Bartering and selling yarn to get by
Bartering and selling yarn to get by
Nicholle Ross, 29
Orange County, Calif.


Battling an alcohol problem, I quit my dead-end job at a music store to go into rehab.

As I got sober though, the bottom dropped out of the world. I had no idea at the time that I would be on a nearly four-year long stretch without stable employment, at times having to choose between gas and food.

I've sent out about 270 resumes, interviewed about 15 times, and once I was even drug tested and given a start date, only to be told later that I was overqualified for the position.

Twice, I've had employers say they wouldn't hire me because I was unemployed. It's so degrading, and the feeling of rejection becomes overwhelming. The last time I truly looked for a job was over six months ago.

Instead, I barter for goods. I taught a woman how to knit, in exchange for a cake for my dad's birthday. I clean a yoga studio two days a week, and they let me take unlimited classes there.

Even though I already have a bachelors degree, I've decided to go back to school to wait out the economy.



By Annalyn Censky @CNNMoney - Last updated May 03 2012: 11:22 AM ET
The 86 million invisible unemployed

The unemployment rate is falling. But that doesn't include millions of Americans who aren't even looking for a job.

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.