Hello. I'm Alice (not my real name).

I was born and raised in Sheffield and I've had a varied life, went to Art College when I was younger and loved it. I ran a market stall, had children and then took up running the market stalls again, attending music festivals and selling clothing. I really enjoyed the process of finding nice things and passing them on to others, but also deciding to keep some of the really nice items.

Over the years, I had personal issues to deal with, loss of parents, divorce. I had to clear my Mum's house out after she died, despite being seriously ill myself.

At some point, I recognised that I just had too much stuff. I couldn't see a way through it, felt overwhelmed by it.

I was made aware of the Hoarding Support Group and went along to some sessions. In time, I was referred for one-to-one support. I felt elated that there was something that existed to help.

How do I feel now? Better about the whole thing. Not feeling judged, being accepted for who I am and the way the house is, means not feeling shamed by the Magpie service - and that means feeling better about things. I've appreciated being gently pushed and encouraged, but not forced, to let things go. 

I have more understanding about myself and my hoarding behaviours, I've learnt how it feels to let somethings go and how this can improve my mood.

I now have belief and positivity that it can be done and I don't beat myself up about it.