Shoplifters Anonymous: Helping People with Compulsive Desire to Shoplift

Shoplifting is a common disease, although the motivation of compulsive thieves is different from what you might expect. Many people believe that shoplifters suffering from the addiction steal because they cannot live without stolen items.
Instead, compulsive thieves say that the rash they experience when stealing goods not being caught causes an incredible sense of euphoria. This feeling outweighs the reward of receiving stolen merchandise. In fact, thieves with drug problems often describe these two addictions as having a lot in common.

Key facts on shoplifter anonymous profile
Shopping is generally considered a problem for women, but statistics show that men steal as often as their female counterparts do. About three-quarters of all the detained thieves are adults. However, most of law enforcement officials believe that the shoplifter is caught only in one case out of 49 times.
The scientists distinguish several groups of shoplifters:
  • Cleptomaniacs are impulsive and careless, stealing for no reason. In fact, many admit to taking strange things, such as clothes that do not fit.
  • Professional thieves steal electronics and other valuables. If they are caught, they show no remorse.
  • Marginal people steal diapers, baby food, groceries or other necessities because they simply cannot afford to support themselves and their families.
  • Addicts steal to support their addiction.
  • Forgetful thieves steal by mistake and feel humiliated when they are detained. This category of people includes the elderly, people taking medication, or shoppers who are just rushing to leave the store.

Shoplifters anonymous UK
Simon Stephens, a shoplifting addiction expert at Addictions UK, explains that sort of addiction is comparable to any other addictive behaviors and pathological need to steal from the shop is rather widespread. An anonymous shoplifter describes feeling emotional urge to get the rush of dopamine and adrenaline while picking up the item without paying for it. The only way to get away with that urge is to yield to it. Here is when the support groups become helpful – teaching compulsive shoplifters’ new behaviors to overcome those subconscious impulses and providing non-judgmental support.

Shoplifting anonymous and organizations to help compulsive shoplifters in the U.S.
Support groups provide major psychological help for shoplifters. Let's mention some of them functioning in the USA.

The National Association for Shoplifting Prevention
The National Association for Shoplifting Prevention (NASP) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to raise public awareness of the harmful effects of shoplifting on youth, families and communities. The organization works on uniting public opinion to develop constructive solutions, implement the necessary programs and services. It is of high importance to engage communities in prevention efforts to improve the lives of those who are affected by disorder and reduce the number of people involved.

Cleptomaniacs and Shoplifters Anonymous
Cleptomaniacs and Shoplifters Anonymous (CASA) is a unique, independent and secular weekly self-help group founded in Detroit, Michigan. A recovering shoplifter founded it in September 1992. He felt that such a group could help him, others and the community as a whole.
The Shulman Center program is constantly evolving and getting customized giving successful results. Expert therapy and counseling sessions are available by phone with Terrence D. Shulman, a lawyer, addiction consultant, international expert on shoplifting addiction, CASA founder and recovering thief. 90% of customers are successful in completing the basic program.
As for shoplifters anonymous NYC, in New York and its surrounding districts they can make use of a 12-step recovery program for compulsive thieves, shoplifters and cleptomaniacs working continuously since 1997.
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