Quitting Nursing School

  1. So I am in my second semester junior year in my BSN program. This is my second degree, so I spent a year taking a few prerequisites part-time before getting accepted into this program. It's one of the top ranked programs in the nation and part of me feels terrible that I took a spot that some other person would have loved to have had. My first semester was challenging and terrifying but I wound up with a 3.5 and did pretty well. I got a student nursing position over the summer and it completely rocked my confidence. I didn't feel ready for 8 patients of my own after only having 4 clinical days my first semester. I wound up leaving the job about a month in because I was so unhappy. I went back this semester and my Adult Health Med/Surg class and clinical just has me wrecked. I have never hated my life so much. I have yet to find one redeeming thing about nursing. I'm waiting for that moment of awakening where I say this is why I did this. It has not come. I have no desire to study, I feel defeated. Most of all I don't feel like this is me. College my first time around was a challenge and annoying, but I never hated it to this level. I am crying every night (and I am not a person who cries...ever!). My heart rate is out of this world, I have an ulcer, and I can't function. I know I am depressed. I am just a wreck. The weirdest thing of all is that all this time I never really saw myself in the future being a nurse. I thought it would be nice, but as I planned my life in my head, I never saw myself being a nurse. I went into this hoping to make good enough money, help my family and have the skills to be able to care for my parents in home when they age. I didn't do it because I love nursing. I love animals and the outdoors. My goal is to move to North Carolina in May of 2014 with my sister at a brewery that is opening there. I have my CNA and now I am thinking of quitting school and working full time as a home care CNA. Make money instead of pour it all into school doing something I'm not even sure I will actually do in life and if I do I may hate it. I had a decent amount of aid through this semester, so I haven't broken the bank paying for school so far and don't have any debt. However, my grants end this semester so I will have to pay a lot more for my last two semesters (especially since I plan to move and cannot take advantage of the preceptorship programs since I have to committ time to the local hospital after graduation). I feel quitting is right for me, but I also have doubts. Have I wasted my time? So many people have supported me in this and I hate to let them down. Will I be able to support myself doing something else? I havenever quit anything in my life, but I've also never been so unhappy. Any advice?
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    About Hargrove86

    Joined: Nov '10; Posts: 42; Likes: 3


  3. by   blueyesue
    I don't think I can tell you which move to make, but I can understand how hard it is. By the end of second semester I was having SOB and tachycardia, and many tears were shed. I am in the third semester and I can tell you I feel so much better this semester than second. Second semester was killer. Look at the big picture and do what you feel is best for you. I wish you the best.
  4. by   lace2010
    I think many people are depressed, worried, nervous, and so on when they are in school. My mom is a nurse, and I am in my 1st semester of nursing school. When she started out, she had two kids to raise on her own and didnt have any other options but to go to nursing school, she did it out of necessity. After 16 yrs on the job, she says that she would never change it for the world. As I progress through my BSN program, I honestly can say that I dont know that nursing is right for me, but I know there is a reason I am here. I have a daughter, and I know that I not only need to do this for me, but for her too. After graduation there is no promise that I will love nursing, but I know that I have busted my butt thus far to get here, and Im not about to give up now. You never know, even though you are having mixed emotions now, maybe it will be all worth it in the end.

    Good Luck
  5. by   missnurse01
    There is also a world of different places to work at OP. If you are able to get through the program you can do something like school nursing or camp nursing which is not hospital bound. I could never have been a CNA...I wanted to quit after my first day of clinicals. I thought, omg I can't do this. There are so many different areas to work, and hey you can change your area all the time if you get tired or bored. I would feel that you are so close after all this preparation that you should finish. That way in the future if you need it you are able to work as a nurse. Have you shadowed at all? In many different areas? you might find something to spark your interest. I would hate for you to throw away all this schooling and then in the future wish you would have finished and then have to go thru the entire program again.

    Obviously it is your decision, I just want you to be at peace with it and not kicking yourself later down the road. Very good luck to you. Do you have outlets for your school stress and unhappiness? yoga, meditation, etc etc? I have a friend who was so stressed her doc put her on meds during school! Not that I am saying that's what you need, just making a point. School is torturous, and very different from the real working world.
  6. by   rubato
    If you hate nursing, and I mean REALLY hate nursing, I think it best to change your plans.

    BUT.....If there's any chance that it's just because of situations, I would really try to think this through. You already have a degree and hated college through all of that. Do you think it could just be college you hate? You've spent so much time on this that I would hate to see you waste it, but why waste more time if it's not the right career for you? I just don't understand why you went back to school if you plan to work at a brewery with your sister? Is it possible that you are just searching for what's right for you (2 different degrees, brewery) and haven't matured into what you want yet?
  7. by   QuarterLife88
    I would quit if I were you. No education is worth an ulcer and depression. IA with you; nursing/nursing school is not all it's cracked up to be. There's very little reward value for all that you end up giving of yourself. I wish you luck in whatever you do next.
  8. by   sekishin
    Regardless of your decision, learn from this experience that you are going through now and there shall have been no "wasted time.

