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Thread: Hoarder with a FW

  1. #1
    Super Member quiltingshorttimer's Avatar
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    Hoarder with a FW

    I live in a rural county and there was a recent article in the newspaper about a local woman who has become such a hoarder that the town she lives in is seeking to condemn her house--so stuffed with things that the inspector was hitting his head on the ceiling trying to walk through! Can't use the kitchen or the bathroom cause can't find the appliances or facilities!

    What struck me was that she doesn't see herself as a hoarder at all--a former art teacher that describes this mess (she's living in her car mostly cause the house is to stuffed and filthy) as her collection of art supplies

    But then I saw one of the pictures of a room with papers and trash and "stuff" stacked almost half way up the wall--and in the corner was a Featherweight case peeking into the picture! Some one needs to rescue that!

  2. #2
    Power Poster lynnie's Avatar
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    what a shame
    put off till tomorrow what you can do today, and if you procrastinate long enough, you may never have to do it.

  3. #3
    Super Member DOTTYMO's Avatar
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    If only there was a quick fix for the brain in these situations. This is a psycological problem and the poor lady needs that help not kicking her out of her home and throwing everything away because people think that is the answer.
    if no one resumes the FW it will be skipped.
    Finished is better than a UFO

  4. #4
    Super Member Battle Axe's Avatar
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    I have experience with that type of "hoarder". It was an Aunt by marriage. Poor lady lived in her car as that was the only place to sit down. The bathtub was filled with National Geographics. Her two daughters came and hauled bag after bag out of the house. They compromised on putting them in a shed, not throwing them out, in case she needed something. I guess she hauled half of it back in the house. She was the most talented seamstress I had ever seen, and one of the best gardeners too.

  5. #5
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    Omg....I just can't phantom how this happens. I watched a few of the episodes on tv and just could not understand how......doesn't the brain connect with the eyes to actually see the situation. What I could not understand when watching on tv.....the person looked clean...how if the entire abode was a pile of "stuff", could persson survive, eat, bathe, use "facility"?

  6. #6
    Super Member Wanabee Quiltin's Avatar
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    I have a friend who is a hoarder and this is a mental illness, they place value on each thing they bring into their home because they can't feel love from people like they can with objects.

  7. #7
    Super Member KalamaQuilts's Avatar
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    'Rescue' is the first step toward hoarding. we see it here quite often

  8. #8
    Super Member AZ Jane's Avatar
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    Sadly, many hoarders have neglected the housing to the point it must be condemned. I do have to say, as much as I feel for them, when I see the shows in commercials, I go clean something.
    Better to do something imperfectly, than nothing perfectly.
    Done is better than perfect.

  9. #9
    Super Member wendiq's Avatar
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    I once knew a lady like this and she had a teaching degree.....was very smart and stylish, but she hoarded.....Her house was so full that it was soon going to be impossible to move in. I am not sure what ever happened to her. I moved away and never kept in touch. She was a lovely person.....just a very strange hoarder........I was invited to her house once and was shocked! I had no idea what I was walking into. Piles and piles of STUFF! She had plans for all of it......ahem.....oh well, to each his own I guess. I thought it was rather sad.........

  10. #10
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    In some ways I can understand the mind set what a hoarder goes through. I caught myself becoming a hoarder & one day a light bulb went off. I finally ask myself what the heck was I doing & it was my choice to hang onto things or let go. I finally started boxing up & donating lots of stuff. In my case, it was a mind set I put myself in & I realized what I was doing before it got as bad as most. Except for fabric that is. I'm still a fabric hoarder. LOL

  11. #11
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    Boy, i'm glad I am not a hoarder. i recently gave up and felt something just let go. i decided to sell my antique furniture. no sense on holding on to it. no one else loves it but me. perhaps hoarders love their things and just need to finally be able to let go.

  12. #12
    Super Member quiltingshorttimer's Avatar
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    As a licensed mental health professional, I wish it was just a matter of clearing stuff out. Hoarding has been recently added to the DSM-V (the diagnostic manual for insurance purposes used in the USA)--and it is often treated medically much like clinical depression.

    This situation is so sad cause she's educated, her relatives have tried to haul stuff out(she hauls it back or finds more to add to it), the house is non-livable now--front door falling off, stuff piled all around the house, vermin, etc (she said is used to have a snake in the house that just moved in and wish a black snake would move in again to take care of vermin!). She is unable to bath, uses businesses' bathrooms (although most are resisting on that as she smells so badly), and is wearing clothing typically seen on homeless(dirty & layered). She obviously needs mental health support but unfortunately resources for that in our state have dried updue to our state budget being almost bankrupt because of tax cuts to businesses.

  13. #13
    Super Member mike'sgirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AZ Jane View Post
    Sadly, many hoarders have neglected the housing to the point it must be condemned. I do have to say, as much as I feel for them, when I see the shows in commercials, I go clean something.
    Oh me too! It makes my skin crawl to think of living that way and I get anxious and start cleaning. Poor people!

