Hoarding Problems: How to Let Go of Clutter Before It Affects Your Marriage



Not being able to get rid of something or compulsively collecting things that they have no use for has long been a source of concern, but hoarding as an actual psychiatric disorder is a fairly new development. You don’t have to have your home being completely ravaged by clutter in order to qualify as a hoarder. If you are worried that your hoarding is going to have an impact on your marriage, these tips will help you say goodbye to things that are taking up space in your house and mind.

Take Photos and Videos

You might be reluctant to let go of certain items because of the memories they hold for you, even if they no longer have any function. An excellent solution to this dilemma is to take photos or videos of these items. You can store these on a media device or save them to social media sites so that you can remember them without being overwhelmed by their intrusive presence in your home.

Do It Gradually

When you first start undoing your hoarding, you shouldn’t try to force yourself to get rid of everything at once. Start with getting rid of one item a day or a week, whichever is more comfortable. This can start with things that are of least importance. Over time, you’ll be disposing of things without thinking of it. Don’t think that you’ll just start throwing things away willy-nilly. If something is important and you can justify keeping it, you’ll find a place for it. You might also give something up while bringing light into someone else’s life. If you have a large number of toys, you might look for where to sell collectible toys.

Consider the Positives

Ending a hoarding habit can be more about gain than it is about loss. You might be letting go of material goods, but you’ll also be gaining freedom from their constant presence in your life. This can be incredibly freeing, and it’s something that can benefit everyone, regardless of whether they’ve been diagnosed as having a hoarding disorder. If a messy home brings anxiety then consider this as a step to gain more peace of mind. You’re not losing anything, you’re gaining stability and the ability to know what you have. You don’t lose the memories, you can appreciate what you have and stay organized.

Think About Your Spouse

When you’re single or living by yourself, it can be a lot easier to justify hoarding. However, marriage means making concessions for the sake of your partnership and coming to terms with a hoarding habit is one of the biggest. A caring spouse will be there for you through this process and offer all the help they can. Wanting to keep your things and want to have an organized home both stem from a sense of control and anxiety. Anxiety can stem from having clutter and a mess. It may lead to feelings of filth and frustration.

Many people who grew up very poor have learned the importance of a dollar. It’s a great skill to be able to recycle materials and not let anything go to waste. Having said that, many times this can lead to keeping things you no longer need. Don’t think about losing items, think about gaining peace of mind. If you’re in a better position financially than you were used to you can bless others with your donations. Talk to each other, and if needed a therapist, to help mediate a solution that will benefit both of you.

Taking on your hoarding ways is a far braver act than you might initially realize. It can be daunting to let go of these items, even if you don’t know exactly why they were so comforting for you. Talking to a therapist or another expert can help you to better come to terms with your hoarding nature. It’s also good to keep conversations open with your spouse and to be as vulnerable as you can.


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