Did a nursing instructor advise you to...

  1. NOT be a nurse??

    I can't believe how many nurses told me about that instructor who "had it in for them" or "told me I couldn't cut it."

    Did it happen to you?

    It did to me. But I stuck to my guns, and I'm glad I did.

    What's your story? Care to share?
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  2. Poll: Did an instructor try to get you to quit?

    • yes, and without good cause

      13.64% 12
    • no, not once

      67.05% 59
    • yes, and with good cause

      1.14% 1
    • yes, just part of the 'weeding out" thing

      7.95% 7
    • yes, and i'm still mad

      10.23% 9
    88 Votes
  3. 20 Comments

  4. by   llg
    Yes, I was advised to quit about 3 weeks into the program (my junior year of college). My 27-year-old instructor didn't think I was cut out for it because I had so many interests outside of nursing in other academic fields -- and I was not a particularly "touchy-feely" kind of person and didn't get all mushy about the patients. Later in the year, she repeatedly chastised me for being too polite. She thought that the fact that my father was a physician made me too polite to the docs on the floor.

    Anyway ... that was about 25 years ago. I stuck with it (in spite of the stress that came from having her as an instructor for 2 whole semesters) and have had a very successful career. The instructor? I am pretty sure she retired after having a baby. Her husband (a resident while I had her as an instructor) is a prominent medical researcher for a major institution and she had no financial need to work.

    In spite of the fact that I now have a PhD and what some people would consider a "dream job" in nursing, your question still brings back a lot of that pain. I'll be interested to read some of the stories from other posters.

    llg
  5. by   CMERN
    I had one instructor who obsessed on me, my clinicals, my anything...It was very unnerving..She never could find a thing to threaten me with.. OHH she desparately wanted too. I was aware and always double checking my self constantly..Geez, I DID "hate " her guts ( excuse the emotional outburst).. SHE may have wanted me to QUIT but SHE ONLY MADE ME STRONGER and BETTER...ahaha .. ...
    Last edit by CMERN on Sep 16, '02
  6. by   adrienurse
    Man I had some instructors who were some serious head cases. In 2nd year (my friend had passed away -- I was not having a good year) I was having a crisis with my confidence. I met with my instructor (because I thought she cared) because I was feeling really discouraged (I hated L.& D.) and needed validation that I belonged in nursing. She wrote the meeting up in my evaluation!
  7. by   Mkue
    You all have such inspiring stories. I'm not a touchy-feeling mushy person. As of today I haven't had an instructor tell me not to go into nursing.

    I did have an Advisor during pre-req's who thought I should go into teaching
  8. by   Stargazer
    Found it hard to choose just one answer because 3 of the 4 "yes" answers applied to me: yes, it was without cause, yes it was just part of being enrolled in a self-acknowledged "weed-out" program, and yes I am still pissed about it!

    Psycho instructor who would NOT, under threat of death (and believe me we all considered it) share with you the parameters for any given assignment, clinical, paper, test, until after you'd failed to meet her unverbalized expectations, at which time she was then happy to share her disappointment with you. She got uniformly bad student evals and was fired at the end of that quarter, while I got fed up and transferred to a REAL school where I finished my BSN.

    I will say I learned something from her. As a professional nurse, I have always made it a point to sit down and share my expectations for performance with anybody I am required to evaluate, and to let them know whether they are meeting those expectations or not, well before the eval period ends.

    Living well is the best revenge--I've gotten to travel all over the world and have a wonderful time courtesy of my nursing degree, while I'm sure she's still the same judgemental, bitter hag she was then.
  9. by   pebbles
    In my program, there was a big push towards including community and home care nursing concepts in the curriculum. I was fine with that. But I knew from a very young age that I wanted to be a hospital nurse and work with SICK people... that is who I am. I had one instructor (well more than one) who was very patronizing towards hospital nursing. She told us all repeatedly how hospital nurses are "task-oriented", and need to feel "in control of their clients in order to feel comfortable". Bunch of biased crap. During one of my community clinical rotations, it became apparent that I just wasn't enjoying the experience... so I was called in for a "discussion" where my instructor suggested that nursing was not a good career choice for me. I had been perfectly competent, and she told me that. But because I did not "click" with community nursing, she felt I should look for work elsewhere.

    Same instructor... this was my first semester taking actual nursing courses, and I didn't know my classmates well. I was very shy and I have always been circumspect about sharing my feelings with others. During a post clinical conference, we were discussing our interactions with the clients... and I was asked "How did that make you feel".... Everybody looking at me. I felt this question was SO inappropriate in an academic university course setting, regardless of however touchy-feely nursing is SUPPOSED to be. I said I didn't feel comfortable sharing my feelings in public, but this is what I THOUGHT. This was also brought up in my evaluation with here.

