Do Nurses Earn Big Money? You Decide. - page 10

by TheCommuter Asst. Admin

60,320 Views | 331 Comments

Am I the only one who becomes at least mildly irritated whenever a random individual finds out that someone is a nurse and proceeds to say, “You’re rolling in the big bucks!” To keep things honest, I’ll recall a few... Read More


  1. 4
    Quote from CT Pixie
    Really? You think $50K is suficient for a family of 4 kids w/mom and dad for a total of 6?? Can YOU live on $8,333.33 per year?? Because that's what it would come out to per person.

    I know I live in a very high cost of living state (CT) but I can't see that $50K for a family of 6 in any state being sufficient.
    In most places $50k is more than enough for a family of six to be fairly comfortable. I'm from Brooklyn, and we called you Connecticuters the "Rich" people lol. So over there $50k won't even come close to raising a family of 6. Once you get away from the Tri state area though, cost of living drops dramatically. It really does.
    Last edit by PRICHARILLAisMISSED on Nov 27, '12
    GM2RN, tnmarie, DTW90, and 1 other like this.
  2. 4
    Quote from CT Pixie
    Really? You think $50K is suficient for a family of 4 kids w/mom and dad for a total of 6?? Can YOU live on $8,333.33 per year?? Because that's what it would come out to per person.

    I know I live in a very high cost of living state (CT) but I can't see that $50K for a family of 6 in any state being sufficient.
    You know, i lived on less than 8k a year for living expenses etc, when I was in college- it wasn't all that bad, especially if you divide out the cost of rent/utilities six ways, too. The problem with that example is that kids don't result in extra rent to that same degree. If you're paying rent on a 3 bedroom apt for example, which is sufficient for a family of six- two bedrooms would even be sufficient if you happen to have all girls, or all boys- your cost is probably only going to go up a couple hundred dollars at most, unless you live in a horrendously pricey area. Here in NW AR I can get a 2 bedroom apartment that's nice and spacious for $595/month.


    My family growing up (not a long time ago, as I'm in my early 20s),subsisted on 35-40k a year, with 2 parents and 4 kids... so.. family of six, homeschooling and my dad being self-employed- meaning he had to pay BOTH halves of social security rather than having an employer to pick up the other half... (think, if SS/medicare deductions from your paycheck were TWICE as big). It was comfortable. You have to buy clothes at Goodwill and occasionally walmart, and buy groceries in bulk and pay attention to the prices; no name brand stuff when generic will do- and you can't have steak and pineapple and shrimp and fancy things all the time- but you can be happy. it IS tight... and I kind of want to know how my mom and dad did it- as I have 35k a year NOW, on my own, and wonder where all the money goes sometimes. But.... it's not an unfathomable amount of money to survive on.
    tnmarie, DTW90, PRICHARILLAisMISSED, and 1 other like this.
  3. 0
    Quote from akulahawk
    Exactly.
    Holla!
  4. 1
    Quote from samadams8

    Yes, and you have to remember, it's not that nurses make soooo much money, it's that it's a job that pays better than the local convenience store or the Walmart.

    There are the two year ASN programs and the accelerated nursing programs. Why that's a fair amount less in terms of time and investment for the buck as compared with many other "professions" or occupations. To me, this is just another reason to support BSNs and advanced nursing education; b/c those that make the commitment in education are perhaps saying they are in it, at least hopefully, more for the right reasons.. . .maybe. . .hopefully. (This is something I worry about though with nurses that just want to spend a year or two in clinical nursing and then move right through an advanced practice nursing program to become a NP or CRNA. IMHO, those nurses are at a very distinct disadvantage, clinically speaking, but that's another story.)

    While IDK everything, I have heard a recurrent theme, especially from women that were recently divorced or were in the process of divorce or thinking about divorce. And trust me, I'm not knocking single women (or men) for going back to school to better provide for themselves and their families; but I have heard and seen the mentality of "It pays better than the Walmart" in quite a number of such individuals. And when they didn't say it straight out, it eventually came to light later.

    So what do these people do? They sign up at the community college, and then try to matriculate into the nursing program. A two year program is a short distance to a pretty fair jump over walmart pay for those working the register. Listen, I'm just saying. . . (I'm not all hot for the accelerated programs either, regardless of the fact that the person may have an undergrad degree in teaching or psychology or art history. That's nice in terms of electives and other GE courses, but what the Sam Hill does it have with nursing, and how in the heck do you think you can adequately educate and train someone in becoming a professional nursing, from no nursing at all, in about a year or so? To me, it's insane, but the schools make some money off of it. And that also is another story for another thread.)

    IMHE, I've found that a good percentage of people in nursing either really didn't care for it, in terms of what they are doing--core nursing fx and nursing processes, or they had some other motivation for going into the field that is not exactly altruistic. And these folks tend to be the ones that stir up the most trouble on floors or units or systems.

    The ones that really love the core of what they do as nurses aren't out to dump on others, or step on others, or put on some sort of show, or hob nob with whomever is considered the upper echelon, whether it be residents, fellows, attendings, nurse admins, managers, other admins, the rounding pharmacists, whomever. . . Those that really care about nursing are about the job, and they aren't regularly miserable or backbiting or otherwise displacing on to others.

