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Why Do People Leave Their Curtains Open at Night?

Author:

I'm a dental hygienist, pyrography artist, avid gardener, writer, vegetarian, world traveler, and many other things!

© Kate P (Thanks Mom)

© Kate P (Thanks Mom)

I Couldn't Help but Notice

No—really. I couldn't help but notice because it's dark outside, your blinds are wide open, and all the lights in your entire house are on. My eyes are drawn to the light—and thus to you—like a moth to a flame.

I can see what you're doing (you've made yourself the most visible thing out there.) You're usually watching TV (how sad), sometimes you're in the kitchen, but always—always—you're on display. I can see your pajamas, if you're wearing anything at all. I see the artwork on your walls, kind of shabby chic. I understand you like Dancing With The Stars but do you really need to expose your half-dressed dance to the rest of the world?

I've never understood how people can go through life putting themselves—and everything they own—and their kids—on display to God-knows-who. Me, for example. I can see into your house. I can see what you're doing. I don't understand how your mind works. I'm trying to understand how you could think this is a good idea.

Reasons for Leaving Curtains and Blinds Open at Night

  • You get claustrophobic in confined spaces
  • You can't remember silly things like curtains
  • Never saw the need to shut them
  • Live in the middle of nowhere
  • Not many people walk by
  • If someone wants to look, that's fine
  • You like knowing people can see you (naked?)
  • You have nothing to hide and nothing to fear
  • You have 500 windows but can't afford automatic shades
Time to close the blinds.. or is it?

Time to close the blinds.. or is it?

Top Reasons for Closing the Blinds at Night

  • Peeping Toms tend to pick easy targets
  • Prevent burglaries by not shining a spotlight on everything you own
  • Prevent kidnappings by not showing everyone your kids' bedrooms
  • Prevent lewd behaviors by, well, preventing the possibility
  • Everyone (yes everyone) can see you
  • You can't see out but we can see in
  • It's dark out, why have them open?
  • Privacy is important, which is why toilet doors (and walls) exist
Privacy is important, which is why toilet doors, walls, and blinds exist.

Privacy is important, which is why toilet doors, walls, and blinds exist.

It's a Bit Creepy

You heard me right—creepy. That's what I think of both the idea of leaving my blinds open at night and those people who appear unaffected by being on display in their nightclothes to everyone outside.

To me it's like those obese men who wear Spandex swimwear and parade themselves around in public. My mind can't wrap around how their brains work. Why would they subject themselves to the world?

And my problem is similar when it comes to leaving curtains open and lights on at night. I don't understand why you'd do such a thing. Please help me.

Live and Let Live

Did you hear about the man who was walking around in his house, naked, and got arrested for it? Find the story here. It was morning, he was walking around naked, putting some coffee on, starting the day—when who walked through his yard but a mother and her 7-year-old son. Mother called the cops, and the man faced a year in jail and US$2,000 fine (outcome unknown.) A poll asking readers' opinions on the matter showed that either lots of people walk around naked in their houses with the blinds open, or they approve of it:

  • 3% - He should have kept away from the windows.
  • 97% - If you can't be naked in your own house, where can you?
It's freaking creepy to walk around naked with your curtains open—day or night.

It's freaking creepy to walk around naked with your curtains open—day or night.

While it creeps me out—majorly—to see people walking around their houses oblivious to outside stares, what's even worse is to stop people from being able to do so if they wish. I have no qualms about letting people live their lives however they see fit. It doesn't mean I understand everything people do, or even want to understand, but I greatly value my own freedom and support everyone else's as well.

That said, it's freaking creepy to walk around naked with your curtains open—day or night. Please consider taking the advice of Primus in their song, "Nature Boy." Close the blinds!

Questions & Answers

Question: Why do some people always keep their blinds closed, even in the daytime?

Answer: I would imagine privacy and/or to keep heat out or in.

Question: Do you think in some cases it's depression why some people don't ever open their blinds?

Answer: You're actually the first person to bring this up in the history of this article. Come to think of it, you're onto something. I think depression lends itself to cutting off the outside world and stewing within your own hell, usually alone. The people I've known with depression have bouts where they don't open their blinds for days, weeks, or even months. As regards this article, though, I think the vast majority just don't care if people can see them prominently displayed in their bed clothes. Good question.

© 2011 Kate P

Comments

Stephen on September 08, 2020:

I just got new neighbors they seem nice but they leave their curtains open now I’m not innocent when it comes to this I warned the guy Ryan that I have my window open in the day and blast my tv so if he heard a marvel or dc movie or me playing a video game like call of duty now he also likes to watch me play with my bow and arrow cause I’m an arrow fan and he and Kelly wave to me and it’s kinda embarrassing but fun at the same time but I recently had a sleepover just for me and mark to see the neighbors watching jimmy kimmel live I shut my shades but I don’t know why they don’t but I love to look in cause no better way of saying It’s very hard not to thanks for you time

Leeah L on June 02, 2020:

I've wondered about the reasoning for no window coverings at night too. I fall into the camp of those who close the drapes, mainly because I was raised that way. Even though we lived pretty far from the road we always shut them when the sun went down and the lights were on. Mom always erred on the side of caution, and figured if you don't want anyone taking your stuff or stalking you, you don't go out of your way to put it on display. Now that I live in town and we are literally surrounded by close neighbors and our living room windows are mere feet from the street, there's no way the blinds aren't getting closed. Now for question two - I look, yes I do. Not because I'm stalking anyone but being programmed from modern times to look at a lit up screen, it's TV for the curious if I'm a passenger in a car riding by. Luckily I've never gotten an eyeful of anything inappropriate but did observe some poor design choices.

