Families: Upsides of the Downturn

The uncertain economy is reminding some families that there's more to life than money

The boom times of the '90s were not just an economic story; they changed the lives of families too. Dads jetted around the country, moms could afford to give up their jobs, and families everywhere dreamed about new diplomas and big promotions. But family life was transformed again when the current slowdown began in March 2001. Two million Americans lost their jobs, while others saw their paychecks shrink. How is the changed economy affecting their emotional welfare? "Money is the physical manifestation of who you are. It defines you," says certified financial planner and best-selling personal-finance author Suze Orman. "When you...

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