Considering a career in nursing, but scared of the neg comments

  1. Hi all,

    I'm a 27 yo with a hubby and two small kids. I have a B.S. in Psychology and I work in Finance (Yuck). I have always been attracted to the field of nursing because I have a huge amount of compassion and a love for medicine, however, I just read the one thread of over 16 pages about how a large number of nurses are trying to get out of bedside care. This disturbs me, I suppose because I have always had a romanticized view of nursing, but now I don't know if it is for me. I have applied to several LPN and RN programs and am waiting to hear back from the schools.

    So, my question is, are there other areas in a hospital that I can have patient contact (especially young patients), that won't leave me running for the hills?? I've thought of Rad Tech, Resp Therapy, Child Life and Medical Social Worker. Have any of you RNs/ LPNs considered these fields? I really want to be able to take the time to get to know my patients instead of running around like a chicken with her head cut off as a bedside nurse. What other areas of nursing would allow me to do this?

    Thanks

    Rhonda
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  2. 12 Comments

  3. by   philosophical
    Oh, and for some reason I am attracted to any field that involves working with the dying.
  4. by   CyndieRN2007
    I can see your concern, especially after reading negative comments from bedside nurses on this board. However, this forum is a place for nurses to vent about negative experiences. Unfortunately, it is human nature to focus on the negative and ignore the positive. This is true for every person, not just nurses...

    Speaking for myself, (but I'm sure that many people will agree with me) I love being a nurse. It is what I dreamed of being since I was a litte girl. Do I hate aspects of my job? Sure! But the positive does outweigh the negative, by far. Again, do not be alarmed by the volume of negative comments on this board! People have bad days and this forum is the best support system, for NURSES by NURSES. Im sure when/if you get into nursing, you will need to vent alittle yourself!

    Good luck
    Cynthia~
  5. by   anonymurse
    Mostly you need to know yourself, then your decision will be clear to you. If you're not a multitasker, forget nursing like I probably should have, although I love everything about it. It's the multitasking stuff, the interruptions of interruptions of interruptions, that aren't natural for me to hold all in my head at one time. Very honestly, I should've been a rad tech who deals with pts one at a time, whether or not nursing affords a greater opportunity to exercise and develop compassion. Life is an endurance game, and therefore choice of occupation should be made on the basis of whether you can sustain the pace, whether you can survive each and every day at work without exception until you choose to leave. In compliance-based (as opposed to creativity-based) jobs, you want to inventory your weaknesses before your strengths, because in this kind of job, there are no bonuses for stellar performance, only punishments for not meeting minimum standards.
  6. by   supermonkeyball
    ! I too became a nurse as a second career. While hospital nursing may not be for you if you want time to get to know your patients- RNs keep patients physically safe and as healthy as possible FIRST-this is always the priority- which means there often isn't time for getting to know them. You can and will make a difference for your patients, although sometimes they may not realize it. The good news is there are a lot of areas you can work as an RN- sounds like you might like something like hospice or homecare. Going into something with your eyes open is a good thing, remember people often post here when they are upset and need to vent. I say go for it, just be aware that it may take a while AFTER you finish school to find the job you envison now, but it is possible. Good luck, I'm sure you will make a great nurse!
  7. by   RN1989
    Consider talking with a career counselor. There are many ways you can work with people. You already have a psych degree, this is an excellent degree to work with people and not have to go back for another undergrad degree. Take some certificate courses in counseling and you could be working with hospice patients and their families (to use your interest in pts that are dying). Research various helping occupations and find out what the actual duties of each are. Then see what kinds of physical duties you can or are willing to perform for your job. Look at the types of scheduling for the jobs you want (M-F, nights, rotating shifts) that can be a big deciding factor for many people. Direct patient care nursing is a physically demanding job. Many days you will come home feeling like you just worked a day in construction and not want to be bothered except to flop into bed. If this isn't for you, definitely look at some other options that will let you get the mental stuff you like but not kill you physically.
  8. by   deleern
    Bedside nursing is not the only avenue. LTC is great, I like Hospice and home care as well.
  9. by   ebear
    Rhonda, Jump on in the water's fine! We need many GOOD nurses out here!! Many bedside nurses are leaving and that is exactly where the help is needed! Your psych. degree will come in very handy for you. Hospice is an excellent field and your patient's and their families will always remember you. I won't tell you that it's easy--it's NOT! Some days you will want to scream (that is the reason you see negative posts here) but that's with any job/career. You will need to determine your support at home, especially with the kids. This is definitely not a 9 to 5 job most of the time. Good luck and let us know what you decide.
    ebear
  10. by   tencat
    Don't let anybody kid you.....nursing is a lot of HARD work. I'm a second career nurse, and so far I really feel like I've found my place in hospice. I spent some time learning basics in the hospital setting, and I don't regret it at all. The hospital provides invaluable experience that is a good foundation for anything else you might do in nursing. Some people love the hospital setting. Nurses are underappreciated and overworked. As long as you have a strong sense of what you will and will not put up with and know your limits, nursing isn't a bad way to earn a living.
  11. by   mercyteapot
    Quote from philosophical
    Hi all,