Werner Pfennig on May 28, 2020:

Don't look into peoples windows. I live near the woods, and I always shut the curtains at night, because well, the only thing I can see are trees and my neighbors house. Pretty creepy at night.

Cheryl on May 26, 2020:

Stop looking into people’s homes and the problem is solved. If you people have such a problem with people walking around their homes in the buff with their curtains open (which is their own right) stop being perverts!!! YOU are the problem. YOU are the ones with the audacity to stare into someone’s personal property. Give it a rest, stalker!

Missy on May 13, 2020:

I leave a few inches open in the front window, otherwise I am totally boarded up like a hurricane is coming. I do not have ac so I need some air is my reason for 2 windows being open. Also the windows are blocked by layers and layers of trees and shrubery. Neighbors still tey to peep. I find this weird. My 2 seconds worth !

Cassandra on April 25, 2020:

My neighbors. Doors open all day and all night.

Drapes pulled tight shut during the day, wide open and in fact tied back so the whole window is exposed and you can see inside their house at night.

Maybe their monitoring who is either driving or walking up and down the street outside their house which is very close to the road. Or

who unexpectedly is arriving at their house. It's like Grand Central Station.

Maybe they need to have windows open wide to detect if the Police are arriving and they don't get caught out doing something illegal.

Irregardless of any reason their behaviour is weird and peculiar.

Glad I don't live opposite them. I know enough about them now and it's all bad. Wish they respected others in the neighbourhood and were more private themselves.

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on January 28, 2020:

Thanks again for all the ongoing comments.. many of them actually make me re-think the way I see things, which I always appreciate. It's so funny that at the time I wrote this article in 2011, not one person understood what I was doing writing it.. everyone thought I was crazy and that the article would be wildly unsuccessful lol. But it's almost always in my top 10 most-read articles, so I feel this is something people really wonder about all the time. (?!) Sort of funny, honestly. Keep your stories coming.. there is an endless need to hear about your thoughts on blinds at night (or not!).. by all types of people (it's a thing.) They need to hear your input, specifically on this subject! :) I always look forward to hearing more..

Fin from Barstow on December 01, 2019:

I think there are times when people leave their blinds open by accident and don't realize what they've done. They don't realize that with the lights on inside you can't see out. Someone might leave them open during the day to let in more light or for their plants and then neglect to double check them. I think I have done that a couple of times. I don't even really open mine any more during the day now though.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on November 21, 2019:

Interesting read. I do enjoy having blinds open if there is a cool breeze...but my lights would be dim or off.

But i usually set with curtains closed since i recently moved and do not care for others looking in...day and night.

But i must say it does get a bit depressing at times to never see outside...i wish i lived far out in the country where there is no need to worry. Clothing optional , curtains optional...kinda like john denvers house had glass windows with no curtains at all.

amy lujan on November 13, 2019:

sometimes I leave my curtains open so my plants can get some sun light, always close them at night. we also have unwanted thieves around, so I try to watch out for them.

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on October 29, 2019:

If you live far away from people, okay, leave your blinds open. But if you live surrounded by other people, that's when things start getting a little weird.. especially with nudity. Looking into curtain use has become an interesting look into humanity itself, it seems..

Tm on October 27, 2019:

I agree completely, The Nertherlands is where you see a lot of this happening. Totally weird! I lived there for three years and never understood that extreme mindset of the Dutch.

Debbie Lee on October 02, 2019:

I think people who leave their curtains/blinds open with their lights on fall into four categories - exhibitionists, claustrophobes, nosy people and naive people. In all of these cases, I question their levels of common sense. Of course people are going to look into a bright home when everything else is dark, and criminals gain an advantage when they know what you have, where it's located and who is/isn't at home.

A young and old creeper (both neighbors in a middle class single family neighborhood) taught me that people will climb trees, trim hedges, put chairs at the edges of their property, etc. to get a better view of you and your home. Leaving your windows uncovered is like leaving valuables visible inside your car. Doesn't guarantee you'll be a victim of crime, but it increases the odds.

A lady in my community recently posted a video of a guy with his face pressed up against the window at 3:30am and asked "who does this?". I thought to myself, quite a few people do it if they can. I first became aware of this behavior when I stayed at an oceanfront resort. Every evening around dusk, a gentleman came out and looked up at the rooms for at least 30 minutes. Now I have fun with it and leave oceanfront curtains open a bit at dusk to see how many gather on the beach below. After I close the curtains, I wait 5 minutes then look out and see they have all gone away.

I appreciate those who leave their windows uncovered as it gives the voyeurs and criminals easier targets.

RTalloni on September 27, 2019:

Certainly an interesting read, including the comments. People who do not live conscious of whether their behaviors are safe (in or out of their homes) are the ones most shocked at the consequences of exposing themselves to enemies. Generally, if they become a victim they become more careful.

