Along with the financial difficulties joblessness can create, many Americans who lost their jobs during the recession also experienced more personal problems. Roughly four-in-ten adults (42%) who are currently unemployed or who were unemployed sometime during the recession say that family relations were strained during their time out of work. Another 40% say while they were unemployed they lost contact with close friends. These financial and relationship strains took a tangible toll on half of the unemployed; 48% say they had difficulty sleeping while without a job. About one-in-five sought professional help for depression, and 5% admit to having problems with alcohol or drugs during unemployment. Read More

Russell Heimlich  is a former web developer at Pew Research Center.