I just finished reading a thread about burned out nurses, many of whom talked about leaving the profession. Some of them had been nurses for years, some for only a very vshort while. For nurses who are thinking about leaving nursing entirely, why are you leaving the field rather than exploring other opportunities within it? Not judging or criticizing, just genuinely curious. I've met a lot of nurses and there seems to be so many options within the field. Why have you decided not to pursue other areas (ie change specialties/setting/place of employmt/level of pt interaction, etc)?
Dec 24, '09
As a nurse for close to 20 yrs, I have already tried everything you mentioned - change specialties/setting/place of employment/level of pt interaction, etc. For about the first 10 yrs I liked nursing, but after that I slowly grew increasingly unhappy as a nurse. None of the changes I tried helped. I think I have "compassion fatigue"...I am just plain tired of dealing with people, no matter what the specialty or place! I am burned out. Period. Nursing is a demanding and draining profession. Every area of nursing has its own unique set of stressors. For example, private duty is often thought of as an easy, one-on-one type of nursing - yet you must often deal with complex and frustrating psycho-social issues with the families.
I quit my nursing job in August (for a variety of reasons actually - partly an idiotic employer) and have no plans to pursue another nursing job. I feel so relieved and set free to no longer be a nurse! But here I am on allnurses posting! haha. After all these years nursing, it is hard to think of myself as anything but a nurse!
Last edit by ArwenEvenstar on Dec 24, '09
Quote from GaMBA
Why have you decided not to pursue other areas (ie change specialties/setting/place of employmt/level of pt interaction, etc)?
The best way to describe the way I feel is betrayed. I have loved nursing and given years of my life to nursing. I gave nursing my youth, my energy, my optimism. And steadily through the years, nursing has been like a bad husband. Only taking.
One day it has to stop. That is when we say we are burned out. It is more like used up. We have to take care of ourselves, because nursing has not been there for us. Just like a marriage, by the time it is over, we have tried so many ways to make it work. And, like a marriage, we have invested decades of our lives.
So, I am pursuing other areas, but they all sound suspiciously like what I have had before.
I am happy to be here today to tell AN:
Merry Christmas and a Prosperous 2010!
Last edit by ellakate on Dec 25, '09
: Reason: content