One problem is that society wants to believe that if we are nice to others everyone else will always be nice to us, but nothing is less true. Sharks will always be sharks, unpredictably dangerous. Trying to make friends with enemies is dangerous business, trusting enemies is foolishness, being oblivious to the fact that enemies are always on the prowl is not wisdom.

That said, there are many wonderful people in the world, and respecting them includes respecting our own privacy, just as they would want their privacy respected. Closing blinds and curtains at night is a safe and respectful way to live in most cases.

Emma Mitchell on September 09, 2019:

I have this thing where i get all panicky and agitated if there is the slightest gap in the middle of any of my curtains. Ive tried leaving it but i just cant settle or relax untill its gone.

Gabby on August 17, 2019:

Closing my curtains makes me feel sad and lonely and I tend to look at the night sky as I daze off into deep

Slumber.if they are closed I’m just an anxious mess...

Oscar Jones from Monroeville, Alabama on June 02, 2019:

my wife wouldn't close the curtains. sometimes I could live with it and sometimes I couldn't. she saw no need for the blessed curtians to be closed.

when I was a teenager, I delivered papers and out of as many as 300 homes that I collected subscriptions from, I saw entire streets that were dark, windows totally covered at night. I saw in a low income area, people left windows open, curtains open, doors open and at times I had people come to the door and pay me in the nude. And they seemed to have no idea that it was an issue. Its the way they lived. - But this wasn't necessarily my comfort level. I liked my privacy, and still do.

Lucy Bonette on February 16, 2019:

I’m from the Netherlands, a country that’s known for its open curtain habits. Apparently, the history behind this is that it back in the day, the 16th century, it was a way of showing people you had nothing to hide and you were an open, trustworthy and most of all, decent person (who wasn’t secretly a catholic for example). But also that there was no dirty sexual things going on. Of course, this is no longer the case, but culturally, that’s where our open curtain policy stems from. These days, people close their curtains a lot more.

There’s also cultures in warm climates, where life is more outside in in front of the house than inside. So also no need or option for privacy.

Jackie Lynnley from the beautiful south on January 25, 2019:

If I did open curtains at night it would be to see the stars and I would only do so just before the lights go off.

I guess some people just do not want privacy. Maybe how you are brought up?

Interesting.

joe dancer on November 05, 2018:

Every evening after work I drive through Highland park, the wealthy area of Dallas. None of the street level million dollar homes have window coverings. Their interiors and atriums seemed designed for passersbys to look in and admire. I look, stare, into as many as possible, but never see occupants. The two million dollar, and up, homes are set back far from the street with gates and long driveways. I find it fascinating. I only leave blinds open at night if I'm on a floor higher than 3.

blueka on November 01, 2018:

I leave my blinds open. I like light, and who cares if someone walks by and sees me watching tv or taking a nap?????

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on October 21, 2018:

@Martina Johnsen, That sounds so beautiful! That's an amazing reason to keep curtains/blinds open! Like the Swiss Family Robinson! :)

martina johnsen on October 21, 2018:

i leave them open so i can see the stars from my bed when i can't sleep

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on August 22, 2018:

Thank you all for your comments. It seems the battle wages on! I still think it's weird when people live right next to you and leave the blinds open with the lights on at night. A lot of people disagree! But I'm sticking to my story.. :)

Wayne on August 21, 2018:

We dont have any window dressing in most of our rooms. We love bare windows. I always dreamed of living on acreage with no neighbors and having a house with lots of glass that was open to nature. I think bare windows is also better for our outdoor animals as we could more quickly be alerted to a problem outside, or our dogs might be more likely to notice and wake us up.

Deane Grant on June 23, 2018:

I use sheers during the day and at night close the drapes. When all the lights are off in the bedroom I would fling the sheers, drapes open to enjoy the night sky.

Amberdrm2005 on June 22, 2018:

Being a younger girl, I ALWAYS worry about creeperz peeking in. My bedroom window and bathroom window faces a large apartment. I love my curtains open even at night. I ALWAYS look out of them, if I don't notice anybody, I dont worry. No need to be paranoid

Romi on June 13, 2018:

Great article ! I wonder the exact same thing. I lived around the world, I don't come from USA. To be honest, I never seen this anywhere in the world only here in the USA, LA district.

I grew up somewhere, where everyone closes their blinds and curtains, once it gets dark. Everyone has beautiful sheer drapes and curtains in their homes , as well as blinds. Not just in houses, in flats too. People value their privacy very much and it is nothing to be on display. I myself don't feel comfortable, if I wouldn't have my shades/blinds in windows. I love and value my privacy but apparently our neighbors and other people do not ! This is a spanish apartment building of 6 apartments and another one right opposite to us. Another one is right next to us so close, you can see and hear nearly every word of people if they got open windows/curtains/blinds. I never understood why some of our neighbors don't ever close their blinds in the evening ! Kind of crazy to me. It is mostly single people having kind of sad life. I mean to judge, but people who watch tv all day and night long day after day and barely go out or enjoy life....That is sad to me.

These people do effect us as their bright lights shining into our windows till late night. Many people around here leave some kitchen or dining room lights on all night on too thinking they will not get robbed. Actually nearly whole area does. Sometimes I just go out to our lovely courtyard or garden or to see where my cat is and neighbors staring at me, what I'm doing there like I was some sort of creeper ! I don't like that. If they don't want people to see them or look in, they should close their blinds or curtains !

