The Shulman Center

Terrence Shulman
Founder/Director of
The Shulman Center

Terry Shulman

January 2011 Monthly e-Newsletter
"The Decade In Review"
By Terrence Daryl Shulman

                                    HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!

The Shulman Center offers special discounted holiday relapse prevention phone counseling "tune-ups." Please contact us to find out how we can help your holidays be safe and successful! Fees may go up after January 1, 2011 so act fast!

Mr. Shulman will be conducting a 90-minute Power Point presentation entitled "Biting The Hand That Feeds: The Employee Theft Epidemic... New Perspectives, New Solutions" based on his book of the same title. It will be held Tuesday January 18, 2011 from 8:30-10:30am at The American Society of Employers Training Center: 19575 Victor Parkway Suite 230 Livonia, Michigan. Contact George Brown at 248-223-8019 or or register directly by copying/pasting the link:

Check out our new online support group for compulsive shoppers/spenders and hoarders. Register by going to the link:

Mr. Shulman will be presenting two 6-hour seminars for continuning education credit on Friday February 11, 2011 and also on Sunday February 20, 2011 in the metro-Detroit area. Each seminar will cover material on shoplifting/kleptomania/employee theft, compulsive shopping/spending, and hoarding/cluttering disorders. Please contact The
Shulman Center for more information and/or registration.

The Shulman Center will be conducting an all-day conference in Detroit Saturday October 1, 2011 on addictive-compulsive shoplifting/employee theft, kleptomania,  compulsive overshopping/overspending, and hoarding/cluttering disorders. See

Check out our new 1-hour employee theft online course. Learn why people commit employee theft, how to deter it, and what to do when confronted with it. See

Check out our new short uploaded web-videos on shoplifting addiction, employee theft, and compulsive shopping/spending at and also on YouTube under "The Shulman Center" at

Check out our new websites on hoarding at &

Our Mission Statement:

The Shulman Center's mission is to provide the most professional, confidential, progressive, comprehensive, and effective treatment for persons with theft and overspending disorders. We are committed to serving individuals, couples, families, and the community-at-large through education, assessment, and treatment of these issues. We are committed to immediate results and lasting changes in people's lives. We have a proven record of sensitivity and success. We are assisting in creating a world where nobody has to steal or overspend. Our vision is a world of emotional and financial health and balance, of honesty and deep self-esteem and self-worth for all.

Please Note:

The Shulman Center will be conducting an all-day conference in Detroit Saturday October 1, 2011 on addictive-compulsive shoplifting/employee theft, kleptomania,  compulsive overshopping/overspending, and hoarding/cluttering disorders. See



Wow! Where did the decade go? As we leapt into the 21st century we've seen so many changes in our world. Over the last 10 years we've also seen a gradual but dramatic shift in the way we are thinking about, talking about and treating disorders such as shoplifting, employee theft, shopping/spending, and hoarding. We at The Shulman Center have been passionate about educating and helping people and we feel proud to stand with fellow pioneers at the forefront of new understanding, acceptance, and treatment of these disorders. Here is a brief chronology of some milestones in this journey over the last decade...

2000: Mr. Shulman starts CASA-online support group; Sophie Kinsella publishes "Confessions of A Shopaholic"...

2001: Winona Ryder's (in)famous shoplifting arrest at Sak's 5th Avenue; Enron crisis (the ultimate in employee theft!; 9/11 attack--President Bush instructs Americans to "keep shopping" as economy begins to falter..

2002: 10-Year Anniversary of C.A.S.A. (Cleptomaniacs And Shoplifters Anonymous) in metro-Detroit; Winona Ryder found guilty of larceny by jury trial...

2003: Mr. Shulman publishes "Something for Nothing: Shoplifting Addiction and Recovery"; CASA groups expanded in metro-Detroit and across the U.S...

2004: Mr. Shulman leaves his counseling position at metro-Detroit area chemical dependency clinic where he worked since 1997 to launch The Shulman Center for Theft Addictions and Disorders; Mr. Shulman appeared on Oprah to discuss shoplifting addiction; Suze Orman breaks on the scene with her own show and as a frequent guest on Oprah; Mr. Shulman consults for a Detroit-area education company to develop a local court-ordered theft offender program...

