Hoarding is a serious mental illness - LONG
After 8 years of chaos, I finally decided to divorce my husband. He moved out 3 weeks ago. PLEASE don't anyone say they you sorry - this is GREAT news for me and our sons!!!! We have been married 23 years but the last 8 have been a living he!!.
I rented a 10x10 storage unit and moved about 1000 lbs of his clutter into it - the stuff I knew he would want. I went through the kitchen and basically boxed up everything but a few cans and a few spices. He did all the shopping and cooking; I knew he would think of the kitchen items as "his." I also didn't want the stuff he had infused with his negative energy in my house any longer. I gave it all to him. I bought a 3 saucepan set, an iron skillet, a muffin tin, a cookie sheet, set of mixing bowls and 2 frying pans. I bought a set of dishes and glasses. That's ALL that's in our kitchen right now and the boys and I LOVE IT!!!
I called for bulk trash pickup and cleaned out the garage and breezeway. His hoarding was just awful. I had a trash pile about 8'tall, 12'long and 8'wide. That is AFTER the trash pickers took everything they wanted. I can now park my car in the garage! The boys can get to their bikes!
My dad and I worked on the basement all day yesterday. Trash pile is growing but the trash pickers seem to like most of it - mostly it disappers in a few hours. We will finish up the basement today. That just leaves the attic and DH didn't take much stuff up there. The attic is mainly Xmas decorations and out of season kids clothes.
All of this has shown me that hoarding is a TRUE and SERIOUS mental illness. Actually I've known that for 8 yeras but this compressed clean-out has shown it even more. I have found 24 - TWENTY FOUR - flashlights scattered in all of this, 9 coolers, 30 bags of charcoal, 14 bags of lawn fertilizer, 12 lawn rakes, COUNTLESS of the same screwdriver, pliers, wrench, etc. Multiples of items that don't make sense to have multiples of. Dozens of those folding nylon "bag" chairs. Things I didn't even know we had!
He had a compulsion to keep buying even when he knew he didn't need - or even want - the items. It is actually very sad. It's like a visual example of everything that has gone wrong in the past 8 years. I also found out he ran up my Visa card to $3,900 in one month before he left. It was -0- the month before. Now I have to pay that off.
I took my 2 teens to their first counseling session last week. The counselor asked me to sit in on the first session. DS#2 told him "Our house is so nice now - it's so clean! Mom is working hard to get all the clutter out so we can live in our house!" DS#3 has his first session on Monday - it's a practice where one psych sees teens, another sees kids.
I am doing this massive purge for 3 reasons:
1. To clear out the "stuckness" that has decended on my family for the last 8 years
2. To give DH all the stuff he valued so highly - even above his family
3. As a symbolic cleansing gesture for our home.
Once the divorce is final & the deed is in my name, the boys and I are going to paint every room and then have a housewarming party. My friend who is a spiritual director is going to conduct a home blessing/energy cleaning ceremony during the housewarming party.
Long story short - DS#2 hit it right on the head. My sons and I will now be about to live - really LIVE - in our home!