The Harsh Reality Of Hoarding (WATCH)

Hoarding is a psychological condition that affects 4 million Americans. This compulsive disorder has gained attention through reality shows like ‘Hoarders,’ but the real life consequences of this disease are more than shocking fodder for reality television.

On a segment for HuffPost Live, Alicia Menendez spoke with Frances Boudreaux, whose mother was an obsessive compulsive hoarder. Though she didn’t know the term for hoarding at the time, Boudreaux began to realize that her mother had an issue at a young age.

“She acquired more and more things and wouldn’t get rid of them,” Boudreaux recalled. “The more I dug, the more I realized that she in fact probably had been a victim. It was a gradual process, and it got worse as she got older.”

Boudreaux and Menendez spoke about the psychology of hoarding and how it affects loved ones with Randy Frost, an expert on hoarding disorders and a psychology professor at Smith College, and Sidney Patrick, the daughter-in-law of a hoarder.