For many, the title merely gives a name to a familiar trait. Either it is autobiographical, or refers to someone they know.
For others it needs to be defined, because neither they, nor anyone in their ambit can be so labelled.
Emotional Hoarders are those who take everything personal. They are so overly sensitive that every word you say, every action provokes powerful feelings.
Logic, reality is shoved off the platform. All Emotional Hoarders know is how they feel. And they respond to their feelings.
All of their reactions are based on how they feel, without the slightest reference to reality
What makes it worse, is that every feeling is stored forever. A 48 year old can remember with living pain, how he didn't have a birthday party when he was 8.
It happened 40 years ago, by the calendar, but for an Emotional Hoarder it could have been this morning.
To give you a simple example, Fred is walking down the road. He passes strangers.
He hears one tell another;
"I hate Nike."
Fred is wearing Nikes.
He instantly takes it personal. He wonders why those strangers hate him.
No where in his soul does he, for a picosecond, reflect that those strangers didn't see him, weren't speaking about him, and that one merely relayed his opinion of a particular tracker to another.
Where a normal person would know, without needing subtitles, that the speaker happened to see the tracker and spoke to the other about his attitude towards that brand of foot ware, without reference to the wearer, an emotional hoarder, takes everything personal.
And never lets go.
If ten years from that day Fred sees one of those strangers, he will react as if encountering an enemy.
And that stranger may ponder, who is this guy?
If you are an emotional hoarder, you need to confront that facet immediately and excrete it.
You can not live your life in the past, you can not take everything personally.
It makes no sense for you to constantly assume that everyone around you cares about how you feel about anything.
People think of themselves. They like/don't like. They say/don't say.
People aren't overly concerned about your feelings, because your feelings are neither relevant to them nor are they even aware of them.
No one is going to spend his/her days picking words and expressions so as to please you. In fact, ignoring you and getting you out of their space is desirable.
As far as they are concerned, you're mentally ill and they don't want any part of you. They don't care how you think, feel, or react.
So storing all these emotions and pain is ridiculous. Because no one cares. Further, it makes you repulsive.
No one cares that you didn't have a birthday party when you were eight, or that no one took you to the zoo when you were ten.
You shouldn't even have it in your mind.
That you do makes you ridiculous in the eyes of others.
Emotional Hoarders find change almost impossible.
They might be able to put up barriers to prevent this one hurting them or limit the access another has to them, but they, tragically, will Never Let Go.
They might be able to shove their pain in a corner, but can't excrete it. They might be able to pretend that everything is 'okay' but are so focused on their pretence that they can not move an inch.
They can go back to start at the snap of fingers, and although you might have thought they got over the lack of the birthday party when they were eight, they haven't.
It is right there, ready to spring up.
The discomforting thing is that Emotional Hoarders can only see their side of an issue. They are unable to view events from another stand point, or even to deal with it logically.
They assume everyone else has their point of view.. Everyone is aware of what and how and when as if everyone cares so much. In truth, few do.
Those who did care pulled away when slapped with some ridiculous event that happened twenty years ago, having assumed it was buried in the Past.
Annoyed by this dredging, they cut the Hoarder out of their lives.
There is no Past for an emotional hoarder.
They can not imagine alternate explanations. They see the world through their pity glasses and that is the only world they see.
Apology means nothing.
Unless you can get on a time machine and go back and make him that Birthday Party when he was eight years old, he will carry that 'tragedy' to his grave.