Another 'nursing burnout' thread - page 2

In 11 years as a nurse, I've had rough shifts, jobs I wanted to quit, etc. But now I'm wondering why I ever went into nursing in the first place. I love critical care, but I can't stand dealing... Read More

  1. by   burn out
    Quote from gr8rnpjt
    Thank GOD there are other options for you guys. You nurses with your wealth of experience are wanted and needed at insurance companies all over the country. It is easy as pie and very little stress!

    Sorry but working for an insurance company would be like sleeping with the enemy...changing my political party ...denouncing my religion.
  2. by   K98
    Quote from burn out
    Sorry but working for an insurance company would be like sleeping with the enemy...changing my political party ...denouncing my religion.
    Might be the case, but it beats hosting the Jerry Springer show every shift during visiting hours. Always nice when a family member that can't spell "lab" keeps demanding to see the relative's lab values. :trout:
  3. by   AmericanChai
    I am not yet a nurse (my mom is, I'm in school) but I am the parent of a child who has spent some time in the hospital. I don't know how it is to be a nurse and have to deal with families. I can imagine that it is very challenging at times.

    I just wanted to offer you a different perspective as a parent of a child who was in the hospital a few times. The first time she was FTT and 3 mos old, refusing to eat, ended up on NG tube and dx with GERD. She was in the hospital for 6 days. Before we got to that point of being in the hospital she had been not eating well at home for some time, I was very worried about her, had a 3yo to deal with also, no family support, and my baby screamed allll the time because of the GERD. So by the time I took her to ER I was a stressed out mess. I also had PPD going on. I should have gotten some counseling or something but I was so focused on caring for my sick baby and my 3yo. So I was probably not very patient with the nurses when things would go wrong as the sometimes do, such as her NG tube coming out or the cereal clogging the bottles when the doctor suggested cereal. I look back and think that those nurses must have thought I was the most rude awful person ever, and maybe they were right at that time. I think the illness of a family member brings the worst out of people.

    I wish that the hospital had some kind of support network in place, a counselor to meet with family members and help them destress and take care of themselves while their loved one was in the hospital. That way you would not have to act as social worker or entertainer, KWIM?

    Another time my child was in the hospital for a gtube surgery and her roomate was a child with a very bad case of strep. She was transferred from the ER of another hospital. I was livid that my healty but vulnerable child was placed with a contagious child. I understand that they only have so many rooms and I'm not sure what could have really been done about it. But that child was allowed to walk the halls and even visit the playroom after her pain meds kicked in and she had not been on antibiotics for even 12 hours yet. She also had about 10 visitors including several children who got in bed with her, made a lot of noise and we could not rest. So I did talk to the head nurse about that and voiced my concern in a polite way but I know it annoyed the nurses. My job was to be my child's advocate because no one else would be. At your hospital, do they at least only let one family member stay after visiting hours instead of the entire gang?

    I also valued the 24/7 visiting hours because there's no way I could leave my baby alone in the hospital. She needed me. I was her medicine. She calmed down when I held her on my chest in the chair. When I was there, there were kids whose parents could not be with them all the time and they cried and cried and the nurses could not always comfort them unless it was a medical issue, KWIM?

    On the other hand I'm sorry that some family members want to take advantage of the system and manipulate things. I know with my child, sometimes there were miscommunications between the doctors, the nurses, and myself.

    I hope I don't sound patronizing because that's now how I want to come across at all. I am not a nurse and I don't know what it's like to do what you do day after day. I do know that when I am a nurse part of my job will be to deal with people like the moody, stressed out person I was when my child first was hospitalized. It's part of the package. Maybe if you don't want to deal with them as much, you can go into some other kind of practice like clinical where people are in and out faster.
    Last edit by AmericanChai on Apr 5, '07
  4. by   banditrn
    Quote from K98
    Might be the case, but it beats hosting the Jerry Springer show every shift during visiting hours. Always nice when a family member that can't spell "lab" keeps demanding to see the relative's lab values. :trout:
    Oh, man, don'tcha just LOVE it all?!!

