Help! My son is a hoarder. He’s only four so he hasn’t been able to collect enough objects to fill an entire room yet, but I fear it may happen soon. Leo is what they call a crow. Someone who likes to collect tiny and shiny things… old twisted paperclips, beads from the sandbox at school, googley eyes from the craft box, photo strips from the zoo.
He has a little treasure box where he keeps his most valuable possessions. He is sentimental about the strangest things. For instance, he has a napkin rolled up with a rubber band around it from our trip to Hawaii in January; if you try to move it or throw it away…HE KNOWS. Free toys from the movie theater, foreign coins from countries he have never been to, hotel room key cards… all his favorite possessions.
I am the opposite of a crow; I throw out everything from mail and receipts to my kid’s artwork and handwritten notes pretty much the second they come in the door. I am not sentimental. I don’t love to accumulate, which is probably why Leo’s treasure hoarding is hard for me to deal with.
My brain is saying, “throw out pipe cleaner sculpture,” but I don’t, because I know it’s important to Leo and that he treasures it. Is this something that he will grow out of or will he take his popsicle stick collection to college?
I’ve googled the habit and the search results are mostly not so positive. Is he favoring objects over people? Is he collecting to satisfy an unmet social need? Am I a terrible mother? Oh Google, why do you do this to me?
Does anyone else’s kid to this? Is it totally normal? Help a mamma out!