A shoplifting addiction, can give you a criminal record.
All of us have the potential for shoplifting, even though we know it’s a crime. We like getting something for nothing -- but although we may think of getting away with it, not everyone does it.
There are two categories of shoplifters,
according to the National Association For Shoplifting Prevention
Those who steal and resell items, and have no guilt or shame by their actions, and drug addicts who steal to finance their habbit - but only 3% are professionals.
This is the majority of us. Adults and juveniles steal for many reasons: problems coping with their lives, depression, frustration, anxiety, peers pressure, and just for the thrill of getting away with taking something for nothing. A small percent have psychiatric problems - kleptomania.
Most non-professionals have no criminal intent, financial need or greed. They simply feel that they can get away with it (73 percent of adults and 72 percent of juveniles don’t plan their theft).
On average they steal approx. 48 times before getting caught and they’re only charged 50 percent of the time when they do.
If you score 48 times before getting caught you feel you’re a pretty good thief, and they'll never catch you. So, similar to gambling, or sex addiction, there is a high (adrenaline rush) when they get away with it, and the stolen item is a reward. This theft is not about money, or greed, or even wanting what they took in the first place. It’s about the adrenaline rush (the high).
Shoplifting addiction develops quickly and approx. 27 percent of shoplifters can’t stop - even after getting caught - and they continue to steal on average 1.6 times per week
This crime affects all of us. It overburdens the police and the justice system. It adds to store security costs, and all of us pay the price in the long run.
But it should also be understood that for many, it’s similar to over-eating, drinking, gambling or drugs – a maladaptive way of coping with problems.
Similar to other addicts, shoplifters need help and they’re ashamed. Others deny the addiction in the first place, until they have no choice – they’re caught.
Unlike the professional shoplifter, they suffer guilt and shame. For these people, the crime is a symptom, of many underlying issues in their lives and prevention through counseling is how the problem must be solved.
Therapy not jail will make a shoplifting addiction go away.
Teens must deal with peer pressure
More on shoplifting
Teens have shoplifting addiction too.
Medication may be helpful
Coaching is not therapy, but it's an effective way to get help