    I used to just want to spit when I'd be doing an admission, and every question was followed by a 10 minute oration - which gave you no more info that when you started!!
    How I wished it could have been:
    Nurse, "Any history of respiratory problems?"
    Patient, "You know, that's an interesting question."
    Nurse, "No, it isn't, just answer the damn question!!"
  5. by   DutchgirlRN
    Quote from AmericanChai
    I was probably not very patient with the nurses when things would go wrong as the sometimes do, such as her NG tube coming out or the cereal clogging the bottles when the doctor suggested cereal. I look back and think that those nurses must have thought I was the most rude awful person ever, and maybe they were right at that time. I think the illness of a family member brings the worst out of people.
    Illness may bring out the worst in some family members but it's not an excuse to take it out on the nurse, the person who is attempting to make things right and care for your child. There are times that I am in a bad mood and I have to realize it's my problem, not the person I'm dealing with.
  6. by   GoldenLove
    Quote from DutchgirlRN
    Illness may bring out the worst in some family members but it's not an excuse to take it out on the nurse, the person who is attempting to make things right and care for your child. There are times that I am in a bad mood and I have to realize it's my problem, not the person I'm dealing with.
    AMEN TO THAT!!! GRRRR..it's absolutely frustrating to try to help families who make it difficult for us to do our jobs effectively...we need your help and cooperation just like you need us...:yeahthat:
  7. by   gr8rnpjt
    [QUOTE=AmericanChai;2144211], Another time my child was in the hospital for a gtube surgery and her roomate was a child with a very bad case of strep.


    That must have been horrible for you. This I can't understand. I know my clinical days were in the past but I would never have considered admitting an infectious patient to the same room with a fresh postop patient.

    I hope your little girl is doing well now.
  8. by   VAC
    Yikes, I don't know how I missed all these responses.!! Thank you all so much. This Friday, I am eligible to put in for transfer again. Pray for me.

    AmericanChai.
    I would never ever leave my young child alone in a hospital any more than I would leave them alone in any public place. I believe peds and neonatal are in a different world altogether, there is no choice but to deal with mom and dad, and rightly so. That is a big reason I chose not to work in those areas.

    I'm taking about adult ICU with 24/7 open visitation and no real enforcement of any limitations on visitors. I'm so over it, I need to get out before I burn out on nursing completely, and I can see I'm not alone.



    thanks again
  9. by   VAC
    Quote from burn out
    I just wonder if by writing you up is not just a ploy to keep you from transferring because your manager doesn't want to loose a good nurse and then have try to replace you. This way you may change your mind, the PACU position may become filled, or then they will keep you at the current job until they find a replacement for you . I think you are probably doing a good job and they don't want to loose you.
    I'd thought of this. I had put in a transfer request BEFORE this incident.
    I did an extensive job search outside the system and found that PACU and part time don't mix in many places.

    Actually, when I transferred to this position 3 years ago, I had to wait 4 months (after placing the request and being accepted by the new manager) before my manager would 'release' me to the unit I'm in now...
    so the game still goes on.:spin:
  10. by   smartynurse
    This is an interesting thread, because nurses aren't allowed to be irritated with families!!! Why, they are our customers! And customers are always right, right? Anyway, American Chai mentioned something about support systems for families! In my hospital (I should say former hospital, my last day was last Saturday-Hallelujah!) they have patient representatives, they come up and take down all of the families grievances, etc. That is fine. What they realllly need to do is provide some emotional support for the nurses!!! In my research for a management class for my RN to BSN, I found out that Vanderbilt U. Hosp. has classes for health care workers (all-doctors, nurses, etc.) to help them deal with demanding people. They also apparently go up to the unit to meet with the nurse, not make him/her go see them on their days off! According to them, their turnover rate is less than 10% for nursing staff (I think my MAGNET facility is closer to 17%!!!!!!!).
    Anyway, I am so incredibly sick of nursing and all of the stress/demands/demoralization-they have finally beat me down! I just want to find a way out....I am moving to northern va. and hopefully will get an agency job, so I won't have to work more than 21/2 days a week. Then I can pursue other things in my life, maybe even a new career!!!

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