WHAT IS HOARDING
Hoarding is the persistent difficulty discarding or parting with possessions, regardless of their actual value.
The behaviour usually has harmful effects—emotional, physical, social, financial, and even legal—for a hoarder and family members.
SOMEONE WHO HOARDS MAY EXHIBIT THE FOLLOWING BEHAVIOUR:
- Inability to throw away possessions
- Severe anxiety when attempting to discard items
- Great difficulty categorizing or organizing possessions
- Indecision about what to keep or where to put things
- Distress, such as feeling overwhelmed or embarrassed by possessions
- Suspicion of other people touching items
- Obsessive thoughts and actions: fear of running out of an item or of needing it in the future; checking the trash for accidentally discarded objects
- Functional impairments, including loss of living space, social isolation, family or marital discord, financial difficulties, health hazards
While most hoarding involves objects, some hoarders “collect” animals. The Huron-Perth Hoarding Coalition works with appropriate agencies in these circumstances as well.