As for me, I love my privacy like I previously mentioned. I never seen so many nosy people like here ! Nearly all neighbors with no life ! I think one of the reason, why they keep their blinds open is to see, what is going on outside and what others are doing. Who walks around etc. Not us ! I don't need to see outside, enough I hear them all and hear gossiping a lot too ! Worse than a lovely village I come from and this is a city ! Downtown of a city. Neighbors always trying to find out a lot info about everyone and us too. I don't like that ! We are friendly but like our privacy and no need to tell them all about our business. I never even knew my neighbors in London ! If I even ever seen them. Anyway, moving out of continent and can't wait yey :-) !

Oh and regarding the open blinds/curtains/windows, this is warm California, so yes If I leave windows/curtains/shades open, its because we don't have AC and its hot and I only leave them open in back garden rooms, when we are not in those rooms. Recently bought blackout curtains too and very happy with them. Highly recommending those. Also why do people need to sleep with open blinds/curtains ? Everyone these days got smartphone or some sort of mobile with alarm clock. Plus never seen a person without a usual or digital alarm clock. So why ?

Justmeee111 on May 21, 2018:

I am a 22 year old girl who never thought anything of leaving my blinds open in all my rooms, even the bathroom. I figure I dont look at other windows and always assumed people dont look in. This article has me wondering now. I hope the high scool boys next door never looked in my place because I always walk around nude. My shower is all glass, no curtain and the bathroom window faces a busy sidewalk. I now look outside to see if anyone is peeking in and have not seen anybody looking so I guess I am safe

Linda M Giberson on April 26, 2018:

I really enjoyed your writing~! I believe it's how we're raised. At dusk we'd shut our curtains and blinds and at sunrise we'd open them. This being done for the very reasons you stated. At night, everyone can see in. Every little thing you do. They can also see what valuables you have and may "want" those things. Besides that, who wants a creeper, peeper? We lived across the street from a park and baseball field, people coming and going until after 10pm. I think people do more exercising by walking these days than they used to in the 60's and 70's. We make sure ours are closed by dusk, if not before~! Great article really had me thinking~!!!!!

Silly Goose on April 12, 2018:

I live in NYC and most people leave their blinds open. I don’t even think to look across the street to see what others are doing. It’s just a normal part of the landscape.

Jonathan T Mason on April 08, 2018:

I never leave my curtains open because I have always had this phobia every since I was kid I could be in a room by myself at night and I get a really weird feeling to get out the broom can I get paranoid because the Blinds or the curtains are open I guess I think that somebody could look in I think it's because When I was a kid I have a nightmare and I guess subconsciously it I just get a fear that comes over me I'm I do remember the nightmare but But I don't think of the nightmare whenever I run out of the room at least in my Regular train of thought I think it's in my subconscious

Kerrie on February 28, 2018:

Oh haa haa...great hub!! This made me chuckle! Im right there with ya...shut those blinds!!!

Jennifer Mugrage from Columbus, Ohio on February 07, 2018:

Haha, great Hub, and it looks like it was very popular!

I can tell you exactly why I used to carelessly leave my blinds open, and now don't: cluelessness. Especially on summer nights, twilight comes in so gradually, you barely realize it's getting dark outside. And as it gets the dark, the outside becomes less visible to you, and of course, if you can't see something, it isn't there, right?

I was cured of this one night when coming home from a jog. It wasn't fully dark yet, but I was intrigued to realize I could see into many houses and was fascinated by their interior decorating. Then I found myself looking into a rather messy house that turned out to be my own. Ever since then, I close the curtains at dusk.

House nudists on January 21, 2018:

If you don't like what you see through someone's window, especially at night, then simply don't look. Unfortunately we are a curious species and we're gonna look anyway.

thatgrrl on January 01, 2018:

I have window blinds. I leave them partially open so the street light comes in and I don't need to turn any lights on inside the house. Why are you such a peeping tom? I understand most of your points, but, why are you spending so much time looking in windows?

amanda jjj on December 21, 2017:

i feel exactly the same way you do. i live in the uk and the houses where i live are pretty close together there is a house across the road from me that never shut the blinds at night. its bizarre i always close mine i only really no they are always open as i have to open the door curtain to let my cat in and out and its not just me that can clearly see everything inside its at least 6 other houses that have a clear view in. why would anybody enjoy the thought that loads of their neighbours can see in the house?

bungalowdweller on December 17, 2017:

I remember when this trend started---about 50 years ago!!! The hippies thought that window coverings weren't "cool" so they were the first to keep any blinds, drapes, etc open at night. Then the would be hipsters imitated them. Fast forward to today where the middle and upper classes expose themselves nightly. It's part of the "show off" and "look at me and my stuff" syndrome. "Observant" made an important comment when h/she said that the upper classes "don't give it a second thought". Before this horrendous trend became a thing, the upper classes would have NEVER engaged in such narcissistic behavior; they were private people. The poster is incorrect about so-called "ghetto" or urban neighborhoods. Urban people don't turn on the porch light unless they're waiting for someone to come. It has to do with not wasting energy. Urban houses are small and many are almost 100 years old. Draperies provide privacy and warmth, particularly in the fall and winter months. If a neighborhod is not "gentrified" (filled with upper middle class people) why would Anyone with any sense keep their drapes and blinds open? To advertise their possessions to gangbangers, criminals, etc who walk by??? It has NOTHING to do with Fear and EVERYTHING to do with Common Sense. Finally, different ethnicities do things differently. If you walk in an urban neighborhood in Paris or Prague drapes are pulled at night! It's the opposite as here! Only the ghetto dwellers have everything open and "on display" for passersby. My family is upper middle class, we live in an ethnic urban neighborhood and it is Dark. Blinds & drapes closed, thank you.

