The Official Writing Challenge
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I have a couple of relatives who lived like that. One of them, thank God, is finally open to the idea of throwing and/or giving stuff away.
Heartbreaking. Well written.
Incisive without being cruelly judgemental. Well done.
I had two friends who had this disorder. It made my heart ache each time I visited. Many of my patients in the nursing homes were afflicted and were in misery when they came to live without their huge collection of "items."

Well done,

Thanks for shedding light on this very real and heart wrenching disorder. Prayers...prayers and more...for those affected by this.

Congratulations on your EC Linda. You have painted a great word picture of an all-too-common problem.
Congratulations on your 4th place finish, Linda.

Last year I went to a conference on hoarding. Hoarding is now considered a separate mental health issue and has its own category. Unlike the other anxiety disorders hoarding has some pleasure associated with it (buying new or used items).

The cost is hefty. Just getting the house cleaned up is estimated at 5,000.00 and up. If the sufferer wants treatment, he or she must participate in the clean-up process. Clinicians are finding out that some of the problem has to due with the decision-making process. The person can't decide whether to keep or throw out an item. Also, unless some other person is in the room, he or she is solely focused on one item (No idea that 30 toasters were purchased).

The key is consistency. The person must concentrate on a small area (half of the kitchen table for example) and decide to keep, throw out, or donate each item. This therapist had the person come to her office with a garbage bag full of items to sort because insurance companies rarely pay for a psychologist to visit the person's home.

Usually it is better for a couple when one or both are hoarders because they rarely hoard the same items and encourage purging. Isolation and shame usually result when the hoarding becomes overwhelming.

Thank you for educating others on a devastating issue.
Good job, Linda. Good writing. And what is it about that program Hoarders that keeps me glued to the tv? It both repulses and fascinates me. Congratulations on EC.