Hoarding is a condition whereby one can’t part with their items even after they have exhausted their use. A person who does hoarding finds it difficult to dispose of items and they keep on buying or acquiring more items. Hoarders tend to keep items that at times are valueless. Items that people find no use for. Some hoarders go as far as keeping so many animals like cats and not wanting to donate or give them to animal protection. Hoarding is considered to be a disorder caused by anxiety or being distressed. Many people with a hoarding condition do not accept that they have the problem. And that’s why you need to learn more about hoarding cleanup.
For there to be a cleanup, the person has to be ready and willing to be part of the process. There are a lot of precautions when considering how to help a hoarder overcome their condition. Hoarders do not know how to differentiate having clutter in the house from hoarding. They tend to keep even the tiniest of receipts from stores. At times the hoarding behavior goes even outside to their yards causing an unhealthy living environment for both the hoarder and the neighbors.
Before a hoarding cleanup, there are some considerations that have to be in place. This is to ensure the process is safe for both the hoarder and the people involved in the process. The following are guidelines on the dos and don’ts during a hoarding cleanup.
Connect With the Individual
Get to understand someone’s state of mind. What actually made them be in that particular state? You have to first get to understand the individual and offer them moral support and be understanding of their nature.
Talk to the Hoarder about Situation
Before you begin the hoarding clean-up, you have to talk to the hoarder about their current living situation. Explain to them how living in such an environment is not healthy for them and they are at risk as they are in a hazardous place. Keep following up on the matter with the hoarder until they fall through and accept the condition they are in.
Seek Professional Hoarding Cleanup Help
If the hoarder refuses your help with cleaning their house, it is advised that you seek the services of a professional psychologist who specializes in hoarding. With the help of a professional, they will see the sense of their current situation and accept help.
Talk to the hoarder about their safety in their home. Explain to them how their hoarding condition is making it unsafe for them to live in their own homes. Try explaining to them that if they consider reorganizing the clutter and hoarded items in the house, they can create a safe environment for them.
If you want a hoarder to let go of some of their items during the cleanup process, be sure to encourage and promote them to donate some of their stuff to homeless shelters and some other charity organizations. This will motivate them in getting rid of most of the unwanted items as they will feel they are being helpful to other people.
Hoarding is considered to be a mental disorder caused by anxiety. It is important that during the process, you should not get angry at the hoarder for such behavior. You have to consider their emotions and be very supportive of them. This is so that they can be free to talk around you.
Belittle their Items
Never undermine a hoarder’s possession saying that it is worthless or that they don’t need it. To a hoarder, every item they possess is of great value and that’s why they have a hard problem disposing of them. If you belittle their items, then it is likely that you will not assist with their situation. Do not mishandle any of their possessions by saying that you want to throw them all away.
Make Fun of their Living situation
Never make fun of a hoarder during a clean-up. You have to consider their mental health state and know how much making fun will damage them instead of helping them. Doing this will distract you from achieving the cleanup process. They will be afraid and ashamed to open up to you.
Touch their Items
During the process of hoarding cleanup, it is important that you do not touch the hoarder’s items in the beginning. You need to let the hoarder pick out the items that they see fit to dispose of. What you need to do is help the hoarder identify the items they have fewer attachments to.
Ask Why They Hoard
Asking a hoarder why they hoard directly is rude to them. You have to first try and understand what led to their current situation before you actually get them to agree to the hoarding cleanup process. If you have to ask then you have to let them trust and know that you are there to help them. Most importantly, this answer will be helpful in the healing process so ask it in a very respectful and kind way.
The above are a few of the dos and don’ts that can guide you if you are about to help a hoarding friend overcome this habit in a safe way. Nonetheless, be sure to seek the services of a hoarding cleanup service for a more effective process.