Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW

Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW

  • Are you able to observe in yourself where symptoms of ADD/ADHD, such as attention issues, become a challenge when you are sorting? If you do, what does that look like in your regular sorting sessions?

  • Hello Clutter Buddies members! Have you ever had a ‘Clutter Buddy’ before? If so, what was it like? If not, do you feel like it would help or hurt your process?

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 3 weeks ago

    That is powerful and so important for others that are still struggling with acceptance and placing responsibilities.

    • The trouble is that I never would have said I was “waiting for permission” I didn’t feel like I was, or that I needed it, but I was waiting on my mother for something… I thought it had something to do with her/us … it did, once… but I got sick of waiting and I just left her behind. and then things got better… It sounds kinda harsh and t…[Read more]

    • Maybe a less cold sounding version is that I realized there was no “us” there was me taking care of her, there was a big, often suffocating HER, but there was no us. I’d always been coping on my own. I could me me taking care of her and taking care of me, or I could be me taking care of her and neglecting me, but either way it was really all o…[Read more]

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 4 weeks ago

    Sounds like a great idea to me!

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 4 weeks ago

    In adding content to the Library for Professionals, I have added the page titled “Roles – Understanding Professional Roles, Abilities, and Limitations“. Under APS, look at ‘Policy Manual – Tennessee…’ This has the most thorough explanation of self-determination and capacity that I can find. It’s a big document so I recommend using the…[Read more]

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    Group in 30 minutes, will you be participating? Amelia is likely unable to, she’s out of town doing some self-care.

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    I would agree that the landscape is significantly different now. Additionally, more and more COH and spouses are getting out in the public arena to speak about their experience and the impact on their lives as well as partnering with researchers. These include, but are not limited to, the authors you mentioned, Cecelia Garrett – who has partnered…[Read more]

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    This was a lot to take in so I hope that I have addressed each issue for you here.

    The ‘fortress effect’ is definitely a common thread in hoarding. Remember that the clutter is a symptom of hoarding disorder, it is a ‘soothing behavior’ for lack of a better description. This explains why there are physical walls built to reflect the internal…[Read more]

    • Have you read Barbara Allen and Jesse Scholl?

      I don’t imagine researchers are oblivious to what they cannot study, only emphasizing that this lacunae is significant issue for many COH whom I talk to… it is a major road block for many who feel that experts “don’t get it.” Many have disengaged… but the landscape is very different from what wa…[Read more]

    • I would agree that the landscape is significantly different now. Additionally, more and more COH and spouses are getting out in the public arena to speak about their experience and the impact on their lives as well as partnering with researchers. These include, but are not limited to, the authors you mentioned, Cecelia Garrett – who has partnered…[Read more]

    • 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻🙂

    • Group in 30 minutes, will you be participating? Amelia is likely unable to, she’s out of town doing some self-care.

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    Awesome! Hoping it gave you the space you needed to focus on you and only you. Glad to have you with us. I am not usually online this late in the evening however, was updating some things and wanted to say hello.

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month ago

    In regards to the self-medicating yes, but the hoarding is not the self-medication, an acquiring addiction is. Hoarding disorder is a completely separate issue as excessive acquiring occurs outside of those with hoarding disorder in addition to frequently co-occuring with hoarding disorder. This self-medicating through acquiring is typically…[Read more]

    • This interface is killing me Marnie… I just typed a really long reply and it vanished. i’m Going to send you and email instead

    • I also see the fortress-effect of the hoard functioning as a huge LEAVE ME ALONE, KEEP OUT OR ELSE, just like substance abuse, and the fortress keeps people/experience from causing pain, it has a distancing, numbing , anesthetic effect. Given the rampant alcoholism in my mother’s family, and her vehement determination that she would never be a…[Read more]

    • I get what you are saying about PD. The problem is basically that 100% of our parents never seek treatment for hoarding disorder so these two populations do not overlap. We don’t know the population in treatment and experts don’t know ours… I don’t know anyone from COH Yahoo whose parent was ever treated and Many seem to feel their paren…[Read more]

      • This was a lot to take in so I hope that I have addressed each issue for you here.

