I have been in the ER for 9 years, working as a nurse for 4.5 years. On a daily basis, I see people come in oh so obviously for drugs, for routine breathing problems exacerbated by cigarette smoking, and the social visits who have no real medical problems. I push through my mundane day of coughs and colds just hoping that for one pt I can use my brain and actually pull from the brink of death. I don't wish harm on anyone, but I WANT TRAUMAS AND CODES! Is that mean...? I want to use my brain, I want an adrenalin rush.
I realized today that I hate people. I know that is awful to say as a nurse, but I was yelled at by a mom who waited 4 hours with her 11 year old who 'had a stomach ache", yeah the one laughing with her friend, drinking a soda, pink warm a dry, no vomiting. I was yelled at by a man who has had a lump in his throat for 7 months!!! because he waited 2 hours in the ER for a work up. I had a young woman whose children were filthy, drinking water/milk and beautiful. she was in for "backpain" and mad she didn't get pain meds to go. How are these children going to grow up? When I see the children, either as patients or with families, who are unkempt, treated poorly and are living in bad situations, it makes me want to cry. I cannot see this anymore, it tears my heart out. I don't care about the mom yelling at me, or the guy with lump yelling at me, but when i see the big eyes of a child who isn't provided with a stable and nurturing environment, I just want to yell----who cares about your back pain, buy this kid some clothes or healthy non fried foods. How do you nurses do this job in this environment for 15+ years without going crazy.........how do you handle your emotions....look past all of these thoughts to do your job. because, I think I need to get out of the ER even though I love those traumas and codes. Can anyone share any advice on how to survive?