find-a-job-keyboardSome Republican senator claimed that most unemployed people on the dole don’t even begin looking for jobs until their unemployment insurance runs out, and because of that, he voted against another emergency unemployment extension. First of all, Senator, thank you for reading this site to do your research, because for once, you were right. Second of all, thanks to all the OTHER law makers who voted to pass yet another extension, thereby delaying our demise once again.

Unemployment extension news is hard to keep up with. One moment Congress is against it, then they go on vacation, come back, and suddenly the unemployed get another lucky break. When the recession first started, there was what, one extension? Now there are four or five with that mysterious FED-ED extension that may not exist? Congress is talking about extending the filing dates for extensions, not actually adding new extensions? Whaaat? It’s all very confusing, and to deal with it, the unemployed did exactly what that senator claimed: they kept on collecting their unemployment checks while putting off the job search, banking on their elected officials to tack on more weeks of free money.

For many, the end is near or already here. With every new extension and Congress vote to fund the extensions, those who sat back to enjoy the ride avoided thinking about life without unemployment checks. Then one day, they woke up on the ”wallow and feel self-pity” side of bed and realized, “Holy crap, it’s been a year and a half!” After living off government generosity for 13-week intervals at a time, the unemployed counted backwards to that happy moment when they ripped open their first unemployment check and realized that well is drying up. Fast.

With a recession dating back to 2007, a 99-week maximum for unemployment benefits and no clue as to whether an extension will be granted come June 7, the job search is on. Unemployed job seekers face the harsh reality that it’s still really hard to find a job. While pouring through job ads and spamming their resume anywhere and everywhere, they’re kicking themselves for not having been so aggressive sooner. With only so much time left collecting unemployment, and zero responses to their applications, they spend sleepless nights fretting over what the future holds for them. Will they make rent? Will they learn what it’s like to struggle? Will they have to downgrade from Match.com to OkCupid.com and sift through the pool of fellow penniless dating prospects?

It’s this kind of stress that makes the unemployed feel like they deserve a break. They tell themselves, “Even if I had started applying earlier, I’d probably be in the same boat.” Rather than dwelling on the fact that they’ll never know, the unemployed are going to take advantage of those last couple of unemployment checks, suspend the job search and go on a mini-vacation. Only after can they REALLY concentrate on getting a good job. But maybe they’ll wait to hear if there’s been another extension first.

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28 Responses to “#150 Wishing They Started Job Searching Sooner”

  1. Breathless says:

    You are not addressing age discrimination concerning people ages fifty and up. It exists, and no one is addressing this in Congress. In addition there are very few jobs for college graduates.

  2. UnemployedPA says:

    There are tons of people who are intensely job hunting from day one and dealing with rejection and/or discrimination.

    I WISH i had a choice to do what i want to do.. that i didnt have to move across the country to find a job (never did), or go job hunting in an industry I absolutely hate (banking which is what mostly exists here)… but I do it anyway..

  3. Randy says:

    Yep, age discrimination does exist. I’m 52 and been unemployed ~18 months with only a few nibbles. I was told that one company only wanted to hire younger folks since they would work for much less and would not leave when the market picks back up.

  4. william says:

    No reason why the unemployed can’t become a political force to be dealt with. Maybe if we all join U Cubed we can keep this party going until the hiring starts again…

  5. Matt says:

    What a snide post. I have been searching my rear end off for a job since I became unemployed three months ago. I pray every day that I do not have to become a 99er, but even the truth is that even with my Master’s degree I am having a rough time. Please do not send the message that we are all a lazy bunch just hanging out until it gets destitute. These kind of post are the ammo that people look for, and sadly folks like you give them. I freaking hate being unemployed. I feel like a failure every day and and would love nothing more than to go back to work.