2005: Mr. Shulman publishes "Biting The Hand That Feeds: The Employee Theft Epidemic... New Perspectives, New Solutions"; 1st International Conference on Theft Addictions and Disorders in Detroit; Founding of The Shulman Center free monthly e-Newsletter; Mr. Shulman appears on 20/20 and Prime Time Live to discuss shoplifting addiction and on The Early Show to discuss employee theft...

2006: "Big Spender" premiers on TLC Network; Oprah's "Debt Diet" series first airs; Mr. Shulman completes Dr. April Benson's 14-week counselor tele-training for working with compulsive shoppers/spenders; Renaming of Center as The Shulman Center for Compulsive Theft & Spending...

2007: 15-Year Anniversary of C.A.S.A.; The Dave Ramsey Show is syndicated; "What Would Jesus Buy?" film released; Mr. Shulman consults for another Detroit-area education company to develop a local court-ordered theft offender program...

2008: Mr. Shulman publishes "Bought Out and $pent! Recovery from Compulsive $hopping and $pending"; 2nd International Conference on Compulsive Theft & $pending; Bernie Madoff fraud exposed; The Shulman Center sued for alleged trademark/copyright violations; Mr. Shulman creates home-study class on shoplifting for Kingman, AZ court system; Mr. Shulman creates online shopping addiction education course with American Psychotherapy Association in Missouri...

2009: "Hoarders" premiers on A&E Network; The Shulman Center settles lawsuit over alleged trademark/copy-right violations and changes the website to; C.A.S.A. weekly phone support groups launched; "Confessions of A Shopaholic movie released; Mr. Shulman creates theft education class with Baton Rouge, Louisiana court system; Mr. Shulman adds hoarding disorder as a treatment sub-specialty...

2010: "Hoarding: Buried Alive" premiers on TLC Network; "Storage Wars" premiers on A&E Network; Mr. Shulman creates online employee theft education course with 360 Training in Texas; Mr. Shulman appears on The Today Show to discuss "returnaholics"; Mr. Shulman starts a online support group...


2011: Mr. Shulman intends to publish his fourth book in the summer--a compilation of new stats/facts, theories, stories and treatment strategies and exercises on addictive-compulsive shoplifting, employee theft, shopping/spending, and hoarding; Mr. Shulman is planning a 3rd International conference in metro-Detroit; Mr. Shulman hopes to present at conferences in San Francisco, Chicago, Las Vegas, Washington, DC, among others; Mr. Shulman hopes to publish articles and appear on various TV and radio news segments on compulsive theft and spending...

LOOKING BACK, MOVING FORWARD: Claiming The Gifts of 2010; Creating A Vision for 2011

According to the Opinion Corporation of Princeton, New Jersey:

* 62% of people make New Years resolutions
* 8% are always successful
* 19% of people achieve resolutions every other year
* 49% have infrequent success
* 24% never succeed and have failed on every resolution every year! (That's 1 in 4 people who fail each and every time!)

So, instead of making resolutions, let's do another exercise that may be more fun, provocative, and helpful!

To start with, let's look back on this past year. Here are some questions to ask about 2010:

1.  What was your greatest victory?
2.  What was your greatest loss or defeat?
3.  What was your greatest learning?
4.  What was your greatest mistake?
5.  In what area(s) did you most grow or move forward?
6.  In what area(s) did you most stay stuck or regress?
7.  What was the most fun you had?
8.  What/who made you the most angry?
9.  What made you the most scared?
10. If you had to sum up 2010 with a title or description, what would it be? (Example: "2010, A Year of Challenge/Growth")

So, how do you feel? Are you glad to see 2010 go? Are you looking forward to 2011 or dreading it? Or are you feeling a little of both? Did you have a vision for 2010? A hope? An intention? A guiding focus? If so, was it met? If not, what keeps you from co-creating your reality? We're not talking about New Years resolutions or even goals but something less "left-brained." 

Perhaps there's a way to allow "spirit" to enter our lives for some guidance. Ask spirit a question such as "what is my lesson for 2011? Or, what is my touchstone, or most powerful gift to the world in 2001? If we meditate or just get quiet enough, maybe even journal or go for a walk in the woods, we might be surprised what comes to us. Call it a mini-vision quest if you will.

