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My husband is a professional with hears of upper level experience in his field. He has been looking for a position since March 2013 and it is now January 2014. We have two sons (14 & 10), and I was able to stay home with them for years as my husband was able to make a fairly decent living ( even though we never owned our own home; we lived in a decent neighborhood renting a 1200 sf home in a great area). During this period of unemployment, we went theough his severance pay for 3-4 months, a little bit of savings we had, cashed out his small IRA, and I got a part-time job for just $10/hour in September (even though I am still sending my résumé for professional jobs which might use my graduate degree & earn more than 2x that amount). And, as I haven't held a job in my field for 14 years, companies seem reluctant to hire me. We have no family to help us and we have reached the end of our resources in December. My kids are now on Medicaid (Medi-Cal in Calif.) and I just applied for the foodstamp program (still in process & not confirmed yet). My husband has had at least 1 interview a month so he is definitely not sitting back in order to collect unemployment money which doesn't even cover our rent anyway. Even though his benefits have not yet run out, I greatly sympathize with those who are losing theirs. To make matters worse for us, one of my boys has had some neurological issues, and has had to go to an independent study program, adding to our stress. He needs one parent to stay involved in his education at home. (I'm really not making this up! They say "When it rains, it pours."). All we want is to work. Our cars are from 2002 & 2003. We live simply. We were never part of the real estate boom (or bust) and we never invested in the stock market. We resent that the economy has squeezed us out of steady employment because of those who caused the great recession in the first place. And now, businesses seem reluctant to hire unless you have the "exact" experience they want. They don't want to take a risk; or perhaps hire older workers too (over 50); & the economy is still not supporting widespread hiring. We are not greedy, we just want to work and make a decent life for our kids.
—MarieCA
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