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Compulsive Hoarding?

This is a discussion on Compulsive Hoarding? within the Health and Nutrition forum, part of the General Discussion category; How do you help a family member who hoards compulsively? My father's house is a risk to his health and ...

  1. #1
    RHF Member Allie's Avatar
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    Default Compulsive Hoarding?

    How do you help a family member who hoards compulsively? My father's house is a risk to his health and safety. The volume of mess impedes movement around the house as well as the rooms' function (ie- he can't cook in the kitchen because there's 5 feet of clothes piled upon the stove, or shower in the bathroom because there's stuff stored in the tub, etc). But what really worries me is the health risks that I just know are lurking in every crevice: animal waste, mold, mildew, rotting food, bugs, and God knows what else. I'm also worried that he's going to trip over his stuff and hurt himself. And as for being a fire hazzard, I know he'd never make it out in time. I've tried cleaning his house for him, but I have since come to understand the futility of doing so. The mess just comes back without treating the underlying cause of WHY he lives this way. What can I do to help him? Are there support groups I can steer him towards? Advice and links would be appreciated...

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    RHF Member Amber's Avatar
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    Default Compulsive Hoarding?

    I knew a lady like this and I think she has no idea how bad it is chek out sites below

  3. #3
    RHF Member JAngel's Avatar
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    Default Compulsive Hoarding?

    I went to hoarding and cluttering conference and this is a very hard issue to deal with in mental health. If you can go to your local mental health associate and they can give you great interventions to use with your father. One of the methods I have used with my clients is taking a trash bag to their home and throwing it away with them. That little support can be a step, jjust remember it is a mental illness and it takes time to manage it, be patient. Good luck

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    RHF Member Kara's Avatar
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    Default Compulsive Hoarding?

    I remember an exact show on this. It was on Oprah. It was about people that are in situations like your father. It was very informative, as many people just perceived such people as being dirty... but the issue had nothing to do with that. I have a link to the specific show and it includes resources for help to the both of you. Good Luck!!!http://www.oprah.com/tows/pastshows/200411/tows_past_20041118_b.jhtml

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    RHF Member Maryjane's Avatar
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    Default Compulsive Hoarding?

    My mother has this exact problem. I don't know how to help her either...but please know, that there are others out there.

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    RHF Member FallenAngel's Avatar
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    Default Compulsive Hoarding?

    Just google compulsive hoarding. There are dozens of links out there.

  7. #7
    RHF Member Maryjane's Avatar
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    Default Compulsive Hoarding?

    Either he is unable to do things for himself due to health problems or he just doesn't care. Either way, he is living a miserable existence. How long has he been living alone, and how old is he? Can he afford a regular housekeeper? If so, find one for him. Suggest he have a yard sale and help him organize and do it. Get rid of the junk that's left over. It sounds like he has too much stuff and needs to have his life streamlined. If he is in poor health consider moving him to a nursing home.

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    RHF Member xxBabygirlxx's Avatar
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    Default Compulsive Hoarding?

    call the health department

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