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I Just Learned That My Girlfriend Of 6 Months Is A Hoarder and Has 8 Cats In Her House. What Should I Do?
Before getting judgmental, know that there is a difference between a hoarder and a collector. A collector likes to display her valuable collections such as figurines or cards. They also like to invite people over to her house. A hoarder just hoards everything from cartoon boxes to grocery packaging and litter. More often than not, they don`t like to invite people over because they are ashamed of the clutter.
If she is indeed a hoarder and you want this relationship to work, here are the things that you can do:
Speak the same language.
Before getting sarcastic, hear me out. She keeps those cartoon boxes and plastic caps because it is sentimental to her. Never call those stuff junk. Once you do, she will never listen to you and it may be the end of your relationship.
Communication is the foundation of every relationship and understanding her will help your relationship in the long run. For your relationship to work, one of you must be willing to compromise.
Have some suggestions.
Sheldon of The Big Bang Theory was a hoarder. Everything that he has ever owned since he was young was kept in a storage unit and for a long time, he has kept it from his partner, Amy. He has never overcome the urge to keep all of his things. He still keeps everything that he has owned there and still, their relationship has worked out.
You can also suggest to her to have a storage unit for everything that she wants to keep. That will be a safe place for her to express who she is without the bugs and insects going into your future home.
Join online groups.
Facebook and Reddit. Here are the two social media outlets where you can ask for advice from people who deal with this every day. Take advantage of the free information we can access through the internet.
Online support can really help you out. It`s hard to understand where your girlfriend is coming from and it helps that other people are going through the same thing that you do. We, humans, have a deep need to be understood.
Seek professional help.
When all else fails, you need professional help from a psychologist in order to help her deal with this. It is definitely not normal to not throw away garbage and litter and let it accumulate in your own house. Only a psychologist will be able to deal with whatever is in your girlfriend`s head.
In terms of pets, there is nothing wrong with the number of cats that she has as long as she keeps her house tidy. Some people are just easily attached to pets for emotional support. Some tend to adopt the strays that they see. Heck, even Taylor Swift has a lot of cats.
You have to decide for yourself whether this is a deal breaker. If you love her enough to tolerate or support this side of her, then let her know of the arrangements that you want. A compromise from both of you would be the only way for your relationship to work.
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