Leaving Nursing after first year - advice?

  1. 0
    I have been an employee at the hospital I work at for almost 7 years. I graduated from nursing school last December, passed the NCLEX-RN in February and started my first RN job. I worked full time until the birth of my first child a few months later, took my 12 weeks of leave and have been back for a few months at part time. I want to work and I want to stay home with my baby and I'm having a hard time doing both. I have asked twice to work less and have been told those positions do not exist. In fact the only way I got off of full time is because my OB took me out of work for good about 5 weeks before my due date. (I had to beg him to let me go back to work and the only way he would allow it is if it was part time)I would love to work weekends, or PRN, or heck even one day a week less (I currenly work 3 evenings) but they are not willing to work with me. We currectly have a hiring freeze and I'm upset that they would rather me quit (haven't told them) then let me work weekends when that is when everyone calls off! I plan on asking again for a reduction in hours, but if I get the same answer then I plan on leaving in February. I am really torn though. I LOVE being a nurse and have worked SO hard for this. I just want to work less while my baby is still so little. As he gets older I will want to work more. Right now it's too hard and I don't feel like my son or my job is getting the best of me. My biggest concern is about leaving nursing so early into my career and the problems I might have coming back in a few years. I definitely loving working in the hospital and can't see myself doing anything else. My husband is supportive but is getting sick of the back and forth. One day I know I want to stay home and the next I'm sure I want to keep working. I'm just so torn and obviously cannot talk to any co-workers about this and my family is split on it.
  2. 12 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    This is a recurring issue for women, not just in nursing, but overall. Is there a financial need for you to keep working? And what will happen when you have more children? What makes you think that working on weekends will make it different?

    Away is away - that motherhood pull is very strong - regardless of the day of the week, time of day.

    Only you can answer these questions. Best wishes!
  4. 0
    It can really be difficult, the best thing to do is to weigh which is more important at the moment. Ultimately it is still your decision and I wish you luck and hope you will be able to find the right decision on this.
  5. 0
    If you can find a way to cut back your hours and stay home do so immediately. A job is a job and there will probably be many in your life but your baby is your baby only once. If you are able to stay home run do not walk, your nursing career will be there when you get back
  6. 1
    I respectfully disagree with passionflower. I realize that the lure of being a SAHM is very powerful, and feels so very 'right' for those of us who have small children, but nurses who have completely removed themselves from the workplace usually discover that it is very difficult to resume their careers. Healthcare is a very dynamic environment that advances at a very rapid pace. Technology & practice evolve so rapidly that an absence of even 2 years in some settings (e.g., ICU, OR) means that re-entering nurses are basically 'new grads' again - with all the difficulty that this can mean.

