Unfortunately an attempt by family and friends to help is not always we received. So, if you’re going to try to help, keep these things in mind:
– Change cannot be forced. Until the hoarder is ready to change, there is very little that can be done. The hoarder must have a true desire to change.
– Unless the hoarding is resulting in placing someone else in jeopardy, then it’s their right to choose to live that way.
– Simply cleaning out the home without the hoarder receiving treatment for the underlying problem will fail. The hoarder will go right back to collecting things. Without treatment, a clean out of the home might actually result in increasing the feelings of attachment, which could lead to an even worse case of hoarding.
When the hoarder does become willing to talk about the problem and is ready to do what is necessary to start changing, be sure to follow these guidelines:
– Show sympathy and provide lots of encouragement.
– Always treat them with respect and dignity.
– Never be judgmental or argumentative.
– Have patience and remember these are real feelings of anxiety the hoarder is attempting to deal with.
– Never, ever dispose of anything without first getting the approval from the hoarder.