The Washington Post

Scrimping, little saving, lots of worrying

“A major part of our new normal describes what we can’t do because we no longer have the money.”

We aren’t saving anything for my retirement. We also can’t save any money for emergencies and the peace of mind a small nest egg would provide. All of our purchases — large and small — are paid for in cash or debit cards. Instead of going to state universities, my children will attend community college. Will they be able to get an affordable education and find jobs that can earn them a middle-class standard of living? And what about health care? When my wife retires, will we be able to afford coverage? What if either of us gets really sick? What our new normal contains most of all is worry.

The “Help Wanted” project follows six unemployed people from across the country. To read more, go to

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