The book series and movie "Confessions of a Shopaholic" makes light of a very real condition. In fact, much like alcoholism or drug dependency, a shopping addiction is a very real and harmful condition. Sure you can't die of a shoe overdose, but you an end up in serious debt, damaging your credit score, and potentially isolating yourself from family and friends.
Psychologists believe compulsive shopping comes from two deep mental thought processes. The first is that the addiction stems from feeling the need to control or own something. The psychologists surveyed believe that in a time of chaos and confusion, shopping allows the individual to take control of an object. This also may stem into a hoarding disorder if the sufferer doens't get rid of older things when he or she buys the new items. The other thought process is the sufferer is making up for lack of having things as a child.
What do you think of this disorder? What's the difference between retail therapy and having a problem?