  6. I have been looking for work too. It’s hard when there is 1 job for every 5 or 6 applicants. That’s not exactly true in my area theres more like 50 to one. The last job I got call on they were going through 50+ apps for a sweeping job that was part time. Hmmm…

  7. Miles Lacey says:

    In the sort of work that I’m skilled to do there are often upwards of 50 to 200 applicants per job. I face the problem of being male in a predominately female dominated field, on the wrong side of 40 and being banned from driving for medical reasons. Most unemployed people are looking for work and some of us are even looking outside of our areas of expertise. The rate of unemployment here in New Zealand may not be as high as that in the United States but being unemployed sucks no matter where you live.

  8. tajhaa says:

    The economy is to so bad that many have degrees and still are unemployed. I sympathize with people that are unemployed and have no type of income. It’s easy to talk and down unenployed citizens until your pockets run dry. I suggest stretch what unemployment benefits you receive the best you can, budget, and seek any type of job regardless of your background & work history. In my opinion some income is better than ZERO even if it’s retail, fast food, rotating shifts, etc. You know some people are picky about the type of jobs they want and when your income is zero choice is not option.(THAT’S MY OPINION) I will never criticize the unemployed because it could be me in the blink of an eye. I can only say find some way of earning income because UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE is helpful but doesn’t last long. I was unemployed years ago, but finally found my way back to the workforce and dealing with unemployment was a headache. I thank GOD for what income I received while laid off. We can only pray that this economy rise once again where citizens can GET BACK TO WORK & TRULY ENJOY DAILY LIVING. I hope many that are dealing with the struggle of job hunting keep their head up, faith, be positive & PRAY!

  9. Amanda says:

    I have been looking for a job since *before* I lost my job because I knew it was coming. They were starting to mention the phrase “avoiding laying people off” a little too much, and I was the newest hire. I’ve been unemployed since December 2008, but I started the search in October of that same year. Back then I got more interviews because I was newly unemployed, but because even then so many people were qualified for the same job that I just never got hired. Even now, I haven’t had an interview in a full year, despite never giving up the search. At this time, I’m trying everything I can to try to earn money so I don’t have to go on welfare, but I might just have to do that. In the meanwhile, I’m trying to freelance, but it’s not really working out. I’ve made a total of… $3.75 as a freelance worker. Yes, three dollars and seventy-five cents. I can’t even claim it yet because it’s under the threshold amounts.

    I find it reprehensible that people think so badly of the unemployed. We had jobs like you and we lost them through no fault of our own – if it had been our fault, we wouldn’t be getting unemployment checks anyway. I went from being paid $30,000 a year to $13,000. Yeah, I’m being too lazy to get a new job. It’s not like I liked having stuff, or eating, or doing something besides just paying rent and bills. Let’s just hope that you’re never in the same boat as the rest of us, and if you ever are, let’s hope you aren’t met with such hostility.

    • Karen Windsor says:

      I made at least $40K for about the past 20 years. I highly enjoy dropping down to the level of poverty I am now in. I volunteered for Room In the Inn for about 15 years when I lived in Nashville. I never thought I would become homeless myself. I feel like the biggest loser on the planet. All of these people that can’t show any compassion for anyone will at some point in their lives be repaid for their ill thoughts. There is a special place in hell for people that ignore the suffering of others.

  10. Maggie says:

    I had a job right out of college graduation in 2008. I lost that job in April 2009 and I started looking for another one well before that, because I was unhappy there but I could also tell that business was slowing down and layoffs were coming. Almost 14 months later, I’m working an unpaid internship just to have somewhere to go. I’ve applied to temp agencies, sent out hundreds of resumes per month and I’ve had several interviews only to be told “We think you’re great, you’re very qualified and we’d love to bring you on, but we just don’t have the space or budget right now.” Most unemployed people I know who stopped looking for jobs did so because it was a waste of time.

    People who have never been laid off or have never collected unemployment have no idea what it’s like and Congress’s actions are disappointing but not surprising. If there’s an unemployment lobby, it needs to be louder.

