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My unemployment adventure:  By comparison to almost anyone else in the US who has experienced involuntary unemployment recently I'm incredibly lucky.  

I was given notice in late January that I was being laid off.  Because the company I worked for falls under the federal definition of "large" they were forced to give me 60 days of notice.  The way they did this was by saying I was being laid off, but still being paid as an employee with full benefits (health insurance - yay!) for 60 days.  Once the 60 days was up, I'd get severance equalling 4 weeks of pay and I'd have to start paying for COBRA coverage.  All in all a rather decent thing compared to many of the horror stories I've heard/read about.

The 60 days were up on March 27th and I filed for unemployment.  It's really tough to describe how worthless I felt while filling out that brief online form.  When my ex-boss told me about the RIF I mostly felt sad and a bit relieved that it had finally happened.  I wasn't surprised.  I saw it coming, had already started hoarding cash and looking for a new job.  Turns out that was a really good thing to have done.

Now it's 2 weeks later and I start a new job on Monday. Unfortunately the new job doesn't provide health insurance until 30 days past the 1st of the month after you've started working.  This means I'll be paying for COBRA for a while longer, but I can live with that.  

Now I get to be a statistic twice.  The first time for filing for unemployment, and then for ending unemployment.  It's difficult to say what things look like anywhere but here, but seeing how much activity is going on in this valley (Silicon Valley) things are getting better.  I can't begin to think my situation is indicative of how things will go for others but it really does make me hopeful for everyone.  I'm incredibly lucky to do what I do, and live in this particular place where it's a pretty sought-after skill.  I wish the same luck/karma to everyone out there who has been unfortunate enough to lose their job.  I feel your pain.  It is not of your own doing so please do not blame yourself.

Peace to all of you.

Originally posted to obviouspseudonym on Fri Apr 09, 2010 at 11:06 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Lucky (7+ / 0-)

    Laid off last summer.  Still looking. The UI extension is a godsend.

    I am the typo queen. Sorry in advance.

    by sadpanda on Fri Apr 09, 2010 at 11:14:11 AM PDT

  •  Thanks for sharing your thoughts (5+ / 0-)

    and unemployment story. Many of us know how it feels and can celebrate your good fortune with the new job.

    "Don't leave the duck there. It's totally irresponsible. Put it on the swing, it'll have much more fun." - Sleep Talkin' Man

    by Polly Syllabic on Fri Apr 09, 2010 at 11:18:23 AM PDT

  •  It's amazing how badly it makes you feel... (4+ / 0-)

    ...when you're filling out the UC forms, isn't it? It's only been a few years since I last had to do that. It's not something that you leave behind quickly or easily.

    "Ridicule may lawfully be employed where reason has no hope of success." -7.75/-6.05

    by QuestionAuthority on Fri Apr 09, 2010 at 11:38:13 AM PDT

  •  Congratulations on your new job. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    luckylizard, Polly Syllabic, sow hat

    I'm a statistic, too.

    I was hired 25-26 years ago (full time temp), and switched to full time perm a little over 25 yrs ago.  Roughly 10 years ago, they outsourced my department, and most of the staff.  I was supposed to lose my job about 6 months later, but they tacked on a month, then another, then another...

    about 6 or 7 (fretfilled) months later, I was told "just kidding, we're gonna keep you on with the outsource company."

    It got bought out a couple of years ago in kind of a merge thing, that got transferred completely to the buying-out company earlier this month.

    I still work at the company that outsourced me.  They have stopped matching funds for 401k's, they switched from not great to really not great to really pretty crappy insurance, and they have had forced 2 week furloughs for the past couple of years.  

    The company I worked for (still) matched funds for 401k, as does the buy out company.  The company I worked for had a pretty nifty PPO coverage - actually to where pharmacists would tell me, "Wow, nice insurance."  The buy out company offered an HMO through the same insurance company (and my dr accepts it.)  We have not had furloughs requested or suggested; as a matter of fact, in both new companies, we are allowed to accrue vacation/PTO time - more than a couple of week's worth - to allow longer vacations (since many of our consultants are from 'foreign lands'), or just as a safety net.  The old company never allowed that.

    I've been extremely lucky.  Plus, I love doing my job.  :)

    "The joy of activity is the activity itself, not some arbitrary goal which, if not achieved, steals the joy." ~John "the Penguin" Bingham

    by sheddhead on Fri Apr 09, 2010 at 11:44:21 AM PDT

  •  We are all statistics (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    luckylizard, Polly Syllabic

    in one way or another, but it still sucks.

    At least you found work - be glad you're in that statistical bracket!

    My life is an open book, and I want a rewrite!

    by trumpeter on Fri Apr 09, 2010 at 11:48:53 AM PDT

  •  My bf was out of work for 16 months and starts (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    luckylizard, Polly Syllabic

    his new job on Monday also.  Things are getting better:)  Congrats!!

    "If you don't do it this year you'll be another year older when you do"-Warren Miller

    by fishgirl26 on Fri Apr 09, 2010 at 12:19:26 PM PDT

  •  You have done far better (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    luckylizard, Polly Syllabic

    than the average. I've been unemployed 8 months with no good prospects. Congrats on the new job.

  •  Thanks to everyone (0+ / 0-)

    Thank you for posting comments.  I was kind of surprised how much better I feel about the whole thing after just telling the world at large what happened.  As I said, I have it much better than most and I truly wish I could give that same luck to everyone who is out of work and needing a job.

    Even now that I have the new job that feeling of utter helplessness is tough to shake.  I keep getting stuck in a circle of 'what if' in my mind.  

    What if I hadn't saved every cent and was still out of work?  Would I end up losing the house?

    What if I hadn't been able to find a job so quickly?

    On and on.  

    It'll subside but I just don't know when.

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