When Shopping Turns into a Shopping Disorder

Hello, my name is suchandsuch and I am a shop-alcoholic. I am addicted to shopping it doesn’t matter if I go grocery shopping, clothes shopping, Christmas shopping or even to garage sales. However, I prefer the dollar stores; I can bring home a lot more items that way.

It’s not surprising that I am a shop-alcoholic, I have an additive personality. I am also addicted to chocolate, coffee and cigarettes. To me shopping is a form of therapy one that I took up shortly after my son died. In the early years I would go as far as writing bad checks if that was the only way I could leave the store with what was in my cart. I am ashamed to say I did that a few to many times and the bank fees and store fees added up quickly. Of course I paid them all eventually.

What makes a person a shop-alcoholic?

The way I see it from my own personal experience, an individual who is lacking something on an emotional level whether it be love, peace of mind or happiness. Or something on a physical and emotional combined level such as self esteem, self confidence, or a loved one.

The purpose of shopping?

For a shop-alcoholic the act of shopping is the means of filling a void. When something is missing in our life we both consciously and subconsciously look for a way to fill that void. What better way than filling it with material items. New clothes, personal items and even food can make us feel better. On every movie or TV show you watch if someone is sad they go straight to the kitchen and usually return with a spoon and a half a gallon of ice cream. Unfortunately in the case of a shop-alcoholic was we get home and spread out all our new items and give them the once over we realize what it is we are searching for is no where to be found in our new purchases. The temporary artificial happiness we had at the store and on the drive home is now gone and the void remains.

How do you know when it’s time to get help?

The realization that you need help takes a long time to reach. By then you have more clothes than you will ever wear in your lifetime, more food than you can eat before it spoils or the expiration dates arrives. You have started several collections such as; angel’s figurines, wind chime, miniature tea cups sets and holiday decorations. Not to mention your Christmas shopping is done by February.

You have more garage sale items that should have went straight to the dump instead of being set out on a table with a price tag on someone’s front lawn. How many issues of a magazine that has been out of print for a decade do we need? Well, you never know there might be an excellent recipe or craft project somewhere among the brown wrinkled pages.

If you can relate to this article then your shopping has turned into a shopping disorder. While you may choose to ignore it as I do and continue your shop therapy as long as it isn’t causing any financial hardships or family problems then happy shopping.

If you need and want help it’s time to call a physiologist and work through the void you’re trying to fill with useless material objects. Then concentrate on what it is you REALLY want and go out and get it.