    There is also a huge career disadvantage overall for SAHMs no matter what profession or work setting. Unfortunately, the work of motherhood is not recognized in any sort of financial way... although I understand that there is some legislation underway that would allow SAHM (or SAHD) to have IRAs for retirement... this would be a great tax benefit. Unfortunately, I have known an unbelievably large number of women who have suffered greatly from the consequences of deciding to become a SAHM. Especially if the marriage dissolves - becoming completely impoverished because they are unable to support themselves & having to turn over the 'primary custody' to the father because he can support them. This happens on a regular basis. I realize that it may not be a very popular idea, but I would caution you not to become a SAHM without a binding "post nuptial" agreement with your spouse that would prevent this from happening. Just sayin . . .
    GrnTea likes this.
  7. 0
    Although I can see your point, I had to make that decision 20+ years ago, and it was a challenge! I look back then and remember the struggles of one income - we were poor financially and had to make so many sacrifices, and I remember having a hard time finding a job because i didn't have "experience". Eventually I found a job and many more after that first one.
    In my life I regret a lot of things but I never regret the choice I made. I was fortunate enough to be able to stay home with my children the first few years of their lives. I did prn work one day a week here and there to cover some bills but mainly stayed home. Even with all the challenges I never regret it but I know I would have regret missing that time with my children. I am forever grateful and I still say if you HAVE an option and WANT to stay home, choose home, eventually you will get a job but you will never get back those beginning years with your child. I'm sure many women only wish they were able to choose.
  8. 0
    I worked fulltime for a year after starting my first job, and then went to contingent status. I hated being at the hospital's mercy for time off. I hated having every other weekend away from my family and watching my husband go off and do fun things with the kids while I worked or slept. I don't think you can ever go wrong by putting your child first. I am lucky that my husband is the main breadwinner in our house so cutting back my hours didn't hurt us. Being able to pick my days around my kids' and husband' schedule is priceless to me. I figure I can always work fulltime after the kids leave the nest or are more self sufficient.
  9. 0
    Quote from RNandMom2012
    I have been an employee at the hospital I work at for almost 7 years. I graduated from nursing school last December, passed the NCLEX-RN in February and started my first RN job. I worked full time until the birth of my first child a few months later, took my 12 weeks of leave and have been back for a few months at part time. I want to work and I want to stay home with my baby and I'm having a hard time doing both. I have asked twice to work less and have been told those positions do not exist. In fact the only way I got off of full time is because my OB took me out of work for good about 5 weeks before my due date. (I had to beg him to let me go back to work and the only way he would allow it is if it was part time)I would love to work weekends, or PRN, or heck even one day a week less (I currenly work 3 evenings) but they are not willing to work with me. We currectly have a hiring freeze and I'm upset that they would rather me quit (haven't told them) then let me work weekends when that is when everyone calls off! I plan on asking again for a reduction in hours, but if I get the same answer then I plan on leaving in February. I am really torn though. I LOVE being a nurse and have worked SO hard for this. I just want to work less while my baby is still so little. As he gets older I will want to work more. Right now it's too hard and I don't feel like my son or my job is getting the best of me. My biggest concern is about leaving nursing so early into my career and the problems I might have coming back in a few years. I definitely loving working in the hospital and can't see myself doing anything else. My husband is supportive but is getting sick of the back and forth. One day I know I want to stay home and the next I'm sure I want to keep working. I'm just so torn and obviously cannot talk to any co-workers about this and my family is split on it.
    You can try agency contractor since you are not stressing financially or consider home health or hospice....unless there are some other hospitals around you that do not mind prn nurses.
  10. 0
    If you all don't need your income, I would definitely recommend you to be with your baby. I did the stay at home thing for the first 5 years of my child's life. It's the best decision I ever made. They are only little once. You will blink and this precious little boy will be graduating high school. Most employers will understand gaps in employment due to expanding your family or being a stay at home mom. When you interview for your next position you can tell the interviewer that you ate in a great place in your life for a career now. You will have gotten that golden year of experience under your belt, and if you give 3 weeks to a month notice and leave on good terms, this employer might even rehire you. Just as everyone else has said, only you can make this decision. I hope that they will work with you and cut down your hours. I think that's a great solution. Gives you the best of both worlds.
    Last edit by FLmed on Dec 16, '12
  11. 1
    Since you already have a year's experience try applying for per diem positions at other hospitals, home health agencies, schools, etc or even looking at agency work. If all else fails and you're prepared to back it up if need be, tell your manager you either need to go per diem or you're quitting. If they've invested all this time in you they may try to keep you no matter what. I was a SAHM for 10 yrs and although I don't regret it, I do wish I'd kept my foot in the door even just a day here and there. It would've made it ten times easier in every way possible-financial, keeping up my skills, returning and not being at the bottom again, feeling more confident which I lost a lot of being home so long. I have literally felt like a new grad again and everyone knows how crappy that is the first time around let alone going through it again! Good luck!
    GrnTea likes this.


Nursing Jobs in every specialty and state. Visit today and Create Job Alerts, Manage Your Resume, and Apply for Jobs.

A Big Thank You To Our Sponsors
Top