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Counseling for Over-shopping and Over-spending

We all shop for many reasons but the addict buys to relieve anxiety and over time the buying creates a dysfunctional lifestyle and more and more of their focus is on shopping and sometimes the cover-up too.

What causes it?

  • Emotional deprivation in childhood
  • Inability to tolerate negative feelings
  • Need to fill an inner void
  • Excitement seeking
  • Approval seeking
  • Perfectionism
  • Genuinely impulsive and compulsive
  • Need to gain control

Types of Behaviors:

  • Compulsive shoppers – shop to distract feelings; “when the going gets tough, the tough go shopping”
  • Trophy shoppers – find the perfect accessory for outfits, etc. High class items will do.
  • Image shoppers – pick up tab, expensive cars, highly visible stuff
  • Bargain shoppers – buy stuff they don’t need just because it is a good deal. Out for the hunt.
  • Codependent shoppers – to gain love and approval
  • Bulimic Shoppers—buy and return, buy and return (similar to actual bulimia)
  • Collector Shoppers—have to have complete or many sets of objects or different colors of same style of clothing

Suggestions for change:

  • Avoid people or places which tempt you to shop/spend
  • Cut up plastic; close charge accounts; rip up credit card offers and home equity applications
  • Make lists before going to the store; buy what you need only – call support people, take a trusted friend
  • Wait a good period of time before you make an impulsive purchase
  • Ask yourself: Do I need this or do I just want it?
  • Develop better ways to manage difficult emotions
  • Develop fun things to do to fill in your time better
  • Seek out specialized counseling, medication, support groups, read books about compulsive shopping/spending
  • Be aware of events that trigger urges to shop
  • Cancel magazine subscriptions or e-mail subscriptions and block certain Internet shopping sites or TV shopping channels

Do Material Things Make Us Happy? Watch this 15 min Huffington Post video featuring Terry Shulman.

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Compulsive Shopping Checklist

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Are you a Compulsive Buyer?

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What is Compulsive Shopping?

Welcome to Shopaholics Anonymous
Bought Out And $pent
Recovery from Compulsive
$hopping and $pending
By Terrence D. Shulman
Bought Out and Spent by Terrence Daryl Shulman
  The Shulman Center for Compulsive Theft, Spending and Hoarding
Terrence Shulman
Founder/Director of
The Shulman Center
Shopaholics Anonymous

"How much would you have to buy in order to finally feel satisfied or good enough?"

A Stanford University study (2006) has concluded that compulsive overspending or overshopping is a legitimate disorder that affects approximately 6% (17,000,000) of the U.S. population and that men and women suffer
about equally."

Click here for more FACTS about Compulsive Spending


Shopaholics Hoarding Disorders Employee Theft
Shopaholics Hoarding Disorders Employee Theft
Overshopping and overspending