someone tell me it gets better after RN school??? - page 6

by rnintwo 10,213 Views | 57 Comments

Im half way through my 1st semester of 4 and Im hating nursing school! Is this normal??? For one, our clinicals are being done in LTC rehab and I HATE it. Bed sores and bed baths, incontinent patients, feces and urine everywhere,... Read More


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    With the gagging and the smellyness... to block out your nose completely... I do what my mom does. She works for CIBC and she plugs her nose with vicks during the day (you can be amazed how there are so many 'different' smelling people there are that come into a bank)... VICKS Vapo rub Works the best!
    blueheaven likes this.
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    Quote from rnintwo
    OP here, thank you for all the feedback!

    I am very aware (now) that new grads are having such a hard time finding jobs and it has crossed my mind already that I may have to take ANY job when I graduate and I HAVE noticed that LTC seems to always be open (cant imagine why) and yes that is causing me anxiety. I would be miserable working there and I pray I am never in that position. I went into Nursing school set on being a Plastics Nurse and did not know until I was fully vested in school and lots of $$ deep that the job market for nurses was so horrible and that I might not be able to go straight into Plastics or Derm. I was fed the idea that Nursing was a recesssion-proof job and that employers were bending over backward to hire you! So now here I am, I have put too much $$ and effort to make that a reason to quit now but what to do about having to face working in another area,one which might go against what I can stomach?

    Nursing school is a learning experience. As much as you think you can prepare for 'what to expect', you really cant possibly know how youre going to feel and react until you are there and experience it firsthand in the flesh. I have never been someone who is squimish about blood, Ive changed hundreds of baby diapers and never had even a moment of issue with it, however I do have an issue with cleaning up a strange adult's feces and urine and bathing their genitals. What can I say, Im just not cool with it, wish I was but Im not. I also have always been someone who gags when I smell vomit. Maybe I just dont want to work with sick people. Are these things enough of a reason to not become a nurse?? I dont know, I dont think so but Im not sure which is why I posted. Surely there has to be areas of Nursing where this isnt required except in the rare instance. Hospital Nursing is not the only choice you have as an RN. Obviously there are many other things you can do with an RN degree. As I said, my intention is to become a Plastics or Derm nurse. I dont see myself having an issue with all the blood and I can avoid bedbaths and cleaning genitals except in the rare instance of a labia surgery and even then I dont think its nearly the same thing.
    Dermatology might be your thing, but if you have the intent to totally avoid anything smelly; vomit and urine, just get out of nursing now. Because "Plastics" or "Reconstructive/Cosmetic Surgery (as it is typically referred to) involves a LOT of all those things. Thes pt.s generally wake up sick, swollen, and needing to use a bedpan. Don't want to clean genitals? Then don't take care of a plastics pt. who just has a tummy tuck and lipo, who needs you to wipe her after her first postop void.
    You stated "Maybe I just don't want to work with sick people". That's a great reason to not become a nurse.
    Please, go work in an office.
    blueheaven likes this.
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    Quote from BurntOutRN
    please don't listen to all of the negative posts on here. Many people look for opportunties to bash people on these boards just to make themeselves feel better. you came here for advice and stated your honest opinion. you can't help how you feel. people want to act like they are saints on here but the truth of the matter is nobody ENJOYS the things you mentioned (unless they are just downright crazy, wierd and disgusting). Some people enjoy the positive aspects of nursing so much that it overshadows the negative aspects. Some people like others have mentioned do it for a few years to put in their "dues" because they aspire to do other things such as advanced practice nursing, teaching, or administration. My advice is if you really are just too grossed out by these things, now is the perfect time to do something else. There are many other healthcare jobs out there that aren't nearly as gross, and you would hate to waste your time and money for a job that you can't stand. I would definately suggest looking into other areas such as radiology tech, respiratory therapist, speech and language pathology, or physical therapy. you will have to complete more schooling for ST and PT, but it may be worth it. Yes there are other areas of nursing such as working in a clinic that arent as gross, but often as others have mentioned, these jobs are extremely hard to come by, or you will need a certain amount of experience in a hospital to obtain them. Good luck with whatever you decide and feel free to PM me if you need more advice or just want to talk.

