does prison nursing affect your home life? does prison nursing affect your home life? | allnurses

does prison nursing affect your home life?

  1. 1 I read in someones post recently that when a person has been doing prison nursing for a while it effects your home life, most significantly your relationships with your partner and friends,,,

    does it change the way you are emotionally? are u selling your soul to the devil? are only certain people supseptible to this or is it it totally untrue?
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  2. 29 Comments

  3. Visit  Thunderwolf profile page
    #1 2
    Good post.

    Bound to generate a good discussion. Thank you.

    Looking forward to other's viewpoints.
  4. Visit  **nurse** profile page
    #2 12
    The times it most affected my home life was when I was in dysfunctional relationships (2). Controlling men do not like "thier" women working in an environment that is mostly men. Getting rid of them solved that problem.

    My kids loved it....one son in particular. He got in trouble at school once and the teacher asked for a number to call me. He told her, she couldn't, his mom was in prison. She totally changed from anger to sympathy and worked hard to give him loving support. Little manipulator. I don't know how she felt when she found out the truth, but he managed to graduate and is doing fine on his own now.

    Working in an environment where a whole group of people are defined to have less rights can be damaging. It wasn't good for a lot of slave holders, Nazi's, etc, etc. I went through development of wanting to save them (briefly!) from bad medical care of some of the staff, to becoming cynical, a fair period of being the junkyard dog and CATCHING them manipulating, ROOTING OUT the malingerers, making them SORRY. Then thankfully beyond to just giving good care. Understanding that the correctional part belongs to DOC, and the health care part mine. That I need to always have my safety and my coworker's safety in the highest priority, but not be so worried about someone getting over on me. I guess a few hundred or thousand times I've been checking out a bogus complaint and found that the description was bogus but there was a significant health problem that they couldn't describe. He says he had an STD lab that he never got results from and I tell him that means it was good, but check and find that the lab was never resulted AND he was prescribed stuff that was never taken off AND look at that great big MRSA that he hadn't complained of yet.... The guy with "pee problems" that turns out to be new oncet NIDDM.

    It CAN corrupt, but the high stress of nursing in ANY field can impact your homelife.
  5. Visit  RN.38SPCL profile page
    #3 2
    Quote from sidney82
    I read in someones post recently that when a person has been doing prison nursing for a while it effects your home life, most significantly your relationships with your partner and friends,,,

    does it change the way you are emotionally? are u selling your soul to the devil? are only certain people supseptible to this or is it it totally untrue?
    What I notice is that when I look at anyone, a new aquaintance or even just people watching in a public place, I can pick out the manipulators and pretty much make an educated guess on who has been in jail and who aught to be. Or so I think. If it looks like a family member, even spouse, might be trying to get one over on me, I really let them have it. However, that seems no different than an ER nurse telling her family over the phone, "Do not call me at work unless you have blood squirting out of your head". After a while, you just don't have time for stupid. I have a very god raport with the inmates who are actually ill and really need my case management skills.
  6. Visit  kmruddrn profile page
    #4 4
    I was a correcional nurse for 7 years and I'm only 30. All I knew for the most part in nursing and I was good at it and proud of it. Makes you extremely independant at work and home (so controlling spouses need not apply), makes you watch your back at any location at work and elsewhere, selling yourself to the devil is one way to express it...I always said we were in the devil's playground at work (affairs between staff members [not inmates:angryfire], liars, lazy people, manipulators, back stabbers--I'm talking about the workers, not all but most), and cussing!!! GEESH!! F this and F that. Causes potty mouth outside of work after a while. You yourself become institutionalized. Fortunately I worked in supermax prisons so inmate contact was minimal and we didn't see inmate staff issues as much as lower levels do. Yes it affects you. I have been a ICU nurse now for 6 months and I can tell a huge diferferance in myself and how I handle my patients. I love to love them again. But some of my ICU buddies use the "f" term more than my prison nurse buddies! Some days are hard no matter what or where in nursing. But I value my years in corrections, great job with great state benefits but you have to separate work from life or your longevity is at stake. Hope this helps!
  7. Visit  texascowgirl profile page
    #5 2
    i developed a big time potty mouth, and though i hate to admit it, i started hating men (most of my waking hours were in prison seeing men act like animals, jacking in front of me and basically seeing the worst of humanity)...and i probably took it out on my husband (husband at the time). it was hard to turn off the prison persona and turn on the non prison persona. i became very cynical and skeptical of others.
    but i loved every minute of being a correctional nurse and will go back into it if i ever leave this job i have now, which is the best job in the whole field of nursing...i finally hit the jackpot and i am riding this wave for as long as i can

    Quote from sidney82
    I read in someones post recently that when a person has been doing prison nursing for a while it effects your home life, most significantly your relationships with your partner and friends,,,

    does it change the way you are emotionally? are u selling your soul to the devil? are only certain people supseptible to this or is it it totally untrue?
  8. Visit  DiegoRN profile page
    #6 0
    I would like to learn more about the opportunities available in corrections. Can someone tell me what type of nursing assignments are available at a prison? I live in the San Francisco bay area and San Quintin is close by.

