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Veritas Aequitas
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last night a saw a show on TLC called "Hoarders: Buried Alive." The basic outline of the program is to show shocking footage of homes packed floor to ceiling with nick nacks, do dads, etc to the point where the inhabitant of said home literally can't move from room to room or floor to floor. There is no space left. They claim to have furniture, bathrooms, kitchens...but you can't see any of it because it is all swallowed up by their junk.

They of course do not see these items as junk and attach some sort of emotional security to the items themselves. Eventually they bring in a counselor and family members to help the person take baby steps toward throwing out a few things. The general consensus is that this is a disease or mental abnormality that people can be pre-disposed to.

So as I was watching this show I had a thought. Many folks here claim to have a bazillion rounds of ammo, 5 years worth of food for 10 people, 500 pairs of shoes sitting in a bag (just in case). Is that where it ends or do these people "collect" other things besides survival preps?

Does your house look like a rat's nest? If your focus was not on prepping type items would you have over-filled your house (and life) with other types of items? Basically, does "prepping" give meaning to the lives of some people that would otherwise just be called hoarders? And is hoarding prevalent within the prepping community?

I'm sure many of us are just here for the good info and tips. Admitedly, I have lot's of ammo, lots of food, etc. However, I keep it out of sight and out of mind...neatly tucked away in closets or the garage where most people would never see it. Generally if I buy something new I toss (or donate) something else. I don't feel like I've gone overboard and I can actually see a day soon where I will be done prepping and simply maintaining (for example replacing expired items and throwing out the old stuff).

Thoughts?
 

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Tough Chick
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I think the big differences between what you see on that and similar shows and people in the prep/survival community are:

1) Generally, we know what we have. Hoarders have no idea what they have. If they see a cute pair of shoes they will buy them and bring them home having no idea that there are already 10 pairs just like it scattered around.

2) We store what we eat/use and use/eat what we store. Yes, there are longer term prep items but even those will eventually go into rotation.

3) Hoarding is quite obvious when you walk into a person's home. I would venture to guess that most in the prep/survival community do not wish to advertise that they have extra whatever so things will be neatly packed away and generally maintained.

4) For hoarders, it is not about the usefulness of the item nor is it seen as an investment or insurance to own multiples of whatever. For a prepper/survivalist, storing items is viewed as an investment in an uncertain future and insurance against what might go wrong.

5) Many hoarders are also "shopaholics" meaning they get a temporary feeling of euphoria from purchasing an item but once purchased, the item has no meaning or value to its new owner. The sale itself was the drug whereas the items left behind are merely the residue. This is not true of all hoarders, and afaik, largely untrue of any prepper/survivalist since the item itself is what holds value and not the purchase of said item.
 

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RESET CONGRESS!!
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9,462 Posts
The things I deem necessary as 'preps' fit easily in a 8x10x8' pantry.
That's 600 cubic feet of storage. OK, some additional space here and their for closets, garage storage,.. but that's not a lot. No need to clutter the house with junk.
 

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Maximus
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12,320 Posts
Hoarding is a mental disorder. Prepping is an outlook on life. Are some Preppers hoarders? Sure, but the same way some preppers are bi-polar or manic depressive.

Now... are hoarding peppers actually "prepping"? I say no since they lost all sence of functionality in any emergency situation. Instead they are living in a fantasy world of their own making.

That is my take on it. Love the show also. I watch it every week.
 

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Misfit Toy
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2,185 Posts
Yes, but on a really, mild scale. I don't like throwing out anything I think I may need at some point (e.g., screws, nails, excess materials or wood, tools, etc.).

I don't think I'm a horder. My wife thinks otherwise.
 

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at first i was gonna say yes, because i thought you asked if i was a "hoarer," and misspelled the word. then i realized you are talking about people with a mental disorder.

no, because i have lots of things i might need in the future, i don't fanatically hold on to everything i come across. i throw what i don't need out.

you ask...does "prepping" give meaning to the lives of some people that would otherwise just be called hoarders?

no, they are prepping for a purpose. if they weren't prepping, they probably wouldn't be stocking up on stuff. hoarders save EVERYTHING regardless of value. preppers gather items they forsee they will need in the future.
 

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My grandmother is a horder, and it is an easy difference. Like me she keeps "Rainy day supplies", but unlike me she doesn't use hers, also she keeps anything she may want to use at a later date (like butter containers, mayo jars, styrofoam meat trays......).
Everything I have I use, including my BOBs. My food is rotated and eaten.
 

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I help enlighten folks
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16,624 Posts
Yes, but on a really, mild scale. I don't like throwing out anything I think I may need at some point (e.g., screws, nails, excess materials or wood, tools, etc.).

I don't think I'm a horder. My wife thinks otherwise.
no one throws out screws nails or tools. I don't think.
 

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Never Give up
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7,579 Posts
Not at all

Now you could of said that before we built our new home and you would of been right. And we had 4 storage spaces at the same time in differnt parts of the area. Now everything has its place and a place for everything.
What have outbuildings for all sorts of stuff so things stay in there places. And most of the long term stuff is underground so to the causual person they would walk right over it and never know. I feel that if my home burnt down we would still be fine for all of our stuff is put away so it canot be stolen or burnt down ect ect. They cant take what they cant find. As far as in the home its kind of very open Log home so it is very noticable if things are out of place.
Besides I kinda think it is a cumpulsion on my part and part of that is to be organized to an extream.
 

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There's a BIG difference between hoarders and preppers, my mother was a hoarder...she rarely threw anything away. There were rooms she couldn't get into because they were filled up with old toys, several sets of dishes, empty bottles, old clothing, dyed Easter eggs, you name it. It took several the dumpsters, a rummage sale that ran up and down the driveway, circling the back and front yards and filled tables throughout the first floor. We had to donate most of it, no one would by it...worthles stuff. We tried to help her, but it was useless...
 

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Everyone that knows me would call me a hoarder. Look at my pic... it tells it all...
I don't save used tissues, diapers, or garbage. For real, it seems like every time I throw something out, I need it within 2 weeks. One day, I need to have a yard sale and get rid of most of the items in my house. I have no emotional tie to them, but I just always seem to need a part off of something.
 

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Looks like rain to me.
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no one throws out screws nails or tools. I don't think.
Thats what baby food jars were invented for?

I don't consider myself a hoarder. I define that as someone who has more of something then they will ever need, or can use.

I don't convert every inch of space for preps, I just have a place for everything. Sometimes it's not in it's place. Just look at my garage, but that's another thread. LOL
 

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getting there
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I'm not a hoarder, but I'm a disorganized prepper. I'm working on getting organized, but even now, at least I know what I have (even if I can't find it quickly).

I've been accused of being a hoarder, but I don't keep anything that I honestly might be able to use (with the exception of a few sentimental things that could fit in a single tote). I hear the "experts" on these hoarding shows (and other shows) say if you haven't used something in x number of years, you're not going to use it, and I know for a fact that that's CRAP! Several times in my life, I've put stuff away years and then had a legitimate need for it, so I was glad I didn't have to go out and buy it again.
 
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