Cut it out! Peeping is just plain creepy

You like to watch? Why not try doing?

I moved into a building with a great view of the city and residential building across from me. When I sit at my desk, I notice an attractive woman in the building. I find myself looking out and hoping to see her and privately wishing she’d notice me. I have a feeling this voyeurism isn’t the healthiest behavior. I’m shy and know I could never land a girl like that, but I have fun admiring her. She seems so nice. What do you suggest?

Before you label your behavior voyeuristic, know what that is. It’s having intense sexually arousing fantasies, urges or behaviors while observing an unsuspecting person who is nude, disrobing or having sex. Based on your question, I don’t suspect that’s the case. Though I do have concerns that your behavior is fantasy-fueled and limits you from going out into the real world where you might actually meet someone similar to your neighbor. Know that underneath every fantasy is a desire for change and an opportunity for growth. Here’s what to do:

Think about common social etiquette such as respecting neighbors.
Would you want someone gawking at you or a loved one? Of course not, so don’t be that guy. 

Take action. You have options as to how to set up your apartment. Move your desk to a different area.

Address the underlying issue.
Do you privately admire this fantasy neighbor because you’d like to have someone like her as a friend or lover? If so, know that as long as you sit home you’ll continue to be alone, but if you get out there in the real world you’ll at least have the potential to meet someone.

Examine your thinking. What’s the fantasy that this behavior is supporting? “She seems so nice” — what’s this based on? Your observation of her routine isn’t enough evidence to suggest she’s nice. An alternative way of thinking would be something like this: “She’s attractive, but I know nothing about her.” Write down alternative ways of thinking and ways you can use your time other than glued to the window. And if she does notice you looking, it isn’t going to get you anywhere but her thinking you’re creepy.

–Jonathan Alpert is a licensed psychotherapist. E-mail him your questions at jonathan@jonathanalpert.com

Metro does not endorse the opinions of the author, or any opinions expressed on its pages.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MAP: New York City Street Closures August 22,…

The Percy Sutton Harlem 5K and NYC Family Health Walk-a-thon and Pakistan Day Parade and Fair will cause traffic delays and street closures in New York City this weekend. Plan…

International

U.N. nuclear inquiry on Iran seen making slow…

The U.N. nuclear watchdog appears to have made only limited progress so far in getting Iran to answer questions about its suspected atomic bomb research, diplomatic sources said on Friday,…

National

Violence-weary Missouri town sees second night of calm

By Nick Carey and Carey GillamFERGUSON Mo. (Reuters) - The violence-weary town of Ferguson, Missouri, saw a second straight evening of relative calm on Thursday…

National

Journalist James Foley's parents, after call with pope,…

The parents of James Foley, the American journalist killed by Islamic State militants in Iraq, on Friday called for prayer and support to free the remaining captives held by Islamic…

Television

Recap: 'The Knick,' Season 1, Episode 3, 'The…

The third episode of Steven Soderbergh's "The Knick" finds Dr. Thackery (Clive Owen) meeting an old flame and other characters embracing self-destruction.

Music

Webcast: Watch Polyphonic Spree live on Sunday Aug.…

Polyphonic Spree singer Tim DeLaughter sits with Metro Music Editor Pat Healy for a chat and then the big band performs live. It begins on Sunday at 9:30 pm

Movies

Matthew Weiner on directing 'Are You Here' and…

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner discusses his movie "Are You Here," his history writing comedy and the tiny movie he directed in 1996 you can't see.

Movies

Michael Chiklis on his football past and 'When…

Michael Chiklis remembers playing football in high school and how that prepped him to play a coach in "When the Game Stands Tall."

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Jets storylines to watch

Metro looks at three Jets storylines to watch as they play the Giants Friday.

NFL

Giants expected to work Corey Washington into first-team…

The day of reckoning for the Giants' fringe players will fall upon them Friday night against the Jets.

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Tech

Siren: A new dating app that puts women…

Online dating can be brutal, especially for single women. Noting that many women hate wading through inappropriate messages and photos, two tech entrepreneurs decided to…