Another fun and often profound exercise is to draw Angel or Medicine cards--which you can buy at almost any bookstore. Shuffle the deck, close your eyes, take a deep breath or two and let yourself draw a card from a face-down spread. My wife and I have drawn cards every New Years for many years now. We do so as a couple; she also does so with her women's group and I do so with one of my men's groups. This last year--at the beginning of 2010--I drew the "relax" card. The year before, I drew the "divine guidance" card. One of the jokes is that the cards we draw (or even the word or vision which comes to us) may be that which is most challenging for us. So, for me, as a recovering worry-wart, drawing the "relax" card was perfect.

You can make resolutions and goals if you want. But I encourage each of us to also be open to the mystery and to remember that life/God/source has its own plans in mind for us. Stay open, stay curious, stay alert, and stay amused.


Preliminary figures state that holiday retail sales from November through December are up sharply over 2008 and 2009 and may even pass 2007's pre-recession numbers. While this may be good news for the economy and could be interpreted as a sign that consumer confidence has returned, we might also just be a bit aware that our "shopaholic" tendencies merely took a temporary hiatus and we've just individually and collectively had a major relapse! We'll have to wait and see...


To be held in Detroit, Michigan August 2011. Stay tuned for more details or check

Click Here for Mr. Shulman's recent 5-minute interview on shopping and shoplifting addictions on local Southfield, Michigan cable TV.

National Public Radio interview/transcript/recording from 12/3/10 segment on "the dark side of returnaholics"

HOARDING (and more hoarding...)

The A&E Network's "Storage Wars" began December 1, 2010. See

Also, see 2-part front-page articles on hoarding in November 28/29, 2010 in The Detroit Free Press newspaper:


Born Into Debt: Gene Linked to Credit Card Balances by Valerie Ross, August 12, 2010

When trying to understand why some people have trouble living within their means, we tend to blame factors such as high interest rates and irresponsible spending. Now researchers have found another possible culprit to add to the list: a gene linked to credit-card debt.

Earlier work has shown that genetics plays a role in how we handle money. But a recent study was the first to show that a particular gene affects financial behavior outside the lab. Researchers at the University of California, San Diego, and the London School of Economics looked at genetic data and questionnaires already collected from more than 2,000 young adults aged 18 to 26 as part of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. In particular, they looked at whether these young adults said they had any credit-card debt and what version of the MAOA gene they had.

Monoamine oxidase A (MAOA) is an enzyme that breaks down neurotransmitters (signal­ing chemicals) in the brain. Previous studies have linked the low-efficiency versions of the MAOA gene—the variants that cause less MAOA to be produced by brain cells—to impulsiveness.

In the new study, people with one "low" MAOA gene and one "high" MAOA gene reported having credit-card debt 7.8 percent more often than did people with two "high" versions, the researchers found, even when they controlled for factors such as education and socio­economic status. For people with two "low" versions of the gene, that number jumped to 15.9 percent.

The researchers were surprised by the magnitude of the difference. "The effect is almost as big as financial literacy," meaning people's ability to digest complicated financial information, says Jan-Emmanuel de Neve, an author of the study.

But, de Neve cautions, an individual's version of the MAOA gene does not predict whether he or she is carrying debt. The gene affects credit-card debt the way other genes have been found to play a role in breast cancer: a particular version of the gene increases risk, but many other genetic and environmental factors are important, too.

See rest of this article at:


Bernard Madoff's son Mark Madoff's recent suicide was a painful reminder of the old saying "the sins of the father are visited upon the son." Whatever Bernie Madoff's motivation for his multi-billion dollar Ponzi scheme--whether pure greed or some combination of greed and sociopathy--there are lessons for all of us, parents and non-parents alike: we may never be able to anticipate how badly we hurt those around us, even those closest to us, as a result of our addictions, our greed, our madness.

It remains unclear and unproven if Mark Madoff--who, along with his brother, worked for their father--knew there was something wicked in Denmark. Publicly, he proclaimed his innocence and his ignorance, turning his father in just over 2 years ago. Mark Madoff had moved his wife and children out of state, changed their last name and appeared to be working with investigators and doing his best to find ways to pay claimants.