    Why is it that nursing instructors sometimes get on such an ego-trip that they think they have the monopoly on knowing what makes a good nurse? A competent student should be given encouragement regardless of what the instructor thinks of the student's motives, personality and career intentions.
  10. by   indeed
    Ahhh the memories...

    I actually had an instructor say to me (on multiple occasions) "People like you do not become nurses." She never was able to tell me what exactly she meant by that. I sort of ignored that idiocy. Turns out people like me *shocked gasps* do in fact become competent nurses. Who'd have thunk it!

    Indeed.
  11. by   sjoe
    "Power corrupts," seems to be the rationale here.

    I had one instructor that made it clear she would just as soon I'd have died or otherwise disappeared. But I was always blunt and direct with her, took no crap, and I think she knew who would be on the losing side of any direct conflict.

    ... and she was wise enough to avoid me. Clearly she was used to intimidating students and, so, didn't know quite what to make of me.

    But another side of the argument is the simple fact that some of these nurses remembered the abuse they were subjected to in hospitals when they actually worked, knew that was where most of us were headed (at least for a while), and were preparing us for the "real world." (At least that is how they could excuse their behavior to themselves.)

    And, many of them were working in situations anything but supportive--competing for teaching assignments, praying for tenure, hoping for academic status elevation, trying to get something (however useless) published, etc. Very much on their own and very much dog-eat-dog. So they passed the same level of support on to the students when they could.

    There is a saying well-known among the faculty at universities and colleges: "Why are academic politics so nasty? Because there is so little at stake."
    Last edit by sjoe on Sep 16, '02
  12. by   live4today
    No.....never had a nursing instructor tell me to leave nursing school....not once.

    I did have nursing instructors always telling me I belonged in medical school and not nursing school because of the way I processed information. Now....I'm still trying to figure out if that was a good compliment they paid me.....or a bad one.....being that they wanted me to become a "doctor" and all. :chuckle :roll :chuckle

    Nighty night ya'll! Sweet dreams! :kiss
  13. by   kmchugh
    Like Renee, I had a couple of instructors that I really respected tell me that I should have gone to medical school. None of those instructors were surprised when I became a CRNA.

    I did have an instructor who tried to make my life miserable in nursing school. Third semester, labor and delivery took up half the semester. The instructor at the time hated men in nursing, and went out of her way to make male student's lives as miserable as possible. Example: On my first day on the post partum unit, I was assigned to a couple from another part of the world. The husband was a internal medical resident (and pretty good, by all accounts). Their culture was such that men did not help with the labor and delivery process. Prior to the child's birth, this family had gone out their way to make sure that everyone involved in her care, including OB/GYN, nurses, and anesthesia providers were all female. That was what made her comfortable, and I felt then and feel now THAT'S HER RIGHT!

    Anyway, I knew none of this when the instructor dragged me into the room on the first day, saying "here's your nursing student" just as mom was receiving her first breast feeding instruction from the lactation consultant. Very uncomfortable, and I was immediately removed from the room. Fortunately, the husband was a very understanding man, and caught me later that day. He explained in a very nice way that they had absolutely nothing against me, but culturally men were not part of the birthing process in their country. He was a great guy.

    In fact, the first nine patients this woman assigned me to had either specifically stated "no men" or "no students" before they ever came to the hospital. Odd coincidence. I came within a hair's breadth of quitting nursing school. I didn't, mostly because I was not going to give up on my desire to be a CRNA, and was in no way going to give this b*tch the satisfaction.

    Now, when she sees me at the hospital, she acts as though we are great friends, and introduces me to her current crop of students as "one of her past students." Probably just me, but I have always felt that understood in this introduction is the idea that "he wouldn't be were he is if it weren't for me." One of her students (a male) cornered me later and asked me about it. Basically, I told him I was where I was at in spite of her.

    So, as you can tell, seven years down the line, I am still very angry about it, and consider my LDR experience to be some of the mental baggage I have to drag around.

    Kevin McHugh
  14. by   teeituptom
    Howdy yall
    from deep in the heat of texas

    Never did have an instructor tell me to quit. Did have on tell me to stop being so god damn arrogant, I cant imagine why though.




    doo wah ditty
  15. by   llg
    I posted earlier a little about "my instructor from h***" who advised me to get out of nursing after 3 weeks -- and with whom I had to spend an entire academic year. After reading some of your posts, I have decided to add how our relationship ended.

    By the end of our second whole semester together, I was getting "A's" on my weekly care plans and had even done a little extra project for no grade just because it interested me. However, in our final conference in May, she still found a way to give me a B- for the semester. She did it by giving me a "C" for attitude, which counted for 15% of the total grade of the course. She said that I had written those good plans and done that project "just to get a good grade," not because my heart was really into it.

    Instead of rewarding for me for making an extra effort and putting it all together by the end of our time together, she decided to stick it to me one more time. I've never forgiven her for that.

    llg

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