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Front Page: Psychiatrists Ask — Is Shopaholism a Disease?

  • While compulsive spending continues during tough times, the psychiatric world is trying to decide whether it should be considered a disease. — New York Times
  • Iran says it would welcome a change in its relations with the US, if it involved a withdrawal of US troops from abroad and an apology for past crimes against Iran. — Reuters
  • Concerns are growing that reconstruction in Gaza will be slowed down by politics. The cost of reconstruction is estimated at $2 billion. — BBC News
  • Despite losses, Wells Fargo has reported that that it will not ask for more bailout money. — CNN
  • The poor parents of Slumdog Millionaire's child stars say that their children were exploited and underpaid. — Telegraph


Join The Conversation
wackdoodle wackdoodle 8 years
wells Fargo does not need a ask for a bailout because they just randomly decided to charge me a monthly service charge for having my account. 18 years I've had this account and NEVER been assessed a monthly service charge then suddenly - "oh we forgot to steal this money from you for the last 18 years" at least that's what I understand from talking to the Wells Fargo Rep. So I opened an Electric Orange Checking account and am dumping Wells for good.
chatondeneige chatondeneige 8 years
I agree with pioneers completely. It's a societal problem - having more junk implies to others that you're more successful. People need to have personal responsibility, though, and that's what it boils down to.
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
Well said pioneers. I agree that is part of my friend's problem ~ that he equates spending with happiness and success.
pioneers pioneers 8 years
Shopping too much is just like consuming anything too much, but I think it's more widespread because it is constantly popularized, accepted, and encouraged in every media outlet. Everything from print ads to television shows condone and promote hyperconsumption. In advertising, objects are connected to human emotions or easy solutions to complex human problems so that people equate happiness with spending. Shopping, like emotional eating or drinking, becomes a means of filling a hole in one's life; a feeling of emptiness that won't be satisfied. I could go on and on with this topic, sorry.
chatondeneige chatondeneige 8 years
Jazz, I'm not sure who you mean by *they*, but the *medical community* calls it a disorder, not a disease. A disease is characterized by something which interferes with physiological function, and mental disorders, such as OCD or "shopaholism" do not do that. Also as a sidenote, "[randomword]aholic" like "chocoholic" and "potoholic" irritate the hell out of me! the "ahol" in alcoholic comes from the word alcOHOL, so if if you're a chocoholic you're addicted to chocohol, etc.
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
PinkNC ~ the difference is that after Christmas most of us can stop spending our whole paychecks on Christmas. The young man I know recently lost his house and filed bankruptcy, but after that he made $30k on a construction job and even though his work is only seasonal, he went out bought all new furniture, skiing passes for his whole family for the whole year, every day he would buy something new, new flat screet TV, xbox, games, new gun he always wanted, cruise, clothes, up to $1,000 a week until it was all gone. He didn't save for taxes nor did he save for the winter, and now he is trying to figure out how to pay for food. I don't know about you, but it sounds like an alcoholic to me if not an obsessive gambler.
PinkNC PinkNC 8 years
Shopping should not be considered as a disease. I mean we all turn into "shopaholics" during the Christmas season sometimes, and then we get over the exciting moment. Now even though some people shop waaaaay more than others, again, I don't think it's a disease.
genesisrocks genesisrocks 8 years
I know right? What are they going to do? Invent a pill to treat "shopaholism"
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
chaton ~ I think it is pertinent to note that I said "If *they* call it...a disease" I didn't say *I* call it a disease; although, feel free to note the definition of disease in the Onelook dictionary is "an impairment of health or a condition of abnormal functioning". I think OCD and ADD could be considered abnormal functioning and I believe they are chemical disorders.
geebers geebers 8 years
Kscincotta- I agree with you. This is why I feel torn. On the one hand I do think those kids should have had money to help THEM but when you are that poor the money is going to get spent quickly on short-term need. Not that I blame the family at all =but I do think that it is difficult for them to understand the long-term benefit of having money for their schooling. So I agree with the producers in this case but I also am questioning if they are giving these kids enough money - because they did not predict their success they really should add more to the pot as it is only fair. Did they do a percentage or a basic sum? That is what bothers me.
