When she insists on checking up on you

What you need to know:

When he refused to return her affections or accept the gifts, she showed up uninvited at his local kafunda

It all started with a late night phone call. She wanted to know how he was doing. He said he had been sleeping but was now wide awake because of the phone call. After all, it was 1:00am.

So, what is the problem? He asked. They had separated three years earlier but she clearly had never moved on. Once in a while, she would update her status with posts about how she missed him. On that particular night, she said she was just checking on him since she had not seen him in a long time. He cut her short and tried to sleep again in vain.

Then came a series of calls and texts every day, most of them at really awkward hours. She would ask about how his day was or inquire countless times a day about where he lived and worked.

When all this did not stop even after several warnings, his friends advised him to block her. He did.

But she always found a way of getting to him, asking who he was hanging out with. It even got to a point of her starting to deliver gifts and lunch to his office. How she had found out where he worked still remains a mystery.

 When he refused to return her affections or accept the gifts, she showed up uninvited at his local kafunda. Luckily, he was not there and so she opted to cause chaos, breaking bottles and insisting on stopping the music because it reminded her of him.

It took the intervention of the police to calm her down and ask her politely to leave. All the signs of a stalker were there; constant contact, showing up unannounced, sending you gifts and the urge to be around him.

According to the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, stalking is ‘a pattern of fixated and obsessive behaviour which is repeated, persistent, and intrusive and causes fear of violence or engenders alarm and distress in the victim’.

Anyone could become a stalker if they were to become fixated on another person and take steps to force interaction against that person’s will. Anyone could be a victim of stalking, regardless of gender, age, ethnicity and sexuality.”

A 2018 Suzy Lamplugh Trust report, Out of Sight, Out of Mind also said 45 percent of all stalkers are ex-partners.

And here is a thing about them; they will often want to know what you are ‘up to’ in millennial speak.

This, the urge to find out what you are doing, they can only do by way of call or incessant texting. They will check your social media accounts every three minutes. They will reach out to whoever likes or comments on your posts. Then they will start asking you the really personal questions. A stalker, especially one you have had a thing with will start hurling insults at your partner or friends that they believe are too close to you.

This will escalate into something worse such as hurting you or themselves. Worse still, they could hurt your loved ones.

What should you do? Let them know you are not comfortable with this. If this fails, involve the police.

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