Why do I enjoy hurting myself?

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by John-Wayne, May 21, 2018.

  1. Necronox

    Necronox Contributor Contributor

    Sep 1, 2015
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    Canton de Neuchatel, Switzerland
    Ooh the brain, what a wonderful mystery you are.

    Personally, I am one of those people whose wires got crossed somewhere. I am not a masochist really. I do not go out and stab myself, at least not anymore. But I do derive a kind of pleasure out of it. It’s this kind of almost amusing or funny feeling. Hard to describe. Not sure if that counts as masochism but there you go. Remember the dentist looking at me funny when my wisdom teeth where being removed and I was there trying my best not to laugh hysterically.. haha

    Insofar as hoarders are concerned. Primarily borders excessively collect stuff. Not just mildly useful stuff, but sometimes it may manifest itself where they will not even throw a use candy bar wrapper away. They’ll keep every chewing gum every eaten in a nice tin stuffed underneath a mountain of literal junk and garbage. There is however people that just like disorder or that like to keep stuff. Those are not horsers. Collectors, for instance those who collect key rings (like me) or other stuff like stamps or cars are no hording. But that is just how I understand it so I may be wrong.

    Edited to fix typos
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2018
  2. John Calligan

    John Calligan Contributor Contributor

    Aug 8, 2015
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    :) No, I’m not saying I’m a horder. However, if I can sit in a beanbag in the middle of an empty room, I’ll never be more comfortable. I love having empty space around me.
    jannert likes this.
  3. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

    Mar 7, 2013
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    Yes, it's a very very interesting condition. I've been reading a lot about it recently, in an attempt to understand it. It's one of those conditions that can wreck lives, but isn't really curable, apparently.

    I can't remember the title of the book (I'll look it up) but there is a particularly revealing one written by the daughter of a hoarder. She understands the condition and doesn't blame her parents (mostly her father), even though it came close to ruining her life in many ways. However, no matter how 'clean' the start—and they did get a couple of fresh starts during their lives—they always reverted.

    At one point, during her teenaged years, their house burned to the ground and the entire family lost everything except the clothes on their backs at the time. Her reaction, once she realised her parents were unhurt was 'yay!' The family restarted life in a new home, and the parents seemed relieved as well, and vowed to never let that mess happen again. However, it wasn't long before the hoarding took over once more. So it wasn't attachment to particular stuff, although the parents sometimes justified it that way ...oh, I can't get rid of this (sentimental value) thing because.... It was the process of accumulation and retention that they were unable to halt.

    I'm a little dim on all the details, as I read this book four years ago, but the book is: Coming Clean: A Memoir, by Kimberly Rae Miller. It's well worth a read, for anybody interested in the subject.

    I'm closely related to somebody who exhibits this kind of behaviour, which is why I'm interested in it. She has to work at it every day, not to continue to accumulate stuff beyond a certain point. Even relatively nonperishable food. She has cupboards and fridges so full of opened bottles and jars and boxes that she forgets what she's got, and so goes out to buy more. We can all do this at some point, I suspect. I like a well-stocked larder myself. But my fridge gets cleaned at least once a month, my freezer gets defrosted and cleaned twice a year. I routinely go through cupboards and get rid of anything that I'm not using. I use a list, which I keep attached to the freezer. When I open a container of something, I put it on the list for replacement. So I usually have one unopened container of whatever it is. But ONLY one.

    For her, these clearouts never happened and she just looked at me funny when I suggested making an ongoing list. When I was visiting, I helped her clear the cupboards and fridge of old food but she resisted. Not the idea of me helping her, which she was glad to accept, but resisted every single thing I tried to throw away. She would hold the item and finger it and say things like ...well it seems okay. I'm sure it's okay. It was NOT okay, and she had three OTHER jars of it open as well, but that didn't matter. Back it went. It was disheartening and revealing.

    At least she didn't hoard green meat and sour milk, etc. If it stank or was covered in mold, she willingly got rid of it. So it could be worse. But it was still upsetting to witness. It wasn't so much the stuff itself, but the ingrained resistance to getting rid of any specific stuff. She recognised the problem...I have too much stuff ...but couldn't bring herself to the point where she knew that meant she needed to get rid of some of it.
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2018
    Some Guy, ChickenFreak and Cave Troll like this.

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