  11. DIck army says:

    This is one those posts that makes one want to track an IP address and send a satelite photo of your house to you then show up and kick you ass at some point tin the near future. Happy sleeping

  12. rhonda says:

    what a Troll. Anyone who is going to put in the same sentence with the recession starting in 2007 and people not looking for work, you have truly marked yourself as an idiot. Sorry there is no other word for what you just attenpted to do. I would like to know this how is it that somehow the unemployed became the lowest class in America it used to be Welfare. You know the ones who dont pay taxes. But you picking on people in general must make you feel better which is pretty sad if your life consists of kicking people when they are down. This is a delicate matter that is not to be used for the Idiots of the world clearly its beyond your comprehension so to explain it to you would only be pointless. Stop bullying the unemployed some are in a fragile state and if you push one over the edge you could be help liable if not criminally charged. Hmmmm do you think you understood that? Not a game go play with someone else and leave the unemployed alone. Otherwise, it might just be called bullying.

  13. yourapunk says:

    Can I have some of the money you make off the unemployed.Your advertisers must pay some good bucks for you to sit on your rump you hard worker you. Personaly I would never give money to a company that would support you.I have so much time on my hands I think i will call them all and ask why they do.

  14. Kayla says:

    Thank you for being honest! I personally know 3 people who are unemployed and not looking…well, they have started looking now that their benefits were cut off.

    • Karen Windsor says:

      Well Kayla – you must have some bums for friends. Please read the guidelines from whatever state you’re in and you will see that YOU ARE REQUIRED TO MAKE JOB CONTACTS EVERY WEEK IN ORDER TO DRAW UI.

  15. Jon says:

    This site is really stupid. Not everyone who is unemployed is lazy and unmotivated. Sure there are some people who scam the system to live off free money but many people just cant find work. I make less than $300 a month and am desperately looking for a job, my savings are running out and I am planning on seeking government assistance so I can keep a roof over my head while I look for a second job; I don’t see what the fuck is wrong with people getting help

  16. Sound Off says:

    You tell the truth… and it hurts…

  17. Sound Off says:

    I have read hundreds upon hundreds of comments from unemployed people who are clamoring for more unemployment benefits. Here is my observations:

    The vast majority of these long-term unemployed people are under-educated, educated in a field with terrible job prospects, or un-skilled. This is the real reason why they cannot find a job. even if the economy improves, they will still be jobless.

    The vast majority, like most Americans, saved little for rainy days, and have been living well beyond their means. Many continued to keep up this lifestyle even after losing their jobs and going on unemployment.

    The vast majority refused to believe that their world has changed, and they must take drastic measures to try to find another job. Instead, they fell back on the safety net of UI payments, and put themselves in a bigger disadvantage everyday they delayed reentry into the workforce. If they had tried to go to wherever the jobs are and changed careers if needed to, right from the beginning, most of them would be working right now.

    The UI is intended to be a temporary safety nest. Unfortunately, this point was lost on so many people. These are people that remained unemployed for so long, to the point that their skills and work ethics depreciated so much, employers don’t want to hire them anymore. This is a natural outcome of misguided expectations and excessive enjoyment (i.e., laziness).

    These unemployed people are now in a desperate, unfortunate situation, not so unlike that of a drug addict. They became addicted to free money, to an easy life, and like all addicts, they want more of the same. The solution will be painful, but there is no other way to treat an addiction.

  18. another round says:

    Looks like congress in going to extend the benefits again. Cut off in June, extend in July with retroactive pay. We’ll never know if those that I know would have actually got a job instead of feeling that they lost part of their 99 weeks of benefits. I agree with the last comment. The long term unemployed should have started looking right away, because now they are loosing their edge and becoming desperate. More competition, plus loosing their skills. There are actually companies that won’t even consider hiring a person who is unemployed for any reason. Not necessarily a good idea, however it is becoming reality. I know that there are a lot of people who have really been trying to find a job and I do feel for them. Unfortunately, the people that I know are not looking because they have money to live on and feel they are entitled to government benefits. I only wish that the Unemployment Dept would actually check up on the recipients instead of just extending their benefits with no repercussions for actually not looking for a job or even for not being available for work (being on vacation and using the internet doesn’t count). Today’s benefits are way different than they used to be 10 years ago or so. This is definitely the good life as far as unemployment benefits are concerned. Good luck to the true seekers.

