'Passive-Aggressive' Note Aimed at Woman Smoking in Yard Splits Internet

Reddit users weighed in on a situation in which a woman faced criticism from neighbors for smoking cigarettes in her backyard.

The post, which received more than 10,000 votes since it was shared by u/Left_Kaleidoscope109 on the Reddit forum "Am I The A**hole," discussed a note and a conversation the Reddit user had with neighbors who complained about her smoking while there are children in the neighborhood.

"One of our neighbors slid a passive-aggressive note through our letter box last week, saying something along the lines of: 'My children just wanted to play in our backyard. Thanks for exposing them to cancer, I hope you're happy,'" u/Left_Kaleidoscope109 wrote.

Woman Smoking
Here, a stock image of a woman smoking. Reddit users weighed in on a situation in which a woman said she faced criticism from neighbors for smoking in her own backyard. optop/iStock

Secondhand Smoke

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, exposure to secondhand smoke can be harmful to children and adults.

Children exposed to secondhand smoke may experience health risks and may become sick more often.

"For children with asthma, breathing secondhand smoke can trigger an asthma attack," the CDC said.

The Tobacco-Free Youth Recreation said that secondhand smoke odor can be detected at 23 feet from the source, while irritation levels start 13 feet from the source.

"Furthermore, anyone positioned downwind from an outdoor source of secondhand smoke will be exposed, even at significant distances from the source," the organization said.


Redditor u/Left_Kaleidoscope109 said she lives in a house with her husband, but she smokes cigarettes in their backyard because he does not like the smell and does not smoke himself.

After receiving the note, she said she decided to ignore it and continued to smoke in the yard.

"Then 4 days ago, one of our neighbors knocked on our door and complained, and said I shouldn't smoke in my backyard because their kids play in their backyard," u/Left_Kaleidoscope109 wrote.

She said their yards are large and she smokes in the center of her own yard, giving the smoke "more space to disperse."

"I think my neighbor is only complaining because they can see me smoking over our fence," u/Left_Kaleidoscope109 said.

Reddit Users React

Some Reddit users said she was not unreasonable.

"It's your yard," a top comment read. "You're outside."

"If the kids are inhaling soooo much smoke that flew over the fence they can take them to a playground or [something]," another Reddit user wrote.

One Reddit user, however, said that while it is her property, her smoking has made an impact on her neighbors.

"You're partaking of a habit so nasty that your own partner won't put up with it and you are inflicting it on your neighbors and their children," they said. "Your smoking is affecting their ability to enjoy their own property."

Others said that while it is her right to smoke in her yard, she could try to work out a compromise with her neighbors.

A Redditor wrote that they "can't stand" the smell of cigarette smoke and would be annoyed by a neighbor who frequently smoked.

"That said, it is your property," they wrote. "Maybe you could work something out with the neighbors where you don't smoke at certain times, when the children are playing outside."

Another commenter echoed the sentiment and said the smell of their neighbor's cigarette smoke wafts into their own yard.

"You can't control what someone does on their own property, so the best solution would be to work something out with the neighbors," they said.

Newsweek reached out to u/Left_Kaleidoscope109 for comment.

Other posts on the popular "Am I The A**hole" forum have sparked conversations among Reddit users.

A mother was supported after she told her sister—who destroyed the mother's baby items—that she hoped she would not have children.

One man was backed for asking his mother and sister to help pay his bills if his wife became a stay-at-home wife until they had children.

Another woman faced criticism for not stepping in when her husband made "cruel" comments about her sister's infertility.