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I want to stop

Forum for the discussion of Shoplifting Addiction and related behavior.

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I want to stop

Postby tellthetabl0ids » Mon Jul 04, 2011 12:26 pm

Hi everyone. I'm new here and I desperately want to stop shoplifting. This has been a problem ever since I can remember. In elementary school I would steal things like lipglosses and doll clothing from friends- I always felt guilty, every single time. In grade 6 I decided to stop, which was fueled by my mother finding the things I had stolen. 3 years ago my friends began shoplifting, and I thought it was horrible- then something sparked me to start shoplifting. I am 19 now and I haven't been caught. I feel like it comes from a need to have a "complete set"- OCD or something of the sort. I have always needed a "complete set"; buying the same shirt in 3 colours, etc. I don't want to be a thief, I am a good person who wants to help others. I am lucky because I haven't been caught, but I am afraid to go into the stores that I have shoplifted from (which I also purchase from) because I feel like the staff are starting to catch on and even if I go there to actually PURCHASE something, they will recognize me and call the police. If I haven't been caught, can I go in to purchase something? I just want to be an honest person, I don't want to do this anymore.
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Re: I want to stop

Postby jasmin » Thu Jul 07, 2011 5:41 pm

Hi, tellthetabl0ids! You could try to stay away from shops that trigger you or items that trigger you for a while. You should look for a therapist who can treat this too. Confess to your doctor about what's going on and ask them where you can find a specialist. This must be very stressful for you, but you can overcome it. Posting here is a good first step, I'm glad you found the forum.
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Re: I want to stop

Postby forgetthename » Thu Jul 28, 2011 1:53 am

Hello, tellthetabl0ids!

I've never shoplifted before, but I do agree that your shoplifting appears to be fueled be OCD-like behaviors. Rather than avoiding the stores that you shoplift at, maybe you should face the problem head-on? Don't buy something that comes in 5 different colors, for example, or maybe you could ask someone else to purchase the typical items you tend to steal.

There's a multitude of ways to combat a problem, but I feel that without more detail and knowledge it is rather difficult to explore any solutions fully. Let it be noted that all these solutions I offered are only temporary. This looks to me like the shoplifting is being fueled by something much larger than the OCD. (The OCD playing a crucial role, of course..)

Do you remember your first time shoplifting? Can you tell us about that?

Cheers
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Re: I want to stop

Postby GothicBBW » Tue Aug 09, 2011 6:58 pm

I remember being a child and stealing a pack of gum. I did steal something from my nanny once and got caught. I did not steal for many, many years that I can recall. I do have OCD, a doc told me its not severe enough to get a clinical diagnosis. It sounds crazy. I am a good person who has a very difficult problem. It is helpful to have people to confess to b/c I can't keep it a secret. It bothers and festers to the point of major depression. I want to be better. I do not want to live with panic, depression, OCD, or my impulsive shoplifting. I feel so bad and angry.
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Re: I want to stop

Postby Brio » Fri Sep 30, 2011 10:32 am

Though you haven't been caught yet, you will one day if you keep doing this. You must seek help from a qualified Psychiatrist who understands this to be caused by a mental illness but won't drug you into another one (meds can be helpful if not taken to extremes).

You sound just like my 25 y/o daughter. She has a 5 y/o son and I am terrified she will lose him over this and we will both lose her. This weekend, she was arrested for what I think was the 5th time and allowed to return home. She has to appear in court in November. She was on probation and this was the 3rd time in the past year she's been caught. She didn't have a criminal record up till now but that may change after this.

When she's been caught before, the police, judge, and prosecuting attorney have been very sympathetic because they know she is struggling with a number of mental illnesses, one or more of which likely cause this. She sees a counselor who specializes in it as a condition of her probation.

I don't believe my daughter does this due to some personal or moral failure and her Psychiatrist tells me it's caused by mental illness (health care is "free" in Canada and his practice is overloaded, so he doesn't have ulterior motives). I don't judge her. I listen when she talks about it. She's the only member of our family to have experience with the criminal justice system, so I can't say I understand why this has happened. Her doctor has assured me that it's not my parenting because my other daughters don't have it and yet, I feel guilty.

I raised all three of my daughters to understand that stealing is wrong. This daughter is the middle one and her sisters have careers they do well at. Initially, she started by taking things from my dresser which I would later find in her room. For a time brief time in adolescence, the youngest engaged in some shoplifting with her elder sister, but seeing her get caught was enough to spook the youngest into stopping. Arrest hasn't been enough to stop my middle daughter, though it upsets her. She cries and becomes hysterical and is often suicidal afterwards.

She has a compulsive need to acquire things. She has spoken of a need to have complete sets of things, just as you have. She told me once that if one of a set of dishes got broken, the whole set would be ruined and she would need to replace the whole.

For a long time now, she would come to the city to see her counselor, doctor, and/or probation officer in an old Chevy Tahoe she borrowed from her son's father, stay a few days, go to the stores for hours each day buying some things and shoplifting others until the truck was so full she couldn't see out the back and drive home (I knew what she was doing but couldn't get her to stop). She said she would cry the whole time she unloaded the truck into her home. It seemed to me the MAOI her doctor had her on may have exacerbated the shoplifting, though it provided immense relief for her depression. I've spoken with her doctor about this and he wants her in the hospital to re-assess her medication because it can worsen this type of behaviour in some.

Two days ago, my daughter decided that she could not stand the sight of all the stolen goods in her home anymore and turned herself in to the local detactment of the federal police. It took eight police officers five hours to fill 150 boxes, though they may have packed some items she owned legitimately. They assured her that it will be sorted later and what actually belongs to her returned. They also assured her throughout that this was a voluntary process she could have called off any time if it got to be too much.

What can't be returned to the stores (which will be difficult, as my daughter has memory problems) will be donated to charity. They haven't packed everything stolen yet, as they lacked resources to collect all of it.

Obviously, this involved hoarding also. She had to get a local doctor to prescribe tranquillizers to cope though they were very gentle and kept asking her how she was doing. The fact that she did this voluntarily and never sold anything will be taken into account. Obviously, if she had ever gained from her shoplifting, that would add another layer of illegality that would harshen her punishment so don't ever sell the things you have taken.

Just like you, she is a good person who likes to help people. It can become an addiction so the sooner you get help, the better. Please don't let it get this far.

If you ever decide to turn yourself in like my daughter, get help first and have it documented so you have proof it's an illness that you are getting help for. Good luck.
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Re: I want to stop

Postby shree123 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 5:32 am

Shoplifting can be a more serious than people realize. There are different types of Shoplifters. It is a psychological problem for many people. This is a issue that affects millions of people, men and women of all ages and from all walks of life. The psychotherapist will support you to cure your Shoplifting problem.
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