Marriage to a Nurse-- Need HELP - page 4

Hi everyone. I am nto a nurse, however I am in a serious relationship with a Student Nurse. We have been talking marriage for some time now but she needs to graduate school. She will be done with... Read More

  1. by   ktwlpn
    [QUOTE=NeedAdvice1234]Hi everyone.
    2. I see alot of ER jobs out there that require shift work. Since my career bassically allows only for a 8-6 type of schdule. I am afraid that I will never see her if she get stuck on a 7-7 shift or so. The thought of comming home to an empty house and being alone until she has off next frightens me. I want to be able to some home and share each others day. Also we plan on having children so I don't understand how we can have children if she has so many messed up hours.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> >>>>>>>>I have never had a problem getting my shift of choice-I may have waited a few months but it has always worked out.When our son was a baby my husband worked days and I worked evenings.Our son was only in day care for about 2 hours-it worked out well.....>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> >>>>>>>>
    3. Holidays are important to the both of us. But since we have plans to move from NJ to out west. We will only have each other. Our familys will be behind. I don't really want to spend Christmas all alone.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> >>>>>>>>Holidays are important to us all-but I believe that it is NOT about the day but rather the people...You can celebrate Christmas the day before or the day after.If she has to work and you are off why not volunteer somewhere?>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> >>>>>>>>>>>
    ...She will have days that she comes home feeling as though she has had the life sucked right out of her-nursing is tough emotionally and physically....It's not sitting at a desk dealing with abstracts....it's life and death......
    That's my 2 cents-good luck
  2. by   rebeccalizzie
    I'm not a nurse (yet!) but I feel qualified to answer part of this. My husband is a cop, and I am a former 911 operator/ police dispatcher for a large city. So I have a lot of experience on strange shifts, working around your family (we have an 8 year old DD) and missing holidays. I do have fears about him getting hurt, but I think that's an individual thing--I'm not generally a fearful person, so I put it in perspective (for instance, he's much more likely to be in a car wreck and be killed on the way to work than he is to be killed at work). But everyone has to deal with their fears in a way that works for them--statistics help me a lot.

    DH has been on second shift (3-11) for 5 years. He works 4 days then is off 2, meaning he gets one real "weekend" every 6 weeks. I am now in a normal day shift job, working 8:30-5 monday thru friday. DH and I see each other on the evenings he is off, then Sat and Sun morning while I'm off. I go to bed before he comes home most nights, and he is asleep in the morning when I leave.

    We have made a huge effort to spend quality time together because we don't have quantity time! I try to wait up for him one night a week. I also call him from my lunch break, and he calls me from his dinner break. That way we at least can keep up with the day to day little stuff. On his days off I don't run errands in the evening, and I keep my social life to a minimum. Since I have 4 other days to go out with friends this isn't a hardship, and our two days together we spend *together* as a family.

    When DD was small, this was perfect--she was only in day care a little bit of each day, and she got individual time with each of us. Now that she is in school DH doesn't see her much, but they do their best to have time together too. He will likely be on first shift in a year or two, and then that will be better.

    As for holidays...you learn to be creative. We often do a brunch on a Sunday instead of a dinner to celebrate birthdays, so he can be there and then go to work. We celebrate Christmas morning on the day, but have Christmas dinner on the closest day he is off--it's great because our whole families can be there on the 27th, the 25th people have so many other family committments. Easter we are doing an egg hunt and a brunch (I've gotten *really* good at brunch dishes!). We've learned that what is important to us is to celebrate the holiday, we don't care so much when we do it.

    I really commend you for facing right now what *could* be a problem for you later. By dealing with your fears early, I really think you will help keep yourself from being resentful over something you hadn't really considered. Sounds like your fiancee is getting a great guy to me!
  3. by   NeedAdvice1234
    Thank you rebeccalizzie. I guess I am so used to my own family traditions of Christmas eve dinner then a Christmas dinner and opening gifts on Christmas I never really thought of the oppurtuities to have brunches/lunches. However, us moving and being away from family, I don't think its fair to go home to see our familes without her on those holidays, but if I don't go home... We might end up not spending time if she gets a double shift. Its one of those things I guess will work itself out when it comes down to it. I don't feel its fair to ever leave her alone on holidays and I would hope she feels the same.

    Thank you for understanding and i appreciate the "great guy" remark. I think I have my own little issues that doesn't make me so great one of them being the obvious I worry and over anayze everything!
    Listening to how you deal with your schdules is very interesting. I assume in life I will have more standard schdule of a typical 8 hour day. With that, I am begging to realize that being a nurse she could work around my schduleing more than I can work around hers. Which makes me feel quite guilty.

