My grandmother, she is a hoarder. She always has been. However, back when my grandfather was alive and before he got Alzheimers, he kept it in check. But when he went downhill and couldn't stop it, she went nuts. They lived in a six bedroom house. The living room, kitchen, and areas that guests saw was spotless and normal. Open the door of any room but the master bedroom, and your jaw would hit the ground. Wall to wall, ceiling high mounds of boxes and stacks of STUFF. Books, magazines, newspapers, sewing patterns, cookware, more BOOKS, canned food, and just tons of other things. When she obviously couldn't handle the house (or my grandfather, since she denied his condition until it got serious), myself, my father, and sister stepped in. Though we were not her ONLY family, we were the only ones who would actually DO SOMETHING. my grandmother's other three children? Couldn't be bothered, even the one who lived in the SAME TOWN as her. My family drove back and forth from Michigan to Pennsylvania almost every weekend, a 12 hour drive one way, to deal with this issue. Fastforward to now. Grandmother lived in a one bedroom apartment at an independent senior community, close to my family. We were able, so we thought, to keep her hoarding in check. Well, she fell, hurt herself, and needed skilled nursing home care for a time. And to be moved to an assisted living facility since she is in a state where independence is just not smart or feasible anymore. So we are once again, cleaning out her apartment. We did all her shopping, and knew how much of what she had. So for instance, if she said she needed chicken bullion, we could tell her she already had a full jar, and show her. BUT when friends and other family came to visit, they'd do her shopping for her. And they obviously didn't know her inventory. So my grandmother could hoard stuff with their ignorance of the situation. Some of the stuff we are discovering now. This is barely all of it, just the more unique. Remember, this was in a one bedroom apartment. Sock drawer full of chocolate bars (she thinks she is allergic to chocolate (she is not, per recent allergy testing results)) Seven jars of chicken bullion in the coat closet Enough wound care supplies to serve a hospital for months Pyrex pyrex pyrex! Pyrex measuring cups, bowls, etc. but not just one of each. Half a dozen of each! Half a dozen 2 cup measuring cups, for instance. More than enough for several families starting up their kitchen, and she barely ever cooked. VITAMINS. Dozens and dozens of jars. Some opened, most not, most expired. Inhaler canisters. Each empty canister she saved. SO many canisters. Cleaning supplies, we will not need to buy toilet cleaner, window cleaner, etc. for years now Sterile syringes and needles. Understandable if she needed any medication to be injected. But she doesn't and hasn't ever. So the packages that are still intact will be used for giving goat vaccinations, for years. Underwear elastic bands. When a pair of underwear wore out, she saved the elastics. Clothing: long after my grandfather died, we found the many many outfits of his she hid. I'd understand if she saved a few, but not almost his entire wardrobe for his entire life. Survival equipment, a massive box with kerosene lamps, waterproof flashlights (x 8), many little boxes of waterproof matches, glowsticks, batteries, etc. Cosmetics! 10 jars of vaseline, 15 bottles of aveeno lotion, more bars of soap than are countable, etc. Yarn. She hasn't crocheted for years. So...much...yarn. More sewing patterns. Again, she hasn't used her sewing machine for a long time. Holy mason jar collection! And some are the nifty blue ones. This is just all the stuff I can think of off the top of my head, at the moment. What can be donated (that isn't expired, opened, broken, etc.) will definitely be donated. We've already given away a lot of it, since we know some new families that are starting out. What we can use, we will use. We are NOT throwing away anything sentimental. We know what things are especially special to her. The thing is, is that she doesn't even remember having most of this stuff. I asked her about the needles, for instance, she had no idea. Some of these things she put in places and just forgot, and thus got more. Some she actively tried to hide. Yes, hoarding is a horrible mental illness. It is just a little shocking all of the STUFF that has materialized out of this apartment. It was bad enough emptying her house so it could be sold!