    Know thy self, be true to your own intentions, and you will succeed.

    Good luck to you
  9. by   nurseprnRN
    You sound depressed and overwhelmed. Mayhap in a few years you'll see it differently; nursing opens many, many doors that are completely invisible to the nursing student, and so you don't know what you could be doing that you might really love. Maybe you'll be better at delayed gratification later, more able to put up with school by keeping your eye on the prize. Lots of choices here.

    See your health department counselor for a little help with that depression, and then if (and only if) you have truly decided to quit, then go help your sister open the brewery.

    Good luck to you.
  10. by   manisha03
    welll if you reallydont see yourself as a nurse i dont think you should do it what gets me through school is being excited about being a nurse in 2 years, i dont think i could get through school any other way. PERIOD. its hard but if its not somehting you want to do dont do it, this is going to be something oyur doing 4-5 days a week 8 and 12 hour shifts you dont want to be miserable going to work for the rest of your life , do soemthing you want
    good luck hope i helped!
  11. by   sueall
    Hargrove86: I won't profess to know what you're going through, but, wow, your post fits my situation eight years ago to a T! Second degree, best BSN nursing school in the state, 4.0 GPA my first semester of nursing school, total emotional support from everyone, great relationship with teachers and administrators, tutored my classmates -- then BAM! Second semester came around with clinicals and I just could not do it. It was like I was playing the role of a nursing student, doing and saying all the right things, but feeling completely empty inside. I felt panic and dread, and wanted off the stage. It was a terrible feeling, but I realized that being a nurse was just not going to be a good fit. I dropped out, and felt such bone deep relief walking out the door for the last time that I laughed and cried all the way home. I held -- and hold -- the utmost love and respect for nursing as a profession and everyone in it, but I realized it just wasn't for me. That you CAN do something doesn't necessarily mean that should SHOULD. It was an expensive, eye-opening lesson.

    Be true to yourself. Always. This intense anxiety and dread you are feeling may very well be your way of telling yourself that something is wrong, that you're on the wrong path. Listen to it. You will find another path, one that will fill you with hope, not dread. There is no shame in realizing that what you're doing is not a good fit for you. The bigger tragedy would be to continue forcing yourself to complete something that is not what you want to be doing.
  12. by   Hargrove86
    Thank you all so much for your advice! This is a hard decision, but as the week as worn on, I have become more at peace with the idea of moving on. I am 26, single and not dating, don't have children...I am definintely in a different situation than many. I don't have anyone to do this for but me. I can't even describe how much I hate my life right now and what a roller coaster I am on. I went to classes yesterday, took my Med/Surg exam and felt like I knew nothing. Waiting on the grad, but I think my mind is made up. My family has been so supportive of me through all of this. They are not judging me for leaving; they really just want to see me happy. I am thinking of just dropping my Med/Surg 7 credit class and keeping the 8 credits of 3 easier classes. This gives me some time to think, be less stressed, and still haev my spot at school incase I change my mind. I don't see myself changing my mind, but at least it's there.

    Sueall, thank you for your story! It sounds like you felt exactlty the way I do. I don't feel like I'm making the wrong decision for me, but I also worry about what to do next. What are you doing now? You don't regret dropping out? I am feeling so much better thinking about not doing this anymore. I don't care anymore about learning or the patients and that is such a red flag saying this just isn't for me. I always really wanted to be a vet tech, but the pay is so low, I talked myself out of it and decided to do humans instead. It is NOT the same thing for me. I don't have the deepseated love for people, I have for animals. I just felt like I could do nursing even if I didn't love it and have it finance my love for animals. But what good am I to anyone if I am miserable in my work?

    My friend sent me this quote the other day and it all clicked:

    The most dangerous risk of all - the risk of spending your life not doing what you want on the bet you can buy yourself the freedom to do it later.
  13. by   Etrips
    Quote from Hargrove86
    The weirdest thing of all is that all this time I never really saw myself in the future being a nurse. I thought it would be nice, but as I planned my life in my head, I never saw myself being a nurse. I went into this hoping to make good enough money, help my family and have the skills to be able to care for my parents in home when they age. I didn't do it because I love nursing.
    This is really the wrong reason to be a nurse. I do not think it would be wise to keep on continuing on with your current state of health, both physically and emotionally with that goal. If you keep going on like this there may be some hope of you actually enjoying it, but at the same time you could keep on hating it.
  14. by   nursel56
    I think making good money, helping your family, and having the skills to be able to care for parents at home when they age are fine reasons to become a nurse. Just the fact that someone is thinking along those lines at the age of 26 indicates they are the sort of person who would very likely make a great nurse.

    But to the OP - if you've thought through all of it and read the really thoughtful posts about what the job is really like as opposed to the process of learning to do it and you are at peace with your decision -- the very best to you!