Who's feeling the effects of the economy?


New member
I can't say that I personally have felt too much of it. But I do see it's effect all around me. :(


New member
Definitely. My day job is secure, but my side biz is completely stagnant - it's a luxury service anyway, so there's just not a market right now.


New member
I've been looking for work almost a year now. :(


New member
I was one of the first people in my area to lose my job. Spring 2008. Had a steady job one morning, and by mid-afternoon the entire office was shut down. Ouch.

It was pretty traumatic at the time, but it's turned out to be a blessing, in many ways.

When I came home from work early that day, my Fidelio was an absolute mensch about it all. Kind, loving, and supportive in every way that counts. After some of the initial shock wore off, we sat down and took a hard look at our finances, and came to the conclusion that if we were careful with our resources, I didn't need to rush out and grab the first job I could find.

I’m still not working, at least not for a paycheck. And as the economy continues to soften, Fidelio's pension goes farther and farther. (He's retired military.) What we used to refer to as his "fixed income" we now think of as his "steady paycheck." We don’t spend what we used to, but we don’t do without anything we need, either. And because we’re smart with our money, we’ve been able to help some of our family and friends over some of the rough spots, too.

We spend our time differently now, because we have more time to spend. I live a little slower now, and breathe a little deeper. My sweetie and I take a walk together every evening now. Backyard BBQ and birdwatching has replaced dinner and a movie. Because we enjoy good wine, Fidelio has learned to make it. He took it up initially with an eye to saving money, but he’s made a hobby of it and thoroughly enjoys it. I’ve expanded my garden, which I’ve wanted to do for years but haven’t had the time. When there's an excess, I take it to the local food bank, sometimes the farmers' market.

The main thing I’ve learned in all this has been to quit looking out at the world to see if we have enough. Once I started looking at what's right here, turns out that we have plenty.


Active member
It's definately tighter here. So far hubby isn't out of work which is good. BF was for a few months but a friend of a friend of a friend managed to help him get a good lead and back to work.

But utility costs have been driven up significantly as have costs for all grocery items due to shipping and that means that the money we do have isn't going as far anyway.

In addition to that is the number of people we care about who can't take care of themselves or keep their jobs that we are trying to help out and that has become a NIGHTMARE job in and of itself.

So yes-definately affected. :(


New member
Fidelia, that is great that you took a negative situation and turned it positive. Very cool. We're still trying to figure out how to do that... :p


New member
Here in the frigid climes of Buffalo. NY we are preparing to do winter with no gas service. I had an electric hot water heater installed last month so we finally have hot water again, but the only cooking and heating we can do is what we can do with electric.

The gas bill used to be a full 40% of the monthly household costs anyway. Gid riddance to it.


I had to move to Florida from the UK last March around the height of the recession. I've spent a good amount of that time unemployed. When I have found work it has been low hourly wage work. Even the job I got being a lead teacher at a private school for autism only payed $11.50 an hour for 32 hours a week. All the other work has been temporary seasonal theme park work that pays even less.

Despite being a certified teacher in music and special needs, there simply haven't been the jobs to apply for. Even the staffing agencies don't have openings for new people because their books are full with all the other teachers who lost their jobs. Also there are practically no theatre jobs here, just theme park corporate jobs and they are all taken up. For the next year, I'll be more likely focusing on finding the steady income of a teaching job rather than finding theatre work. Though I have a job waiting for me back in London.

So this year, my income is about a sixth of what I earned last year. Fortunately, I started a retirement savings when I first started teaching. I have to cash that retirement in now in order to pay my overdue UK bills, and it means I lose a good percentage of it, but it is still better than the alternative I face, which is bankruptcy.
Last edited:


New member
Fidelia, that is great that you took a negative situation and turned it positive. Very cool. We're still trying to figure out how to do that... :p

Thank you for your kind words, Sweetheart. I hope I haven’t given the impression that it's been easy, because it hasn’t. Getting laid off really messed with my head, and the way it happened certainly didn't help. I still struggle sometimes with some issues around not bringing home a paycheck. Being a productive, responsible adult is extremely important to me, and before I got laid off I tied a lot of that to my ability to contribute financially. But my precious, beloved spousal unit has been pretty much one enormous blessing through all of it. Turns out, he really, genuinely like having me around!! :D

But seriously, I’ve gained some valuable lessons through this period, some practical (around how to make sure we don't run out of money before we run out of month, etc.), and some philosophical (mostly around the concept of enough). I know I’ll be able to make good use of the knowledge and wisdom I’ve gained no matter what the economy does, or where the future takes me. So it's all good.


New member
The dive hit my investments pretty hard, which was where I had saved about 90% of my money... but it seems to be recovering and my quality of life hasn't really suffered.

Someone was telling me the other day that families have actually grown closer because of the downturn. That is, because things are tighter, families are staying in, eating in, playing simple, cheap games with each other rather than being sucked into their internets, movie theaters, electronics and various other activities that alienate us from each other.


New member
Yeah, Legion, I'd read that too. I see it here in our household. Once again, the negative event (the recession) brings about a positive effect.

Fidelia, yes it's funny how we place such a great deal of weight on how much we earn financially, as if our own self-worth is determined by that somehow. Your situation sounds a lot like ours, and we are going through a lot of the same struggles. Be grateful for the solid support you've got there. We still have some major challenges ahead of us in the immediate future, and I hope we survive them.

Greenearthal, we used to live in Rochester & Ithaca, so we know what you mean. More than once we had to leave the oven on & open, just to have heat. Good luck to you, man. We'll be thinking of you and sending you warm thoughts!


New member
I've been rather fortunate through the recession. I work for County Government for a outpatient drug and alcohol treatment facility. There have been HUGE cuts to funding for those types of services and it has greatly affected our staff. Last year we had around 60 employees. Currently we're down to 34. This has made it extremely tight as far as workloads, client capacity, etc.

The reason I mention being fortunate is because everyone who works for the county has been required to take mandatory furlough days consisting of 8 hours per pay period. I am in a IT position and am one of 5 people in my agency who does not have to take furlough. In that, my income has not been affected. But I see the effects everywhere else. I feel sorry for families who are struggling to get by through these tough times as my only dependent is a fox terrier.


New member
Your situation sounds a lot like ours, and we are going through a lot of the same struggles. Be grateful for the solid support you've got there. We still have some major challenges ahead of us in the immediate future, and I hope we survive them.
I hope so too. Be strong, y'all. A better day's coming. If y'all would like some ideas on how to stretch your $$$, PM me. I'd be glad to share some of what I've learned.


New member
Thanks, Fidelia!

You were right, a better day is coming! We just got 3 big checks in the mail today, and all of them were surprises! :eek: :D

R is working again, and things seem to be stabilizing for the moment.

Let's hope this trend continues...



New member
The way that it seems to be hitting us the hardest is that DH's having a hard time finding a job since we moved to NYC. Partly that's the economy, partly it's that I didn't really anticipate how hard of a transition the move to the city was going to be for him (but that's something for another thread).


New member
My job is based 100% on tips, and while it took a while, the last 6 months or so it has finally hit me. people have less money to tip, so i make less. luckily i'm still getting by. just barely, but getting by.


New member
I read an article a couple months ago about how Wal-Mart and McDonald's were doing better because of the recession.

Apparently, fewer people were shopping at upscale stores or eating at nicer restaurants, so Wal-Mart and McDonald's were experiencing a "trickle down" effect as more people turned to them.

Then I read a different article the other day. It said McDonald's was starting to experience a downturn.

Not a good sign, man.