My wife has been out of work now for over a year. She is tail-ending her unemployment very soon.
Our county is experiencing close to the worse rates of unemployment in the country right now [ Elkart, Indiana - Obama's economic poster child ] is just 50 miles away. Our county has a rate nearly equal to theirs. In the past year my wife has probably sent resumes/applied to well over 1500 places of employment, cutting thru every sector of industry and business she can to find employment. In all that time, she has had two interviews and no offers. I have honestly never seen anyone look so hard for work.
A couple of serious matters affect this: We have, for lack of a better word, inherited responsibilities and legal custody of our three grandchildren. This limits her ability to literally move, or to commute too great a distance. Like many Americans, our housing industry is totally in the toilet here, so there is virtually no chance that we can sell and move.
I have a good paying job [for a non-college educated former window washer, over 50]. But without her income things are already tight. We might end up cutting off all but the essentials. We hope to keep the van - but who knows? We have eliminated a phone bill by going to MagicJack, but that requires we keep broadband. We have reduced to absolute basic cable for the television, but may cut it entirely in the next few weeks. I may look for a way to eliminate garbage removal [we are in an area legal to burn, and we could recycle most everything else].
This may be a very long winter if things don't change soon.
Not whining - just expressing a relatively common situation nowadays. This economy sucks.