    Everyone is begging to open up a new door of enlightenment to this entire profession. I wonder what the most dangerous parts of the job really are.

    regards,
    me!
    Quote from rebeccalizzie
    I'm not a nurse (yet!) but I feel qualified to answer part of this. My husband is a cop, and I am a former 911 operator/ police dispatcher for a large city. So I have a lot of experience on strange shifts, working around your family (we have an 8 year old DD) and missing holidays. I do have fears about him getting hurt, but I think that's an individual thing--I'm not generally a fearful person, so I put it in perspective (for instance, he's much more likely to be in a car wreck and be killed on the way to work than he is to be killed at work). But everyone has to deal with their fears in a way that works for them--statistics help me a lot.

    DH has been on second shift (3-11) for 5 years. He works 4 days then is off 2, meaning he gets one real "weekend" every 6 weeks. I am now in a normal day shift job, working 8:30-5 monday thru friday. DH and I see each other on the evenings he is off, then Sat and Sun morning while I'm off. I go to bed before he comes home most nights, and he is asleep in the morning when I leave.

    We have made a huge effort to spend quality time together because we don't have quantity time! I try to wait up for him one night a week. I also call him from my lunch break, and he calls me from his dinner break. That way we at least can keep up with the day to day little stuff. On his days off I don't run errands in the evening, and I keep my social life to a minimum. Since I have 4 other days to go out with friends this isn't a hardship, and our two days together we spend *together* as a family.

    When DD was small, this was perfect--she was only in day care a little bit of each day, and she got individual time with each of us. Now that she is in school DH doesn't see her much, but they do their best to have time together too. He will likely be on first shift in a year or two, and then that will be better.

    As for holidays...you learn to be creative. We often do a brunch on a Sunday instead of a dinner to celebrate birthdays, so he can be there and then go to work. We celebrate Christmas morning on the day, but have Christmas dinner on the closest day he is off--it's great because our whole families can be there on the 27th, the 25th people have so many other family committments. Easter we are doing an egg hunt and a brunch (I've gotten *really* good at brunch dishes!). We've learned that what is important to us is to celebrate the holiday, we don't care so much when we do it.

    I really commend you for facing right now what *could* be a problem for you later. By dealing with your fears early, I really think you will help keep yourself from being resentful over something you hadn't really considered. Sounds like your fiancee is getting a great guy to me!
  4. by   shyviolet78
    I believe nursing may be considered "dangerous" because of the risk for back injury. But you will find this in any job that requires you to lift or stand alot. Probably as dangerous, or likely as carpal tunnel syndrome for an office worker, I'd think. And nursing is not the most dangerous job! I copied this list from the US Department of Labor statistics, nursing didn't even make the list:

    1. Truck driver
    2. Farm worker
    3. Sales supervisor/proprietor
    4. Construction worker
    5. Police detective
    6. Airplane pilot
    7. Security guard
    8. Taxicab driver
    9. Timber cutter
    10. Cashier
    11. Fisherman
    12. Metal worker
    13. Roofer
    14. Firefighter
    [Source: U.S. Labor Department]

    And about working holidays... My facility has a list where you make out your "dream schedule" of 3 holidays off each year out of 6, and they try to accomadate that. After that, they go by the previous year's schedule, so that noone ends up working two Christmas's in a row, for instance. I've never had to work Christmas or Thanksgiving once in 3 years, because I work a weekend only shift. This year I may have to work Christmas, but we'll simply celebrate the day before, no biggie in the grand scheme of things. The only thing I mind about it is having to miss Midnight Mass on Christmas morning.
    Last edit by shyviolet78 on Mar 30, '04
  5. by   canoehead
    NeedAdvice,

    You will be slammed by SOMEONE here if you ask the color of the sky, so don't take it personally. It just shows that you've got a lot of people interested in your question and you got a good variety of opinions in your replies. I think it's great that you are looking to the future and trying to work out your problems ahead of time.
  6. by   CCU NRS
    Quote from Rustyhammer
    If you truly care about her you'll let her follow her path.
    Here you are thinking about marriage and yet you want to keep her from what SHE wants to do.
    Would you be willing to change your livelyhood to fit around her schedule?
    You should think about this.
    -R
    edited after reading more

    I agree with Rusty you don't sound like you really care about her you just want a wife and homemaker. One thing I will tell you is that Nurses are people that will not be pushed around they take too much crap from too many people on a daily basis to deal with control freaks in their home life!
    Last edit by CCU NRS on Mar 30, '04
  7. by   mattsmom81
    Hmm. Lots of replies to this thread I see. My question is why come here for info?
    Your wife to be is already in the medical profession as a MA if I read right. She likely knows what she's in for and why she wants to pursue nursing...ask HER. Practice your communication skills ...you will need them when you marry believe me.


    There is great flexibility in nursing as i see it...so it makes a good career for a someone who also wants a family IMO. I love working 3 12 hr shifts personally. I love knowing I can work PRN (as needed) status at hospitals and literally make my OWN schedule around my kids/family. I can work agency and subcontract if I don't want to work 'for' a hospital/facility.Works great for many families, and while it definitely has it's drawbacks (like ANY job) the pluses can outweigh the minuses IF one is drawn to a helping profession. Good luck to both of you.
  8. by   sharann
    Quote from canoehead
    NeedAdvice,

    You will be slammed by SOMEONE here if you ask the color of the sky, so don't take it personally. It just shows that you've got a lot of people interested in your question and you got a good variety of opinions in your replies. I think it's great that you are looking to the future and trying to work out your problems ahead of time.

