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Jennifer
Posted: 07 March 2014 - 07:31 PM
Thanks for the suggestions Dave.
Actually, the cats are litter trained and I have several boxes they do use. I have been keeping up with the litter, somewhat. I dumped 5 of the boxes 2 weeks ago, however I did not dump the ones in the cat room, and those are disgusting.
The couch I am getting is very cheap, only $75, and I've already committed to buying it. The loveseat I have now is non supportive and hurts my back. The animals haven't peed on the furniture (thank goodness).
I am going to start posting on the daily chat forum now.
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Dave
Posted: 07 March 2014 - 03:55 PM
Hi jennifer,

Thanks for posting back.

Pictures sound "fun". They will allow you to clearly see the progress you have made when you become discouraged.

If you can start with some simpler tasks like putting some trash in trash bags, washing some dishes or cleaning the bathroom sink it will give you some simple starting points to start redeveloping your cleaning habits.

You can see what Dianne says about this one, but I would encourage you to wait a bit on the new couch if you can. It seems to me like if you get a new couch now you will just get a costly new piece of furniture ruined by cat pee and cat hair. You might be able to get a similar effect to help you in moving forward by cleaning off the couch, vacuuming it, and then covering it with a layer of two sheets. It then becomes a no-clutter zone in your living area. It will be relatively easy to remove the sheets to wash until you make final decisions about the animals. If there is cat pee smell in the couch, you could try spraying it with Febreeze to see if that would help on a temporary basis.

Like Dianne said, please keep coming back-don't give up, particularly when a gray fog of overwhelming depression hits. You can post here if you like, you can also make posts in the Daily Chat thread about what's up with you, what you want to do today and so on.

We have all had various difficulties around the core issue of too much stuff and we want you to succeed.
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Jennifer
Posted: 07 March 2014 - 03:14 PM
thanks for the support and suggestions everyone.
My drinking isn't so bad that I get overly drunk and start throwing up or having hangovers the next day, I just get a little buzzed and stop drinking for a little while til I don't feel it anymore. It's just a few hours of escape every once in awhile. I have gotten overly drunk a couple times when I first started doing it, but I dont like it when I over do it, so I found a way to not drink "too much" ..
The cats, well, I have adopted out over 100 cats over the last year, the ones I have now are new rescues. I don't keep them, or even have the desire to keep the cats really. I love my dogs however, I have 4 dogs. 3 of them I have gotten over the last year and am not too attached to them so if needed I can probably let them go too. My Papillon, however, I would never let her go. She's 6 years old and I've had her since she was a baby, and she's like my daughter. And to be honest, she's the only one I like all the time. We took a trip 2 weeks ago just her and myself, it was so nice to just be me and her for a change, without the clutter, the smell and the other animals.
I do not have insurance or the money for therapy or medications but I can get motivated through support and having someone to talk to. I haven't even seen a regular doctor in over 2 years...
I am going to start cleaning tonight after I get my paper done for one of my glasses. I want to take before and after pictures so I can show myself a week from now what it can look like. I want to re-paint the walls so that after I clean the animal stains off of them they will look new (ish) and I am also buying a different couch this coming week. I know I won't be able to do the floors like I want but I figure if I get a job soon I can do it within the next 2 months. I really would like to take my house back and let these animals go.
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Dianne
Posted: 07 March 2014 - 12:34 PM
sorry for little computer glitches making weird extra marks
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Dianne
Posted: 07 March 2014 - 12:28 PM
Jennifer, you are very brave to be so honest!! Admitting to yourself and to us the extent of your problems is a HUGE first step. The fact that you can do that and want to make changes is a wonderful indication that you WILL make good changes. Believe that.

Dave is absolutely right with everything that he said. I've been in the same place with drinking and have seen first-hand many times how that works. It never ends well when it continues.

Anti-depressants for teens and early adulthood can produce suicidal feelings. You were right to get off them at that time. Now that you're 27 the right meds could be very beneficial. There are newer anti-depressants with fewer side effects. It may take some time (weeks) to figure out what will work best for you and that needs to be done with a doctor. Extended talk therapy can be done with a counselor for much less money. If there is a crisis center near where you live they will have recommendations. Or check online for help that is available. Suicidal depression has been a life-long problem for me. I used to resist meds. I have come to see depression as a treatable disease. Healthier living helps but daily meds have their place as well.

How many dogs do you have? Please let most, if not all, of your cats go for adoption. I currently have 6 dogs and 9 cats, down from 20 total. I did rescue also so I understand that you fear they will die in the shelter if you give them up. Are there rescue groups in your area? Most groups and even the shelter are happy to take in a large group of *hoarded animals* (please forgive the phrasing, that is not meant as a personal insult at all) and take extra measures to make sure those animals are placed into loving homes. Most adopters tend to look at an animal from a hoard situation and want to give it extra love. You may want to do that with your dogs also.