        The ‘fortress effect’ is definitely a common thread in hoarding. Remember that the clutter is a symptom of hoarding disorder, it is a ‘soothing behavior’ for lack of a better description. This explains why there are physical walls built to reflect the internal…[Read more]

        • Have you read Barbara Allen and Jesse Scholl?

          I don’t imagine researchers are oblivious to what they cannot study, only emphasizing that this lacunae is significant issue for many COH whom I talk to… it is a major road block for many who feel that experts “don’t get it.” Many have disengaged… but the landscape is very different from what wa…[Read more]

        • I would agree that the landscape is significantly different now. Additionally, more and more COH and spouses are getting out in the public arena to speak about their experience and the impact on their lives as well as partnering with researchers. These include, but are not limited to, the authors you mentioned, Cecelia Garrett – who has partnered…[Read more]

        • 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻🙂

        • Group in 30 minutes, will you be participating? Amelia is likely unable to, she’s out of town doing some self-care.

  • Do you recognize the co-occurring mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, add/adhd, ocd in your family member? If so, how do they impact the hoarding? Do they impact you differently that the hoarding does?

    • YES. I wish I could unpack it better, but I assume you already picked up on that Marnie. I’m finally resettled for this Thursday :). So many coh I talk to seem to be responding to what look like NPD, BPD, histrionic, paranoid, OCPD… It is my suspicion increasingly that hoarding may be compounded, or a susceptibility may be present due to f…[Read more]

      • In regards to the self-medicating yes, but the hoarding is not the self-medication, an acquiring addiction is. Hoarding disorder is a completely separate issue as excessive acquiring occurs outside of those with hoarding disorder in addition to frequently co-occuring with hoarding disorder. This self-medicating through acquiring is typically…[Read more]

        • This interface is killing me Marnie… I just typed a really long reply and it vanished. i’m Going to send you and email instead

        • I also see the fortress-effect of the hoard functioning as a huge LEAVE ME ALONE, KEEP OUT OR ELSE, just like substance abuse, and the fortress keeps people/experience from causing pain, it has a distancing, numbing , anesthetic effect. Given the rampant alcoholism in my mother’s family, and her vehement determination that she would never be a…[Read more]

        • I get what you are saying about PD. The problem is basically that 100% of our parents never seek treatment for hoarding disorder so these two populations do not overlap. We don’t know the population in treatment and experts don’t know ours… I don’t know anyone from COH Yahoo whose parent was ever treated and Many seem to feel their paren…[Read more]

          • This was a lot to take in so I hope that I have addressed each issue for you here.

            The ‘fortress effect’ is definitely a common thread in hoarding. Remember that the clutter is a symptom of hoarding disorder, it is a ‘soothing behavior’ for lack of a better description. This explains why there are physical walls built to reflect the internal…[Read more]

            • Have you read Barbara Allen and Jesse Scholl?

              I don’t imagine researchers are oblivious to what they cannot study, only emphasizing that this lacunae is significant issue for many COH whom I talk to… it is a major road block for many who feel that experts “don’t get it.” Many have disengaged… but the landscape is very different from what wa…[Read more]

            • I would agree that the landscape is significantly different now. Additionally, more and more COH and spouses are getting out in the public arena to speak about their experience and the impact on their lives as well as partnering with researchers. These include, but are not limited to, the authors you mentioned, Cecelia Garrett – who has partnered…[Read more]

            • 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻🙂

            • Group in 30 minutes, will you be participating? Amelia is likely unable to, she’s out of town doing some self-care.

  • In your experience, what is the most misunderstood perception of children of hoarders?

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month, 2 weeks ago

    I hear what you are saying. The other issue that has an impact in regards to APS, especially in hoarding cases, is knowledge, understanding, and resources. We are working on that but it’s a long process.

