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The Shoplifters Recovery Treatment Program (SRTP)

People underestimate their capacity for change.  There is never a right time to do a difficult thing. | Roger B. Porter

door opens.1The Pathways Institute for Impulse Control works to help people gain control of their lives by helping them stop their compulsive stealing. Each day millions of Americans steal as a way of dealing with the pain in their lives. Our work is to help people stop stealing and prevent future relapse.

We provide psycho-educational and psychotherapeutic treatments to people who compulsively steal whose stealing is psychologically driven and amenable to therapy. By offering an opportunity for rehabilitation rather than punishment, The Pathways Institute offers the criminal justice system an effective intervention to reduce stealing offenses that are overwhelming the courts.  We also offer 2-week and 4-week outpatient intensive programs for compulsive stealing for those who need more intensive treatment or who can’t find a specialized program locally.

We work to create a non-judgmental, non-shaming and safe environment so the patient can begin to trust in themselves and fully accept their problems, free to move beyond the secrets into a meaningful and fulfilling life.

Note: We can offer individual therapy via Skype for patients who live in California but do not live in the Bay Area.  We also offer our STOP STEALING Workbook for those who live to far away to participate in treatment.


Treating behaviors such as:

  • Kleptomania
  • Shoplifting
  • Employee theft
  • Check fraud
  • Embezzlement
  • Identity theft
  • Bank Robbery

Does this apply to you? Take our questionnaire.



This Program Will Help Individuals

  • Stop stealing;
  • Resolve criminal or other legal problems by providing the court or attorneys with expert assessment and/or treatment;
  • Identify high-risk situations that trigger the impulse to steal and develop strategies for overcoming them;
  • Become part of a supportive network of people who have been compulsively stealing and overcame it;
  • Repair job-related problems or revise career plans that have been neglected due to compulsive stealing;
  • Define and implement life-style changes that increase self confidence.
  • Get out of the cycle of stealing and move towards a happier, more intimate, more fulfilling life.

Why Seek Treatment?

Individuals with addictive stealing behaviors don’t know why they steal.

They don’t understand how to stop the behaviors.

They experience shameful feelings that prevent them from talking about their problem in order to get help to correct the problem.

They don’t understand the consequences of their actions on society, the retailers or themselves.

They end up in jail or prison often suffering from undiagnosed and treated mental illness.

They are unaware of mental health problems such as impulse disorders, mood disorders and anxiety disorders.

They are unaware of available cognitive behavioral and psychotherapeutic treatment options.

They are unaware of available psychiatric medication that may benefit them. Stealing is an isolating behavior that must be made public in safe individual or group settings. Individuals can begin to talk and understand their problems. They can learn to employ new behaviors in order to resist their impulsive cravings to steal. They learn new ways of coping with the underlying psychological and emotional triggers that lead them to steal. New behaviors combined with psychological understanding are the foundation of relapse prevention.

All inquires are strictly confidential.  Contact the Pathways Institute to set up an appointment or receive more information.

Insurance reimbursement may be available.