Author Topic: Adding to the hoard?  (Read 3505 times)

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AuntyEm

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #15 on: January 07, 2013, 07:19:17 AM »
I think that offering unwanted items to someone you know has a problem with hoarding is unethical.  In this case it solved the problem of getting rid of a big, bulky tv at the expense of someone who already has a serious problem with collecting things. 

Sharnita

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #16 on: January 07, 2013, 07:31:59 AM »
But does person A agree that these friends have a serious problem? I might think you hsve a drinking problem. That doesn't mean others should/will agree.

BarensMom

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #17 on: January 07, 2013, 08:00:18 AM »
But does person A agree that these friends have a serious problem? I might think you hsve a drinking problem. That doesn't mean others should/will agree.

I don't think that OP means whether Person A should or shouldn't have brought the TV to Person B.  It's more of what would she do if she were in Person A's shoes and knew for a fact that Person B was a hoarder.

I know people like Person B who will take everything that's offered and more (if you let them).  Their houses and garages are packed with other people's old stuff.  I agree with the OP - I will not enable hoarders any more than I would a drug user or an alcoholic.

Hmmmmm

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #18 on: January 07, 2013, 09:54:43 AM »
If I believed a person had a problem with hoarding, I would not go out if my way to provide them with more items.  In the scenario, friend A not only suggested friend B take the item friend A also helped arrange more people to assist with the move. 

If I have a friend struggling with compulsive shopping ( whether they are admitting to the problem or not)  I'm not going to call them up and suggest we go to the year end clearance sale. 

I know many will say it is not my place to diagnose a problem, but we are all aware that many people with problems are the last to recognize they have an issue that needs to be addressed.  I may not be able to suggest they get help, but I don't have to enable a behavior I see as harmfull. 

Amara

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #19 on: January 07, 2013, 01:26:51 PM »
OP, your DH was very nice to help with the moving. My thought is that if you know someone has a hoarding (overeating/drinking) problem it is better to not contribute to it. But the OP's husband did not. If anyone should have "kept his nose out of it" was was A, assuming A knows that B has a hoarding problem. (And I assume that A does know this since he responded immediately.)

katycoo

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #20 on: January 07, 2013, 05:31:01 PM »
Probably it is unethical, but since it did not directly involve either you or your DH, its also none of your business.

I think it's none of anyone else's business, and you need to stay out of it.



Right, but the OP isn't suggesting that she will interfere in any way in this particular situation - she's just using this as an interesting example and asking what we think we would do if we were "Friend A" or in a similar scenario.     

OK.  If I was friend A, I wouldn't volunteer to friend B that I knew of a TV going free unless I knew that they actually needed a new TV (ie. theirs was broken).  If they somehow found out and asked for it, I would not try to talk them out of it.  But I would probably not be the middle man either and would rather connect the 2 parties to work it out.

Lynn2000

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #21 on: January 07, 2013, 05:46:38 PM »
If I believed a person had a problem with hoarding, I would not go out if my way to provide them with more items.  In the scenario, friend A not only suggested friend B take the item friend A also helped arrange more people to assist with the move. 

If I have a friend struggling with compulsive shopping ( whether they are admitting to the problem or not)  I'm not going to call them up and suggest we go to the year end clearance sale. 

I know many will say it is not my place to diagnose a problem, but we are all aware that many people with problems are the last to recognize they have an issue that needs to be addressed.  I may not be able to suggest they get help, but I don't have to enable a behavior I see as harmfull.

I agree with this. I think there is definitely some judgment that comes into it, which may not sound very nice or fair if it was actually articulated; but as long as you (general) keep that judgment to yourself, I think it's not rude to make it. Example: I have a friend who struggles with money problems and has told me about it many times. If we're going out to lunch (each paying their own way), I suggest cheaper places that we both like, as opposed to expensive places that we both like. She's an adult and can make her own choices about her money and where to spend it; but I personally don't want to be the one who "pressured" her to spend more, or "forced" her to counter my expensive suggestion with a cheaper one and thus "embarrass" herself. (The quotes represent an extreme way of looking at the situation, granted.)

Another example: My dad has hoarder tendencies (thankfully countered by my mom). I've cut the number of gifts I give him way, way down over the years, because each thing is just something else to add to his pile of stuff. Around the holidays each year my mom and I have the same discussion--"Should I get this for your dad?" "I dunno... Do you think he'll use it, or will it end up on the pile?" He's not really into gifts anyway and doesn't seem to mind, which is good, but sometimes I feel a bit guilty about it, or maybe sad is the better word, because I love giving gifts as an expression of affection. But I feel like it's not "good for him." Just like I wouldn't buy him candy or suggest getting a dessert when dining with him, because he's trying to cut sweets from his diet. I'm trying not to "lead him into temptation," you know?
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bah12

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #22 on: January 07, 2013, 05:57:16 PM »
This is a difficult question to answer.  On one hand, I wouldn't feel right in offering someone something that I knew would contribute to a health problem, but at the same time, it wouldn't be my business to decide how someone goes about dealing with their problems.

I think it matters if the addiction is recognized medically or not.  For instance, I could have a friend that in my own opinion drinks too much, but that doesn't necessarily make them an alcoholic.  As a friend, I might try to suggest that we do things together that doesn't lend well to drinking (like going for hikes vs going out to a bar), but I don't think that I would not offer them a drink if they were at a party in my home...especially based on my own opinion of whether or not they have a drinking problem.  Totally different if the drinking was a big enough problem that they had to seek professional help or were putting themselves in danger.  In that case, I wouldn't want to enable and I might not invite them to any event where there would be drinking.