    Don't overanalyze so much Mr. NeedAdvice1234, it will be o.k. I don't think you are trying to control her but I agree with some of the posters that you need to talk to HER about these issues. There is no such thing as impossible when you put your heads together. Just remember, when you are married you don't HAVE to go home every holiday to the families, YOU are a family. Let them come to you! So good luck and don't lislten to those who you think are slamming you.
  9. by   Jocie
    I think one of the biggest risk is giving the wrong med and being in a legal battle.
  10. by   Agnus
    nnnnnnnnnnn
    Last edit by Agnus on Apr 1, '04
  11. by   NICU_Nurse
    The following is going to be typed by my husband, who, as you can figure, is married to a nurse (me!):

    From NICU_Nurse's Hubby:

    1. There is always a risk, but it's generally small. A television show is not a good indicator of how things actually are.

    2. It's going to happen, you probably won't be seeing a lot of her; most Nurses end up doing some evening and night shift work at some point during their careers.

    3. Holidays are completely unrealistic. For the first five or six years she's going to be working most of the major holidays. You'll find yourself hoping and praying for a thanksgiving, or a christmas eve, forget about even THINKING of getting every holiday during the year, ain't gonna happen.

    4. ER is a joke, it is over dramatized and unrealistic. That said, a lot worse can happen than what you see on ER, and a lot less too. Most nurses who go into ER IMO are usually kind of adrenaline junkies, they like the action that an active ER can bring.

    Overall, it sounds like you're not ready to marry this girl, A nurse needs a lot of emotional support from their partners and families, and it doesn't sound like you're ready to give that much of yourself.

    What are you going to do when she comes home crying because she lost her first patient and is upset because she is wondering if she could have done more? Or how about that 6 year old burn victim that is giving her nightmares? Are you just going to sit there and say "Yeah, but what about me? I got chewed out by my boss today."

    No offense, but nurses have a very high stress job, and they deserve every ounce of support you can give them, and it just doesn't sound like you're ready for that level of commitment.
    Last edit by NICU_Nurse on Apr 1, '04
  12. by   ljr3000
    Just so you know; nursing school is totally different from being a nurse. I didn't have much free time while in school but now it's totally different. LIke someone had said earlier working per diem you make your own schedule and your pay is higher and this is because you don't get insurance benefits. It's really a great way to go if your husband has a good job and has health benefits. Also at my hospital it seems that I am always scheduled for day shift which is 7-3 so if this were her case she would get home before you. Also she has the option of working 3 12's and then having 6 days off afterwards. Overall nursing is very flexible. Nursing is a wonderful profession and she can go anywhere and find a job. Well, good luck to you both and if I were you I would stop worrying about it. Everything will be great!!
  13. by   lady_jezebel
    My husband (and engineer) and I are both very glad that I went into nursing. Now that we are expecting our first child, I can continue to work until delivery since my job is so flexible. Shift work is great, for you can adjust your work schedule around your life! Additionally, I can take 3 months off after the delivery of the baby (family leave act) & then go back to work part-time and STILL make a good salary. Honestly, for people who want to have it all -- family, career, travel, house --- nursing is an EXCELLENT career choice. I am so, so fortunate to have a job like this.

    Right now I work 4 days a week, 8-hour days, including 4 weekend days per month. This gave Rob and I plenty of time together! It's good for the relationship to have time away from one another now and then -- it makes the time you are together more valuable. Plus, it's so easy to plan great vacations or weekend events around a nursing schedule. Now that I'm pregnant, I will work 3 12-hour nights per week -- I will continue to work nights after the baby is born so that he/she will not need daycare, ie.either my husband or I will be at home to take care of the baby.

    As for diseases -- nurses and healthcare professionals in general are very cautious about exposure. Standard precautions are used for EVERY pt, even in the ER (which protects the nurse from almost everything). If there is a needlestick, it is still difficult to acquire a disease from someone else -- also, hospitals have excellent protocols to follow for accidental sticks, and someone exposed will be offered treatment. Catching HIV from a pt is very, very rare. It is much easier to catch TB from a person riding the city bus!

    Don't worry so much, and support your gal. Look at the advantages of this profession -- she will feel personally fulfilled in her career (which will make her a happier person), will have great flexibility & doesn't have to sacrifice anything for motherhood (more happiness), and she can decide how much money she is going to make & when she is going to make it (since nurses are in short supply and can really decide which shifts they want to work, including holidays -- she will work some holidays if in an ER, but you can adjust celebration around this). If you really consider all this, like my husband you will come to appreciate your wife's career choice.

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