Normally I wouldn・t recommend that someone let go of all their animals at once because that can be traumatic. But you have been honest enough to recognize that it・s getting to the point where you don・t even like them anymore. Really Jennifer, if I were with you now I would give you a HUGE hug for admitting that! It also means letting go of an identity that you have built around yourself ~ that of dog and cat rescuer. Been there, done that. It is SO hard to admit you just cannot do any more.

You sound like you are ready to make changes for Jennifer. And at this point you need all your energy to focus on taking good care of yourself. Without the animals you will have less expense that can be used on healthier food for yourself. You・ll have way less messes. I have to go to the dump on a weekly basis with all the poop and used litter from my animals. You・ll have less anger, less stress. You・ll build a new identity for yourself ~ a happier, healthier young woman with tremendous insight and good decision-making skills. You already have amazing insight!

Isolation is perfectly normal for people who have been so wounded in life they just don・t want to deal anymore. I think that can be a good thing at times. We all need to pull back if we can and get a little breathing space. We take a look at what has hurt us, what we are using to cope, and, at some point, we say, enough. What do I need to do to feel better, to make my life better, to begin to appreciate and enjoy what is free in my life (fresh air, sunshine, the sound of birds) instead of slugging through my days waiting to die.

You say you don・t like yourself and gave us reasons why. Well I like you A LOT Jennifer. :)? I like your honesty, your insights, your strength in overcoming so much pain in your life, your reaching out for help, your readiness to change.

As hoarders here we have come to realize it isn・t just our living environments that need work. It・s what got us to this place, whatever level it is, and that there are lots of other things that need to change in the process of cleaning. Many of us need to work on personal care, healthier eating, developing relationships with people, getting control of finances; so much stuff.

I hope you・ll come back. We could learn a lot from you as you make small, daily improvements, Jennifer.

I know you・re gonna be great! :)


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Dave
Posted: 07 March 2014 - 10:48 AM
Jennifer,

Do you have a way to get some counseling appointments to get a new med and some counseling to work with your anger?

The suggestion that you drink to escape the depression indicates that you are not really getting better by being off medication. And with the drinking, I think you are finding something out that I discovered about drinking. I could go out and get falling down, puking up and memory erasing drunk. What I got for that was feeling like c*** the next day, AND all the problems I was trying to escape were still there, AND since I couldn't remember, I didn't know if I did something to add too them.

You have also discovered something else that gets spoken about many times on the site. That is, basically, if you don't change the way you-the clutterer/hoarder thinks, a cleanup doesn't last. That depression and fear are going to continue to sabatoge you until you find a way to get a handle on them.

On top of all that, the anger and the fear from the violent removal of your father from your life are causing chemical reactions in your body that are messing with your ability to back yourself out of the situation you are in. All those animals in your life are not going to bring back or replace your father. We can listen to you and respond to your posts, but we CANNOT replace what meds will do to stabilize the chemical conditions in your body and the effects of face to face talking with a trained counselor.

If you take some steps to work on your mind so it is not continually tearing you down, people here that have been through the things that you have can start making suggestions about steps for actually cleaning up your living conditions.

Are there some low income type clinics in your area that you could go to monday or tuesday to start the process of getting help?

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Jennifer
Posted: 07 March 2014 - 01:07 AM
My name is Jennifer, I am 27 years old and currently attending online college courses ...
all my life i have battled with depression. My mom left when I was 12 and I ended up living with my father and step mom. when i was 17 i was put on anti depressants but took myself off of them at 19 because i was feeling suicidal. I felt a little better when I got off the medications and decided the meds were not the right choice for myself.
I've always been obese too. I eat out of boredom, but I dont eat a lot, I just eat cheap foods cause I dont have much money. These foods are full of fat, starches, and not a lot of good foods like vegetables.
I don't like myself. I don't like the way I look and I don't like the way I treat the animals I am supposed to love and rescue. I take in cats that nobody else wants. Right now, I have 13.
Two years ago my father was murdered in his home. Ever since, I've been very angry, depressed, sometimes I drink to forget that I am depressed so I can have a good time.
I lash out at the animals I have in my home for no good reason... like the cats arent supposed to get on the counters. When they do I scream at them and just get so angry my heart races. I know it's not their fault but I cant help but to scream at them... Im getting to the point where I dont even like them anymore, but I am supposed to be rescuing and if i quit, there will be a lot of them that die in shelters and such.. and i just keep doing it... and it doesnt matter that I dont want to do it anymore. I place them above myself and i can use them as an excuse to why my house looks like it does.. well at least i can excuse it with myself anyway.
Nobody is allowed to come into my house. I have isolated myself from the world in the last year. I dont like that i dont have friends over but i still dont get up and clean or anything, or even take my dogs out to use the bathroom.
I havent cleaned my house since January. There's poop and pee from the animals everywhere as well as my own trash that I havent thrown away. I just dont feel like doing it, and my school work is also suffering. I dont want to study, i just turn stuff in when i want.. I brought my A average down to a C average and one class I am even failing.
I see all this and I want to stop it, I hate it, but I dont know how to stop it. This is not the first time my house has been like this. In the past I've just cleaned it up... it stayed clean for about a week and then I just got overwhelmed all over again.
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