Getting older...feeling forced out

  1. 7
    Feeling somewhat stuck. I'm almost 45 and have been a nurse for 19 years. I've experienced a lot in my career and am very glad I had those opportunities to learn and grow. For the last few years my ability to handle the stress of dealing with difficult situations, long shifts, bad scheduling, heavy physical activity and night shift have taken a toll. I have learned that nurses like me...older ADN's...aren't really desirable. I have pretty much been told if I can't handle the work then I should find other employment. I have never had a bad evaluation and am a preceptor to new nurses along with charge nurse. I think it's pretty sad that I have invested so much in my career and when the time has come for me to slow down management would rather I leave my job than help me. I have seen a couple of nurses pressured into leaving. I am looking elsewhere so I can get back some quality of life but wondered if there are any other nurses experiencing this.
    David_Lee, Ashleyrn2011, aboucherrn, and 4 others like this.
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  3. 21 Comments so far...

  4. 10
    You are far from alone. You may want to start thinking about where you would like to go next for your career.

    There really is no such thing anymore as loyalty. The initiative is no longer to keep nurses long term, just long enough for the facility to get their money's worth and move on. They can hire 2 nurses for what they pay you.

    It is beyond sad, but seemingly,no one cares that you are an amazing nurse, with excellent evaluations. (By the way make sure you have copies of all of your evaluations, as they have a magical way of disappearing the harder management rides you--no proof that you were EVER a good nurse)

    There is more than one instance that management makes condtions so horrible and unsafe that the nurses who know better feel as if they have no choice but to leave. Which is really what managment would like, but in passive-aggressive fashion like to make it "your idea". That way they no longer have ties, don't "have to pay unemployment" and the like. Oh, and usually love to start all this before a nurse is fully invested in their pensions--which most got rid of long, long ago.

    What part of nursing do you love? Expand on that--whether case managment, home heath, hospice---even urgent care, clinics, infusion nursing--or even filling in at your local schools. You could teach a CNA or some other type of course.

    I am so sorry this is happening to you. It beyond stinks, but think of you and what will make you feel complete as a professional. Best wishes!
  5. 13
    Welcome to the club...((HUGS))

    I NEVER thought nursing would do this....we used to be rewarded for tenure and seniority. Not anymore. To celebrate 30 years in nursing...I got a pink slip at age 48. "Downsizing" even though they hired someone half my age 6 months later for the same position. I found that if "reasonable time has passed" and they rehire for that position it cannot be proved age discrimination.

    I wonder if all of the older RN's got together and did a study/survey what percentage of nurses are older nurses and are being forced out by the "BSN" craze or "downsizing" to prove it is age discrimination.
    David_Lee, Ashleyrn2011, MoshRN, and 10 others like this.
  6. 3
    Did you share you concerns about the workload stress etc with management ? Is that why they are are advicing you to seek other employment. I hope you did not share your concerns with them!
    imintrouble, MidwayRN95, and llg like this.
  7. 8
    Hear you loud and clear. Many girls I work with are retiring this year...they are in their early 50's. We are in a public retirement program and pretty much are being forced out due to changes that will be coming in our healthcare plans. All of they graduated from the diploma school this hospital had there. All have worked in so many different roles, excellent nurses, worked on many big hospital committees. The hospital did away with the retired PRN float pool ( perk was you stayed within your own unit) and have now said you have to reapply for either a regular house float position (ick!) or a part time job somewhere in the hospital. Kicker is that they will not hire you without a BSN. Doesn't matter that this person has worked for 30 years there and can come back and step into any thing going on in the unit. I think this is so disrespectful and a slap in the face to people. The hospital would rather have people go to any unit, not be able to function to their fullest capacity? Wrong on so many levels. But a nurse with a BSN is a nurse who can do it all in their eyes. I can stays there as a I have my degree, but I am not going to. I'll go work somewhere else or not in the nursing field at all.
    David_Lee, Muser69, brandy1017, and 5 others like this.
  8. 8
    Thank you for sharing and the advise. I do feel we ADN's have systematically been devalued in hospitals push to be Magnet. Have they already forgotten the shortage not that long ago?? I have been exploring some alternative jobs and it's going to be a big change. Since I work for the federal government, I will be loosing some major benefits once I leave but at this point I really don't care anymore. I asked for a reduction in hours and was told no immediately. Have been searching for a job for weeks now. Not much out there for a non BSN. One hospital will hire me but as a employment condition I would have to enroll in a BSN program. I think I'm done with the assembly line work on medsurg anyway. Hopefully I can find something soon where I can use my knowledge but not throw my back out in the process. I am thankful that I have a wonderful husband who is supportive. He is all for me changing jobs as he has seen the toll it has taken on me.
    Muser69, brandy1017, mamagui, and 5 others like this.
  9. 1
    Yes it sounds like you need to get out of there! I deal with and instruct nurses all day long and I have found that generally the nurses with experience are extremely efficient,get the big picture and have a depth of knowledge not found in the novice. They are worth every penny and deserve much more respect that they are getting in this current environment. Someone will see that in you..good luck with your search!
    Muser69 likes this.
  10. 6
    Quote from MidwayRN95
    Thank you for sharing and the advise. I do feel we ADN's have systematically been devalued in hospitals push to be Magnet. Have they already forgotten the shortage not that long ago?? I have been exploring some alternative jobs and it's going to be a big change. Since I work for the federal government, I will be loosing some major benefits once I leave but at this point I really don't care anymore. I asked for a reduction in hours and was told no immediately. Have been searching for a job for weeks now. Not much out there for a non BSN. One hospital will hire me but as a employment condition I would have to enroll in a BSN program. I think I'm done with the assembly line work on medsurg anyway. Hopefully I can find something soon where I can use my knowledge but not throw my back out in the process. I am thankful that I have a wonderful husband who is supportive. He is all for me changing jobs as he has seen the toll it has taken on me.
    ​Have you considered hospice? It can definitely be stressful at times, but compared to M/S it's much easier on the body and soul. It stinks to be out driving around in bad weather, but when it's warm and sunny it's great. On nice days I used to go eat my lunch in a park. Even had a squirrel jump up on the park bench, then hop onto my hand and start nibbling on my salad!
  11. 8
    I'm almost 56, am valued as a professional and plan to cont to work for many more years.

    My advice:

    1. Stay current on EBP, volunteer for committees, to precept, to be charge

    2. Go back to school even if it means student loans. I got a BSN (had an ADN) when I was 44, MSN at 45, post MSN cert at 46 and a second one at 52. Education keeps you current.

    3. Don't talk "old". Dont complain about aches and pains, dint discuss medical problems or mention meds while at work.

    4. Keep a smile on your face, be someone friendly who others want to be around.
    nurse2033, nursehorvath, mamagui, and 5 others like this.
  12. 8
    Not everyone wants to be an APRN. Some people are very happy at the bedside.

    I find it sad that bedside nurses, and their experience, are being tossed aside.
    Muser69, Khalesi25, mamagui, and 5 others like this.


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