I have become quite obsessive in the last couple of months.  I can't throw out anything that has to do with Terry.  I have things like his empty cereal box from the hospital, water bottles, receipts, envelopes, utensils, cups etc.  I can't get rid of anything even if its garbage and I am so protective over it.  I have gotten really upset with my kids for touching or moving things.
Terry and I used to watch "hoarders" on tv.  I couldn't understand why these people  just don't throw the garbage out. I would get annoyed and comment throughout the show and in turn annoy my husband.  He would say for me to just stop watching the show if it bothered me.  Now, he is dead and I now understand why they cant throw anything out. 
Just when I thought I knew so much, God pulled the rug from under me and everything I knew was gone.

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You're holding on to what was part of him.In all reality,It is just STUFF!!!The thing no one can throw away are your memories!My husband was a junk collector,as he would say"Good Sh*t"but anyone else would call him a hoarder!We got a large dumpster in and filled it!Then for 1 month we collected scrap metal and cashed it in.He would be so p*ssed!Then i did the unthinkable and cut his precious palmettoes down!But I am the one left to keep up the yard and the house.Still kept the sentimental things or gave them to the kids.My poor dog grieved for days untill I found 1 unwashed sock.I still have his bathrobe,can't give that up!We all have our quirks,do what makes you feel better.You will know when the time comes.
My husband was a junk collector also. i don't know what i am supposed to do with all this stuff. I know he would never get rid of his "junk" so how am I going to be able to do it without feeling guilty for it.
Funny, my husband was a collector too. I was a pitcher. He would always rub it in years later when he used that piece of junk for something, and say, "See, if I would have thrown it out like you wanted me to, I would be buying it right now for this project." I didn't realize how obsessive he became in the last years of his life. He collected Harbor Lights, which are lighthouses. They are very nice and not cheap, and when he died he had 125 of them boxes and all. That didn't bother me, but when I was forced to move and get rid of some things, ( my house sold before he went into the hospital,) I couldn't believe what he saved. My son's girlfriend gave him a Lighthouse calendar for Christmas, you would tear off the page daily, and each page had a lighthouse on it. He had cut the top off of the picture of the lighthouse and I found a freezer bag full of them. He saved the Lighthouse depot catalogs, which are no more than a sale catalog from JC Penny. He hole punched them and put them in a Binder. I pitched the whole binder with the catalogs when I moved. I, like you Kathleen, kept the sentimental things. My son's taking the Lighthouses when he gets his own house. I just don't want all the STUFF. I kept two Nautica Sweatshirts and wear them-they make me feel close to him when I do.
I read the discussion on obsessive behavior and I know exactly what you are saying. My husband was not a junk dealer and had very little when I met him. He had spent the 20 years prior to meeting me at the whim of his 33 year old daughter who allowed every possession of his to be lost when they were evicted 20 times in as many years or didnt pay storage and he lost all his belongings. When he moved in with me there were 2 small garbage bags of belongings he brought with him so in a strange way it has made things much easier. Every item I have has a memory attached to it of our very short (23 months) marriage. My heart aches for anything that he slept in or with, every little gift, every receipt to remind me of where we were on a particular day..then theres his ashes...I have scattered some but everyone thinks I should scatter them all...I just cant. He died tragically at the hands of a disease that has no survival rate and his family treated him cruelly and are responsible for cheating him out of months of quality life by using verbal abuse to stress him to the point of stroke. I took care of him, I lost sleep, I lost hope, I cried everynight and at the end I stood alone with MY children to mourn him. His daughter got exactly what she wanted in the end...his inheritance of $85,000. I have $80,000 in debt. I keep everything including his anger towards his family and just wish i could let it go with everything else.
Hi Linda,

You appear to be a really good person. I just wondered why your husband would leave $85,000 to his daughter instead of you his wife. You cared for him when no one else would. I can't believe it.

Nancy

Linda Dey said:
I read the discussion on obsessive behavior and I know exactly what you are saying. My husband was not a junk dealer and had very little when I met him. He had spent the 20 years prior to meeting me at the whim of his 33 year old daughter who allowed every possession of his to be lost when they were evicted 20 times in as many years or didnt pay storage and he lost all his belongings. When he moved in with me there were 2 small garbage bags of belongings he brought with him so in a strange way it has made things much easier. Every item I have has a memory attached to it of our very short (23 months) marriage. My heart aches for anything that he slept in or with, every little gift, every receipt to remind me of where we were on a particular day..then theres his ashes...I have scattered some but everyone thinks I should scatter them all...I just cant. He died tragically at the hands of a disease that has no survival rate and his family treated him cruelly and are responsible for cheating him out of months of quality life by using verbal abuse to stress him to the point of stroke. I took care of him, I lost sleep, I lost hope, I cried everynight and at the end I stood alone with MY children to mourn him. His daughter got exactly what she wanted in the end...his inheritance of $85,000. I have $80,000 in debt. I keep everything including his anger towards his family and just wish i could let it go with everything else.
Was there a will ? If so, I take it that it was never updated... If there was no will, you should have seen a lawyer to be made adm of the estate - you would have to go thru the surrogate courts - it takes about 8 months total - if there was no will - i would look into it the spouse gets the 1st $50,000 in NYS.