    Of course I am speaking in my own experience and in general.
    I agree that the push for nurses to continue there education is important. However a BSN or advanced practice degree isn't going to "weed out" people going to school for nursing. Even an ADN is a time commitment, because it typically takes 3 years to get to the end degree, if the student gets most of their prerequisites before entering their nursing courses. Some people who arent exactly "well-fitted" for nursing can make it through any type of nursing education if they want it bad enough, regardless of why they want it. It happens everyday.
    tnmarie likes this.
  5. 6
    Quote from tewdles
    Sounds to me that a CNA going to school to improve her circumstance is not getting a handout but rather a handup.

    It is sad for me the number of otherwise well meaning Americans who despise people for needing help. I think that very few of us do well in life when we are truly on our own. Not everyone comes from a family or social situation that can provide assistance for financial needs...they can't afford to subsidize college, or rent, or food, or transportation for their children. That doesn't make them less American or less valuable than the child born with the silver spoon. Mitt Romney, for example, is no more valuable to the USA because he was born wealthy and has never received welfare as compared to the young man or woman who receives support while getting an education or working toward personal goals which will improve their social status.

    In my view, this "class warfare" is destructive to our society.
    You're right, but I believe you may have taken some comments the wrong way. I'm pretty vocal about these things-you should listen to me in "Real life" lol. But sometimes I'm taken as being a little cold hearted so let me clarify a bit. I don't despise, nor would I imagine that any of the other "Negative" posters despise people who need help. What I do despise is the amount of help some people get, if that makes sense. I have people in my own family who've been on government assistance all of their lives (Not exaggerating in the least here, either) and, because they are used to it, well they're used to it. They do the minimal legwork necessary to stay on it, trying not to work. I can even give an example of one in particular that, whenever she gets board of the free section 8 housing she's living in, she checks into other "nicer" housings that offer section 8 acceptance. This woman was actually telling me the "Good news" that she was getting a new house, as the 2 bedroom apartment that she was living in "sucked" (it is actually a pretty decent apartment, btw). I couldn't believe it!!!!! She is about to move into a 4 bedroom HOUSE that is actually a bit nicer than the 4 bedroom house that I'm renting for $1500.00 a month. On section 8's dime!!! And the thing is, she's one of many. One of SO SO many. I know a lot of people who want to be more "PC" would say something like "Well Jaime, that's just an extreme case. Normally people just take assistance until they can get themselves on their feet." I'm here to tell them that is the other way around! It's actually normal for people to take advantage of the system as long as they can (once they get on it, anyway), and then hustle at the last minute when they are threatened with their benefits ending.

    I'm all for giving a helping hand when needed, but not a helping hand that is so good that they live a middle class lifestyle on the tax payers dime while doing nothing.
    tnmarie, cp1024, RNinIN, and 3 others like this.
  6. 6
    Another factor separating us from most everyone else is the level of responsibility and liability we take on in our job. Even though I work in a relatively low acuity environment (as a LPN in LTC) I still have much weightier responsibilities than 95%of the working population.


    This is part of why I deserve higher pay for a position that required relatively little education. And a ADN working in the hospital deserves much higher pay than an associates level degree would seem to indicate. And so on up the nursing ladder.
    GM2RN, tnmarie, redhead_NURSE98!, and 3 others like this.
  7. 2
    Quote from Morganalefey
    My family of 5 lived on about $36,000/year, prior to my husbands promotion, and me finishing nursing school. We had no credit cards and drove used cars (still do). We sometimes had to juggle bills around, we certainly went w/o a lot of extras, but we made it.

    One of my best friends has a husband who made $98,000 last year. And her family of 5 struggles to buy food every week.

    I have never understood how that can be.
    The answer to that would be financial irresponsibility...
    BrandonLPN and anotherone like this.
  8. 5
    It is annoying when the comment comes from ignorance and jealousy. Especially from those who think i just hand out pills to walkie talkies. If it is so great than they can go do it. I have a few people like that in my life. I told them to go he a cna since in some metro areas they can make pretty good money and it offers some view into nursing. I was told , everytime, something about how they couldnt do a job like that ("ewww it is gross, changing diapers!"). Well then stop hating on my paycheck and designer purses and clothes. lol
    cp1024, DTW90, redhead_NURSE98!, and 2 others like this.
  9. 5
    I'm a second career nurse. Prior to nursing, I made 45,000/ year. I've also made and lived on much less than this. Currently, I make over 80,000 working full time. Yes, I am paid very well, AND I am very appreciative of my salary. However, I make no apologies for what I make. I earn every cent. Furthermore, "big bucks" is relative. I wouldn't consider 80 grand "big bucks". Certainly, I'm comfortable, but the cost of living is high. More importantly, it's not how much you make that counts. Understanding how to manage your money is the key. I have friends with no children who make 80+ a year, and they're always broke. Go figure.
    Sehille4774, hiddencatRN, DTW90, and 2 others like this.
  10. 2
    My mom has been single for the past 8 years and never made more than 25,000 a year and has raised 3 kids/teenagers(not on food stamps, doesn't qualify for medicaid.) She bought each of us a used care when we were 16 with her tax refunds and always provided us with whatever we needed. She's about 10,000 dollars in debt, if she had been making 50,000 or even 40,000 a year through out that time she would have no debt and i'm sure even money saved. If you live frugally it is possible. We live in Utah where the cost of living isn't necessarily high, if she made as much as a nurse (by no means is it "big bucks") she would be much better off.
    tnmarie and DTW90 like this.


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