But as the 2-year anniversary of his father's public downfall approached, his family recognized Mark was becoming more and more despondent. He hung himself with a dog leash early one morning just hours after e-mailing his family some final words. Some may pr may not feel sorry for any member of this family. But now, a wife and small children are left without a husband and a father and no amount of money could or should be worth that. Hopefully, the children find healing and peace.

Books of the month:
  "The Drama of The Gifted Child: The Search for The True Self" by Alice Miller (Basic Books, 1979, reprinted in 2007) by Alice Miller and "Cyber Junkie" by Kevin Roberts (Hazelden, 2010). 

"The Drama of The Gifted Child" is a well-known classic--originally written in German with the title "Prisoners of Childhood"-- it's about child development and personality development and how we learn to suppress our true selves to survive and get what love we can. It's also about narcissism and co-dependency. I read this book many years ago and couldn't get into it--I probably wasn't ready. I had to buy another copy recently to see if I could relate better to it and after 3 pages I had to put it down as it hit me like a ton of bricks! Boy, how it spoke to me! From the back cover: Far too many of us had to learn as children to hide our own feelings, needs, and memories skillfully in order to meet our parents' expectations and win their 'love.' Alice Miller writes, 'When I used the word 'gifted' in the title, I had in mind neither children who receive high grades in school nor children talented in a special way. I simply meant all of us who have survived an abusive childhood thanks to an ability to adapt even to unspeakable cruelty by becoming numb... Without this 'gift" offered to us by nature, we would not have survived." But merely surviving is not enough. (This book) helps us to reclaim our life by discovering our own crucial needs and our own truth.

"Cyber Junkie" by Kevin Roberts--a metro-Detroit therapist and good friend of mine--is one of the pioneering books on the topic of video game and Internet addiction which are fast becoming epidemic. The author chronicals his own descent into this black hole and his eventual recovery which led him to specialize in ADHD and video game/Internet addiction treatment. This book is well-written and well-organized and is helpful for addics, those concerned about them, and mental health professionals. The author describes a reasonable recovery program of balance rather than full abstinence, taking into consideration the realities of today's ubiquitous technologies . From the back cover: More and More people are isolating themselves, turning their backs on reality, ignoring their family and friends, and even losing their jobs due to their excessive use of video games and the Internet. (This book) gives compulsive gamers and surfers--and their family and friends--a step-by-step guide for recovery. Congratulations Kevin!


I/we give/receive love...

I/we give/receive compassion...

I/we experience patience...

I/we embrace our true power...

I/we embrace our true wisdom...

I/we accept ourselves and others...

I/we experience stillness...

I/we embrace true abundance...

I/we share our gifts with humanity...

I/we rejoice in nature's beauty and harmony...

I/we know peace.

The Shulman Center Comes to You!

A reminder: The Shulman Center offers counseling services in the metro-Detroit area, by telephone and/or SKYPE. In certain circumstances--we may be able to come to you. Please feel free to contact us to explore what option works best for you!

Free Intimacy with Money Telephone Seminars

It is with great excitement and confidence that I share about the free "Intimacy with Money" telephone seminars conducted by my long-time friend Tom Lietaert and my more recent friend Andrew Hogan who currently work out of Boulder/Denver, Colorado. To learn more and to register, please go to:

Please check out -- Dr. April Lane Benson's new website!

Compulsive Theft & Spending in The News! December 2010/January 2011:

November 25--Mr. Shulman was featured in The New York Post on shopping addiction and the holidays. See

December 1-3--Mr. Shulman presented on employee theft detection and prevention at The National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds Annual Conference in Las Vegas.

December 16--Mr. Shulman was interviewed for a column about credit card fraud by a reporter with

December 30--Mr. Shulman was quoated in an article in The Oklahoma Journal Record on shopping addiction. See

December--Mr. Shulman is being interviewed by Atlas Media for a show about compulsive shopping.

December--Mr. Shulman was interviewed by CBC (Canadian Broadcast Corporation) out of Washington, DC on compulsive shopping/spending.

