by Traci
(Alabama, USA)

My Great Uncle, 85 years of age, has requested I be his power of attorney. I have done so for approximately 6 months. His living conditions were awful. He had a good sound home he was renting, but he has become such a hoarder that it was very difficult to visit him.

He agreed to allow me and my boys to clean his kitchen, it was NOT sanitary by no means. We worked hard for one weekend, returned in two weeks to work again and was mortified. He hoards more "trash" than we can get rid of. I can't garbage anything without him going through it first. I mean egg shells, dirty napkins, empty food and drink cans, etc... The tornadoes hit in April and we were without amenities for a week.

I could not get to him, as the roads were blocked and closed, and our phones were out, cell phones had to be charged and there was no electricity .... It took me 4 days to find out if he was okay. Afterwards, I requested he relocate closer to me to where I could see to him better and he agreed (plus I figured that to be the only way I could beat the trash collecting, we could start with a clean slate.)

He bought a trailer and has moved onto my parents farm property, where I too live along with several other family members. I moved him, the best that he would allow, I set-up his home and it was clean and organized, until he moved in.

My sister tries to clean once per week, cleaning includes doing laundry, changing bed sheets, everything (God bless her!). But, we are fighting a losing battle. He can dirty and hoard quicker than we can clean and organize. He will not throw away a napkin! Bathroom tissue is another issue. I discuss sanitary and fire hazards. But he insists this is his home and it is fine like it is. But, if I leave him alone, it will be back to the unsafe environment that he was in before.

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by: Christine

Your are dealing with the mental affliction of hoarding. This may be his age, but it may simply be his brain. You need help.....there is no way you can confront this on your own. Wave the white flag and get assistance, or he'll exhaust you. Don't mean to be so blunt, but I know of what I speak.

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