Hoarding might seem strange to anyone who has never wanted to hold onto things that seem to the rest of the world to be useless or excessive. Underneath the desire to hoard there is usually an underlying emotional connection that most people can’t understand. If you are about to partake in a hoarding cleanup, either for yourself or for a loved one, there are things that you should know ahead of time. This will give you the coping skills to work through the hardships and hurdles that can stand in the way of it being a successful path to a new life.
It is About More Than Just “Cleaning Up”
Hoarding is more than not throwing things away. Every object within a hoarder’s house has a specific reason for being there. Although it might seem like a matter of just a basic cleanup, for the hoarder, it means giving up things they hold dear. When you are going through the cleaning process, it is important to know that every little thing might spur debate. So come prepared with an understanding that it is not the same as other types of cleaning. It is an emotional cleaning and is on a whole different level.
If You Try to Move Too Quickly, Things Might Shut Down
If you go into a hoarding cleanup with the notion that things will go quickly and smoothly, think again. There will likely be times when the hoarder will become overwhelmed and halt the entire process. Be patient and realize that when each new item is removed, the hoarder may experience a sense of loss that will slow the process. It might even become frustratingly painful to go through each item. But if you don’t let them feel in control, they will probably shut down the process altogether.
It is Going to Be Highly Emotional and Anxiety-Provoking
When cleaning up a hoarder’s home you will likely experience a lot of emotion coming from the hoarder attached to things that might seem like junk to you. Underlying all the “things” is an emotional attachment that outsiders can’t possibly understand. Be prepared for emotions like anger and anxiety when you are throwing things out. A hoarder has an attachment to both small and big things at a level that you probably don’t understand and won’t see until the cleanup is already in full swing.
Hoarding is something that most people can’t understand from the outside. Hoarders usually have an underlying emotional attachment to things. This means it is vital to be patient, try not to rush them, and not to go too quickly. The hoarder is going to feel remorse at getting rid of the things in their home, regardless of whether you find value in them or not. So be prepared for a long, emotional day – or longer. For more information about this process, let Soil-Away help guide you through your hoarding cleanup situation.