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Do you know anyone who is a hoarder? Do you think hoarding is becoming more common?

It seems like I've been hearing a lot about hoarding lately, both on t.v. and in my personal life. I had a great aunt who was a hoarder, we visited her a few times when I was a child. Her house was clean and she had a living room that was cleaned out and open to visit in, but the rest of her house was packed floor to cealing with tight paths in and out of rooms. My step mother told me recently about a rental property of theirs that had been abandoned by the renter after 20 years or so. They went in for the first time in 20 years and said every room of the house was packed 5 ft high with clothing and purses, most new with tags. And my mom just tonight was telling me about an old co-worker of hers. She noticed in the newspaper earlier this week that this lady had died of cancer. She had been my mom's friend for a few years but had all kinds of issues and the friendship ended. This lady was estranged from her family, thought everyone at work hated her and had no friends. My mom said there were 15 people at the funeral. Anyway my mom got talking to the lady's sister (she contacted her family a few months before she died when she could no longer take care of herself and needed help). No one had ever been in her house, she moved in with her sister near the end of her life, and my mom offered to help the sister clean out the house. So they began this enormous project today. She said the house was so packed they couldn't even get in, they had to put a few things outside, and then make a small path and keep putting thins behind them in order to get anywhere in the house. She said the lady hadn't thrown anything away or done dishes in years. My mom took the kitchen duty. She said there were dirty dishes and pots and pans everywhere, that she must have kept buying new things as she dirtied them, then she must have gone on to buying plastic/disposable plates and cups, she also ordered a lot of takeout and never threw away or cleaned the packaging. She said she made her way to the bathroom and the toilet was dry, she flushed the toilet to see what would happen and black water came up. She said the rest of the house was full of clothes and bags of things the lady had bought. She also owned 2 storages units, one of which is packed with clothes, and the other the family hasn't seen yet. She was terribly in debt and her family is just trying to find any items of value in the house that they can sell before they give the house over the bank. Even after working all day she said it doesn't look like they even made any progress and so far the only thing possibly of any value are the clothes and treadmill.


Asked by mybella81 at 8:46 PM on Mar. 20, 2011 in Home & Garden

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Answers (10)
  • I'm not a hoarder in my house, but I love animals. Left to my own devices, I'd end up on Animal Planet, on their hoarding show, with my family going "we don't know what happened. One week, she had 4 animals,and the next week,she had 80!" LOL. I actually like to watch the hoarding shows, makes me feel better about my house. LOL.

    Answer by cbk_mom3 at 9:00 PM on Mar. 20, 2011

  • Hoarding isn't worse, it just have been given a public forum in the form of the latest "reality" television shows.

    Answer by twinsplus2more at 8:48 PM on Mar. 20, 2011

  • Its just got a camera pointed at it now. Those people are mentally ill, I mean truly sick in the brain. That TV show drives me NUTS!! I want to see those hoarders tied up outside while a team of folks clears all that crap out on them or piles it up and burn it on them Just ONCE.

    Answer by vbruno at 8:58 PM on Mar. 20, 2011

  • I like to watch those shows too, it motivates me to clean. I would think it was just tv hype if it weren't for hearing all of these person stories. Not just those 3 I mentioned, but at a party last week some friends of mine started talking about relatives of theirs who were hoarders. Maybe TV brought it to public attention but based on my experience it seems like it must be somewhat common.

    Comment by mybella81 (original poster) at 9:03 PM on Mar. 20, 2011

  • I agree, I always watch those shows and I am terrified of becoming a hoarder! I stopped buying craft supplies because one lady hoarder had 3 rooms full of craft junk and now I clean out my closets once a month (which makes my little sisters VERY happy :)

    Answer by brighteyesbryar at 9:29 PM on Mar. 20, 2011

  • My neighbor is a hoarder. She goes around our complex and looks in the garbages and takes things that she likes and fixes them up. He apartment is full and now she got a storage and is starting to put the older things in there while she still collects things.

    Answer by jnb71584 at 9:31 PM on Mar. 20, 2011

  • Yes my FIL, I will throw stuff away and after my DH takes it to the garbage bin to be picked up ,my fil will go through our trash and get out stuff he wants to keep, now don't get me wrong the man can take nothing & make something but he has so much junk that he has no where to put it and his yard even looks bad, i hate it and we offer to clean up and go through his stuff but he says the same thing everytime, he doesn't want to throw anything away! it is sad!

    Answer by momto4girzls at 9:45 PM on Mar. 20, 2011

  • Yes, I have a friend who is a hoarder. The strange part of it for her is that she and her husband still entertain (bday parties for their 5 kids mostly) but every time, less and less people show up. I mean, there is absolutely no where to sit, you have to climb over piles of clothes and boxes just to get to the bathroom (or anywhere in the house really), and I personally refuse to eat anything that is served because one look into their kitchen and I want to throw up. She and her husband are oblivious to it.

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:06 AM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • The woman we bought our land from is. Her problem is cats. Her late DH was a computer guy. It has taken us more than a year (while clearing forest, building a home/barn, caring for our livestock, etc.) to make even a small dent in what was here. An entire single wide filled with ancient computer parts. A double wide that housed over 100 cats. Cleaning up this type of mess is not for the faint of heart. It's expensive (we're renting one of those industrial dumpsters when we are ready to tackle the doublewide!) and backbreaking work. Some days I honestly feel like we'll never get it all cleaned up.

    Answer by Farmlady09 at 7:58 AM on Mar. 21, 2011

  • I know 2 as a matter of fact. My SIL's mother is one and a close friend is another. I just choose to NOT go to their houses.

    Answer by salexander at 3:42 PM on Mar. 21, 2011