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March 24, 2023

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Sleepless in the USA

With unemployment rising and the economic picture none too bright, a new poll by the National Sleep Foundation finds that almost a third of us can’t get a good night’s sleep. Money woes now outweigh other concerns such as war, global warming or terrorist attacks. “What is very telling is that these Americans whose sleep is impacted by financial worries report that their sleep disturbance makes them much less likely to work efficiently, exercise, eat healthily, and have sex compared to their better-sleeping fellow Americans,” said co-author Michael V. Vitiello.


  1. Jen

    I’m finishing up my doctorate in psychology and I’m terrified that when I’m done there won’t be any jobs for me. Every company I know that could use my skills has a hiring freeze. After investing so much time in my schooling, it might end up amounting to nothing in this market.

  2. nancy

    I am in foreclosure. I work but turned my retal company over to a man that ripped me off. I sleep 12 hours but wake up tired. I have tired exercising. I also use over the counter drups to help me sleep. I make minor mistakes at work but in my line of work a dot or dash can make all the difference. I pray asking God for relieve, what more can I do. I just recently moved to a new location and have no friends…its a hard life.

  3. Miss Bates

    I hardly slept from 2001 through January 19, 2009. The first night Obama was in the White House I began sleeping much better. During the Bush regime I was unemployed four of the past eight years. My current unemployment is not nearly as troublesome, because we now have a highly competent administration who has already achieved a lot. We have a long way to go, but I sleep at night and know that my efforts during the day have a chance of success.

  4. Lisa

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  5. T Hillmon

    I got fired in April 2008, at the time I was 7 months pregnant. I started receiving unemployment and we had a lot of money in our savings and hubby makes good money. We mutually decided that I would just stay at home, have the baby and shortly after that, go back to work.
    Well luckily I was able to find a temporary position in October 2008 through a lady at my church. I was covering for her daughters maternity leave.
    That position ended Feb 6, 2009. However, while employed there, I submitted tons of applications because I wanted to have something lined up when that job ended. Sadly, it has been 4 weeks, and still nothing. I’ve applied to over 300+ jobs, and I have only had 6 interviews. Some jobs I apply for, I find out they cancel, some just never call me back. Others, I guess because I got fired, don’t want to hire me.
    To make matters worse, I have an MBA, and I think some employers feel I’m either over qualifed or under qualified.
    My husband is still working (Thank God)..but my unemployment is not helping us at all. I have a lot of sleepless nights wondering if I’m ever going to find a job, AND, if I find a job, will it pay enough to keep us afloat. Our sex life has diminished, mostly due to our son, but its deeper than our son.
    Right now, I’m trying to figure out how to pay the mortgage. I’m praying that we get our income tax return SOON!
    I know its just a temporary fix for now, but I’m praying hard, that I have something by this time next month.

  6. Beth

    I worked in the financial field that is currently experiences a meltdown and lost my job in July. I had interviews after that but nothing now. I’m networking, going to meetings, using social networking sites online and I’m getting more anxious to the point where it’s starting to impact my health. Unfortunately a close friend and my family is not very supportive at all. To complicate this situation, I am the sole caregiver for two very ill parents.
    I pray everyday and know that things will change but I feel alone and that if I’m not working, then I’m not an outcast. This is ludicrous and I’ve stopped talking to my family and friend because of this situation.

  7. melanye

    I have also experience a similar situation, although I am not expecting a child nor do I own a home. I do, however, maintain both an M.A. and an M.L.S. along with a certificate in Dispute Resolution. I too applied to a vast number of positions that I felt were modest, low-to-mid entry level, 25,000 to 35,000, either never to get a response or receiving a response that was computer generated… I had two interviews out of 150 applications, and I eventually was hired as a flight attendant. Now I am making less than poverty wage. I had to defer my student loans because I don’t make enough money to pay on them.
    What bothers me the most is that I worked hard to get through school. I wanted to be a good citizen, contributing to my community and to my country. I was a single mother, worked 2-3 p/t jobs, and took college classes whenever I could afford them. Then after my children were grown, I jumped at the chance to go to school full-time, and taking out school loans was the only way to do so.
    And while I am happy that I went to school, I feel a bit foolish because financially I am worst off not only for assuming an educational debt, but I am making less money now than I did before I borrowed the money. Now what kind of a citizen am I?

  8. Bobbie Kingsbury

    I am losing sleep because I have no job and I have been looking since Christmas. I had a temporary (contract) job from Sept 2008 to January 2009. I started applying for jobs and searching online and through friends right around the holidays. I have had no luck at all. I have my associates degree, and find that most jobs ask for at least a bachelors degree. I am a single mother of 3 children who are all in my custody. I am already behind on the rent, and since I was a full time student for 2 years I am not qualified for unemployment. I lived on savings while I was a student and now the savings is all gone. I don’t know how I am going to stay afloat without a job. Needless to say it is hard to sleep at night.