  14. #14
    Super Member Jan in VA's Avatar
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    Hoarding is a disorder in which many of those affected are replacing a significant loss (to them) by holding onto things where they were unable to hold onto the person they lost. Very sad, but much like those who become addicts.

    Jan in VA
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  15. #15
    Senior Member ChrisDee's Avatar
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    Very, very sad. I too, become attached to my belongings and periodically I have to force myself to box up my treasures and donate them, hoping they will find their way to someone who will treasure them like I did.

  16. #16
    Super Member DebbieJJ's Avatar
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    We had a neighbor that hoarded everything from empty gallon milk jugs to newspapers to empty envelopes. She filled her house AND her car. When her car got so full, she would park it and go buy another one to drive and fill up. When her house got full, she lined the milk jugs up on the hood and bumpers of the car. My brother is a mechanic, and once she needed some work done (wanted an expensive repair done free, but my brother said nope). Anyway, when he tried to get in the driver's seat, he couldn't because of all the paper and stuff on the floorboard, then couldn't push the seat back because of all the junk behind the seat. She only had a dinner-plate sized hole in the windshield to see out of, but she never had an accident. I remember as a child going into their house because her youngest daughter was a good friend. At least there was a path from one room room to another, but you couldn't see over the stacks of junk on either side of the path. I don't know if she was a sewist, but I'll bet there were some sewing machines in there. We were living in another state when she passed of cancer a few years ago.
    A happy person is not a person in a certain set of circumstances, but rather a person with a certain set of attitudes. ~Hugh Downs
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by lynnie View Post
    what a shame
    Well said!!!

  18. #18
    Super Member coopah's Avatar
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    My dad grew up in town during the Great Depression. He said he wore holes in his pants and the holes were mended and the mended parts got holes and those were mended. He collected a lot of stuff, but most had a way to be re-purposed. Not that he always did that. It was security for him to know how to fix or build anything and have stuff to use that he already had. At least he wasn't out in the bars or any of that. I miss him and his stuff. He never let his stuff into the house, but had 4 buildings of it. He always knew where things were, too.
    "A woman is like a tea bag-you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water." Eleanor Roosevelt

  19. #19
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    I shared a horse barn with a woman that the info was shared with me that she was a hoarder. Her behaviors led me to believe the info was true. She has a college degree plus a Masters. She also works in the Mental Health field, met her husband thru her work, he has mental health issues and cannot work. Scares me, her job includes teaching/rehabbing persons living and daily skills. A woman with obvious mental health issues teaching others with disabilities to function ??? Scares the crap out of me. I left the barn due to her ability to latch on to things that were not hers. She was just Creepy!!

  20. #20
    Senior Member Clmay's Avatar
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    Halo, I agree with what you wrote. I too have a bad habit of collecting items that I might use one day and the day never comes. When my daughter comes over, she has been telling me how much better the house looks. I have had to clean and when I clean, I ask myself, do I need this? what for? If I can't give a logical answer, it gets packed up and off to the good will it goes.
    Never put off what you can do today, because tomorrow may never come.

  21. #21
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    I am a collector(ahem), and am working very hard to let go of things. I believe it is the result of being divorced and had to fight for every little thing I got. Just hard to let go....but have things really neat and everything is on shelving and in boxes or totes in basement. House is very neat and not cluttered. Perhaps on the verge of being a hoarder????

  22. #22
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
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    My husband and I both collect a lot. But I also see the difference between the things we collect and display and enjoy and the stuff that just gets stuck away and kept because no one wants to clean out. I just cleaned my junk room out last winter. I bought shelves to keep stuff on and found a lot of stuff I just didn't want anymore and tossed out.

    I have a ton of antiques (furnture, dishes, collectibles and vintage signs). I"m the only one that likes a lot of it but that's okay because it brings me joy to drink my coffee or tea out of a vintage cup or eat off 100 year old dishes. That's worth having the things around to me.
    Patrice S

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  23. #23
    Super Member sewingsuz's Avatar
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    Yes, it may happen because of a death or some other tragic thing that has happened in their life and they cannot live and this is how they cope. You can get help but I think a lot of times they don't think it is a disorder.
    Suzanne
    Asking a seamstress to mend is like asking Picasso to paint your garage.

  24. #24
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    It's sad and it is a psychological disease, where they feel if they give anything away it will be disastrous. My DH thinks I'm a hoarder of fabric, and maybe I am, but we can move about freely. It's very sad though and has to be tough on her family. I had a friend who qualified as a hoarder, and although I never saw her house, I was told that there were pathways of "stuff" and her daughters could not help her, so it was tough when she passed away in her 80's. It happens more than people realize.

  25. #25
    Super Member patski's Avatar
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    It is so sad when people lose control and hoard. I understand it is part of OCD and mental illness issue.
    Patski
    always learning

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