The world’s first children’s book that explores secrets, safety and hope, “An Ordinary House” by Tania Reid.
from “Book on Hoarding Disorder aims to unclutter children’s minds” 23rd March 2014. Konrad Marshall from The Age wrote “The book is her passion though… The book title is a conscious attempt to correct another myth or misconception about hoarding – that all such homes can be spotted from the street, characterised by collections of car parts and stacks of magazines on the lawn”
“Tania Reid’s An Ordinary House is a long overdue first for children growing up in hoarded homes. Without minimizing the confusion and frustration children experience, Reid offers a message of hope as her heroine Dawn reaches out to other adults rather than enduring family secrets in silence. An Ordinary House challenges society to muster the resources to help children like Dawn and their families.” -COH Inc.
I wrote this is the story of Dawn, who lives with her dad. After a loss, Dad started buying a lot of things, just in case he needed them and they were very cheap!
Dawn tries to fix her cluttered home as she wants to have her friends over but she can’t. Feeling brave, she keeps telling adults until her Dad gets the help he needs. Dawn learns that only adults’ can fix their own problems and that he needs support, and time to get better. Then her home returns “ordinary”!
I wrote and self-published this book (the first in the English language!) to reassure children that if they feel something at home isn’t quite right, then it’s ok to tell. I’ve used the “try and try again” message, as Dawn experiences, often children need to tell a few different adults until someone listens. Whilst this book is about the mental illness of hoarding, the message is the same for any concerns children have about how others are behaving.
“This is a story of how a child overwhelmed by a cluttered, hoarded household finds hope in the community around her. There are literally thousands of children who lead a hidden life, separated from friends who never visit, nowhere to sleep or do homework, and at high risk of fire and health hazards because of the vast amount of ‘stuff’ in their home. Tania Reid has written this timely book for so many children living with hoarding and associated deprivations. She speaks for hundreds of community workers working with families affected by hoarding and squalor across our communities – from the leafy green suburbs to the public housing communities – with heartfelt knowledge that that these children are at risk” Dr Chris Mogan, The Anxiety Clinic, Melbourne Australia.