Oct. 1, 2012 at 10:27 AM ET
For some, shopping is simply a necessity. For others, it's also a fun way to pass the time. But for the subjects of Oxygen's new "My Shopping Addiction," it's become a budget-busting, all-consuming obsession.
"I shop when I'm happy, I shop when I'm sad, I shop when I'm tired, when I'm bored, when I'm mad," Marceia Hawkins said in a clip from an upcoming episode.
On Monday morning, Hawkins, joined by clinical psychologist Ramani Durvasula, visited TODAY to talk about how far her addiction took her and how far she's come since participating in the docu-series.
"Every time I go to the store, I pretty much have to spend," Hawkins told TODAY's Savannah Guthrie.
Which explains how, over the course of 10 years, she was able to amass a shoe collection valued at over $30, 000 and collect $60,000 worth of dresses -- to say nothing of the handbags she's purchased.
"I've gotten into credit card debt, you know, maxing out all the credit cards," Hawkins explained. "(I was) borrowing money from friends, robbing Peter to pay Paul, my parents, family members."
Eventually, it all caught up with her and she recognized her problem as an addiction, which Durvasula could help her with.
"It very much is (a real disorder), because people are bringing themselves to financial ruin," Durvasula said. They're hurting their relationships; they can't stop themselves.... This can really bring a life down and create years of debt and create really big problems in all areas of their lives."
As for Hawkins, who's followed Durvasula's advice, things are already improving.
"I definitely think I'm doing better," she said with a smile. "I actually consolidated all my credit cards, so I don't have one credit card to spend. I don't have the money in the bank, so I can't go shopping, which was the biggest step thus far."
"My Shopping Addiction" premieres Oct.15 at 11 p.m. on Oxygen.
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