Nikki Khan from London on November 24, 2017:

I never left my blinds open,just don't feel comfortable with someone looking inside and ruining my privacy.If people do it, I'm sure must be some good reason for that.Interesting article,topic is unique too.Had much fun while reading.Thanks for sharing dear.

John on November 21, 2017:

That is not right that mother walking throw his backyard its not her business so ya and she should get introuble.

kterbo on November 07, 2017:

Look, here is a simple example... my grandmother closed everything...her fear of robbers (as she called them).... her sister opened everything,..no fear. My grandmother was robbed 4 times. Her sister, same town, never!

If I am walking by a home,.. the one that is all closed up sparks my curiosity more. The ones that are open, say the people have nothing to hide.

I lock my door, I lock my car but leave all my blinds open 24/7 unless I need to change or sleep in bedroom.

We don't own a big flat screen, wtf are they going to steal, my desk or book cases. Nope. Open in day says there is someone home. Open at night says you are not afraid, we are not afraid of anything! Blinds are open all year round. ... Never had a problem . We also leave small lights on too. No one is coming in here.

Only close the blinds if you have a creepy neighbor. We have good people on either side. And we are from small cities, Portland Scranton. I think It is creepy when people black out everything ,...what are they hiding? ;)

Observant on October 21, 2017:

People in or from the ghetto tend to black out every window in their home with curtains, blinds, blankets, etc.. There's never any natural light inside their caverns. Their neighborhoods look really dark, because this same demographic is not known for their inclination for landscape lighting. The porch light is off. Everything is dark. People who grow up middle or upper middle class or wealthy never give it a second thought. If they do have window covering, it's often only for the bottom half their windows, and it's often thin and translucent. You can always pick out the first home to be gentrified on a block. It's the one where you can see the paintings on the walls inside. There's no curtains or blinds. They live without fear of street people looking in the window to plot on stealing their microwave.

hal on October 20, 2017:

If I close the blinds, I won’t wake up in the morning. I need the natural sunlight.

I keep my curtains closed, but they’re very sheer. You can still see in and out, but you have to put in some effort. You shouldn’t be looking into my apartment.

Chris Burdick on September 05, 2017:

I think the reason why people leave their curtains open at night, is because they're too lazy to close them before going to bed.

Either that or they just don't value privacy and they want to be robbed.

Barbara on November 17, 2016:

My mom drives me nuts about keeping the blinds open at night. She doesn't understand how unsafe it is to keep the blinds closed. She argues and fights with me. It seems to me that People don't know how to be private. I don't see why people have to keep

There blinds open it's pathetic and your attracting stupid people! When I move out I will do whatever I want! Then I will never argue with my mom again about this! I can't change people who like having all there blinds opened at night some people like it some dont. Anyway I am glad we have this form I can explain my fusterations! I am happy mostly people on here agree.

Cindy on October 12, 2016:

We have neighbors who have no blinds or drapes on any of their windows in the back of their house. The problem for us is their chandelier is bright and lights up our entire house. I am just surprised at how inconsiderate people are. Not paying attention to how their choices impact people around them!

Linda on September 23, 2016:

I keep my blinds open at night, because if I close them I forget to open them in the morning and my dog is in the dark all day. I was wondering if you put a flood light outside your window will people still be able to see so well inside your house?

Jecht on July 30, 2016:

That guy that got arrested got out easy cause the women and her daughter were charge for trespassing and peeping tom.

Nakedguy on June 25, 2016:

Those people that ''put them selfs on desplay'' are proud of who they are and what they look like, like everyone should be anyways. Their should be no judgment . If you dont like dont look . I do it all the time , im not over weight or anything but that wouldnt matter. Never had a complaint . I live in a buuilding in a busy area. Not doing anythong sexual . Just naked chillin, its the best feeling of freedom

Jenna on May 29, 2016:

I just moved in to a townhouse a few months ago after living in a house for many years, having to get used to having neighbors all around me again. One of my neighbors does this same thing, pulls up their living room blinds and has their curtains wide open at night. Drives me nuts cause the sidewalk goes right past their window so I have to walk by it. Makes me uncomfortable every time cause I feel like I have to purposely not look towards the window in order to respect their privacy but I also feel as though they are watching me when I go by with my dogs. It just creeps me out and makes me want to ask them why they have their damn window open for all the neighbors to see as they go down the sidewalk.

Matt on May 06, 2016:

I am late to the party here, but thank God someone wrote this article! I too always felt creeped out by those who leave their windows or even worse their damn doors open for a long time. I almost thought there was something wrong with my for thinking this.

