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Hoarding Help Message Boards : Welcome to the new board! : Helping a hoarder
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Helping a hoarder

Posted: 16 November 2013 - 10:26 AM
Hi Newbie :)

Some hoarders collect and keep too many items.
Some people are trash hoarders. They don't necessarily collect a whole lot of items but they do keep everything that comes into the house. Never getting rid of anything like food containers, mail, newspapers, etc.
A hoarder is any person who keeps too much stuff in the home.
When all the stuff makes using the rooms for their intended purpose very difficult or impossible.
It doesn't really matter what the hoard is made up of. A hoard is a hoard.
Trash hoarders are usually easier to help because they tend to not be too emotionally attached to the rubbish. They are just stuck not knowing how to fix the problem and don't have the skills to prevent it from piling up again.
Posted: 16 November 2013 - 09:47 AM
I am just learning about hoarding. A lot of us in the family seem to have the traits but my brother is the one who has a horrific house. But it could the piles of real trash - to-go containers and gallons of milk that have turned laying around the house - be signs of hoarding? Or just simply bad house keeping on top of hoarding?
Posted: 12 November 2013 - 09:39 AM
Hi Dee,

Welcome! Come over to the Daily Chat and jump in. There's a variety of situations and we're all helping each other.
Posted: 10 November 2013 - 06:27 PM
Hello Dee :)
try to join is in the Sunday night chat.
Click on the link to the right here that says "online support group".
Chat starts at 5:00pm PST.
Posted: 10 November 2013 - 06:06 PM

Hi - I am brand new to this - trying to reach out to others for advice or encouragement. My little condo is so full of stuff and I have a difficult time throwing anything away but I have no space to live.
Arlene Frank
Posted: 23 April 2013 - 03:18 PM
I believe the real difference between a hoarder and a person with clutter or lots of stuff is the emotional response they have to the idea or having their stuff messed with. My mom is a level 5 hoarder and let me tell you, my mom develops supper strength when it comes to her stuff. It is like a raging maniac replaces the mild manner mom I normally have. After 10 years of trying to help my mother who says she just needs a hand to get things together. I have resigned myself to the fact that my mother will never change. All the people who have tried to help her have had to suffer if they threw out something. She is trying to sue a community group that helped clean up her three yards full of stuff. This came about as the city filed fines on her for the accumulation of junk. So as part of a court order they came out and cleaned up. I warned the group that my mother was a hoarder. They said they could deal with it. They were supposed to organize stuff as throw away, sell or keep. That would have take a lifetime because to her old McDonald coffee cups are not trash. Given the option of her stuff or her family, stuff won. I was hoping somebody would have found a way to deal with this but I am resigned to the fact that unless the person wants to change and seeks counseling and in my moms case drug therapy so she can let things go without turning into the hulk that there is nothing to do about the problem. The hoarder seems to dominant. In fact I feel like I have enable my mom. I just cant stand to see how she lives. We could be taking trips to Europe instead of dealing with her three storage units of junk. It is like watching someone starve to death when there is food but worse. NEVER touch a hoarders junk unless you are prepared for there emotional response!
Lynn S
Posted: 21 April 2013 - 06:54 PM
My mother is also a hoarder and does get defensive about her things too. The rule is for a hoarder's things is "Don't touch their things". My mother said the same thing about moving out if you don't like the situation.

The point is only if she is willing to get help, then and only then she will get help. Otherwise there is nothing you can do. My mother will also go out to the trash and bring stuff back into the house.
She was never fined or in the paper for having too much stuff though.

The only thing you can do is if she shows positive changes, encourage that and support her that way.

Read my posts of Why Hoarders Hoard, and How to help a Hoarder.

The only way a hoarder will change is if they change mentally and discover that they really want to change.
To them it's a lot of mental challenges, a feeling of security, fear of losing their security blanket. Also getting things makes them feel better even though they have no room to put new things.
I was planning on moving out until I lost my job, but now have to just deal again.
Posted: 21 April 2013 - 06:19 PM
One other thing, she was in the paper in 2011 for having too much junk. The city council ordered her to clean up the yard and put a fine on her house because of it.
Posted: 21 April 2013 - 06:17 PM
Hey Folks,
I just moved with a hoarder. She said she wants help getting her house back on order. I did nt realize how bad she was. There is clutter every where. The other lady who lives here, threw out a gallon of expired milk, and got yelled at for it. She will go through the trash and get things. The house stinks from cat pee. Advised me that if I dont like it, than I can find some where else to move to. The clutter is every where and she wont let anyone in to repair the house or help clean things up. I care about her, when I mention some thing, she gets defensive and calls me a hoarder too. Please give me some advice.
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