Harley stuff, skulls, etc in house


Hi everyone,
When I married my husband almost 20 years ago, we combined our households. My “style” would be minimalist, but he is a complete and total hoarder! We have a huge house which used to be a duplex so every room is huge and there are many rooms and it’s filled to the rafters with junk! All I have are my books and my art supplies which are substantial, but I’m not attached to any of it. I don’t care about clothes or shoes or “collecting” anything.

DH, on the other hand, collects everything and anything! He’s totally attached to even an old Coca Cola bottle-- not even an antique-- there’s a barcode, but he insists on decorating with every piece of trash he’s ever come across. I’ve such a struggle because literally every square inch of this house is filled with his junk, and people keep giving him their junk, because he acts like its the greatest gift ever to give him a giant box of old Avon bottles, old clothes or old ANYTHING! It is actually raising my BP just typing this and thinking about all the garbage he brings home…but I digress.

My real problem and question is all the Harley-type stuff from his days riding motorcycle. Luckily he was never in a club, but he was very much into the culture, hence our house is full of what I call “Halloween” decorating style. I absolutely HATE it, but we have skulls all over the place…and skeletons and just evil looking things…I’ve put most of it upstairs in his rooms over the years, which has not gone unnoticed by him, leading to arguments.

If you know what the Harley t-shirts can look like, that’s what I’m talking about-- scantily clad women, glorifying hellfire and guns and warfare in the art and so on. Like I said, huge house and I’ve eliminated the majority of this from “public” view, but I want to know if this stuff is sinful.

Are skulls / guns / skeletons / gargoyles etc as decoration intrinsically evil? IMO, it’s juvenile but is it evil? Is it something I should press to get out of our house? Believe me, I wanted it gone a long time ago, but what we have now is a compromise mix of my religious decor and his stuff. Eclectic to say the least… Thank you for any and all responses!


There is a definite sin against good taste! :slight_smile:

On a serious note though skulls and skeletons are not inherently sinful (there is a chandalier in a church in Prague made entirely out of human bone, not to mention the skulls and bones used to decorate monasteries throughout Europe as a memento mori). If it were depictions of skulls with occult symbols then it would be a different matter, as they glorify and trivialise the real danger involved with the occult. As for the naked ladies - I’m not sure any woman would be happy with those plastered about the place and it’s degrading to women.

As an aside, hoarding can be a real problem (often with an underlying cause, beyond that which is rational), also if it causing arguments this could have a huge impact on your home life.


Hoarding can be a nasty habit, and it’s more common than I once realized.

I can appreciate how a person can think the Harley style is fun. At the same time, the person should, at least, recognize that it can be misconstrued as support for nasty stuff.

I wouldn’t want this kind of negative stuff around me.

Good luck: hoarding’s a tough habit to break. Perhaps start with a storage unit?


Goodness, I sympathize with you.

My husband collects recorded music. He has to have it all: CDs, vinyl, 8-tracks, 4-tracks, reel to reel, playtapes, cassettes, hip hop records. About the only thing he doesn’t have is Thomas Edison cylinders, and if he could find some of those, he’d probably want them too.

The collection is everywhere in our house: the living room, kitchen, bedroom. You should see the pile in the garage–it almost hits the ceiling! We paid $3,000 for a storage shed to house his stuff. (This was so we could clear out a bedroom since our older daughter wanted her own room.) Every weekend he goes to the swap meet to get more. And during the week he hits the thrift stores.

When I asked him why he needs all this stuff, his reply was “I just do.” Goodness, if he lived several hundred years, he wouldn’t have enough time to listen to it all. (And that’s another thing. I get to listen to a lot of it whether I want to or not.)

What, for crying out loud, is the point of having a bunch of stuff you will never use? And what is the point of spending good, hard-earned money getting more of it?

Well, I figure it’s an addiction.

I just wish I knew how to make it stop. :frowning:


A member of my family was a hoarder (think it may have been linked to rationing during the war years). In the end it took some tough love and willing hands to help her. We explained it wasn’t good to be living in such a state and systematically helped her dispose of clutter. General rule was if it hasn’t been used or worn in the past year it’s going (obviously didn’t apply to everything!), as room began to clear and the home became more pleasing to look at she became very grateful for the help.


Sorry for your difficulties. While there is nothing particularly sinful about the things you mention I understand your desire to remove them.

I would caution using religious beliefs as a reason for removing them. After all, being his wife and not wanting them in the house is enough of a reason. Using religious beliefs as a motive will just raise animosity towards the church.

As well, the hoarding is an issue, but not the problem. Emotional insecurities about loss are part of the real problem with hoarders. Resolve the issues and the clutter wil start resolving itself. Realize though, these things have been “in process” for 20 years at least and will not resolve overnight.

Good luck.


Skulls, etc as decor are not inherently sinful.

They stem from the adolescent fear-fascination with death, which sometimes carries on into adulthood.

Flames and the like aren’t usually about Hell, but are a symbol for physical speed (a fast-moving object is “hot.”)



Much more than just a habit. Over the years I’ve gradually saved more & more stuff. Even after I forgot the the original reason for saving something, I kept it because I’d had it so long. I never called it hoarding until I’d been in Overeaters Anonymous for a year. Then I began to see the connection (in me - not necessarily in anyone else) between overeating & hoarding. So now I’m working on both problems, with success.

Unfortunately, the OP’s husband may never see his problem, so it becomes her problem.


I don’t know. I guess I have a different perspective on this. Collecting stuff, even if it’s a lot of stuff, isn’t necessarily hoarding. You see the hoarders on tv - that’s where they have so much stuff they have no room to walk at all or can’t even use the kitchen because every available space including the floor is covered with stuff. That’s a whole lot different than being a collector. Things like old Avon bottles are definitely collectible. I have some old computer stuff - just recently got rid of an old 386sx desktop computer and only because it finally didn’t work anymore due to battery leakage (it actually used AA batteries instead of a button battery) and yes I had some of the big old 5 inch floppy disks for it too. Generally speaking, I like old things, which are much better made than today’s stuff. Also, I believe in repairing things instead of replacing them and am pretty handy, so that means I keep parts of things for future use. So, I tend to keep stuff. It doesn’t make me a hoarder. You won’t find stuff all over my living room - the stuff has its own designated space.


Thank you, Bonnie. This really reminded me of something I had forgotten-- my counselor told me there’s a connection between hoarding and obesity, esp compulsive eating – my husband had gastric bypass in 2007 and he went from 387 to 220 lbs, which he’s maintained for almost eight years. So he can’t “stuff” his body any more, and maybe he’s making up for it by collecting more than ever… I can’t change him and I’ve been trying to accept it.

I do feel much better now, after hearing that the “collection” is not sinful.

Good luck on both problems in your situation, I will pray for you.


Thank you everyone for your answers!

I feel so much better now that I know this stuff isn’t sinful or evil…though most of it belongs in a garage or biker clubhouse…

I’ll offer it up and try to accept it. Thanks again! God bless you!


No, in our house there are no depictions of ladies, naked or otherwise. I was just generalizing what Harley shirts usually depict. What’s plastered about the place is the darn skulls… As I said in my earlier post I’m very thankful having those is not evil or sinful!!

(The only Lady is our Blessed Mother. I have a beautiful oil painting on canvas of the tilma of Our Lady of Guadalupe. It’s 28" by 40" and I love it.)

EDIT: Oops, sorry, I have pics of the Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart and probably more, but no naked ladies.


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