My parents don't want me to become nurse but I don't care anymore

  1. My parents and I are immigrants from Mexico and they hate the idea of me becoming an RN. Now that I've just graduated HS, they are bugging me (even more now than they have in the past) about what I am going to do in life. My parents wanted me to become a Doctor (like a neurosurgeon) and while I thought how cool it would be to become a doctor and how awesome the pay would be, I came to realize a while later that becoming a doctor just wasn't for me. I decided that I want to be a neonatal nurse (my parents disapprove, but whatever, I love babies and I want to help take care of them). They like to put me down and keep telling a bunch of things.
    Here are some examples:
    -If you become a nurse, we won't pay for your tuition. (Okay, good. I don't want you to. Why do you think I'm applying for scholarships and looking for a job?)
    -You won't have a good pay. (Umm, have you gone on the Internet and seen how much the starting salary is in our state? It's a pretty good starting salary.)
    -Why would you want to become a nurse when you could become a doctor? Nurses would work for you if became a doctor. (Because I'm not a leader, I'm follower. I'm not good at giving instructions but I'm good at following them.)
    -Nurses work long hours. (Umm, I'm pretty sure doctors work longer...)
    -You only want to go into nursing because it won't take as long. (Ah, no. It's because I want to be a nurse, not because it's shorter.)
    -We won't support you. (Ah, you rarely every support my choices. And besides, I have friends who support me on becoming a nurse because they know it is something they know I want to do.)

    But for right now, I'm gonna take a year gap (I desperately need it and senior year was HELL), and get a job at a local Dollar Tree store (my parents hate the idea, but I don't care anymore, I'm done with them ruling my life). After the year gap, I'm going to a technical school and study to become a CNA and then later on to a University to become a neonatal nurse.

    My parents keep telling me that I'm making a big mistake but that's just them.

    Have any of you ever been through this?
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  2. 35 Comments

  3. by   LovingLife123
    FYI, nurses don't get paid that much. Especially for what we do. It may seem like a lot when you are young, but when you add it all up with COLA, it's enough to support yourself. Not much more.

    If you have the absolute desire to be a nurse, great. I wouldn't take a year off though. It will be hard to go back. A lot of life will happen in that year, trust me. Been there, done that.
  4. by   JayLuv108
    Yeah, I heard that there are a lot of ups and downs when it comes to taking a year gap but my therapist strongly suggested that I do because of my depression (senior year did not help at all, it just made it worse because of school work, teachers, bullies, and my parents).
  5. by   caliotter3
    Almost fifty years ago I went through the same thing. Parent and grandparents wanted me to go the doctor route, but they sure didn't tell me how to go about that. And they did not have the money to send me to school for anything anyway!
  6. by   TriciaJ
    If nursing is what rings your chimes, then go for it. I think you've got a good plan. A gap year to take a break from school and earn some money, then a CNA program, then on to nursing school. I don't think there's anything wrong with that. It may not pan out exactly that way, because life is like that. But you sound like you've got a good head on your shoulders and you'll roll with whatever life sends.

    Good luck.
  7. by   jaderook01
    "Nurses would work for you if became a doctor. (Because I'm not a leader, I'm follower. I'm not good at giving instructions but I'm good at following them.)"

    What is this about? I don't work for any doctors. I work with some doctors though- theoretically anyway. Even though I rarely ever see any doctors (night shift)- and more often deal with nurse practitioners attached to different groups. When I call I'm usually flat out asking for (i.e. recommending) things. You need to be a critical thinker as a nurse. There is no blindly following someone's instructions ever.
  8. by   Lisacar130
    I would get info for your parents to enroll themselves into medical school to become neurosurgeons. It's never too late for them to try. This is the American Dream and they can start from wherever their education left off.

    Nurses do make very good money compared to other professions. Of course it varies by the area, but google the average starting salary for RN and you get $65,000. The average starting salary for an electrical engineer is $57,000. Probably a lot less student loans for the nursing degree too. Teachers start at, on average, $37,000 (in Illinois).

    Now, give it 10 years and the electrical engineer will be making more than the nurse because nurse's raises are limited. But it's still a good salary. I make almost $80K/year after 12 years of experience. Also, you'll never have better job security than with nursing. When the market crashed in 2009 my husband (a network administrator) was laid off for 2 years while I didn't have to worry at all. I have always made more money than him as well.
  9. by   nutella
    All nurses are leaders in my opinion....
    You do not just follow orders blindly or do what the doctor tells you to do.
    Nursing is very different from medical school.
    Physicians orient themselves towards illness and their education is specific to diseases and how to detect, diagnose, and cure or manage them. Sure, there is some prevention going on but that is not the focus of becoming a physician.
    Nurses orient themselves as a profession that has a holistic view on a person and the overall "world view" of nursing includes the four big topics: health, environment, person, and nursing (nursing metaparadigm - there are several but this one is the most popular one). We do not focus on a specific disease - we look at the broader picture. Nursing is also often called a "caring profession" with which I agree but there are also nursing folks who think that this is not something to focus on.

