What to do when your job makes you sick?

  1. It has occurred to me that my job and the undue stress it causes are causing me health problems. GI upset, headaches, menstrual irregularities, palpitations, oh yeah and depression. I hate it there, administration treats me like a warm body used to fill a staffing quota, the physicians feel as though the nursing staff is their personal slave/handmaiden. I do not concur. I am thinking of taking a travel position, however, I had a bad experience with travel in the past and am now frightened to try again. I do not want to jump right in to another facility, and feel that travel nursing would atleast afford me the opportunity to test the waters with other hospitals while only being committed for 3 months. If I was the only one complaining I would be skeptical that it was the facility and not just me, however, my friend works at the same facility and was in tears before work the other day and told me she fears she will have a "nervous breakdown" if she stays there any longer. Believe I am not naive enough to think that the grass is much greener elsewhere but shouldn't I atleast give myself the opportunity to see? Am I crazy to consider leaving?
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  2. 12 Comments

  3. by   ceecel.dee
    Originally posted by huggietoes
    Am I crazy to consider leaving?
    Heck no! Sounds to me like you NEED a change!
  4. by   MicheNurse
    Hi;
    Leave, get out of there
    I will tell you from personal experience the following. I've only been a nurse for five years, but I stress out pretty easily. I was put into the hospital for bilateral pulmonary emboli this past march (I'm 28 years old) and I truly believe that stress emotionally and physically was one of the causes of this....I had NO other risk factors (no recent traveling, not on birth control, not on medications etc). I was becoming so negative and angry towards my boss and the work was getting pretty stressful.
    I have been off work since March, and I feel I am ready to go back. I feel much better, and am glad for the break.
    If you don't at least leave, then take four to six months off. Get your doctor to write you a leave of absence note. Only if you can afford it that is
    take care and best of luck to you
    Michelle
  5. by   redshiloh
    Absolutely get the heck outta there! Stress is the basis of many chronic and acute diseases.

    If you look objectively at your job and can find no redeeming qualities in it, get out now!!!
  6. by   VivaLasViejas
    In two words: HELL NO!

    No job is worth getting sick over.....in my last management position, I was so stressed that I gained 30# in 4 months, became severely depressed, developed stomach problems, and finally had what my grandmother would have called a "nervous breakdown". I was making $50,000 a year, but it wasn't worth what I went through. To make a long story short, I ended up getting fired, which was probably the best thing that could've happened to me because I was able to take a couple of months off to recuperate and regroup while collecting unemployment benefits.

    The lesson here is, don't hesitate to leave ANY job where you are unhappy. Life's too short to be miserable. And don't worry about what's next; you don't have to make a commitment at this point, and agency nursing is probably your best bet for now (although you should do some research on the company before you even interview with them).

    Good luck to you, and please keep us posted. We care!
  7. by   Todd SPN
    I think you've covered it completely, both objectively and subjectively. Your care plan should read: Run, don't walk, away from there. Nurse will state instant relief.
  8. by   renerian
    I could not agree more with all the postings. Let us know what you decide to do........

    Hugs,renerian
  9. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    I have left several jobs for the same reasons you mentioned: overwhelming stress which affected my health, no support from mgmt, and being generally invalidated on every level by the employer.

    For some reason, nurses are made to feel as though they are failures if they can't stand a job situation and want out. You have not failed- the employer failed you.

    Best of luck in whatever you decide to do.
  10. by   Monica RN,BSN
    A good alternative to the burn out nurse syndrome and stress factor is to try agency nursing. There you have the opportunity to pick and choose where you want o be assigned and when you want to work. This is especially nice if you go someplace you do not like, you have the option of not going back thereif you don't want to. Better than signing a contract for a three month committment.
  11. by   CseMgr1
    Originally posted by huggietoes
    It has occurred to me that my job and the undue stress it causes are causing me health problems. GI upset, headaches, menstrual irregularities, palpitations, oh yeah and depression. Am I crazy to consider leaving?
    Do you have disability insurance with your employer? If you do, run, DON'T walk to your PCP. If he/she can substantiate that you are unable to work due to a serious health problem, get that documentation, GO HOME AND FILE FOR STD!

    Honey, I know EXACTLY what you are going through! Three weeks ago I was virtually on the verge of a nervous breakdown, due to the stress that my job was causing me. Then, my DDD started acting up (probably due to the stress, too), and that was THE icing on the cake. If I hadn't gone out when I did, I would have been in a psych ward, by now.

    If you don't have disability insurance, apply for FMLA anyway (you are ENTITLED to it, under the law). Go to your family and ask for help, if you need help paying your bills (I did, and it tickled my older sister to death, just her knowing that I needed her help). You need time to heal and to decompress...just as I am doing right now....and make a decision about your future at that place.

    As the old saying goes: "Don't Let the Door Hit Ya, Where the Good Lord Split Ya". If you can't take a LOA, get the HECK out of there! YOU are #1, NOT them!

  12. by   mattsmom81
    I love all the positive support on this thread. Ain't it a shame how stressed out we are??? I know I don't WANT to be, but I can't alter my response enough to the craziness to NOT be stressed.....we don't have enough control over the nutzoid system we're in.

    I can relate to everything you are feeling. It isn't us. It's the crazy system we work in that demands we be all things to all people. It's making us sick, literally.

    Try to find something you can live with...it's all any of us can do. Agency and travel are great alternatives (and one I'm considering again myself. )

    Hang in there!! The reasons for the shortage are NOT due to the nurses, and I know there are some posters here who are quick to blame us, but I don't buy it.

    Let us know what you decide, and best wishes!
  13. by   Brownms46
    You can only go with an short term travel assignment. There are even those that are only 2 weeks long. I started on a travel assignment that was for 2 weeks, that became 6 months, and another that was for 8 weeks, that became almost 6 months.

    I see them posted all the time on another site. So check it out, and RUN to save your own life! My mother died in a job, that caused her untold about of illness! Don't let this job destroy you!!
  14. by   Agnus
    Consider cutting back to part time or perdiem. Are those extra $$ for working full time worth your health?

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