    I DO NOT consider what I do as "GROSS", and quite frankly, I resent your attitude. I consider it part of my duty to treat the whole patient, and if it means wiping the bottom of someone I have just spent 15 minutes counseling about her latest round of chemo; yes, I WILL do that. I just helped her to a peaceful place, should I reject her when she had a diarrheal accident? I am just STUNNED by this thread. OBTW, Rad techs, Ct techs, PTs and IR nurses have to clean up vomit and poo also, so that takes THOSE fields out of the runnning .
    blueheaven and kool-aide, RN like this.
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    My cousin is an RN for a renowned Plastic Surgeon in CA and so I can say to the post above that you are only 1/2 right. She said it does occasionally happen that patients are sick from anesthesia but rarely do patients need to void in bedpans bc the majority of oatients are Rhinoplasty and Breast Augmentation. Im well researched in what a Plastics/Derm job would be and it suits me fine, thank you very much.

    To the poster who is STUNNED at the fact that feces, urine and vomit would be considered of GROSS nature, I dont believe you. You can empathize and help your patients to a peaceful place and still recognize that certain bodily functions are repulsive to your sense of smell. Give me a break.
    LeLeeFNP and blueheaven like this.
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    Makes me wonder if you have read too many Cherry Ames books or have watched too many TV medical shows. If you can't see past some of the more distasteful aspects of the job and actually looking at the PEOPLE you are caring for, then nursing isn't for you.

    Do you think that most patients LIKE having someone else wipe their butt etc? It has been my experience that they don't.

    LTC is hard, I've worked it. Working in the "glorious" ICU many times is not much different. I still deal with "poo" etc. but I happen to like my job and I get a lot of satisfaction when a patient comes back to visit us and they are better. Families that are thankful for us to be there with them when a situation is hopeless and their loved one is dying. There are situations that aren't perfect but it's part of the job. I'm not a saint by any means.

    You seriously need to rethink your decision to be a nurse.
    Fiona59 and kool-aide, RN like this.
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    Quote from steelydanfan
    I DO NOT consider what I do as "GROSS", and quite frankly, I resent your attitude. I consider it part of my duty to treat the whole patient, and if it means wiping the bottom of someone I have just spent 15 minutes counseling about her latest round of chemo; yes, I WILL do that. I just helped her to a peaceful place, should I reject her when she had a diarrheal accident? I am just STUNNED by this thread. OBTW, Rad techs, Ct techs, PTs and IR nurses have to clean up vomit and poo also, so that takes THOSE fields out of the runnning .

    okay well you either need to reread my post or you are are just weird. I never said anything about not caring for your patients or wanting to help them when they are vulnerable etc. Of course you are going to do whats right for them and help them in their time of need whether that means cleaning their poo, or vomit, or whatever, I simply said that any NORMAL human being would not find the "task" itself pleasant unless they are just a total freak. The thought of helping your patient may give you such pleasure that you are able to overlook it. Great for you. I'm sure the angels above are looking down and singing their praises. I'm just saying don't judge others because deep down everyone knows logically that these are not tasks that normal people enjoy. Again I say "normal people" so if this doesn't include you then simply take yourself out of the equation. No attitude here, just reality.
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    I'm a pre-nursing student enrolled in my CNA class and will begin clinicals in a few weeks at LTC. This is a guess since I have not experienced it first-hand yet, but I think that LTC would make you face the reality of aging in a way that none of us faces except under those circumstances. Anyone with the least bit of empathy would envision themselves as the patient - incontinent, insensible, helpless, and hopeless. Yes I know that not all LTC patients are like this, but a fair number probably are and frankly picturing myself like that is not only terrifying but repellent as well. I *hope* that I will remember to remember, when I'm there giving care, that it's not all about me and my feelings and that instead it is about this person in front of me who needs my help in preserving that last tiny shred of dignity they possess. I will stuff my nose full of Vicks, stick a peppermint in my mouth, smile and hope to God that one day years from now someone will do the same thing for me. I just watched "I Am Alive: Surviving the Andes Plane Crash" on the History Channel and it has TOTALLY given me a new standard of comparison for what I think I can't handle. I know I will soon be encountering some intimidating and gross situations and when I get to feeling all squidgy I plan to ask myself this question, "Is this as bad as being trapped in the Andes Mountains in Winter having to eat frozen meat from the dead bodies of my friends to survive?" When my inner voice answers, "No! Of course not." I will then reply to myself, "Then man the **** up and do your JOB!" I have made up my mind to be a nurse and nothing I encounter will ever be as bad as that. Good luck in your decision-making. I hope you find the answers you are seeking.
    Last edit by dianah on Nov 17, '10 : Reason: Terms of Service: please use all *s
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    Maternity? Talk about dealing with genitals all the time. LOL
    Fiona59 likes this.


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