  19. Karen Windsor says:

    I was laid off in March 2008. I have worked 36 of the past 38 years (lied about my age so that I could get a job at the Sonic Drive In). I am 53 years old and have ACTIVELY been seeking a job since March 2008. I wake up in the morning in a state of panic wondering if I’m ever going to have my normal life again. I usually can’t go to sleep at night because I worry about the same. I’ve already lost everything I own – except my car (which is owned by the finance company). They will probably repo my car within the next month or so. My UI was cutoff the end of June. I am now getting food stamps. Anyone that thinks this is a holiday can kiss my ass.

  20. Karen Windsor says:

    BTW – Obviously the people that are making comments about the unemployed not looking for a job from the beginning DO NOT KNOW THAT PEOPLE THAT GET UI HAVE A CERTAIN AMOUNT OF JOB CONTACTS THEY HAD TO MAKE PER WEEK AND THEY ALSO HAVE TO KEEP A LOG OF CONTACTS FOR REVIEW BY YOUR LOCAL WORKFORCE CENTER.

  21. Leslie Drew says:

    Anyone who thinks that unemployed people aren’t looking for work or haven’t been looking for work since the beginning of their unemployment is just a moron. The only people who say something like that are rich people with rich friends. Anyone who works for a living or used to knows plenty of people trying hard to find a job but can’t. It’s never fun not being able to take care of yourself or your family.

  22. Jenna says:

    I want to know where Sound Off gets the right to make these comments about people collecting unemployment being lazy. Obviously the tone of the original post – although possibly in bad taste – was a humorous outlook on a terrible situation that many people have NO control over. Imagine being told you don’t qualify for a fast food job because of age??? Do you realize how many qualified people are sending hundreds of resumes out and get virtually no response? Why you ask? Is it because they are long-term unemployed through no fault of their own? Possibly, but also because each job posting has 50-60 people competing for each opening, making the odds impossible. And, I have news for you a-hole, even the people that are highly trained (i.e. Masters and PhD candidates) are having trouble getting jobs-THERE JUST AREN’T ENOUGH JOBS TO GO AROUND!

    I wish I knew where Sound Off lived so I could bash his kneecaps in.

  23. nojob says:

    No one wants to hire a 47 year old woman w/ a few extra
    pounds, even if I actually CAN do the job. I’m well past the 99
    weeks & still going on interviews. It gets on my last nerve
    when HR types BS me by saying, “Wow, you made alot of money @ your
    last company, I don’t see how you could possibly be happy w/ what
    we are offering!” That is so full of BS! Half of San Diego was
    under water and yet I was dressed up & 15 minutes early for
    the interview…what do you all think? Of course, I wanted the dang
    job – I don’t even care what they are paying, I just want a reason
    to wake up everyday. So this company calls me back for a second
    interview, but forgets to call me afterwards. Huge waste of my time
    to get showered & dressed that I am reluctant to answer my
    phone to new employers – so afraid they will waste my time, as
    well!