    Also, I would like to know what type of nursing experience and skill set would be most valued by those doing the hiring. I have emergency nursing experience but that was many years ago, I have been working as a case manager for large insurance companies and the tedium is killing me.

    Any assistance would be most appreciated.

    Diego
  9. Visit  Foxy78 profile page
    #7 0
    I'd say it definitely does. Going into a prison shows you a side of humanity (if you can even call it that) that you will not see anywhere else. I have thick skin and I try not to let things get in the way of doing my job. But I'll be honest with you, its hard sometimes to come home and chit-chat with my wife and have cuddle time after an IM describes to me in graphic detail what he would do to me, my wife, and my kids. Sure, what the inmates say is just words. And most of the time their words are the only weapons they have and the only thing they have to try to control and influence their environment. But when you hear that kind of talk over and over again, day after day, it can get to you at times. I'm fairly new to corrections and I can already tell that it will be a challenge to leave work at work when I come home. Its a tough job and its definitely not for everyone. Whether its for me or not, I guess time will tell.
  10. Visit  VegRN profile page
    #8 0
    Sure, sometimes it can be hard to get things out of my head. Like what some inmates have done to get there. No matter how hard you try to avoid it, there are times you will here CO's and other staff talk about what inmate so and so did. And some of it is truely horrifying and takes a bit to move on from.
    And yes, seeing the worst of humanity sometimes gets to me. It is always quite odd to take care of the more "high profile" convicts. Most of the time though, I do my job and have a few laughs.

    And I always try to remember that what I am doing, in some way, helps to protect society since the bad guys are behind bars.
  11. Visit  Pipsqueak profile page
    #9 0
    Quote from Foxy78
    after an IM describes to me in graphic detail what he would do to me, my wife, and my kids..
    Is it typical in corrections to have ID badges that display your full name? I think I would be terrified of being seeked out by an inmate with a grudge who was just released. In what ways are you able to protect yourself from this sort of thing?
  12. Visit  Foxy78 profile page
    #10 1
    ^We don't wear ID badges, but it is very easy for them to find out your name. For instance, every time I submit an incident or a disciplinary report on an IM, my name is listed on it and the IM gets a copy of it per policy. They also can request their medical records (nurses notes, etc). If just 1 inmate finds out your name, you can pretty much assume they all know it. As for protecting myself at home, I'll have to admit I have gotten more conscientious about making sure the doors and windows are locked. I'm not paranoid and definitely don't loose sleep over my job, but it doesn't hurt to be cautious. I'd like to get a gun, but the wife says absolutely not, haha. I will probably get a dog though.

    Although many inmates have made threats to staff or intimated that they know where staff members live, I know of only 1 instance where something actually happened and that was quite a few years ago. A bunch of gang members showed up at a CO's house, but nothing actually happened, the police showed up and defused the situation.
  13. Visit  shell911rn profile page
    #11 0
    Quote from Pipsqueak
    Is it typical in corrections to have ID badges that display your full name? I think I would be terrified of being seeked out by an inmate with a grudge who was just released. In what ways are you able to protect yourself from this sort of thing?
    In the prison I work in, we are identified by our last name, not our first name. So we answer the phone or are called "RN Jones" instead of "RN Sally" by other staff and inmates. I think this creates a more formal situation and understanding of authority so that the inmate doesn't see us as being on the same level. Technically, we are supposed to wear ID badges that have our first initial and last name and title, but I and most other nurses I work with don't for our safety. They do know how my name is spelled, though, if I have given them passes to medical for treatments, doctor's visits, etc., as this is required in order to issue them a pass. I just choose not to have my name on parade for everyone to see. If an inmate asks me for my name, I give it to him and make sure he knows how to spell it properly (hahahahaha...I think all correctional nurses can relate to that one). It probably wouldn't be hard though, if your last name was unique, for the inmate to get information about you, just as any one could get information about you if they really wanted to from the internet nowadays. But, I know when I worked on the outside in an ER, we feared this same thing and did change our ID tags to have our first name and initial of our last name to protect ourselves, after rumors of gang members following a nurse home after she treated a victim of a drive-by and gang members (patients or visitors) started threatening nursing staff in the ER.

    One way we can protect ourselves is by not listing our name and address and/or phone number in the phone book. My employer also allows us to register with the DMV to have our address blocked (just as law enforcement personnel are allowed to) so if you try to look up my information in their system, my employers' address will appear, not my own. Otherwise, you just don't think about it. Patients have gone back to hospitals and shot/assaulted their doctors/nurses when they didn't like the care they received so no workplace seems to be exempt from violence anymore.
    Last edit by shell911rn on Jul 21, '08 : Reason: Clarification
  14. Visit  azguyrn profile page
    #12 1
    A myth. I do Correctional & ER Nursing. ER nursing is way more stressful. I get assaulted verbally and physically in the ED on a daily basis, more than I ever have working in a prison.

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