Dirty secret : a daughter comes clean about her mother's compulsive hoarding
New York : Gallery Books, 2011.
To be the child of a compulsive hoarder is to live in a permanent state of unease. Because if my mother is one of those crazy junk-house people, then what does that make me?When her divorced mother was diagnosed with cancer, New York City writer Jessie Sholl returned to her hometown of Minneapolis to help her prepare for her upcoming surgery and get her affairs in order. While a daunting task for any adult dealing with an aging parent, it's compounded for Sholl by one lifelong, complex, and confounding truth: her mother is a compulsive hoarder.Dirty Secretis a daughter's powerful memoir of confronting her mother's disorder, of searching for the normalcy that was never hers as a child, and, finally, cleaning out the clutter of her mother's home in the hopes of salvaging the true heart of their relationship-before it's too late.Growing up, young Jessie knew her mother wasn't like other mothers: chronically disorganized, she might forgo picking Jessie up from kindergarten to spend the afternoon thrift store shopping. Now, tracing the downward spiral in her mother's hoarding behavior to the death of a long-time boyfriend, she bravely wades into a pathological sea of stuff: broken appliances, moldy cowboy boots, twenty identical pairs of graying bargain-bin sneakers, abandoned arts and crafts, newspapers, magazines, a dresser drawer crammed with discarded eyeglasses, shovelfuls of junk mail . . . the things that become a hoarder's "treasures." With candor, wit, and not a drop of sentimentality, Jessie Sholl explores the many personal and psychological ramifications of hoarding while telling an unforgettable mother-daughter tale.
Born in a log cabin in the Ozarks, Alvin "Titanic" Thompson (1892-1974) traveled with his golf clubs, a .45 revolver, and a suitcase full of cash. He won and lost millions playing cards, dice, golf, pool, and dangerous games of his own invention. He killed five men and married five women, each one a teenager on her wedding day. He ruled New York's underground craps games in the 1920s and was Damon Runyon's model for slick-talking Sky Masterson. Dominating the links in the pre-PGA Tour years, Thompson may have been the greatest golfer of his time, teeing up with Ben Hogan, Sam Snead, Lee Trevino, and Ray Floyd. He also traded card tricks with Houdini, conned Al Capone, lost a million to Minnesota Fats and then teamed up with Fats and won it all back. A terrific read for anyone who has ever laid a bet, Titanic Thompson recaptures the colorful times of a singular figure: America's original road gambler.
Gotta have it! : freedom from wanting everything right here, right now
Gregory L. Jantz with Ann McMurray.
Colorado Springs : David C. Cook, 2010.
Are you spending so much time trying to get what you want that you have no energy left to get what you need? Each of has a "never enough" activity, food, or behavior-and we're ready to throw a grown-up tantrum when we don't get it.
Present perfect : a mindfulness approach to letting go of perfectionism & the need for control
Oakland, CA : New Harbinger Publications, c2010.
While there's no doubt that setting high standards for yourself is a good thing, you've probably already noticed that perfectionism can come at a high price. And when you take steps to try to change, it's easy to be too hard on yourself and fall into the same traps that keep you feeling stressed and disappointed. This book presents a revolutionary approach to overcoming perfectionism-a way to transform your need for precision into self-acceptance, compassion, and love for each perfectly imperfect passing moment in our lives.
As a child, Avis Cardella devoured the glamorous images in her mother's fashion magazines. She grew up to be one of the people in them, living a life that seemed to be filled with labels and luxury. But shopping had become a dangerous addiction. She forwent food for Prada. Credit card debt blossomed like the ever-increasing pile of unworn shoes and clothing in the back of her closet. She defined herself by the things she owned and also lost herself in the mad hunt for the perfect pair of pants or purse that might make her feel whole. Spent is Avis Cardella's timely, deeply personal, and shockingly dramatic exploration of our cultural need to spend, and of what happens when someone is consumed by the desire to consume.
She bets her life : a true story of gambling addiction
Berkeley, CA : Seal Press : Distributed by Publishers Group West, c2010.
What setsShe Bets Her Lifeapart is Mary Sojourner's ability to take both an objective and a deeply personal look at the psychological and physiological impact of gambling addiction on women. Having lived it, Sojourner is brutally forthcoming, and with her penchant for research and fact-finding, the narrative is teeming with important information and resources to help steer women with gambling addictions (and their loved ones) toward help and healing.
Hot (broke) messes : how to have your latte and drink it too
New York, NY : Business Plus, 2010.
31-year-old Nancy Trejos was supposed to be an expert on handling her money - after all, she's the personal finance columnist for one of the nation's leading newspapers, The Washington Post . But a few months ago, she found herself in her own dire financial straits. Faced with a mountain of bills, debt, and no way to pay her rent, she was forced to call her parents to ask them for a loan. That night was a wake-up call - she vowed to get herself out of debt and into financial solvency. In Hot Broke Messes , Trejos takes readers along with her on her journey. She meets with a financial planner and a therapist to deal with all the issues young people face today - from credit card debt and student loans, to impulse buying and emotional spending, to the cost of having a social life, to buying a house with someone during a potentially impermanent relationship and more. Trejos learns what causes these problems in herself, how she can fix them, and how she can pass that advice on to other young people going through the same experiences. Even better, she shows readers how they can address these problems without completely giving up their lives - no "give up your latte a day" type advice here! Trejos' personal and unique voice, along with her experiences that everyone can relate to, will lead readers to relatively painless financial security.
Stuff : compulsive hoarding and the meaning of things
Randy O. Frost and Gail Steketee.
Boston [Mass.]: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2010.
We've seen them in a Dateline story or an Oprah feature: homes that have become improbable repositories of 'literally' tons of stuff. The camera crews zoom in on rooms crammed floor-to-ceiling with stacks of newspapers and magazines. We watch, fascinated, as professional organizers attack the untidy rooms, or the host expresses horror at a filthy kitchen, but never ask the larger question: How did it come to this? STUFF is the first book to explore compulsive hoarding, a disorder that affects as many as six million people. Using the latest research, much of which they pioneered in their decade of study, along with vivid case histories of a range of hoarders (animal collectors, compulsive shoppers, elderly packrats, scavengers), Frost and Steketee describe the various causes of hoarding, psychological and biological, and the traits by which you can identify a hoarder. In a portrait that disproves many of our assumptions about the often-hidden disease (for example, most hoarders aren't reacting to childhood poverty or deprivation), they also examine the forces behind a hoarder's behavior and the ways in which they affect all of us, whether it's the passion of a collector, the rigor of someone whose desk is always clean, the sentimentality of the person who saves ticket stubs.For the sufferers, their relatives and friends, and all the rest of us with complicated relationships to our things, STUFF answers the question of what happens when our stuff starts to own us.