"You're a nurse...how wonderful!" (rant) - page 2

I have been a nurse for less than a year, but I am already sick and tired of people acting like nursing is morally "better" than other jobs, like, say, computer science. I tell people I'm a nurse,... Read More

  1. by   Little Panda RN
    I went into nursing not only for the knowledge of how the body functions, but to make a difference. Now I am not talking about making a difference where science is concerned, but making a difference in the life of others. I want to leave something behind that will remind people of who I was. I want to know that I did something worth while during my time on this earth. What I mean is if I made a difference to even one person, by a kind word when they needed it most or by meeting some need that they may have, then I have achieved what I set out to do. This is a very simplistic way to put that I enjoy being part of a profession that plays a key role in the advancement of human life. IMHO this is an awesome profession and I am humbled to be a part of it!
  2. by   Tweety
    Quote from arizonanurse
    I can see how it did - it's so hard to convey tone on a web post. I didn't mean it that way, honestly.
    I think I caught what you're saying. When people elevate you to angelic status (the old angel of mercy image) it can be upsetting because that's not how you see yourself.

    Perhaps because I'm a male people don't treat me that way, so I can't relate at much. :roll

    Yes absolutely it is hard to convey feelings on the internet and they are often misunderstood...been there and done that myself.
  3. by   Antikigirl
    I enjoy that people think my choice in careers is a good one, and respect me for it. Many people know that a nurses job is a hard one...having to mix the rules of healthcare as they are today, caring for someone you don't know, dealing with mean people that aren't feeling well and take it out on you, dealing with Doctors and other displines, dealing with families, and actually doing a job at the same time (not mentioning the yucky stuff most people would say "ewwww" to, or technical aspects). I really can't think of another job that is quite like nursing or healthcare! So I will take the compliments when I can get them...frankly! LOL!

    When people talk to me about my profession, and they say the typcial things about how wonderful nursing profession is (in laymans) or about their last experience with a horrible nurse. I use that opportunity to tell them about how nursing REALLY is! No, not a lecture, more like "man, I didn't know when I signed on to this that I would actually be doing .....". Typically I teach them one or two other things...and they may just remember that when they are a patient! Plus I get to share a bit of my job!

    One of my biggest compliments came YESTERDAY! A little 3 year old girl was running in the halls and her mom was trying to catch her...she saw me, stopped and opened her arms for me to pick her up...I couldn't resist! I put my steth on her, had her help me with some waters for that patient, had her help me (fake) make her grandpa's bed...and told her she would make a fine nurse! She was so happy she was dancing around saying "I am a nurse!". The entire family was laughing and having a good time when before it was all sadness (grandpa was going to be fine, but he was milking it a tad! LOL!). That made me feel soooooooo good!!!!!!!!

    So I will take a compliment when I can get them..and also, I ask people what they do and say the same thing to them..."Yes, I am a saleman for ----"...."wow, having to work so closely with people in all their spectrum of moods is not easy some days huh? Well, I certainly appreciate you for that!". And that opens the door to a good relationship in nursing/pt!
  4. by   smkiya
    During my pinning ceremony in December after completing my RN program, we had to wear the white dress and nurse's cap. My 2 year old daughter was so excited and proud she screamed when I was pinned, "good job mommy!"

    Just the other day in the car she says to me, "You goed to your gratulation mommy? you a nurse now?" I said, "yes honey I'm a nurse." She said, "I wanna be a nurse like you mommy"

    I know I'm fresh out of school and passed NCLEX only last week, but I think becoming a nurse (at least for me) was a life changing and defining moment. I made a lot of sacrifices to be where I am now (changing from business suits to scrubs, giving birth in the middle of a semester, putting my social and family life on hold, getting into debt, etc.) and I appreciate when people recognize the value nurses bring to the world. Even if I decide in 10 years to leave the profession, my children will always know of my accomplishment, and that achievement is truly only an "I think I can, I think I can" away.

    The look in my daughter's eyes that day she said, "you a nurse now?" .... how wonderful!!!!
  5. by   sirI
    Quote from smkiya
    During my pinning ceremony in December after completing my RN program, we had to wear the white dress and nurse's cap. My 2 year old daughter was so excited and proud she screamed when I was pinned, "good job mommy!"

    Just the other day in the car she says to me, "You goed to your gratulation mommy? you a nurse now?" I said, "yes honey I'm a nurse." She said, "I wanna be a nurse like you mommy"

    I know I'm fresh out of school and passed NCLEX only last week, but I think becoming a nurse (at least for me) was a life changing and defining moment. I made a lot of sacrifices to be where I am now (changing from business suits to scrubs, giving birth in the middle of a semester, putting my social and family life on hold, getting into debt, etc.) and I appreciate when people recognize the value nurses bring to the world. Even if I decide in 10 years to leave the profession, my children will always know of my accomplishment, and that achievement is truly only an "I think I can, I think I can" away.

