someone tell me it gets better after RN school???

  1. 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, It was all I could do not to have an anxiety attack right there. Its not that I dont empathize with these patients, I do, but If this is what my job is going to be about when I graduate then I dont think I want to graduate. Im hoping that someone will tell me that LTC is where you see the worst part of the job and that there are other areas I can go into that dont deal with these issues. Im sorry but cleaning up someone else's feces and urine and bathing their genitals and whatnot is disgusting and Im not ashamed to admit that. Alot of the students try to pretend like they have no issue with it whatsoever but I think thats a load of baloney and they just dont want to admit that bc its 'taboo' for a nurse of all people to think such a thing much less say it out loud (as if we're saints). We are nurses and yes we care but come one, be real, some of the things nurses have to do is gross! SO, I would like to know, does this sound like a normal reaction to the beginning of nursing school or am I looking at a job that Im going to hate??
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    About rnintwo

    Joined: Oct '10; Posts: 47; Likes: 13


  3. by   shoegalRN
    Well, if you plan on working in a hospital after graduation, you will STILL have to deal with urine, feces, emesis, and genitals.

    The only way to get around it is to go into administration, and you will need floor experience first to do that.

    You will get used to it, eventually.
  4. by   April, RN
    Based on your post, I don't think you will like nursing ever.
  5. by   MJB2010
    If you dont mind my asking, why did you choose nursing? Do you know any nurses? What did you expect it to be like? Perhaps you need to ask to do a few days shadowing a nurse to see if it is really for you. Doesnt sound like you were aware of what nursing entails. This might not be the right path for you.
  6. by   April, RN
    I've read some of your previous posts as well. It seems like you don't have a realistic view of what a nurse's role and responsibilities are. Maybe you need to re-evaluate why you want to go into nursing and decide if this really is the career for you.
  7. by   86toronado
    Not that poo, urine, and genitals are all we do, but if you're a nurse, that's no one else's job other than yours. You may have a CNA or tech to help you out, but in the end it comes down to your license if the patient gets a bedsore from sitting in a wet diaper all day. So, if that's not something you can ever see yourself getting used to, maybe you don't want to be a nurse. PT/OT/RT use a lot of the same prerequisite classes, but do much less of the dirty work (except RT and sputum... and they can have it.) Maybe one of those would be a better field for you.
  8. by   llg
    Not every nurse spends time working in LTC. There are lots of other options. What type of nursing career did you envision for yourself?
  9. by   nedlloyd
    that does sound like a pretty normal reaction for just starting out. however, if you find you just cannot handle it then nursing may not be the place for you. Yes you are likely to see more of it in LTC but you can't "escape" it. I work in ER and while a full bed bath doesn't take place, it's not uncommon for me to clean up incontinent patients. You just get used to it after awhile. When I started nursing school I had never even changed a diaper! So it was weird for me too at first but you adjust.

    and while there are nursing assistants who can do these tasks, a good nurse does not rely on them to do the jobs she does not want to. Sometimes an NA is not available. We are a healthcare TEAM, if the NA's are not around you bet I'll go clean up after someone or help an NA clean up if I'm not doing anything at the moment. I worked as a nursing assistant in LTC all through my nursing program and I cannot tell you the difference it makes to have an RN who helps you vs one who sits at the desk all night. I developed a great deal of respect for those RNs who were willing to help us with the "dirty work"
  10. by   FrogKissingNurse
    bodily fluids and nakedness is part of the job discription. it may be awkward at first, but you do get over it and you just learn to deal. i'm finishing up my last semester of nursing school and i still come across new things that are kind of gross like rectal tubes, but you just suck it up, hold your breath and get the job done with a smile on your face. the patients don't like it any more than you do. if you don't think you can deal with it then you may really want to consider doing something else.
  11. by   rnintwo
    my thinking going into nursing was to be a plastic surgery or derma nurse. Ive also toyed with the idea of maternity. Do these sound like they would be a better fit?

    I thought nursing was giving out meds, talking vitals, talking to patients, holding their hand, educating them, etc...I didnt think bed baths/feces/urine were a major part of the job but where I am in LTC it is constant.
  12. by   NewbieKim
    I have some comforting words for you. I had my 1st rotation in school in a long acute care setting and I did not like it at ALL! Seems like all we did was what you described. But then the following rotations were done at the main hospital. Yeah students are dumped on all the crap cleaning and seems like thats all you do. I'm not saying in the real RN world you never do that, you do (I do!) and I don't mind but that's usually the aides job (and if not AGAIN I'LL say I don't mind it) but your focus is meds, care plan and pain management. So yes it gets better!!! I've been in my new med-surg RN job for 3 months and happy
  13. by   FrogKissingNurse
    well if you go labor and delivery you may still end up cleaning up poop... but yes, maybe plastics is a better fit for you, though if you end up assisting the doc in surgery get ready for lots of blood!
  14. by   StephRN08
    I have a BSN and still wipe butts! This is something you need to cope with if you are interested in a career in nursing. This is simply what we do. Do I personally like working with urine and stool? Not really, but I do it because my patients needs me to.

    Also, I have read some of your other posts...

    In nursing we must pay our dues. I hate to say that but it is true. You must get some hospital or LTC experience before you can move into other positions. If not, you will struggle and your patients will suffer the consequences. Long shifts are not required as you can work 8 hours, but you will find that working 3 12's is a nice bonus.