    I'm a 27 yo with a hubby and two small kids. I have a B.S. in Psychology and I work in Finance (Yuck). I have always been attracted to the field of nursing because I have a huge amount of compassion and a love for medicine, however, I just read the one thread of over 16 pages about how a large number of nurses are trying to get out of bedside care. This disturbs me, I suppose because I have always had a romanticized view of nursing, but now I don't know if it is for me. I have applied to several LPN and RN programs and am waiting to hear back from the schools.

    So, my question is, are there other areas in a hospital that I can have patient contact (especially young patients), that won't leave me running for the hills?? I've thought of Rad Tech, Resp Therapy, Child Life and Medical Social Worker. Have any of you RNs/ LPNs considered these fields? I really want to be able to take the time to get to know my patients instead of running around like a chicken with her head cut off as a bedside nurse. What other areas of nursing would allow me to do this?

    Thanks

    Rhonda
    Look at it this way. If it was some other field that you were considering and you visited one of their bulletin boards, chances are you'd read about just as much discontent. What about someone who is considering a career in finance? I don't know if you participate in any such forum, but if you did, that person might see your unhappiness. It wouldn't necessarily mean that she'd be unhappy, though. Apply the same rationale to what you read here, and remember, people who are dissatisfied, about anything, tend to be more vocal than those who are satisfied.

    I know teachers, a CPA, a bank manager, several people in retail and a whole slew of restaurant managers (my husband's field) who are unhappy with their careers. It is just something that happens along the way sometimes. Lots of times it is just ebb and flow, too- so the post that you read from someone who is close to quitting may be written by someone who was happy last year or who will rediscover their joy of nursing in another position someday soon.
    Last edit by mercyteapot on Oct 29, '07
  12. by   bill4745
    The complainers are more verbal. I love my job. Give it some thought. Maybe you could shadow some nurses for a few days.
  13. by   Ms Kylee
    Whenever I'm having a really crappy night, I remember the words that one of my favorite nurses said to me once. "Kylee, it's just another shift. It's only 8 hours. If you base your decision on this shift to whether or not you want to drop out of nursing school, you're doing yourself a big disservice. Don't base nursing on this one crappy shift". Then she usually tells me how she loves working with me and she appreciates my help.
  14. by   firstyearstudent
    You sound a lot like me. I have a B.A. in philosophy and then worked for years as a trade journalist, which I hated. I went back to school for an R.N. at community college. So far I really enjoy being a nurse on the hematology unit of a cancer hospital. While there are definitely days that I'm running around like a chicken, our patient load is very manageable and our hospital in non-profit with a great reputation. I end up having great relationships with the patients because the are here for weeks and sometimes months at a time. I also love to work with dying patients and I get my fair share of that, too.

    So far, I don't regret chosing this pathway.

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