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Hoarding as a disorder is real, not just a reality TV show

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Burt Gummer, Dec 31, 2011.

  1. Burt Gummer

    Burt Gummer Portland Completely Out of Ammo

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    My friend is a classic example.

    Poor guy. His garage door springs are broke now and since there is not 2" of room in his 2-3 car garage he can't even get to the door to fix it.

    We'll have to force the door openly manually somehow from the outside. He has thousands of lbs of junk in there. Of course to a hoarder, every item is precious and valuable.

    I've even offered to get 3-4 friends together, get a 40-yard dumpster delivered to clean all the crap out but I think he'd rather off himself than let that happen.

    He has OCD and spends many hours weekly burning DVDs and CDs and has tens of thousands of them standing everywhere in his house. Hundreds of film cans. Dozens of projectors - old crap 8mm. Old, broken video games. Four vehicles he hasn't driven in months of years, but won't sell, won't insure, won't properly maintain.

    Amazingly, like an alcoholic (unfortunately he is one of those also) he thinks there is no problem at all.

    Really messed up situation. If the dudes from Storage Wars were bidding on all the contents of his garage (minus a Chevy lifted truck) they'd bid a negative amount to haul it all to the dump. He thinks it is worth Fort Knox.

    Apparently, only .4% of the US population are considered to be serious hoarders like my friend. So, except for the TV show, most people are unaware of it.
     
  2. Burt Gummer

    Burt Gummer Portland Completely Out of Ammo

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    I just offered to rent a dumpster and clean all that garbage out of his house. The offer was met with a violent reaction draped in denial. So, offer is open-ended, but the clean up won't happen until his death.
     
  3. MrNiceGuy

    MrNiceGuy between springfield and shelbyville Well-Known Member

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    The show is hard for me to watch.

    I just dont know how someone could live like that.
     
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  4. bruzer

    bruzer Grants Pass, OR Well-Known Member

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    This is only an opinion and in no way expert advice. Seek out real professional help from people properly trained in helping people with hoarding problems. Even with all the help I have been to a couple of estate sales and your right, "clean up won't happen until after death".
    Sent out a prayer for you too. Good luck,
    Mike
     
  5. mrsafeway

    mrsafeway Auburn Member

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    Good luck. I hope it works out for the best.
     
  6. Asp

    Asp Oregon, the promise land. Active Member

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    I don't see how watching something like that is entertainment.
     
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  7. FarmerTed1971

    FarmerTed1971 Portland, Oregon, United States Well-Known Member

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    I just hoard gunz.
     
  8. borrowedsig

    borrowedsig Lincoln, Nebraska Active Member

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    +2
     
  9. Burt Gummer

    Burt Gummer Portland Completely Out of Ammo

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    I may be wrong, but I don't think over-collecting something of value is hoarding. Hoarding is collecting and storing everything, even worthless gunk, and falsely assigning great value to all of it.
     
  10. Mikej

    Mikej Portland Gold Supporter Gold Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    My 85yo mother is somewhat a hoarder. She doesn't really collect all manner of stuff, she just won't throw things out. She's a child of the depression era. She saves scraps of paper for making notes or shopping lists, and has news papers dating bach to at least 1996. Year before last when we went to visit, she's in Midvale Utah, wifey and I were going to get some of the news papers out of the house for her. She was going to stay up all night reading the OBITs, she wasn't going to let us take them to recycle without her reading the OBITs first. She has tins and packaged snacks in in her cupboards from years ago, and canned food that's bulging and Costo sized stuff on the basement shelves that's years old.

    No clothes ever get thrown out, she's probably got stuff from the fifties hanging in closets. Come Christmas time she'll send wifey something she's had and never taken out of the package and worn to her for a gift. She's not as bad as the people on the show, there's still plenty of room to walk around in the hose, most of it anyway.

    Dad passed away last Christmas eve, so, it ain't getting better, that's for sure. We go down for a couple of week visit tommow. It's really tough to see all the stuff stacked in the same places it was a year ago....and more.

    Mike
     
  11. trainsktg

    trainsktg Portland OR Well-Known Member

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    We are having a similar problem with a family member. There is tarp-covered furniture sitting in the driveway (slowly rotting away), so much misc. stuff under the carport that it is unusable for actually parking a car, and trails through the stuff piled in the house. More arrives all the time. Like any addict, there is 'no problem' and so of course nothing changes no matter how many times we talk about it.

    Keith
     
  12. SonicBlue03

    SonicBlue03 Snohomish Well-Known Member

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    Not sure if you have any recourse to have his garage gone through as a health hazard. Not hard for mice to nest in places like that, and then you have the (remote) risk of hantavirus.

    Good luck helping your buddy out - you're right in that it's a very real problem. Known a couple of hoarders and they are very similar-to-identical to your buddy.
     
  13. Burt Gummer

    Burt Gummer Portland Completely Out of Ammo

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    I would never do that, even if it was a possibility. Ultimately how something wants to live is their business. The last thing I would ever do is inflict some government agency on a friend.
     
  14. Asp

    Asp Oregon, the promise land. Active Member

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    Certain lifestyles that have characteristics of hoarding, OCD, ASPD, etc can alienate your ability to be this guy's friend and vice-versa.
     
  15. Burt Gummer

    Burt Gummer Portland Completely Out of Ammo

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    I have always befriended people with issues ever since I was a kid.

    Just talked to him and he is spending the day burning DVDs. Classic OCD. Repetitive, useless behavior. He will add them to the other tens of thousands of DVDs laying all over his house that will never be watched.
     
  16. Asp

    Asp Oregon, the promise land. Active Member

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    Is he willing to get or receive help? If not, nothing really can be done without some kind of legal intervention.
     
  17. coastal steelheader

    coastal steelheader Aberdeen Well-Known Member

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    Dumb question but does he have a lot of films/movies (8mm etc). What about magazines and comics? Same goes with out of print movies on VHS and Dvd,
    If so he could be sitting on a gold mine. Rare ones - especially Sci Fi and Horror are worth good money on Ebay and on the convention circuit. Same goes for old video games. Just in case have a geek friend or two take a look at anything before you convince him to throw it out. You'd be surprised what sells nowdays.

    Edit - I meant making money for your friend. Hope I didn't come across as wanting you or anyone to take advantage of him.
     
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  18. boxer13

    boxer13 PNW Active Member

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    You what the worst episode of Hoarders is?

    All of them.
     
  19. John Gault

    John Gault clackamas county Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I volunteered with a local agency who responded to emergencies and I went into a house once where we literally walked into the home and were standing in two feet of garbage (empty mayonaise jars, trash, etc) There was one very skinny aisle that led from major rooms in the home. There were two rooms that had been completely blocked off by "stuff" and we only realized that the rooms where there by the top 8 inches of the door frames. The person had died in their restroom which had the only place to sit (toilet seat) in the whole house. When the family relative came we noticed that the vehicle being driven had only enough room for a driver, the remainer of the car was filled to the windows, front and back with the same type of trash as the mothers home. It was a really sad story and I can't imagine the cleanup and destruction process of the home that took place after the fact.
     
  20. sbwool63

    sbwool63 Clark County, WA Member

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    i think i have the 'OTHER" problem, my wife and i get rid of anything and everything we arent using and have no use. i literally sell or throw everything away that has no value or use. Proud of my organization skills. i know where everything is at....the store.. if i need it i buy it but dont keep senseless item what so ever. rather buy something again for 10 bucks 5 years later then store bubblegum!