One of my favorite comments/similes from this editorial is about how it is akin to an obese man wearing spandex. Why would they do that? Exactly!

mike on December 27, 2015:

my neighbor leaves their blinds, shades, windows open day and night. They are the talk of the neighborhood. I just ignore it. We all know they are weird to say the least.

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on September 19, 2015:

Hi Edward, I can definitely picture your situation because I've experienced the same thing myself. I'm becoming convinced that there are two types of people: those who close blinds methodically, and those who don't. I still don't understand the mentality of leaving your life open to the world. Thanks for reading and commenting! :)

Edward on September 19, 2015:

My neighbors have no curtains in their living room, which has a really nice 60" flat screen TV. You can see everything they do, watch on TV, and the kitchen too. I find this very odd. I have blinds and curtains over the blinds for extra privacy. Too many weirdos out there and I cherish my privacy in my home and boundaries. If I had no blinds or curtains, I'd feel violated and on display for everyone. My vote, cover your glass and cover your a**, please!

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on August 24, 2015:

I appreciate all of your comments, and am beginning to (sort of?) understand why some people feel the need to show themselves off with lights on and curtains wide open. Just kidding.. I still don't get it lol

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on August 03, 2015:

Ewwwww.. 'nough said lol

mikelongisland on August 03, 2015:

BRENDA "I'd asked why one would look more than once if walking past a house with drapes open at night ?"

Do you know ANYTHING, about Human Nature ?

Think about it.

Kira on August 01, 2015:

I sort of leave my curtains open. I mean, I have one set of curtains that that is kinda see-through (and are white), and another set that are not see-through (some shade of green). I leave the white ones closed and the green ones open. What does that count as?

Jessamine on July 28, 2015:

I have never been able to understand and never will why people want to have there lights on when it is dark outside, leaving people to look inside your house, it is something I will never understand till the day I die, one of life's big big mysteries

Brenda on November 19, 2014:

This is funny how I found it looking for Christmas sales on drapes but a question I never thought about.

I'd asked why one would look more than once if walking past a house with drapes open at night?

There are a number of reasons this happens. It's often either in a quiet area where not much traffic or the back part of the house where people wouldn't expect anyone to be snooping. Then there are people like I am who tend to close blinds & curtains as it starts to get dark out but once in a while we get busy, the phone rights or something happens & we simply forget a room like the kitchen. Watch old TV show All in the Family & pay attention to that kitchen. Seldom are drapes closes at night but always in the living-room where they spend the most time. Kitchen faces the back like my house & last area to close up at night.

There are also people who probably want to be seen lol Those would likely be nude with bright lights on in hopes someone will look but it's up to the eyes of the individual to look or not. Would anyone here stop to watch if they saw a couple having sex with lights on? I bet most of you men would. I'd be embarrassed if anyone saw me nude but that's the American mentality in me. When I lived in Europe nudity was viewed as nature, natural & not a turn on for the most part. Ads on TV always showed full frontal of men in underwear commercials trying them on but can you imagine in the States Network TV doing that this century? lol This was in the 80s btw.

Some States like FL have strange laws so if a person is seen nude in their own home from outside, they are in trouble! Most States are if you look and don't like, then look away but for safety reasons, I'd say clothes things up since someone might see items then try to break in or might get an idea to rape a woman. I was raped at 16 so I am very careful about things so this reminds me to always be careful to close kitchen drapes & blinds no matter what is going on even though I wear PJs with a nightgown over them so am never nude unless in the shower but living alone, single looking 28 at 50, it's scary to me that some crazy person might see in.

sam sam on October 30, 2014:

In cartoons and film they never close there curtains or blinds At night

is just weird. They don't even do it when thay are in bed.

Valeriana R on July 06, 2014:

Why should you care? Aren't your curtains closed?

mikelongisland on June 22, 2014:

J, the GOOD SHIP LOLLIPOP is leaving, in a few minutes...don't miss it, you have a stateroom, just for you !

J on June 20, 2014:

Holy crap this is a judgemental article.

chan on April 11, 2014:

Well I have to admit that I do leave my curtains open day and night except the times I get changed. The thing is I can't sleep without the moonlight and it is stressing for me to be closed from every side. I tried to sleep the curtains closed and I slept one day non-stop. You said " You are usually watching tv ( how sad?)"! What about you? You are usually peeping on people who trusts their neighbour ( how sad).

mikelongisland on March 14, 2014:

An open window, WITHOUT CURTAINS, or some kind of material obscuring 'the outside looking in', is a legal invitation, for ANYONE to look in.

IF you don't want EVERYONE, to look inside, to what is there, keep some kind of material on the windows.

OTHERWISE you are fair game, for ANY NUT, to look in on you, be prepared for surrendering what ever 'rights' you thought you had.

Denis on February 25, 2014:

Thanks hub for this interesting topic. My neighbour leaves her curtain open every night. I noticed this few months after I had moved into my apartment. She prays at night. One of the mornings I woke up early to prepare for work, I saw her n*k*. I thought she was unaware of it so I did pay attention to her. But ever since she knew I saw her, she has always tried to get my attention by making a sound with her warddrop so I can notice her. Unaware to me, one of my neighbour saw me looking at her, went straight to her and reported me to her. She announced it to the whole neighbour that I am a creep and a bad guy. She even to her husband and my landlord's family. I got angry and left my windows open too. I don't exchange pleasantries with everyone in the compound. I feel insecure because of this experience.