December--Mr. Shulman continued consulting on two reality TV shows about compulsive shopping/spending--one on Bravo Network and another on The Discovery Channel.

December--Mr. Shulman continued consulting with MSNBC's "Your Business" discussing employee theft.

January 4/5, 2011--Mr. Shulman will be in Toronto being interviewed for a Canadian documentary-style program on compulsive shopping/spending.

January 8, 2011--Mr. Shulman will present at the monthly Men of Today meeting at Renaissance Unity Church in Warren, MI. His 90 minute presentation: "Looking Back, Moving Forward: Claiming the Gifts of 2010, Creating a Vision for 2011.

January 18, 2011--Mr. Shulman will be presenting on employee theft at The American Society of Employers in Livonia, MI.

January 2011--Mr. Shulman will be quoted in an article about shoplifting addiction and C.A.S.A. support groups in The Grand Rapids (Michigan) Press.

January 2011--Mr. Shulman to be featured in Real Simple magazine about compulsive shopping and spending.

February 2011 and beyond...

February 4, 2011--Mr. Shulman will be presenting a 2-hour seminar on employee theft to metro-Detroit area recipients rights workers at Washtenaw County Community College.

Feburary 11 and 20, 2011--Mr. Shulman will be presenting two 6-hour seminars for continuning education credit in the metro-Detroit area. Each seminar will cover material on shoplifting/kleptomania/employee theft, compulsive shopping/spending, and hoarding/cluttering disorders. Please contact The Shulman Center for more information and/or registration.

April 7/8, 2011--Mr. Shulman may present on hoarding disorder at The National Association of Social Workers--Michigan Chapter Annual Conference in Dearborn, MI.

Fall 2011--Mr. Shulman is hoping to assist with organizing and presenting at an all-day conference in San Francisco, CA on various impulse control disorders.

October 1, 2011--Mr. Shulman will be presenting an all-day seminar on compulsive theft & spending & hoarding in the metro-Detroit area.

November 4, 2011--Mr. Shulman will be presenting an all-day seminar on compulsive theft & spending & hoarding in the Chicago area through Proctor Hospital's/Illinois Institute for Addiction and Recovery's ongoing learning program.



Mr. Shulman is assisting the Baton Rouge, Louisiana court system a court-ordered three hour, facilitated educational program for retail fraud offenders. The program is based on material from his book "Something for Nothing: Shoplifting Addiction and Recovery" (2003).

Mr. Shulman created a 1-hour employee theft online course with 360 Training. Learn why people commit employee theft, how to deter it, prevent it, and what to do when confronted with it. See or enroll in course at:

Mr. Shulman is consulting on a major motion picture tentatively called "The Rush" in which the lead character is addicted to shoplifting and stealing.

Mr. Shulman created an online continuing education course on compulsive shopping and spending called
"Bought Out and $pent!" based on his book and Power Point presentation. The course, offered through The American Psychotherapy Association, is available for purchase by APA members and non-members. CEs are available. He's working on  a therapist certification program in compulsive theft/spending for the APA.
See or enroll in course at: 

Mr. Shulman collaborated with the Kingman, AZ courts with a court-ordered home-study program for retail fraud offenders. The program is based on material from his book "Something for Nothing: Shoplifting Addiction and Recovery" (2003).

Mr. Shulman is consulting with an author who is writing a novel about two kleptomaniacs who fall in love with each other.

Contact The Shulman Center

Terrence Daryl Shulman, JD, LMSW, ACSW, CAAC, CPC
P.O. Box 250008
Franklin, Michigan 48025


Call (248) 358-8508 for free consultation!

Related sites by Terrence Shulman:


Something For Nothing
Biting The Hand That Feeds
Bought Out and $pent

Products for Purchase--ON SALE through 2009!

Mr. Shulman's three books "Something for Nothing: Shoplifting Addiction & Recovery" and "Biting The Hand That Feeds: The Employee Theft Epidemic... New Perspectives, New Solutions," and "Bought Out and $pent! Recovery from Compulsive $hopping and $pending" are available for $25.00 each (includes shipping/handling).

Click here to purchase

E-mail Mr. Shulman:


Call  (248) 358-8508