    Nursing school is stressful and the admission process is selective. Perhaps you can use your gap year to also volunteer or find some job that is healthcare related. Perhaps there are some CNA courses locally that you can attend and become a certified nurse assistant - the courses are usually only a few weeks and you could get some insight into nursing. I guess CNA would be more of an adult thing but it might be something you are interested in. Good luck!
  10. by   dishes
    It's not unusual for immigrant parents to pressure their children to follow a career path that the parents value. Many immigrants sacrificed their own dreams so that their children could have high-paying, high status careers that offer financial stability. People are influenced by the culture they are raised in, if the view in Mexico is that physicians are highly respected and have a lot of status but nurses are minimally respected and have low pay, that will influence their view of the nursing profession. If your parents assume that nurses are not respected and are poorly paid in the US, educate them with facts, show them the results of polls that show nurses have been ranked the most trusted profession for many years. Show them the pay scales for nurses. Show them the predictions about nursing job opportunities after baby boomers retire etc
  11. by   canoehead
    There is nothing saying you wont move on to be a nurse practitioner after you get a few years in. I like your ideas, knowing what healthcare is like before making a big investment.
  12. by   Avid reader
    Quote from LovingLife123
    FYI, nurses don't get paid that much. Especially for what we do. It may seem like a lot when you are young, but when you add it all up with COLA, it's enough to support yourself. Not much more.

    If you have the absolute desire to be a nurse, great. I wouldn't take a year off though. It will be hard to go back. A lot of life will happen in that year, trust me. Been there, done that.
    Nurses make great money if you know how to manage it. 50k plus goes a long way when managed properly and relates to your lifestyle. If your parents plan to support you all of your life then obey them otherwise especially with previous depression and affective disorder probabilities, you should stick to your guns. Respect them but you need to know I cannot think of another job that allows you so many possibilities re choices, travel and schedule and the opportunity to make seriously good money depending on specialties or other choices.
  13. by   ThePrincessBride
    Quote from Avid reader
    Nurses make great money if you know how to manage it. 50k plus goes a long way when managed properly and relates to your lifestyle. If your parents plan to support you all of your life then obey them otherwise especially with previous depression and affective disorder probabilities, you should stick to your guns. Respect them but you need to know I cannot think of another job that allows you so many possibilities re choices, travel and schedule and the opportunity to make seriously good money depending on specialties or other choices.
    Not after taxes and all the costs of health insurance. Add a kid in there, and it is rough. I know quite a few nurse mothers who work multiple jobs to support themselves and their kids.

    That being said, nursing and medicine are two entirely different fields and shouldn't be compared. There are pros and cons to both. Nurses have more flexibility and work WAY fewer hours than doctors, as a whole. Nursing school usually doesn't put people in as much debt as medical school. It takes far less time to get a nursing license than a MD license.

    But doctors have more autonomy, more prestige and more money. And their work is far more intense and mentally stimulating.

    As a side note, you don't go to school to become a neonatal nurse. You are taught as a generalist, but nursing school doesn't go over neonates in great detail. Also, you may end up not getting a NICU job right out of school. I had to work adult med-surg not quite a year before getting a NICU RN position.
  14. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from JayLuv108
    My parents and I are immigrants from Mexico and they hate the idea of me becoming an RN. Now that I've just graduated HS, they are bugging me (even more now than they have in the past) about what I am going to do in life. My parents wanted me to become a Doctor (like a neurosurgeon) and while I thought how cool it would be to become a doctor and how awesome the pay would be, I came to realize a while later that becoming a doctor just wasn't for me. I decided that I want to be a neonatal nurse (my parents disapprove, but whatever, I love babies and I want to help take care of them). They like to put me down and keep telling a bunch of things.
    Here are some examples:
    -If you become a nurse, we won't pay for your tuition. (Okay, good. I don't want you to. Why do you think I'm applying for scholarships and looking for a job?)
    -You won't have a good pay. (Umm, have you gone on the Internet and seen how much the starting salary is in our state? It's a pretty good starting salary.)
    -Why would you want to become a nurse when you could become a doctor? Nurses would work for you if became a doctor. (Because I'm not a leader, I'm follower. I'm not good at giving instructions but I'm good at following them.)
    -Nurses work long hours. (Umm, I'm pretty sure doctors work longer...)
    -You only want to go into nursing because it won't take as long. (Ah, no. It's because I want to be a nurse, not because it's shorter.)
    -We won't support you. (Ah, you rarely every support my choices. And besides, I have friends who support me on becoming a nurse because they know it is something they know I want to do.)

    But for right now, I'm gonna take a year gap (I desperately need it and senior year was HELL), and get a job at a local Dollar Tree store (my parents hate the idea, but I don't care anymore, I'm done with them ruling my life). After the year gap, I'm going to a technical school and study to become a CNA and then later on to a University to become a neonatal nurse.

    My parents keep telling me that I'm making a big mistake but that's just them.

    Have any of you ever been through this?
    Yes, I've been through it, but in reverse. My parents wanted my high school boyfriend to give me an engagement ring for graduation because, in the words of my father as he was driving me to graduation practice, "You'll never make it through college. You might as well just get married and Rob can support you."

    So I moved out of the house the day after high school graduation (and in with my best friend's family), worked hard all summer at two jobs, saved as much as I could and put myself through college. It took me five years to get my BSN, but *I* did it without a dime from my parents. It was difficult, but I did it.

    I got my danged Master's, too!

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