Nigeria is kinda hot but having your neighbour sell their business to the whole world because they want air to come into their apartment is sad and annoying.

I feel guity anytime I remember what my reputation is like to them.

I feel bad and depressed.

I need help from everyone to help me win back my prestige. You can call me on +2347031142555.

Dean on February 09, 2014:

I like to keep my blinds shut at night just due to privacy. I live in the countryside and nothing around for miles either side. But I always feel as though someone is watching me. I just can't relax otherwise. !

Kel on February 06, 2014:

I do close the curtains for the night. But i like to leave them open when i am studying. Like it could be a little bit dark and my tablelamp is turned on and you can see perfectly to my room if you want to, but I study so much better when i can see the street and the forest.

Jeff on December 11, 2013:

There is only one reason. That's why I do it.

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on December 02, 2013:

This is certainly a hot topic of many, though always emphatic, opinions. Keep them coming!

As for me, there's a new tower block that just went up across the street. It "towers" above we house dwellers, and every night the entire top floor leaves their lights on, and curtains open--like a literal beacon in the night. Multiple neighborhoods can see Everything they're doing. Weird.. I'll never understand..

streetsnacks on November 02, 2013:

I can't understand why people do this! I have a neighbor that closes her blinds at night only if I tilt mine her direction at night. HA. BUT she keeps them open at night with the light on if my blinds are closed at night! WHAT A MENTAL CASE RIGHT! Why would she be worried about my blinds if everyone can see in her goddamn apartment. THese are old folks by the way to make it even more strange. I can't wrap my head around why anyone would want their blinds open at night with lights on when you can't see out! WTF! SERIously I thought about printing out this article and posting it on her door so she can feel as stupid as she looks!

Carolyn on September 17, 2013:

Can somebody explain to me why it's 'embarrassing' to be put on display at night, but not during the day? (Er, yeah, people can still see you during the day if your curtains are open. You're not suddenly invisible because it's light outside AS WELL as inside). If it's 'being on display' that worries you, then you should be against open curtains in general. Otherwise it's just a privacy thing, and the 'preventing burglaries and kidnappings' is the stupidest thing I've ever heard. If anything having your windows OPEN would prevent burglaries and kidnappings - who would burgle a house - or even a NEARBY house - where there are clearly people up and awake? Furthermore, maybe y'all have horrible eyesight but I can see people outside from inside when it's night too. Maybe the streetlights help a bit? So it's not a oneway mirror at all. And that makes me feel SAFER. I can see what's going on outside, they know it, and they're not going to try anything because of it. As for 'seeing' what you have in your house, how many houses DON'T have something of value? Do burglars really only target houses in which they have seen TVs or computers (as if 99% of the population DOESN'T have those??). And again, they could always check out where all that stuff was when your curtains are open DURING THE DAYTIME.

Why doesn't anybody ever point this stuff out??

Williams on September 10, 2013:

My neighbor complained that her male neighbor was watching her in her bedroom. Her bedroom has a wall of glass which faces his living room which is only 15 feet away! It is actually impossible for him not to see into her bedroom! Am I crazy for thinking she should just close her blinds? Am I missing something here?

Annabanana562 on July 25, 2013:

I always close my blinds at night. I can't understand how some people can be totally comfortable with blinds wide open and displaying everything for everybody to see. Maybe I'm just not as trusting as others maybe to the general public, but with so much robberies/raping/kidnapping/mentally ill people out there (especially in a very densely populated area like where I live) I just can not feel comfortable with leaving my blinds open and lights on at night. Thank you Faceless...I agree 100%!

Clint on April 18, 2013:

I leave my curtains open to let the breeze in.

Tina on January 07, 2013:

We close our blinds when it gets dark. I believe in the whole "privacy" thing. Don't want to be "on display". Plus, why "invite" trouble?! Also, if people have nothing better to do than look into your house, they need to get a life! It's not a matter of "I have nothing to hide", it's a matter of privacy.

Calicate on August 01, 2012:

We live in the burbs and our living areas are on the back of the house so we don't even have window coverings on the front facing windows. If you go through the trouble of peeping at my house you will probably be talking to the cops in a short short lol

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on July 31, 2012:

I'm glad to know that, if nothing else, this has made people pause for a moment to re-assess their own habits!

Thanks so much for the awesome comments.

Mommiegee from Alabama on July 31, 2012:

I enjoyed this hub! This is interesting and scary at the same time. I found myself laughing and wondering what if I've left any blinds up or any curtains open. It definitely made me think. Thanks for sharing.

nenytridiana from Probolinggo - Jawa Timur - Indonesia on July 16, 2012:

This is interesting to contemplate. I don't have any idea how you could have this topic in mind. Good work faceless39!

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on June 14, 2012:

Thanks so much for your comments. Though I'll never understand why people would put themselves on display, at least I know now that a lot of people understand my problem with it lol!

stessily on February 21, 2012:

Faceless39, It seems that the behaviour of those who leave their curtains open at night is open to a range of interpretations. You've presented this behaviour in an interesting and entertaining style. I tend to close the curtains at night, except for the kitchen window which looks out onto my neighbour's home to the north. I live in a rural-suburban area, with no neighbours visible to the south or east, and it's pretty to see the lights shining through the darkness to the north; they close their curtains, too.