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month, 2 weeks ago

    Glad you find this helpful. In working collaboratively for years with APS, capacity, especially in hoarding is not always well defined. The basic threshold is, is the person able to understand the consequences of their behavior. Before going further into this, read through this:…[Read more]

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month, 2 weeks ago

    It can definitely be a catch-22. That being said, being the ‘only party concerned with her welfare’ seems to apply to her lack of concern for her own welfare too. This puts us back to the previous question of who wants it more. This is likely a piece that APS has taken into consideration too. If the person doesn’t want the help they are offering,…[Read more]

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month, 2 weeks ago

    My decision to stopping work is based on the answer to the following question
    Based on the current level of engagement, who wants this effort more, me or the client? If I find myself pushing or on the verge of arguing with a client, this is a red flag. There is a difference between challenging the person to assess/change thoughts and behaviors and…[Read more]

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month, 2 weeks ago

    It’s difficult to understand the limitations set on APS and most state agencies in regards to that infamous and often contentious term “self-determination”. Limited ‘reach’ and resources often govern the ability to force change. I am sorry that you are having to go through this. Your inclination of just providing her with drinking water may indeed…[Read more]

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month, 2 weeks ago

    You are in a really frustrating situation to put it very lightly. There is a point in situations where I have to consider if I am being helpful anymore to person or the situation. While all the actions of a team to help someone resolve a hoarding situation are clearly going to be helpful, if the person is refusing and/or stuck and unable to…[Read more]

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month, 3 weeks ago

    Well said Claudia. Amelia, is this helpful?

  • Marnie Matthews, MSW, LICSW posted a new activity comment 1 month, 3 weeks ago

    APS investigation laws are changing in many states so that even if the person refuses help, the investigation can continue. This is ideal in these situations, just taking time for the efforts to ‘trickle down’.

    • I wish my mother had more time… but it is encouraging to know of progress… still amazing how backwards it all seems…

    • Marnie, did you see fb post that APS closed case … #$%@#$# 🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️🙂
      Haven’t decided what to do, if anything… likely waiting re: bank deadline june 4… maybe follow up with lawyer … maybe just keep sending drinking water… I cannot stand the thought that when something happens to her they will say they did everything they could……

      • It’s difficult to understand the limitations set on APS and most state agencies in regards to that infamous and often contentious term “self-determination”. Limited ‘reach’ and resources often govern the ability to force change. I am sorry that you are having to go through this. Your inclination of just providing her with drinking water may indeed…[Read more]

    • Thank you Marnie, it is very helpful to hear that from someone who has to make same decision in professional context… can you tell me what criteria you use to decide in your work when it is time to stop? Certainly i know that coh wanting to do the right thing is great cover for very complex desires, and yet I’m not happy with ‘my best,” and…[Read more]

      • My decision to stopping work is based on the answer to the following question
        Based on the current level of engagement, who wants this effort more, me or the client? If I find myself pushing or on the verge of arguing with a client, this is a red flag. There is a difference between challenging the person to assess/change thoughts and behaviors and…[Read more]

    • I don’t know how to remove myself from this equation apart from doing nothing, but I have no confidence that is the “right” call for *her* bc I am involved and interested, and I am the only other party concerned with her welfare…
      I feel it is an impossible catch-22

      • It can definitely be a catch-22. That being said, being the ‘only party concerned with her welfare’ seems to apply to her lack of concern for her own welfare too. This puts us back to the previous question of who wants it more. This is likely a piece that APS has taken into consideration too. If the person doesn’t want the help they are offering,…[Read more]

    • Marnie, that is perfect, extremely helpful, thank you very much. exactly what i needed to feel confident that i am approaching this objectively, and not as “coh”

      This suffices to help me decide how to act (or not)

      On the reflective side… regarding what she “wants” surely we cannot dismiss her explicitly expressed wishes…. but I still…[Read more]

      • Glad you find this helpful. In working collaboratively for years with APS, capacity, especially in hoarding is not always well defined. The basic threshold is, is the person able to understand the consequences of their behavior. Before going further into this, read through this:…[Read more]

    • This sort of thing definitely satisfies my curiosity about how they understand themselves… ultimately, I think I have fierce substantive conflict regarding the meaning of self-determination, as a political philosopher there is no self-determination or autonomy without reason and rational self interest. Being a prisoner to irrational desire,…[Read more]

      • I hear what you are saying. The other issue that has an impact in regards to APS, especially in hoarding cases, is knowledge, understanding, and resources. We are working on that but it’s a long process.

    • I would be more comfortable with “forced intervention does not work” and leave aside the distracting red herring of “self-determination “

      The other issue is that “legal competency” standard turns a blind eye to a zillion shades of diminished capacity.

      I also don’t feel like APS tries to connect her to services or options. Their approach is “…[Read more]

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