Lori A. Moore is a multi-published, award-winning author who lives in Louisville, KY. She is an avid traveler, having visited all 50 states in the USA as well as 65+ other countries.
Reviewed by Viga Boland for Readers' Favorite
Have you ever watched those TV shows about hoarders and wondered how on earth people can live like that? Perhaps you’ve asked yourself what drives them to fill their kitchens, bathrooms and every room of the house with stuff they’ve dug out of trash piles or their neighbours’ discarded, broken, or unwanted household items. The answers to those questions are what Lori A Moore has tried to explore and understand for herself in The Hoarder’s Daughter: Memories of a Life in Chaos. Her mother was a hoarder whose life was in chaos and whose hoarding caused no small amount of chaos and heartache for her children.
Louise, as Lori calls her mom to simplify the writing, was one of several children born to a stay-at-home mom and an alcoholic father, who, despite Louise’s claims that the family was dirt poor, did provide well for them. So why did she grow up feeling the need to dumpster dive for most of her adult years? The author’s description of the home Louise was living in when Lori and her brother told her she had to move out is nauseating! Not only was there filth everywhere, but Louise slept on a bare, urine and feces stained mattress. Worse yet, she claimed she had nothing to do with that! This was a woman so beset with anxiety issues that she couldn’t make decisions about anything. Hence her inability to decide what to keep and what to dispose of, along with her refusal to accept any responsibility for the “Mount Trashmore” in which she lived. Even after her children moved her several times, she continued to hoard.
But The Hoarder’s Daughter is about more than why Louise hoarded: it’s an attempt by Moore to show how her mother’s actions were a form of emotional and mental abuse of her children. To support her reasons for believing so, Moore has heavily researched personality aberrations like those of her mother’s. She includes information garnered from her studies into Anxiety Disorder and Mild Cognitive Impairment, along with signs of emotional abuse like narcissistic behaviour, a tendency to belittle and criticize others, persistent lying, having a sense of entitlement and a lack of remorse, just to name a few. Readers may find themselves recognizing traits in their own non-hoarder parents and partners. So The Hoarder’s Daughter becomes even more relevant to anyone feeling the pain of all kinds of abuse and trying to understand how they have become the victims of another’s personality issues. As one reads, one begins to hope there is a light at the end of the author’s story, and there is. But you will need to read The Hoarder’s Daughter to find out how some good came out of the chaotic and toxic life to which Louise subjected her children. An easy to read, interesting and informative book.