  9. Jackie

    I am in the fashion industry and got laid off in November. I haven’t had a good night’s sleep since then. It was the second time that I was losing a job under the Bush Jr. administration. (I had also lost a job during Bush Sr. administration.)I had to use my savings during these lay-offs to get by. I worry that with unemployment insurance not covering a whole lot, that I’ll have to dig into what I have managed to save after working for 3 years.
    I try to keep optimistic with the new Obama administration but it is going to be a long time before the market gets back to any semblance of normalcy.
    Working out is the best thing for me. My husband, thank heavens, got me an Elliptical machine for Christmas. I use it to do a lot of de-stressing.
    I keep praying that by the end of this month I’ll be in a new position.

  10. Suzanne

    I lost my position last August due to non-Christian behavior by women who work with the Catholic clergy, mostly Bishops and Archbishops. I have had maybe a dozen interviews with nothing. Mostly I’m overqualified for the positions. My insomnia is due to the fact that I want to go back to work and am unable to within this economic climate. I have been out of work now six and a half months. My state unemployment ran out the end of February, and I applied for the federal unemployment, which won’t come, if at all, for at least two weeks. The unemployment helped keep our heads above water. My husband has a great job, but living in California we still need my earnings. Oh, did I mention that I’m 59, which is also a deterrent to getting a job, although prospective employers are not allowed to ask, but they are intelligent enough to see that with all my experience I am not in my 30’s. Trying to sleep is a big problem for me – the insomnia remember. I stay up late, which is not good as I wake in the morning more tired. My best remedy without taking sleeping pills is drinking valerian tea with honey. Valerian tea is difficult to drink as the “bouquet” is a bit harsh, but the honey makes it more palatable along with a slice of orange. Those of you who have only been out of a job 1 month, hang in there. The loss of jobs will end when the economy turns around, whenever that will be. In the meantime my husband and I have downgraded our lifestyle. We spend what little excess money we have only on NECESSITIES and have given up the excess. Yes, it’s been hard, but we do want to keep our house, and that is the HIGH priority right now. Good luck. Suzanne

  11. Donna J Gamache

    It’s bad all over. I have been at my job 9+ years, and I just was put on a 3-day work week with probably 80 others here. I’m lucky: 18 others were laid off yesterday. Second layoff in 4.5 months. Here’s the good news: Temp firms are busy when full-time work is slow. There are temp firms for just about every type of work and type of educational background. Temping keeps the cash coming in and helps you make contacts. Temp work often leads to permanent work. Every 10 years I’ve seen a bad economy and business contraction and job loss. Don’t pidgeon-hole yourself or your skills, or you will never find work. Learn to generalize what you learn when you are “working” to bring in cash vs. working to advance your career. Generalizable skills are the basis “college level learning”, so figure out how to generalize and apply your experience from your temp work to build a bridge back into your career field, once the economy bounces back.

  12. Beth

    I’ve been out of work since October 2007 (casualty of financial services). Ivy-grad, great networker… difficult to negotiate an industry change because in this environment, having industry experience is almost non-negotiable. In two months I will lose my COBRA because the stimulus package did not think to extend the program beyond its’ current 18 months, despite people being out of work for excessive periods of time.
    While things were difficult, I kept a positive attitude and was getting by. I am debt free and had saved more than the recommended 6 months of living expenses, never thinking I would be employed a year, much less 16 months. I still found things to be thankful for, yet sleep has been elusive.
    I thought things could never get any worse, and then I went for a biopsy the afternoon of the Women For Hire job fair in NY. Full of positive energy, I didn’t give it a second thought. Things could not possibly get any worse. But I was wrong.
    Last Thursday, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was caught early and does not appear to have spread, but on the verge of losing COBRA coverage (and the alternatives are few, trust me, I had researched this in the months prior) and without a job … let’s just say that until last night, I’d only slept a total of 8 hours since last Thursday.
    I’m not exactly sure what I am going to do and for now I am just taking one day at a time. I see a surgeon tomorrow and two consults next week. I’m not sure what I can do to sustain my job search until I find out more about my treatment will be.
    I never thought I would find myself in this situation, but believe it or not, I have found some silver linings … in a matter of days, I have become a subject matter expert on COBRA and alternative insurance and a whole host of other topics that I knew nothing about a week ago. Somehow, I am going to find a job out of this.

  13. paula brown

    I was laid off in January 2009. My husband was just laid this month March

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