kscincotta kscincotta 8 years
I agree that the contracts for the children in Slumdog should have included a conditional clause to throw extra aid their way if the movie was highly succesful. But when it was filmed, it didn't even have a US distributor and was going to be lucky to get out on DVD. To set the kids up for long term success through education was a smart move on the part of the producers. If the kids were paid a lump sum straight away, then I could imagine a scenario where that money would get split amongst their entire families and would be gone very quickly. As it is, the money they were paid was entirely used for medical expenses of both of their fathers (which is fine) rather than helping to lift their families out of poverty. A larger lump sum would have been just as likely to be spent.
clarabelle98 clarabelle98 8 years
I think "shopoholism" or however it's spelled is more a symptom of something else, like OCD or Dissociative Identity Disorder, but I don't it by itself is anything more than a lack of willpower and common sense.
chatondeneige chatondeneige 8 years
Jazz, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder isn't a called a disease. It's a disorder. It's right there in its name!! :) Hainan57, they are the worst! They're so good! I'm just having one more... before lunch. ;)
starangel82 starangel82 8 years
em - with my sister, that's probably the truest statement I've heard. I feel for the poor piggies. Of course any time I hear bacon, all I can think about is that stupid commerical on TV where the dog runs around going, "IT'S BACON!".
skb9850 skb9850 8 years
"I find it irritating how everything people don't have enough self-control to stop is called a disease. There may be a few true shopaholics or sexaholics, but for the most part it seems to me that being spoiled and self-indulgent isn't a disease, but a character flaw." I definitely agree. And I can stop eating bacon any time I want too. Right after I go get a BLT for lunch.
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
I guess if they call obsessive compulsive disorder a 'disease' then it could be called a disease.
StolzeMama StolzeMama 8 years
Oh man Chaton those cookies are the worst. I hate it when someone brings them into our office, you cannot help but eating one (or two or three)
Jazz-Z Jazz-Z 8 years
Interesting stories. I would think if the U.S. were going to apologize to anyone for war it would be Iraq. I wonder if Iran would in turn apologize for hiding Osama bin Laden who needs to pay for his war crimes against the U.S. As far as Shopoholics ~ I think it is a real and serious problem for some people and it has alot more to do with buying than shopping. My observation with someone I know who has this problem (and it is seriously affecting his marriage) is he already had ADD, OCD as well as a need to prove to himself that he is already doubt from chronically listening to success tapes telling him if you want to be successful then you act like you already are, but I think it is different for different people. I think some people have a big hole in themselves they keep trying to fill with other things. I have to admit Jude ~ that was a funny clip from that article. As far as Slumdogs goes, I think there should have been a clause in their contract that if the movie became successful, they would help the actors at least get out of the slums they live in. There are so many wealthy people who have a heart big enough to help those less fortunate and it is sad the only help they offered was so little and even conditional. Interesting they said they got paid three times what an adult makes. What does an adult make in the slums? Was that supposed to be impressive? The greed of the people who wrote their contracts is disgraceful if not an abomination.
chatondeneige chatondeneige 8 years
Jude, I can stop eating cookies whenever I want to! ... No I can't, my best friend brought over those soft sugar cookies with the super soft pink frosting. I HAVE A DISEASE, PEOPLE!
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
Never mind. I thought there was a piggy emoticon.
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
Bah! :pig:
Jude-C Jude-C 8 years
amybdk amybdk 8 years
Well la-dee-da, Jude! I can't stop eating bacon - EVER - it's a little disease I like to call baconitis.
em1282 em1282 8 years
starangel, I've found it's usually a symptom of overcompensation.
starangel82 starangel82 8 years
I don't think shopping is a disease. Everything is a damn disease these days. I do think excessive shopping is a symptom of something else. My sister is a shopping queen. She shops if she's sad, angry, or depressed. Last check the child had 56 pairs of flip-flops. Flip-flops! Her shoe count is obscene.
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