Whether or not to become a nurse

  1. Hi,

    I am looking for some input to help me decide whether or not to go into nursing. I've volunteered in emergency and worked as a CNA, but I'm more uncertain than ever. I'm an excellent student and already have a BA in Biology. I enjoy helping others and find pathology interesting. I have worked in computer programming and as a technical trainer in the past. My alternative career interests include doing a masters in counseling or social work.

    After volunteering in emergency I was really psyched to be a nurse. It seemed so exciting and interesting. After working as a CNA in an understaffed nursing home, I'm very hesitant. I was tremendously overworked, to dangerous levels. It was a very negative experience. I enjoyed many residents and they seemed to like me, but that was the only positives I can find. I don't want a career that zaps all the life out of me. I want a life outside of my career.

    I'm 30, so I'm not very interested in spending more than just a couple of years in school. I haven't had any children yet.

    Can you give me some help or insight?
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   petiteflower
    Not all areas of nursing are like working in ER or the Nursing Home. We are over worked and understaffed, but it is the joy of the job that keeps me there. I too waited until my 30's before I started nursing school--with 4 children at home, and have never regretted it. Nursing is a stressful profession, and many times very unappreciated. What about nursing attracts you????
  4. by   aleduc
    Originally my reason for exploring nursing was my want to help people. The science of it all is very interesting to me too. It seems very empowering to know how to make someone feel better. I also like the ability to find a job anywhere. It doesn't hurt that it is cheaper to go to a community college and get an ADN, than to go to graduate school.

    Thanks for your reply. I really appreciate it!
  5. by   Huganurse
    Go for it! Sounds like you'd make a good nurse. But, that Masters in social work sound rewarding too. Is more important for you to get a job anywhere? Would you like to be able to have the flexability to work in many settings with opportunity from bedside to management, field work, to desk work? If these are important to your decision then I would say nursing is where it's at and encourage you ...Luckily there are so many avenues to choose in nursing that you can always make a change if a job doesn't suit you or your needs. Good Luck, let us know what you decide.
    Last edit by Huganurse on Jun 30, '02
  6. by   grnvillechick
    First of all, I congratulate you on entering the field at the last rung on the ladder. Some nurses I have worked with have no concept of just what a CNA sees and does in a shift.
    I also think you are wise to give so much thought about entering our field. It is not all guts and glory like the TV show ER.
    Yes, it is about being understaffed...and overworked...and 9 times out of 10 underpaid as well.
    We see people at thier absolute worst...and sometimes that can apply to the families of the pts as well.
    We are surrounded by our co workers, so are also burned out ..suffer from lack of sleep...are over stressed...and under appreciated.--and so the dark heavy cloud of gloom seems to be heavier yet.
    Out units are over lighted, noisy, chaotic, and just down right frenzied at times.
    We deal with doctors who are chronically in a hurry and always right, social workers who want the demographics they can find in the chart, but would rather ask you, dieticians who cannot for the life of them figure out why Mr Smith has not gotten his peanut butter snack, and an assortment of hospital staff--EKG,Lab,Pharmacy---who either need the chart or the nurse or both.
    In a nursing home setting as you well know it is even worse...because not only do you care for the pts like your hospital counterparts do....you admit them, become a part of thier " family" and then have to watch them go...sometimes slowly.
    But...I became a nurse at the age of 30--and have never looked back.I was an EMT,a CNA, and now a RN with her ASN. The way I see it--if you were not there to care--who would be?? Do it...make the committment, as they say now- DARE TO CARE !!! You will not regret it. When you see the pain ease away after giving a shot, see the weeping pt smile, watch the daughter hold her mothers hand and say thank you...no you will not regret it at all !!!

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Whether or not to become a nurse