Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Tuesday Tip: Somebody's Knockin'

A few months after I was married, my family members decided to go away on a day trip. We got home late so my Aunt and I stayed overnight at my parents house. My sister was living at home and was working the late shift at a restaurant. We were all in bed. My aunt was sleeping on the couch a few feet from the front door.

We woke to hear pounding on the front door. My aunt assumed it was my sister coming home late from work. She thought my sister was playing a joke on her. My aunt answered in a silly voice "Who IS it?” The pounding continued and a man's voice responded, "Let me in! Let me in!" My aunt finally realized it was not my sister. We did not recognize the voice so we looked out the window. The person at the front door was a stranger. He knocked louder...."Let me in! Let me in! Domestic violence!"

What would you do?

We did not let the stranger in the house. We told the man we would help him and call the police for him. My sister made the call and we were the third 911 call from the neighborhood. The man went running erratically down the road to the next house. Within minutes, the police arrived and picked up the man.

The next day my mom heard the whole story from our neighbor. The man on the porch was the new boyfriend of a woman who lived down the street. The woman's ex-husband came for a visit and was surprised to find the new boyfriend. The ex-husband attacked the new boyfriend.

My family wondered if we did the right thing. Should we have let the man in? One person said to me "You are taking karate now...you should have let them in?" Ridiculous, I just started classes. If this incident happened a few months prior, I might have opened the door automatically. I believe we responded correctly by offering to help but not answering the door. The ironic part of this story is that the front door was not locked. The last person to arrive home forgot to lock the door. The stranger on the porch could have walked right inside.

Tips for answering the door:

1. Do not automatically answer the door. Are you expecting someone?

2. Look to see if you know who is at your door. If you cannot see the person…do not answer.

3. Verify the identity if the person claims to be from a company/organization.

4. Teach children not to answer the door.

5. Carry your cell phone or portable phone to the door with you.

6. Do not open the door if the person makes you feel uncomfortable. It is ok to be rude .

Tueday Tip: Door Answering Safety


Kim said...

Make sure the door is locked before you do anything. Call the police. That's my advice.

Meg said...

Since we're about to move to a house out of an apartment, my kids both need to re-learn door answering etiquette. I just shared this with them.

Michele said...

Kim: Agreed!

Meg: Thanks for sharing the post!