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Monday, 25 August 2014

The Shopaholic in me...


If you're here looking for a review you're not going to find it, I do write reviews, please check my archives and look out for future posts but this post is more serious than a review. This post is opening up to the world and realising that I have a shopping addiction. No, not a "I love beauty so that makes me a shopaholic" addiction but a real and scary one that has gotten out of control and now I'm having to try and deal with it.

Ive always loved to shop, many people do. The thrill of finding a bargain and knowing just how much we are about to save or simply lusting after something and the feeling inside when we are finally able to say we own such item. Shopping can be a social experience that many enjoy for time spent with family and friends. But what happens when that desire to shop becomes addictive? For example, if you're feeling down and you purchase a nice new item for yourself, you feel better right? Don't get me wrong that feeling doesn't stay around for long, but in that moment when you have handed over hard earned payment for whats in your trolly basket and your able to hold that item or wait for that all important delivery to arrive, it's magical. Placing that item in it's new home, be it wardrobe, dressing table, kitchen, wherever it belongs and taking a step back to admire it... but then the reality starts to sink in. The dread of how much has just been spent, the euphoria now over. Now in it's home the item no longer has a brand new appeal to it. We own it now, simple, boring and so we start again on the hunt for our next item or saving.

This scenario may happen to many people who simply make "normal" purchases on an occasional basis, but this, this was happening to me 4-5+ times per week. I am a shopaholic. I enjoy spending money to own materialistic things. I love to shop and I live for finding sales and saving money on items. The problem you ask? I am a Shopaholic who cannot afford to be spending the amount that I was. I am a Shopaholic who covers feelings and emotions with buying new things. I have an addiction and I now face having to overcome this.

Let's put this into perspective. You don't really appreciate an addiction until you see the damage. Now I am not claiming to have gone far enough that there is no way back and I appreciate that there will be many who are in a much worse situation but this is bad for me personally. Last week alone I managed to rack up a bill of £240.55! In the last two weeks this was £425.25. Last month cost me £858.41! Now if we look at what this year so far has cost me. £3167.40!

I reached a point recently where I began to feel guilty about hitting the checkout button, I became embarrassed every time the postman came round and hid around the door hoping it didn't need signed for. I got to a first name basis with more than one delivery driver and still it didn't keep me from the dreaded checkout stage, it didn't stop me throwing money away like paper. Why? because it became an addiction. The feeling that came with opening a perfectly packaged parcel fresh from the postman outweighed any guilty feelings that I had. The good feelings won! I felt the guilt more often then the good feelings but it still didn't stop me because the good feelings were just so worth it. No not everything was from Loreal! But in all seriousness it had got out of hand, I couldn't afford to be spending like this. Those figures above are simply items. Those figures don't include petrol every week, they don't include food shopping or the course that I have to pay monthly for. That's simply for items of a beauty or fashion nature.

I got into debt, luckily for me is wasn't a debt with charges or interest but still nethertheless it was a debt that was getting bigger and bigger, that I was paying back each week only to take more out of the next time. It wasn't my money but money that I should have been looking after. I wrote down every single time that I took out of it with full intention to put back and since the money wouldn't be touched for at least another 16 years I knew I had the time to replace every last penny. I finally decided enough was enough when I finally looked at my bank statement to realise that I was over£200 into the minuses and I couldn't face taking such a lump sum from my "sources." The thing is though that small payments add up and although I've thought I was getting a saving and snapping it up before the offer passed, I was also adding up the final bill and without realising was into the thousands.

I eventually told my fiancé when I couldn't replace the money and my efforts of paying it all back were poor as I didn't have the will power to overcome it alone. He never realised before quite how serious it was becoming, he knew I liked to shop as most girls do but since I was hiding all evidence from him there was no reason for him to be concerned.

I dreaded the moment that I told him, he works hard and appreciates all the income that he has worked for and so I knew that telling him wasn't going to go down lightly. Luckily, he didn't shout or scream but asked calmly how much I owed. We added it up together and it came to just shy of £2000. Whilst he certainly didn't approve nor was he amused in the slightest he stayed calm and told me as it was going to be ok from now on. He replaced all of the money, for which I have to pay him back weekly as that way he can have more control over my spendings and see that I pay back what I've spent.

I'm now on a strict spending ban but has it stopped me? No, not yet, not quite. Whilst I'm no longer getting into debt for my spending I am able to "afford" my purchases this week but the thing is I'm trying and I will continue to track my progress for everybody to see. It's not easy overcoming an addiction but with time and support I believe that I can put an end to it and learn to shop wisely and make better decisions in the future. Bring the fun back into shopping occasionally and enjoying being able to treat myself once in a while. Buying as much as I was, it stopped being fun. I never stopped loving shopping and I don't think I ever will but the guilt took away the fun.


I kid you not that as I write this post Yodel has just pulled up outside with another box addressed to me.

So far however I have made one purchase in 7 days and although none would have been better it's definitely an improvement. I'd like to say a big thank you to Dan for helping me out, his support and love have been a much needed source and now he is in the know I believe that with his watchful eye I can't finally begin to pay back what I owe and dare I say it, begin saving?

Has anybody else let their shopping get out of control? I hope this has inspired you if you too have felt that your shopping has perhaps become too much.

Lots of Love

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