As part of our review series, today we’re looking at the television series Hoarders. From the outset I have to declare that I have met with producers and professional organisers involved in the show. While this gives me a little insight behind the scenes, it may also mean I’m a little biased. So, given all that, here’s what I think…

From an organiser’s point of view there’s a lot to like. It brings the issue out into the open so that many who struggle with hoarding – both those who hoard and their families – see that help is available from the health and organising sectors, they may feel normalised and safe in seeking help.

In the main, it’s good to see advocacy in action.  I truly think the condition of hoarding is better understood in the wider community because of TV shows like this one.  On the other hand, a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.  Some of the insensitive and ill-informed comments I’ve seen in online forums and heard in person have me shaking my head.  There is a tendency for some people to become “overnight experts” and pronounce judgement on the people highlighted on Hoarders.

Here’s what I know and which is often not emphasised enough.  There is way more care and assistance rendered to the subjects of each episode than you see on TV.  Compulsive hoarding is a serious issue which cannot be fixed with a few days of clearing out.  That’s why there is always aftercare provided.

I am a fan of the show.  I’m just not a fan of the ugly comments it is open to.  What about you?

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