Has anyone ever had to deal with a hoarder before?

posted 3 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 3
375 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

Oh man. My mom married a hoarder twelve years ago. Their bliss lasted about 2 years, now their marriage is a disaster. She is a very clean and organized person and she just SUFFERS with it. She didn’t realized he was a hoarder until they bought a new home shortly after the wedding and moved in together and he moved all his sh*t in and freaked out about throwing anything out. He is very controlling and dominant and she is super passive. She has become so depressed she is like a human zombie. It is so horrible to watch. 

My advise to you (for what i’ts worth) is to address this early and be strong. This is NOT normal and if it makes you uncomfortable it needs to be taken care of. Professional help is a must. I am soooo sorry you are in this situation. It really is hard because my stepdad has so many wonderful qualitiies, but the way he chooses to live is really not compatible with my mom. I really hope your husband can work with you to resolve his issue. I am sending you positive vibes to be strong, as I can really understand your situation. 

Post # 4
3344 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: January 2000

@buggiesmom:  Please don’t marry him. This kind of life is miserable.

Post # 5
223 posts
Helper bee

Ugh, my mother. Living with her was a nightmare. We had a dining room table, but you couldn’t see it under all of her boxes and papers. We had a closet, but we couldn’t fit our clothes in there. I had a mattress – for her to put boxes on. We moved around a lot, and I honestly cannot tell you if certain places had carpet or wood or tile, because the floors were always completely covered with junk. Our garages were never for cars, they were for hoarding more.

Whenever we would move houses, there would be the suggestion that she just take some of the boxes and throw them away, to make moving easier and the new house clean. But she wouldn’t, because “What if something important is in there?!” We heard a lot of “Oh, I’ll go through it and throw out whatever’s not important” – never happened.

She now has a two bedroom apartment, the spare room is for her boxes and she has 4 “junk drawers” in the kitchen. She tells people the room is filled with my stuff, but it’s not (I haven’t lived with her for 3+ years, and I took all of my belongings with me). And growing up, she always told people her kids were the reason there was junk all over. Awful.

You don’t want to live that way. It’s horrible for so many reasons. He’s not insane, but he does need help and he does need to realize that. As the years go on he will just gather more and more stuff. And what happens when one room just isn’t enough to shove it all in? It’s embarrassing to live that kind of life, where you have rooms in your house you don’t want people to go in. :/

Post # 6
664 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@buggiesmom:  so sorry you’re going through this. My mom slowly became a hoarder. It got worse when all us kids moved out. So yes I know how hard it is to talk to hoarders about their stuff. Your SO needs to understand that him going to therapy doesn’t make him insane. As to how to convince him to go, I wish I had some way to help but I don’t :(. We have that same problem with my mom.

 Maybe there’s a way to through to him and make him understand everyone can benefit from therapy. Schedule an appointment with a therapist for both of you so you’ll be with him as well. Hopefully it’ll make a trip to the therapist less daunting for him.  

The sooner he sees a therapist the better because I guarantee you his hoarding will leak to the rest of the house sooner than you think. 

Good luck! 

Post # 9
1465 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2015

@buggiesmom:  My dad married a hoarder this past summer. They lived together for over two years before hand. He knows, I know, everyone freaking knows. She won’t admit it though. They have a huge 6 bedroom house, it is literally filled with crap. Her excuse is that she owns a bar, so she gets things for the bar (i.e. 150 chairs) that don’t fit in the freaking bar so she takes them home and now she has had 100 chairs – she sold 50 of them – in the “formal” haha living room for the last 8 months. The worst part is that my little brothers have to live there, they are 8 and 10. It kills me every time I go over there.

She is in complete denial. My dad just stays in their bedroom 90% of the time. Don’t let their relationship become yours. Therapy is a must. If you don’t help him get over his hoarding behavior now, it will snowball until you no longer allow people in your house like his mother.

Post # 10
615 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

my parents are hoarders. They just bought a house and claim that they are going to make it nice.

There’s a whole room dedicated to the sh*t that they hoard.

Now they feel a little guilty and kinda want to organize it. There was a hotel that went out of business and was selling all their armoirs, and my dad wanted to buy 8 armoirs to stick all the crap into the armoirs…

Lets buy more crap to organize the crap we have.

Post # 11
1465 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2015

@elliptical2013:  This. This is what my (now) step-mom does. She literally paid $1 mil for this beautiful house, and now you can’t even see the floor. I feel gross going over there to eat. They live like animals or like they’re in a frat house. She also has “plans” for EVERYTHING. There’s an empty, broken 100 gallon fish tank in the living room, it’s been there for two years but they have PLANS. It’s incredibly frustrating to watch.

Post # 12
1888 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

My FI is very messy, but it’s more because cleaning was never really high on his list. Now that we are moving in together (one week to go!) we had to negotiate things.  I was worried, but this weekend he really stepped up the game in terms of moving stuff, sorting stuff, and just plain throwing stuff out (the entire bedroom is almost completely clear in two days!).  Here’s hoping he keeps up the steam.

If you are going to do it, be under no delusions that it is going to be easy or quick. I still figure that after we move in I’ll do most of the cleaning, slowily transtionting into a more 50/50 arrangement (esp. since right now I’m not working steadily and he is).  It’s all a matter of negotation and time. 

Post # 13
1311 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 1994

My father is a hoarder. We have no relationship because of it. With hoarders comes a lot of other problems. Lack of regard for other people and extreme selfishness to name a couple. If this does not get remidied quickly, it will only get worse, sorry to say. You have to come up with a plan of action, and fast. Insist he gets into couseling and on medication. And absolutely insist he deal with this crap NOW. Do not allow him to bring anything else into the home. Not a single thing. Do not worry about being nice or hurting his feelings over it. Otherwise, you will live tormented as long as you stay with him. Hoarders are given an inch and take a mile, and often take advantage of people and situations, and emotionally manipulate people. If the problem gets worse, do yourself a favor and leave him. You deserve better.



Post # 14
1041 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

 I can understand that he grew up learning that this was normal. I also understand that telling him to get rid of his things may feel like a personal attack on him and the things he values. It can be very difficult combining lives and “stuff”, but marriage needs to have compromise. I hope he understands that. Maybe he needs some time to cool down and realize you could be right. Maybe he needs other people to see that this isn’t normal and it’s not just you wanting to have your things there and not his. If he feels too guilty throwing away his old toys, are they in any condition to be donated? Maybe he would feel better if he wasn’t throwing them away, but giving them to someone who might have use or them. He could keep one or two that meant a lot to him. Otherwise, could you two rent a storage unit for keeping extra stuff that is sentimental to him, but that you don’t need around the house? (Of course I don’t know exactly how much stuff he really has.) I hope there is a way for you both to be happy.

Post # 15
671 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

@buggiesmom:  Yeah a relative who ruined the family. I’m not related to him as far as I’m concerned. This sounds like extra junk that people keep, like books etc and kid toys? Maybe that can be worked on. My relative is worse.. newspapers, car parts, bike parts, etc etc… Piled to the ceiling. I don’t have much advice, but you have my sympathy. 


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