If you feel poorer despite continuing to add to your stock market savings, there’s good reason for that. Below is the chart. Note that the “red line” is the one you want. It’s inflation-adjusted and accounts for dividends (not fees or taxes).
Since the stock market peak on March 24, 2000 the line has gone from 1000 to 702 — a 30% reduction. Measuring instead from the pre-crash peak of late 2007, real total returns have gone down about 26%.