Linda Dey said:
I read the discussion on obsessive behavior and I know exactly what you are saying. My husband was not a junk dealer and had very little when I met him. He had spent the 20 years prior to meeting me at the whim of his 33 year old daughter who allowed every possession of his to be lost when they were evicted 20 times in as many years or didnt pay storage and he lost all his belongings. When he moved in with me there were 2 small garbage bags of belongings he brought with him so in a strange way it has made things much easier. Every item I have has a memory attached to it of our very short (23 months) marriage. My heart aches for anything that he slept in or with, every little gift, every receipt to remind me of where we were on a particular day..then theres his ashes...I have scattered some but everyone thinks I should scatter them all...I just cant. He died tragically at the hands of a disease that has no survival rate and his family treated him cruelly and are responsible for cheating him out of months of quality life by using verbal abuse to stress him to the point of stroke. I took care of him, I lost sleep, I lost hope, I cried everynight and at the end I stood alone with MY children to mourn him. His daughter got exactly what she wanted in the end...his inheritance of $85,000. I have $80,000 in debt. I keep everything including his anger towards his family and just wish i could let it go with everything else.
Terry,
I understand, Tim liked to have an occassional cigar. When I found the last pack of cigars I could not throw it away. There have been some other things that I have found and that I have felt the same way about. I think it is a way for me to try to hold on to what was. Because this is what I need this right. I like to believe that it is o.k. as long as it does not get out of control. I went through this when my mom past away. It was hard letting go of things like her 1/2 used can of hairspray (simply because it belonged to my mom and it was the last one she used) so I put it in a box and on occassion I go through the box and every year it is easier to realize that I don't need a can of 1/2 empty hair spray to remind me or to feel close to my mom. I have so many wonderful memories, pictures and videos. So maybe this is what you need now and it is only temporary. Just give yourself time.
Basia, you do whatever it takes to give yourself comfort, there are no rules to follow in this grief. I still sleep in Brad's lounging pants and tshirts. Do what you want, not what others think you should. In time you will be able to let go of some things, but you will always have your memories and that's what really counts. When Brad left I found out just how many screws, nuts, bolts and nails he really had! Organized neatly, some packages were never opened, but how many does one person need? They are still here in the same drawers I found them in. When I'm ready, I'll give them up, but for now everything I want is still in its place, nice and neat as he always had them. Good luck to you, sending you hugs!
Glad I found this thread,I thought I was the only one that cant seem to thow things out that my wife used.I still have her half bottles of shampoo and skin creams in our bathroom. In the closet are some clothes she bought on a shopping trip just before her illness turned for the worst. As far as some of the wives have written about thier husbands hardware and such, I too have plenty of this stuff myself. I am a mechanic and so was my Dad. I stiil have some drawers with stuf he had in his shop and a vise that I used as a kid over 50 years ago. I am sure when I go my kids will just chuck it. I am not a hoarder,I am always throwing or giving things away.But somethings seem to have sentimental value when the person who used them has passed on. Maybe its in our genes, my mom is 87 and still has a sweater that was my dads,he passed on 16 years ago. She puts it on in the house in the winter.She thew most of his stuff out when she moved a few years after he passed,but wont part with a few items.
Jerry, its been 17 months for me. I have not thrown out any of LouAnn's things such as you mentioned. I have no desire whatsoever to do so either. Still have her clothes and everything. I still have her shirt and pants on the vacuum cleaner handle where she set them next to bed for a nap. She died suddenly during a nap. I heard her die and saw her dead. But, I am leaving her clothes right where they are.I still am using the toothpaste she had bought the day she died. I want to always remember her and those are some of the things I am doing.
Basia, You are trying to hold on to every shred of Terry that you possibly can. My husband was not a keeper except for his tools and things in his workshop which I have not yet touched. I told my sons-in-law to go down and take what they want just so as they leave me a hammer and a drill so that I can do my little repair jobs. I was able to give most of Phil's clothes and things away not too long after he passed but there are some things that I still cannot give away. There are some things that I will never give up - his leather Phila. Eagles jacket. He loved that jacket. Maybe one day I will give it to my grandson but not now. His shaving stuff is still in the bathroom. His 'heart' pillow from transplant is on my bed and I hold onto it at night so that I can sleep. We all have to do things when we are ready and as we can bring ourselves to do them. When the time is right for you, you will know and you will do what you have to do. You need to be careful with the kids though because they have lost their Dad and I am sure that they are grieving in their own way too.
Basia, life is not fair. If it were, none of us would be here hurting as we are. We would be together with our spouses and not living with a broken heart. I will keep you in my prayers.
Basia, I don't think you are obsessive. I think you are somehow still trying to stay connected with Terry. I still haven't moved anything of my husband. His towel is still hanging where he hung it that day after his shower. His shirts are still hanging behind our bedroom door. All his clothes are still in the closet. His jacket is still hanging where it was the last day. His toothbrush is still in the holder even his empty shampoo bottle. My bed still has two pillows one on his side, one on mine. I couldn't hang on to his physical form so all I have is his things. He will never hug me again so I just go and hug his shirt, cold comfort but that's all I have left. You are not alone, I am in your club too.

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