For the hoarding thing, I think Friend A's motivation needs to be considered.  Did he offer the tv because it was a simple way to get rid of something and he dumped it on someone with a known problem, or is it just his opinion that Friend B is a hoarder?  I've been to a lot of packed and messy homes, but I don't think that automatically makes someone a hoarder.  I would be careful to not pass judgement on another adult simply because of my own biases and opinions. 

If I knew for a fact that Friend B was indeed a hoarder and that their living conditions were unsafe and unhealthy and/or if Friend B was actively trying to get help for a hoarding problem, then no, I would not offer them anything or help add to their stash.  If on the other hand, I had a personal opinion that they have too much stuff and too many tv's and I offered up a free one to which they said they'd take, then I'd give to them.  Treating them no different than friends whose homes I find neater and less cluttered.

ETA:  I re-read the OP and realized that it was the friend that helped move the TV that concluded that Friend B was a hoarder.  I'm assuming that this friend does not know Friend B on any level, just made the assumption while visiting the house.  And while the assumption may have been accurate, it could very well have not been.  Like a said, cluttered, overstuffed, and dirty doesn't necessarily mean a hoarder.  There is no evidence that Friend A maliciously or even selfishly used Friend B to get rid of a tv knowing that he had a problem.  It's quite possible that Friend A had never even been to Friend B's home before he delivered the TV.  I think in this particular case, it is no one's business.  But, for the generic question, the above still stands for me.  I might not offer something based on my opinion, but I wouldn't stop them from getting it unless I knew they had a medical condition or I felt they were in danger.
« Last Edit: January 07, 2013, 06:16:36 PM by bah12 »

kitchcat

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #23 on: January 07, 2013, 06:04:05 PM »
It's called enabling and not only is it unethical, it's borderline malicious IMO. If A was aware B had an issue with hording and was trying to overcome it, A should not have gone out of his way to trip up B's efforts with more temptations. Yes, the world is full of temptations that B will have to learn to resist, but A was knowingly (and needlessly) feeding B's hoarding habit, which is cruel and destructive.
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Yvaine

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #24 on: January 07, 2013, 07:01:18 PM »
ETA:  I re-read the OP and realized that it was the friend that helped move the TV that concluded that Friend B was a hoarder.  I'm assuming that this friend does not know Friend B on any level, just made the assumption while visiting the house.  And while the assumption may have been accurate, it could very well have not been.  Like a said, cluttered, overstuffed, and dirty doesn't necessarily mean a hoarder.  There is no evidence that Friend A maliciously or even selfishly used Friend B to get rid of a tv knowing that he had a problem.  It's quite possible that Friend A had never even been to Friend B's home before he delivered the TV.  I think in this particular case, it is no one's business.  But, for the generic question, the above still stands for me.  I might not offer something based on my opinion, but I wouldn't stop them from getting it unless I knew they had a medical condition or I felt they were in danger.

I'm going to agree with pretty much all of your post, bah, and specifically this part. Friend A may have never seen the house. And with the increased awareness of hoarding in the last few years due to the TV show, I think sometimes people are assumed to be hoarders when maybe they're just plain old slobs. There's a psychological difference between the two and an acquaintance can't necessarily diagnose that difference.

baglady

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #25 on: January 07, 2013, 07:50:49 PM »
ETA:  I re-read the OP and realized that it was the friend that helped move the TV that concluded that Friend B was a hoarder.  I'm assuming that this friend does not know Friend B on any level, just made the assumption while visiting the house.  And while the assumption may have been accurate, it could very well have not been.  Like a said, cluttered, overstuffed, and dirty doesn't necessarily mean a hoarder.  There is no evidence that Friend A maliciously or even selfishly used Friend B to get rid of a tv knowing that he had a problem.  It's quite possible that Friend A had never even been to Friend B's home before he delivered the TV.  I think in this particular case, it is no one's business.  But, for the generic question, the above still stands for me.  I might not offer something based on my opinion, but I wouldn't stop them from getting it unless I knew they had a medical condition or I felt they were in danger.

I'm going to agree with pretty much all of your post, bah, and specifically this part. Friend A may have never seen the house. And with the increased awareness of hoarding in the last few years due to the TV show, I think sometimes people are assumed to be hoarders when maybe they're just plain old slobs. There's a psychological difference between the two and an acquaintance can't necessarily diagnose that difference.

This. Thanks to advances in medical science and psychology, and this information-out-the-wazoo age we live in, we're aware of a lot of things that we didn't know about just a few decades ago, and that's led to an awful lot of armchair diagnosing. But not everybody with a messy house is a hoarder, any more than every difficult kid has ADD or every socially awkward person is on the autism spectrum.

I would give friend A the benefit of the doubt and assume he never saw B's house before. If someone put out the word to me that he'd take unwanted electronics, I'd figure he wanted them for parts, or to fix up for resale or charity.

If I *knew* he was a hoarder, though, I wouldn't offer him anything. Not because it would be enabling his addiction so much as it would be keeping the stuff from someone who might actually put it to use. I have a hoarder friend, and he's the reason I no longer Freecycle. He trawls Freecycle for names he recognize and pesters us to give him what we're offering ... even if there's no way in heck he can ever use it.

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Re: Adding to the hoard?
« Reply #26 on: January 12, 2013, 12:18:31 AM »
This has been so interesting to read. Thank you for your comments. Friend A and B know each other very well. My DH didn't know about the hoard until he went into the house. The others tvs are not used for parts because neither adult in the home tinker and fix things. But isn't that an excuse many hoarders use? I'll keep x number of these items because someday I might be able to fix them?  I just found it interesting that Friend A knowingly added to a hoard that my husband said rivaled the tv show hoarders. The home had trails within the hoard which consumed rooms from floor to almost the ceiling. I would never bring my opinions up to the family because how they live is none of my business. I just found it interesting and wondered how others would respond.