Who Are Hoarders?
People Who Hoard:
- Generally start hoarding in childhood or adolescence. Hoarding behavior increases in severity as the person grows older. Oftentimes, hoarding behavior is triggered by a traumatic event.
- May be social outside the house but generally do not invite others into their residence.
- May be seen frequenting stores and garage sales, flea markets, tree lawns, QVC, catalogs, dumpsters, etc.
- Exceed their capacity to manage their lives. They have trouble paying attention, organizing and making decisions.
- Believe that all things they acquire have a beautiful or useful purpose.
- Experience major anxiety and resistance when they are faced with the need to discard items.
- Family members are generally not effective at eliminating the behavior. Most common reactions of family members are embarrassment and disgust.
- Can be helped to manage their hoarding behavior, but total elimination of the problem is unlikely.
- Experience pain in clearing out their stuff, which feels worse than any gain that could result from human relationships.