Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Hoarders. . . Way Beyond Just "Clutter"

When I was going through cancer treatment suffice it to say that my apartment was a tad cluttered. My kitchen table was covered in a mound of paperwork, mostly medical bills and unopened mail. I had clothes on the floor of my closet and a bathtub that needed cleaning. I just didn't have the strength at the time nor the inclination. I was physically as well as emotionally exhausted. In my closet there was even a box of Paul's stuff. I couldn't stand to part with it. It included pictures, letters he wrote to me in highschool along with the jean jacket they had to tear off of him when he was being extricated from the car he was killed in.

I understand it is hard to get rid of stuff especially that belonging to those we have lost. I know all about clutter. In a past post I wrote about my clutterbuggin. Hoarding....now that is a different story. I recently caught a glimpse of this show Hoarders. It was deeply disturbing. Have any of you seen it? It is so way beyond clutter. These people literally cannot even walk around in their homes because of all the crap piled up to the ceiling. It borders on dangerous living conditions. Some even disgusting. One woman had dead cat carcases somewhere in the house. Others have cat and dog poop just laying on the floor in the kitchen. One couple was sitting in the middle of their bed eating dinner.

I wonder if these "hoarders" began as clutter bugs like me. It made me feel disturbed but also sad to see people living this way. When it came time for the person to part with all the junk there was a visible emotional reaction to getting rid of anything. I suppose it is not just about the "stuff". It is what the "stuff" represents. That part I could understand but at some point you need to let go of "things" to be able to live.

Have you seen this show? Were you disturbed by it? Have you ever had issues with clutter? Is it hard to part with things that belonged to someone you have lost?

1 comment:

Daria said...

Yes I watch the show and feel to bad for those people. Since my cancer diagnosis ... I've been getting rid of more and more stuff. I'm surprised at some of the stuff I saved. I think we all have a certain tendency to hang on to things too long.