After receiving more than 223 comments (!) on that first post, another post popped up this week highlighting two exceptional resources for those struggling with hoarding. One had been on my radar for awhile, but the other is completely new.
The first one is the new book, Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things.
I find it fascinating that Stuff is the product of more than 10 years of work by Randy O. Frost and Gail Steketee, the authors of the book.
In one review with TIME, Frost shared:
All of us have special relationship with things and that relationship is in some ways magical. We get carried away with those attachments and — while that could get more of us into trouble with our possessions — most of us are able to decide when an object begins to interfere with our life. We do something about it at that point. That’s the thing that’s so troublesome for people who hoard: when the object begins to interfere, they simply put up with it rather than deal with the item.
This leads to the second resource: the International O.C.D. Foundation’s new online hoarding which launched last month.
Whether you are dealing with hoarding in your own life, or if you know someone who is, this site provides the most comprehensive database I have seen. What I like most about it is how much of the material comes from professionals who have dedicated their lives to helping people.
It’s estimated that there are anywhere from 6 to 15 million hoarders living in U.S., but the reality is the total number is not yet known. What is known is that hoarding is finally getting some much needed attention.
Hoarding was an issue way before A&E’s Hoarders or the myriad of other shows started shining a light into these cluttered closests, but the book’s widespread popularity and the depth of the database made me realize that this is not just a passing fascination.
Even if the media attention wanes, the systems that have been put in place and the services that are being offered to help those who need it will not. There will be National Association of Professional Organizers’ (NAPO) members to help get anyone organized. And of course 1-800-GOT-JUNK? will be ready to take it all away.
My hope is that these shows and books and task forces and organizations will have such an effect that one day we can look back and see how many millions have been helped and are living clutter-free lives.