The Paper Collector

This is a bedroom piled almost to the ceiling with used paper towels and toilet paper.  Three rooms within this house were in this same condition, creating tremendous odors and a significant health hazard. Read more…

OCD Hazard

“Elaine” is a 90-year-old woman who had lived alone for over 15 years in her trendy two story town home in an upscale Chicago neighborhood.  She was diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder that manifested as a need for her to keep, or “hoard,” all of her garbage. Read more…

The Hoarding Dilemma: When and How to Help

The problem of hoarding has recently garnered a great deal of attention, particularly since becoming the subject of an A&E television show. It is not, however, a new problem. It predates the Depression (and is not caused by Depression Era upbringings), has been documented all over the world, and is believed to afflict 15 million Americans to a clinically significant degree. Read more…

Weeding the Garden: Thinning Personal Property in the Second Half of Life

In its own unique way, personal property tells the story of life.  The first half of life is about acquiring as much personal property as we can reasonably house, and the second half is about trying to get rid of it all. Read more…

Hoarding: When is an Alternate Decision Maker a Prudent Choice?

The prevalence of hoarding is underestimated in our society, as is the impact to the person, their families, and to the community. Is hoarding an illness? Many say “yes”, therefore an understanding of this phenomenon is essential when working with those afflicted. Read more…