When I watch the show “Hoarders” on YouTube, I am shocked at the comments people leave. I want to address a few of these vicious comments. The first one is, “How can this person choose their stuff over their family members?! They are awful people.” I am here to explain my heart to what is actually happening inside of me. As a hoarder, we are not choosing our stuff over our family members. I am choosing to avoid the overwhelming wave of anxiety that is hitting me when I am forced to throw something out. I am getting defensive because why does my loved one want to trigger this panic attack that is overtaking my body. Why are they making me choose between them and this tidal wave of emotional pain of letting go of this item. I am feeling almost literal pain because I have over attached myself to this item. I have such an high value on this thing and it feels like you are throwing me out. If you love me, why are you making me choose? You are suppose to love me, you are suppose to be on my side. These are the things I am thinking. But am I explaining that to you? No. I am in defense fight or flight mode and I am saying, “THE ITEM!!!!” Because if I know I can keep the item, the panic attack goes away. I am not choosing you over the item. I am choosing to stop this pain as fast as I can. This is how the neurons in my brain are firing right now. I just want people who don’t hoard, understand what is going on in my mind. If you have a loved one who does hoard, try to be a little more empathetic with them. If you see them starting to get defensive, tell them it will be okay. That they are not the item, they are so much more! And you love them and understand how this might hurt them and you will support them during this healing process. The hoarder needs to be ready to part with their things, just like the alcoholic wants to stop drinking.