For its 10th season on A&E, we'll get to watch two-hour episodes in which professionals try to help compulsive hoarders clear out their houses. And the first couple to be profiled in Episode 1 of the season is Andy and Becky, an elderly Marysville, Washington couple who "feel it is their constitutional right to live however they choose, even if that's among 250 tons of hoard," per the show's description.
Neighbors have been complaining about Andy and Becky's house for more than a decade.
Although Andy and Becky feel they have the right to live however they choose, the city government in Marysville, Washington sees it differently. In fact, Andy and Becky are potentially facing jail-time, in addition to possibly losing their home if they don't make drastic changes — and quickly.
Back in 2014, Komo News shone a spotlight on Andy and Becky's neighborhood and wrote about how their neighbors had been complaining about the couple's hoards for nearly a decade, at the time. Andy, a military vet, explained that he and his wife "both had serious health problems and that contributed to the years of delays" in getting their house in order.
Neighbors described trash stuffed into trucks and tarps, and at the time of Komo News' piece, the couple had a court case pending against them, after which they could face thousands of dollars in fines or 90 days in jail. Considering they've made it to the 10th season of Hoarders, we're thinking they were able to get out of these repercussions scot-free.
However, the city of Marysville rewrote their laws in order to make this kind of public nuisance a punishable crime. "That's one of the reasons we've sort of changed the code is because of this place," said Paul Rochon, who works with the Marysville code enforcement. Although the process has dragged on, we're hoping that Andy and Becky's episode of Hoarders will put an end to the more-than-a-decade worth of complaints, calls and emails.
So, is hoarding a real medical condition?
According to Dr. Robin Zasio, Hoarders' on-call psychiatrist, hoarding is a very real disorder that can be treated with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. "Hoarding Disorder is a chemical imbalance and please never forget this," she wrote on her Facebook page last year, during Season 9.
"I want to strongly remind everyone that therapy is the first starting point to helping people struggling with Hoarding Disorder," she wrote later. "We want to uncover the stressors that are contributing to the problem in addition to the difficulty letting go."
Learn more about Hoarding Disorder and watch Andy and Becky get their house in order on A&E's Hoarders, Tuesdays at 8 p.m.