Thanks for sharing.

Madurai from Online on February 05, 2012:

May be perhaps, some people may like to be open to everybody..they don't like to hide anything..

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on January 07, 2012:

I think that a lot of people just are not tuned into how they're affecting others around them. That said, it is rude to force your life on others, and I wish sometimes that I didn't have to see people doing weird sh-t in their houses.

JaneDoe on January 01, 2012:

I think it's very rude and inconsiderate of someone to purposely leave their curtains or blinds open at night. Did you ever think we don't want to see what you're doing? Maybe people don't want to be apart of your world.

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on December 05, 2011:

Don't get me wrong: most people lead very boring lives within the confines of their homes. However, I don't wanna see it. LOL!

gailalovesbijou from Wyomissing, PA on November 18, 2011:

Voted up and interesting. A well-written, thought-provoking hub. We have 32 windows on the ground floor of our home, so we don't close the shades very often. Too much work. We also don't walk around naked--at least not on the ground floor. Upstairs we keep the shades drawn at night. I'm usually just sitting on the sofa typing on my laptop; sometimes I'm playing my guitar; or I'm cooking in the kitchen. I don't really care if people are looking in, but I hope they aren't doing much more than glancing. I do enjoy seeing how people's homes are decorated when I'm out walking at night, but I don't spend a lot of time staring in their windows. That would be creepy, for sure. Thanks for the interesting hub!

Andrea333 on November 15, 2011:

Voted interesting and funny - I enjoyed it!

Dee aka Nonna on November 03, 2011:

No, I have this thing that people may be watching and I guess I have watched one to many horror movies..lol My curtains are closed the moment it begins to get dark.

Great question!

Justsilvie on November 03, 2011:

After reading the comments I can only say... WOW never really thought much about this subject before, but somehow it has worked its way into my head and since I am moving to ground level in the next two weeks I may have to rethink my “I don't give a damn attitude”, because I would hate to offend my new neighbors by running around in my flannel Pajamas in the morning. I can be a quit scary sight before I make myself presentable.

In all seriousness … you learn something new every day. And moving to the US after living overseas for 15 years this is something I am going to add to my reverse-culture shock list. In America we often have much larger living spaces, much larger yards and everything is just larger in general and it seems it affects the ability to look away.

If you look at many cultures you will realize that privacy is given by averting the eyes, because closing a curtain may not even be an option. Even here in Austria I learned the lesson very fast when entering a men’s ward in a hospital. I was red faced and my partner had to actually tell me it was rude not to avert your eyes. (I actually did not know where to look other than at my feet)

After reading this I looked out my window and realized I could actually look into 16 windows and the 11 also had their curtains open. Hhmmm wonder if they ever give it a thought.

I also am reminded that in Movies and TV closed curtains are always the mark of something sinister, usually the serial killer who just happened to live next door, or someone holding some as a sex slave in their basement, or a poor murdered victim whose body has lain there for months never noticed by the neighbors.

Anyways the hub has been interesting and a real conversation starter. Well done.

Augustine A Zavala from Texas on November 03, 2011:

I KNOW!

There are some people in my complex that do everything you mentioned in this hub. I can't for the life of me understand why. I hate this behavior as well.

Kate P (author) from The North Woods, USA on October 31, 2011:

Thanks everyone for all the wonderful feedback! Maybe when people realize that passersby are looking at them they'll remember to shut their curtains at night! :)

breakfastpop on October 31, 2011:

I have a neighbor who leaves her front door open all day and night. You can't help but look in.

mathira from chennai on October 30, 2011:

It felt nice to read about something which escapes our attention in our day to day life and how observant you are to notice such things.Good!

Cheryl Simonds from Connecticut on October 30, 2011:

I truly enjoyed reading this article. And I close my blinds every night because I want to be able to feel safe in my own home and because my privacy is important to me. But more importantly, I don't think I should push whatever I am doing, watching, or possessing onto anyone else.

ronhi from Kenya on October 30, 2011:

Great write, when i finished the introduction, i was almost disappointed because i thought you were ending there...then i scroll down and you add more flesh to it..wow..I always wondered why people have to do that...and if someone was arrested for it and he found so many sympathizers, it means he has lots of company...too bad. Yes i enjoyed reading this and i pressed the green button :-) Up useful, interesting, beautiful, awesome, funny...and...well, there is no excellent button

catgypsy from the South on October 29, 2011:

Faceless, I couldn't agree with you more!

Mary Hyatt from Florida on October 29, 2011:

I remember when I was a child, the next door neighbors had their light on in their bedroom. I looked and wished I hadn't. I've never got that scene out of my mind. I don't think they realized that they were sharing an intimate moment with anyone, least of all, a kid! I close my drapes at night!!!

epigramman on October 29, 2011:

...love your writing and your hubs ; they are so thought provoking and inspiring for debates and discussions - I most certainly close my drapes at night - you bet, because I am a praticing nudist and walk around in my birthday suit although as of late I notice that my two cats have been wearing shades and blinders - are they trying to tell me something? lol

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