    The look in my daughter's eyes that day she said, "you a nurse now?" .... how wonderful!!!!
    That is so sweet. Very touching, smkiya. I could just envision your dd eyes and up-turned face as she admired you.
  6. by   AlisonBSN
    Oh my God! I've had these same thoughts before, but only told my best friend about them...and she still didn't get it. People look at you like you're some kind of angel and it sometimes makes me want to scream. I like making a difference in people's lives, but I felt that same feeling when I went out of my way to make sure someone had extra napkins when I worked at a fast food drive-thru.
  7. by   ShayRN
    I started as a Hospice nurse in July. I have gotten the "you sure are special" speech almost daily. I love it, YES, I AM SPECIAL! I do a great job caring for my patients and their familys. You know how in acute care, the hospital's VP's father comes in and they say, Oh that is so and so's dad? My response has always been- SO? I treat all my patients like royalty. Hospice has touched me in a way that acute care never did, I wake up first thing in the morning and call to check on my patients from the night before. Last week a son was very concerned when they got to us because of the long ordeal they had been through at the hospital. I told him, EVERY patient that comes through that door is mine while they are here, meaning I treat them as my own family. I meant it, they are family while here and I care for them as such. That being said, I tell my husband he is special because he carries mail in snow and ice in 6 degree weather. I tell my sister in law she is special because she can stand in front of 23 students every day and teach. I tell my brother he is special because he flys airplanes in Iraq to deliver troops and supplies. I couldn't do any of those things, so I guess we are ALL special! I will take the compliment with a smile and say a thank you.
  8. by   lannisz
    Quote from JenTheRN
    Alright, I have to stir things up.

    I love my job because I love my patients. I work in OB, and I find my interaction with patients and families very fulfilling. I get to share a very important part in people's lives. I DO spend time wiping brows with cold washcloths. I DO think about my patients when I go home.

    I feel nursing is a very different sort of job that say, office work. We get to deal with people at the best and worst times of their lives. We get to usher people into and out of the world. We touch families, and many people will remember us for the rest of their lives. I'm very proud and touched when people get that dreamy look in their eyes. I'm proud to be a nurse, and I feel privileged to get to know my patients, and am humbled when people say that I have helped them in any way.

    Just wanted to put out a different perspective. I'm not trying to flame.
    I'm with Jen, and I also work OB. People are giving you a compliment when they say "how wonderful" - don't resent it
  9. by   AlisonBSN
    But sometimes...they say "how wonderful" because they have no clue what nursing is. It's not all comfort related. So when they are patients themselves, they think they didn't get the care that they should have because there wasn't some angelic creature wiping their brow. They don't appreciate that you're bugging them about the incentive spirometer, and all the other things that actually keep them physically well. They don't recognize the time you spend on the phone back and forth with the doc, and CT, and whoever else. Sometimes my value actually depends on the kitchen putting the right food on the dinner tray. And God forbid...when the IV infiltrates it means somebody doesn't know what they're doing.

    The fact that we do all that without snapping makes us worthy of recognition, but it just bugs me that I'm being complimented for being this lovely person by people on the outside of the hospital, when they have no clue about what it really is. I know it sounds like it shouldn't be something that would irritate somebody, but for some reason it does. And apparently I'm not the only one.

    Don't apologize, arizonanurse. Some nurses do consider themselves deserving of the dreamy-eyed look, and some don't. I know how you feel, and it doesn't mean that you don't care about your patients. Like I said before, I love helping people, but I don't sit at home dwelling on the patients I had the day before. Sometimes I do have passing thoughts of "I wonder if they ever found out what that mass was," or "I wonder if that little lady is feeling better." But I will also forget about them after a few days off, or if they get transferred to another unit. There are a few that I still wonder about...like the ones that were on my floor for weeks and weeks.

    I can understand how Hospice would be different...there is a lot of pressure in that area to be rather angelic.

    -AlisonBSN
  10. by   lauralassie
    Perhaps some one has said this to you because a nurse made a difference in their life. Never underestamate what you may be doing for your pt's , and not even know it. Some times a kind touch to a dying pt's faimily member may be all they need to get through that tough time. I agree nurses arn't more important than other professions, but, there arn't too many other professions that are involved with such profound- life changing events. Most people will remember the kindness of a banker that gets the best deal for them, but , speaking form personal experience, when a nurse looks you in the eye and says kind words when you feel your absolute worst, it can mean the difference in giving up that day or going on and fihgting an illness. :1luvu:

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