Going Behind the Scenes of “Hoarders”

I frequently get asked what it’s like to work on A & E’s #1 show, “Hoarders”

It is both exhilarating and exhausting. Both physically and emotionally.

To go into some of those homes… At first it feels sad beyond belief but then you remember these people not only need your help, but want it (although some struggle the whole while).

And even if the hoarders themselves are reluctant, I can’t tell you the connection I feel with their families and friends. They so desperately want to help their loved ones, but just didn’t know how.

To see in their eyes that there may be hope, that this dark, dank world they have been living in may be shed some light…

That is what brings me back.

And did I mention the hard work? The thing we don’t talk about much is how HEAVY some of that stuff is! Sure we’ve got work crews, but in the heat of the moment, when the hoarder agrees to move a box full of old clothes out… I’m the first one pushing!

Then there is the embarrassment factor. People ask me all the time what it feels like to go into someone’s bathroom and sort through their belongings.

I’ll tell you… UNCOMFORTABLE. And then to have to talk to someone about their personal hygiene, on national television? That part never gets easier.

Do I cry? Yes, on every episode. How can you not?

But I also smile and laugh as the weight of compulsion begins to lift from the house.

Hope, in all its many forms, small and big, can have that effect.

To see deleted scenes, never aired on the show before, just head over to  http://bit.ly/cH3d00

And if you know of a “Hoarder” that A & E may be able to help on the show, please either e-mail me or leave a comment in the box below!

Until next time,



  • yknot says:

    My question to you is: Have you ever known of someone who had this issue self-treating, using both the Standard Books on the subject (Frost, Sketee) and Therapy? I’m not talking the Stage 4 and 5 hoarders you typically feature. I’d be Interested to hear your answer(s).

  • Pam Kelly says:

    Loved reading this inside story of the deeply moving “Hoarders.” Knowing it was coming from you made the revelations as profound as the show is. Thank you, dear Dorothy.
    xox Your adoring fan,

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