm isn’t a big request and would be considerate of others.

  2. Can see both sides here – the quiet-loving neighbour and the family allowed some playtime. I have a small child neighbour who teases their dog. The dog nips, the child screams. Also the dog barks quite a bit – just past the puppy stage, so that’s understandable. The parents are pretty much on the ball with everything so it’s not a real problem. Had another family though much worse. The child would be left outside to scream. Thankfully they moved. On the whole, some noise is acceptable within reason so long as it doesn’t go on too long. Then I can sympathise.

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