Tuesday, June 21

Hmmm...how did I get on the topic of Hoarders?

Oh my...another one of "those" posts... As I type this - I have no idea what the next word will be. A topic...a topic...what am I typing about? A dream I had? - not really. Although...

I did have a dream last night that was remarkably exhausting. It all started with my innocent channel surfing last night. I saw a pile of stuffed animals and paused for a moment. Only a moment. And then I was sucked in...to an episode of...Hoarders.

As Carlton would say..."oh mylanta". This is too much.

Each episode of Hoarders (I believe this is the third time this has happened to me...) follows the stories of two people. Once I watched about a guy who hoarded recyclables. And unlike a lot of hoarders - his hoard was meticulously clean. Not so with one of the ladies last night. Bless her heart, this woman was living in a chair in her den. No heat. No running water. She had to climb over a mountain of garbage to get to said chair. In the interest of you not losing your breakfast or lunch...I am going to refrain from expounding on what "no running water" means in a house. A'ight?

The other lady last night had thousands....many thousands...of stuffed animals and dolls. She had bought them at thrift stores and yards sales. She was rescuing them. Her happy little friends.

I think that the thing that draws me in...and the thing that makes me so uncomfortable...is that these folks are so terribly unhappy and alone. And I empathize with them. I wanted so badly to give the doll lady a hug. She bought herself friends. It is hard to explain. But I am deeply moved by their stories.

And I think that both the show and the Hoarders website do a pretty good job of stressing the importance of working WITH the person affected - and the importance of aftercare.

I know a hoarder. And no, I'm not talking about my Dad. He is a pack rat, but by no means is this a manifestation of mental illness. That would be a whole other post entirely! But seriously - there is a person whose hoarding is known to me. I would not wish to be more revealing than that. This is an immensely private situation. But I know that her family attempted to "fix" the situation by clearing out the house in a huge weeklong purge. And I would be willing to stake my life on the fact that the hoard has returned.

If you only treat the symptom - or can't get to the heart of the matter - then you may have only made the situation worse. And so, even though I feel sure that this person could be endangering her life...what do I do? I'm not close to the family. I don't want to intrude and make the situation worse.

It is hard to imagine two shows more different than Hoarders and {wait a second - I was going to say "Inside the Actor's Studio"...but that is actually on Bravo...A&E...isn't that supposed to stand for Arts & Entertainment? Rabbit Trail alert!!! - just scanned through the lineup of shows on A&E. Holy cow. Seriously? What is artistic or entertaining about this stuff: Parking Wars? Dog the Bounty Hunter? Gene Simmons Family Jewels? Oh Arts! Oh Entertainment! Wherefore art thou??

Ok...clearly...that is one beaten hamster. But at least not squashed like those cats in that one lady's house.




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