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Compulsive shoppers, or shopaholics, have in recent years been spotlighted on television programs and women's magazines. They have become topics of conversation in the realm of pop psychology. While the media sometimes uses the term loosely or in an off-handed manner, a true shopaholic shops out of compulsion, making purchases long after they are over their heads in debt, shopping when they are feeling emotionally distressed and they do not shop because they merely enjoy it. Without a doubt, we live in a very "spend-happy" society. As a whole, we are living above our means and many of us are drowning in debt. Many people, no matter their level of income, view shopping as a hobby. They take weekend-long shopping excursions, spend money they do not have, and often regret their purchases the next day. Most people tend to spend more than they earn or have because with the luxury of credit cards they may do so, purchasing items of a thousand dollars or more and only paying a monthly minimum as low as five dollars a month. What they don't realize is that the thousand dollar item collects interest and by the time it is paid off they have spent two thousand on the item! This is where the feeling of regret comes in. After the shopping spree, most shopaholics feel that they may have spent too much money and the realization of debt begins to settle into their mind. Shopaholics use shopping as their "drug" or "therapy". When feeling emotionally down or depressed some compulsive shoppers think buying a nice Gucci purse can put a smile on their face. They feel it will make them happy and it does temporarily. It acts as their therapist, making them feel like a better person. Shopaholics don't merely shop because they enjoy shopping. They shop because they feel they HAVE to have something. They truly believe that item is a necessity they must posses. A true shopaholic will only stick to brand names such as Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Prada, Armani, Versace, and Christian...
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