Does Retail Therapy Work?

It works like any drug that provides temporary relief, then it’s gone. So you do it all over again.

The non-elastic braided handle cut into my wrists and left stripes of red tinge mark. I had just plopped myself onto the bed as my roommate walked in without knockingā€¦

She: You went shopping again? *questioned like a parent would*

Me: Yeah… *guilt ensued*

She: You’ve gone shopping every weekend this month! What did you buy this time? *already digging through the bags*

Me: Yes, help yourself by all means. Not much though, you know how I only buy discounted items. There weren’t that many with my size at the store.

She: But you still spent almost $200 according to this? *holding up a trail of receipts*

Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash


The truth is I felt empty.

Shopping brought me joy from picking out which ones to try on to the swiping of credit cards, and it ends there.

Still lying on the single bed in my dormitory, I had no motivation to unwrap the clothes or remove the tags.


It was a clear sky with few clouds. Looking straight ahead, I gripped the steering wheel unusually tight…

Me: Yeah, so basically that’s my story of being a shopaholic.

He: Perhaps you were trying to fill a void. *gazed softly*

Me: A void… maybe. I was in between relationships when shopping became the one thing I looked forward to. *a little embarrassed*

He: I think it’s quite common that we find ourselves grabbing onto anything that fills the missing piece, may it be shopping, binge-watching or eating, sports, workout or social media. And we all know about those more extreme addictions.

Me: Hmm so I guess anything you do may turn into a void-filler when overdosed? *curious*

Photo by Cristofer Jeschke on Unsplash


Everything in moderation.

The ability to balance all void-fillers plus understanding oneself may unlock the benefits of retail therapy.

But if you need the support of therapy in the first place, what is to say that this form of relief would not be a poison?

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