  24. Milly says:

    What about the people who are super depressed that they
    want to kill themselves? I’m not kidding. I left my job because of
    my horrible bosses and I wish I had been able to keep myself from
    being so depressed about the way they were treating me so I
    wouldn’t have to be so depressed about not having a job now. I am
    trying to get creative, and granted I didn’t really search the
    first month, but now it’s been a total of five months and I’ve been
    busting my ass of with my family having to force me to take a break
    now and again so I can enjoy something in life. I know there are
    people out there with Masters who are having an extremely tough
    time. I am getting on in years myself for the job market (almost 4o
    years old) and I start to wonder if I really did choose the wrong
    career because my skills from the last almost 20 years don’t seem
    to amount to much right now. It’s like I lost my whole identity not
    having a job, but I question if everything I worked for was wrong
    to begin with. Everything I built so far only leaves me with
    recruiters telling me now you have to wear a pant suit because a
    skirt suit with suntan colored stockings (no matter that their
    closer to my color than the stupid “clear/white” stockings) are out
    of date. Not only do you have to be more perfectly put together
    than a person who already has a job (because you’re seen as a
    cancer if you don’t currently have a job – no one seems to want to
    hire the jobless how retarded is that) it’s a fashion show now? And
    I’ve had to do this with only my own funds (zero unemployment
    whatsoever), which are seriously running low. But why are criminals
    more likely to get a second chance than the simply unemployed? Now
    I hear that a bus driver with a bad record and drug habit crashed a
    car? Was he previously employed and that made him more attractive
    than an unemployed candidate. Is that why my skills of almost 20
    years can’t even get me a job at JCPenny? Give me a break. Just
    because we are unemployed doesn’t mean we’re lazy and worthless.
    That’s just the arrogance and hypocracy of the employed. Wait till
    you find yourself in the same boat. See who’s going to lend you a
    helping hand. But you know I still try to help others. I’m sitting
    here writing other people’s resumes for free because I want to help
    them since no one else is helping me. So, when do I get a second
    chance to prove I want to work and deserve a little more than just
    $3/hour as a part time sales person at a flower shop? I’m trying to
    be creative and find other ways to get money (yes running errands
    for others because god dammit it’s honest money too you know), but
    eventually these random errands here and there and income cut by
    2/3 will take me to a point where I can’t pay rent. And I wonder if
    the corporate world will ever let me back in to their elite little
    palace. The unemployed – well, I tell you we have honor and we have
    pride and we have a strong work ethic. We’ve just had some bad
    breaks and we are trying our darndest to get back on track. Let me
    not get into a medical insurance discussion here. This article is
    truly in bad taste.

  25. Milly says:

    The only reason I didn’t look in my first month was because
    I had to visit family I hadn’t seen in a very long long time and I
    needed to regroup. But it’s not like it’s been a vacation being out
    of work. I want to feel useful again. Just because I am unemployed
    doesn’t mean I am lazy. I think it is better to own your own
    business, but the corporate mentality has me so scared that I can’t
    make it on my own, perhaps even in the first month of unemployment
    I deluded myself into thinking my skills would mean something
    because I’m supposed to be in the corporate world. Because that’s
    what I was brought up to believe through my education – find a
    company and they will take care of you as long as you work hard.
    But all that these corporations do is alienate you if you don’t
    dress talk act smell think like them and then turn you away the
    first chance they get. And these recruiters that sit and judge
    everyone, they really think they’re sitting pretty, but what have
    they done that’s really good in this world. They’re no better than
    everyone else, they just love to act as if they are. Now, trying to
    start my own business I’m wondering if I can really make this work.
    No matter how much I’m rejected by the corporate world, I keep
    thinking they’re the ones who are supposed to help people in need,
    but all they really do is disappoint and make you doubt your own
    strengths every day. Hell, then Soundoff says this bs about, “These
    are people that remained unemployed for so long, to the point that
    their skills and work ethics depreciated so much, employers don’t
    want to hire them anymore.” Like the skills to survive day to day
    don’t stay with you. What about someone that’s been sitting in the
    same job for over ten years and knows exactly how to get away with
    doing the least possible just enough so they can keep keeping their
    job? That person doesn’t have a better work ethic than I do. They
    just manipulate better. So there are plenty of working people who
    have a terrible work ethic. Don’t count me out because I don’t
    count on a headcount report. I have a lot more to offer than a lot
    of people I worked with in my entire career.

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