Off to Nursing School

  1. Well allow me to introduce myself. Aubra's the name, I'm a 23 y/o male husband of a nurse who after 4 years of kicking it around, finally decided that I WILL go to nursing school to become an LVN. My question is to other males, or females with their oppinion as to male nurses these days. And for the guys, how do you overcome some of the stereotypes you face? I'm nervous, :imbar and would like some words of wisdom from others.


    Thanks in advance

    Audi
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   hpyrn
    Hey Audi, first I want to know what an LVP is, we dont have that where I live. Any way 99% of the male nurses I went to school with and have worked with have been the best. Very gentle and sweet and effective with their patients. If you are wondering if people automatically think you are a little different, i dont think so any more. Its a great job for a man cause if you want o need to you can work 2 jobs, good luck.
  4. by   Zen Existence
    Hiya Audi,

    My mother just retired after 30 years in the nursing profession and said that the "old sterotype" of male nurses is rapidly disappearing, relatively nonexistent -- although I'm sure that depends upon where you're located geographically.
    Also, the person that got me interested in attending nursing school commented that well over 50% of her class was male, and that in my area [Tampa, Florida] there is a dire need for us.
    Granted, I'm still finishing prerequisites to get into nursing school, so what the heck am I babbling about, lol!
  5. by   P_RN
    In Calif. and Texas LVN is what the rest of the states call an LPN.

    Anyway.....welcome to the family!!

    You'll never know until you try!!

    P
  6. by   mario_ragucci
    Forgetaboutit :-) Your gonna be around women who will stereo-type you as a male. This you can't avoid. Then there were the CNA women I trained with (separate from nursing school) who had pre-historic mindsets and thought I was not capable of caring at all, that I should be a fireman or factory worker and leave the caring jobs to women. Then you may run across the women who will assume you are effeminate for choosing nursing, and they'll assume you are gay deep down inside. Women are different than men, but caring is a skill we all can have. Some women I find have had few male friends. Many women nursing students are straight-away married and perhaps not familiar with how to carry a non-commiting relationship with another male, so they'll act panicy around you, avoid your eye contact to the max, you name it. Then there are the women who will try to pick up on you just to feeel you out and see if you'll react to them. Take care when you are relaxed. If you try to make a joke, remember: they are the majority, and many women will use that fact to make an a$$ of you, for their amusement, and you might not know it. These experiences I gathered from my CNA training i recently completed, which had a little more "hard-core" brand of women, I guess.
    So far at nursing school things are not so bad. I am happy to have went through the rough times with the rough women during CNA training, because now I am experienced. Out of 80 seats in the nursing class I am in, i think there are 3-4 guys (gulp) The hardest part for me is the ignoring. Unlike men, I find women will ignore you totally as a guy, where, say, if a womam went to work in some predominately male job, she would be the center. I have to initiate all the conversations, even with many women I took pre-req's with. I think it has to do with them having a single male relationship their entire life, or something.
    Last week, in nursing school, we had to give each other bed-baths. The 20-something woman who was my partner was so scared of me. She kept holding the book in front of her face in some attempt to shield herself from looking at me. It bothered me how the rest of the class kinda acted strange when pairing up. She had to be assigned to me. But after the bed bath, she was relaxed with me, and I hope she can talk to the other women in the class and mention how I am cool and really authentic. I gave her one hell of a bath and backrub :-)
    There should be a class for us men that would help us to deal with the stereo-types we can expect to be placed on us. At least recognise it.
    All in all, like anything new, it will be a little hard at first. Since your married, they might accept you more willingly. Especially if you broadcast about your wife as much as I hear the women broadcasting about their husbands. Women like to talk about their husbands. I think marriage is like some club your in, because if you are single, you are definately not in the same circle as the married students. You'll be all right.
    Best of luck with you, and, from my end, i like the challenge. I will over-come the stereotypes and be the best nurse there is, just like I am sure you will be. Welcome aboard!!!!!! And this is maybe just an attempt on my part to get some of the women out there to talk The times they are a changing, and I am proud to be part of the change. Many guys I know don't have the guts to be nurses. Nurses are special people, that is for sure! You know it!:roll
    Last edit by mario_ragucci on Feb 12, '02
  7. by   traumaRUs
    Okay guys - cool it with the stereotypes, will ya? I'm a female, (age 43) ER RN and I'm also a volunteer fireman/pre-hospital RN. Give it a break. I enjoy working with whoever - I don't care as long as you work and quit whinin! This is the attitude of most nurses I know nowadays.
  8. by   AZBRONXBABY
    Welcome, Audi!

    I agree with Trauma r us...the stereotypes just don't cut it anymore. I am currently completing my pre-req's and have 3 guys in my classes. I could care less what gender, skin color or preference anyone has...just work hard to accomplish your goals! I am one of the "non-traditional" older students and have been in the work force for 20 years now...I am talking from past experience where I've had all types of co-workers that were useless and uncaring about their, or anyone's, feelings or work ethics.

    Just get in there, work hard and be a nice person (I guess we really do learn all we need in kindergarden, huh? LOL). You'll win over your co-workers and patients. They, and you, will be better people for it!

    Oh, by the way...study...study...study...I know it's stating the obvious, but I thought I'd just give you some friendly advice.

    Good luck and welcome!!

    Christine
  9. by   CATHYW
    Go for it, if being a nurse is what you want! I have admired the male nurses I have worked with for their kindness, dedication and intelligence. Aren't those the exact things we are looking for in nurses of both genders?
    Good luck on your decision!
  10. by   Chuckie
    Who the hell cares what sex
    Last edit by Chuckie on Feb 26, '02
  11. by   audi
    thank you to all of you who were positive........as for mario...heres a jackhammer for that chip u got there
  12. by   gymcobb
    No, Mario's raised some good points. Namely that people make assumptions about you based on your physical appearance. If you're a man, you appear to others as a man. Some women are going to take out their negitive feelings on you or react to you based on the boyfriend/husband they're breaking up with or the father that the never bonded with. To suggest that this never happens is ridiculous. The best thing you can do is to somehow get the person in question to see you as an actual person. Until that happens, they will react to you as a member of the opposite sex.

    What this means is that a certain level of sophistication is required for a male to work in nursing. The kind of jokes and humor that flew well in construction or in the infantry aren't going to cut it here. Being a person with a good heart who wants to help others isn't enough. In addition to the textbook, you're going to have to be a little bit savvy to the ways of women as well. If you're not, you're going to be written up and complained about. I've seen it happen time and time again having worked as an LPN and RN for seven years.

    You think this is wrong? I suggest an experiment. Go up to a member of the opposite sex that you know some but not very well. Say "would you like to have lunch together?" Watch them.
    They will react differently to you than if you asked that same question to a member of your same sex. In addition to processing the request, they are going to try to discern what you mean by this request (date? friend? relationship?)
  13. by   CEN35
    audi,

    i don't think anyone you will work with ever thinks twice, about whether your male or female. as far as patients, there will always be those that think a nurse is a females job, and a doc a guys job. there will always be those who are modest, and prefer a female over a male. just blow it off and move on! :d there are too many other important things in life to think about, rather than how your perceived by others.

    me

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