You may be a Kleptomaniac …

 

For the month of April I am participating in the annual A-Z Blogging Challenge. The Challenge was started by author/blogger, Arlee Byrd. http://tossingitout.blogspot.com

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Each day of the month (except Sundays) we will post something based on that days correlating letter. Some of us chose a theme and others are winging it. My theme is the A-to-Z’s of Mental Health, Raising Awareness. It is a topic that is very close to my heart. I hope you find the posts interesting and you will comment and share the posts everywhere. To see a list of all of the participants or for more information-click on the badge over there to the right>

 Today’s letter is K

A-Z Letter K

 

 

 

 

 

Kleptomania

Kleptomania is a powerful, irresistible urge to steal items that you do not need and the stolen items usually have little value. It is a serious psychiatric disorder and left untreated can cause emotional pain to the kleptomaniac as well as his/her loved ones.

It is an impulse disorder. It was once considered to be a form of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder but is no longer thought to be. It is a disorder in which they cannot resist the urges to perform acts that are dangerous to them and or someone else.

A-Z Challenge Letter K Photo

Most people with this disorder lead secret lives due to shame and rarely seek treatment on their own.

There is no cure for the disorder but the urges can be controlled with medication and behavior modification therapy.

Symptoms:

  • Feeling intense tension leading up to theft.
  • Feeling extreme pleasure during the theft
  • Feeling unbearable guilt after the theft
  • The cycle repeats

Kleptomania and drug addictions seem to have central qualities in common, including:

  • recurring or compulsive participation in a behavior in spite of undesirable penalties;
  • weakened control over the disturbing behavior;
  • a need or desire condition before taking part in the problematic behavior; and
  • a positive pleasure-seeking condition throughout the act of the disturbing behavior.

Unlike shoplifting which is usually controllable and done out of want, need or revenge the kleptomaniac has no need, for the item just the uncontrollable need to steal. It is not a character flaw. It is a serious mental health disorder that can be controlled with professional help.

If you love someone that you suspect has kleptomania, before confronting them keep in mind this is a very serious mental health condition. Do not blame or threaten the kleptomaniac. Gently tell them that a mental health provider will not report their thefts to the police. Explain to them you are afraid they will eventually be arrested. Try to convince them that effective treatments are available.

 

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