Stand up if you're not in it for the money! - page 2

At 43, I'm a nursing student. Why am I doing this? It's because I have volunteered at a nursing home for two years, not including all the years as a child I visited a nursing home across the street... Read More

  1. by   Spidey's mom
    Quote from eldragon
    The thing is, this woman (girl) has been rude to me from the start of our classes, and I get along with everyone. I have just been blowing it off, because at age 43, I've seen my share of messed up individuals. But she always corrects me, and stares at me, etc. Even yesterday, when the instructor asked her to go with me to change this woman's diaper, the woman (girl) told me to go get a trash bag. I asked her to wait for me before she did anything with the patient, as I am new to this field. She said "Haven't you done anything today?" I said "yes, I've done many things today, but my two patients are ambulatory and do not need assistance with toileting."

    And then, when we were rolling the patient to change her diaper, the woman (girl) said "grab that side!" and I answered,"it's still fastened," and she said "you should have unfastened it earlier!"

    And, I mean, she's not nice about it. Finally - she slammed the diaper pad down and - didn't wipe the woman at all. The diaper was on, and she walked out, slamming the soiled one in the biohazard container. I stood with the patient for a second, making sure she was warm enough, etc.


    I have an idea that I might incur a problem with this girl, whether I want to or not. So what if she has taken a 6-week CNA class and knows how to do those skills? I have had a lifetime of accomplishments, many of which are very impressive.

    Thanks for listening, guys.
    I know it is really hard - I hate confrontation - but you simply must stop this girl next time you are changing a brief and say we have to clean this woman's peri-area prior to fastening the brief. And stop her from being so rough.

    This was a learned thing for me - it took awhile.

    Also, people who have to wear them dislike it when briefs are called diapers. They feel degraded.

    As to why I'm a nurse - part of it is for a paycheck, part of it is to help people.

    My major in college right after high school was Social Work. I also volunteer with a medical mission.

    There isn't anything wrong with being compensated for your time and hard work. But if I didn't feel like I was making a difference, all the money in the world wouldn't make up for it.

    Good luck with your schooling.

    steph
  2. by   postmortem_cowboy
    Quote from eldragon
    Actually, your post caused me to reflect on why I even posted this. Yesterday, a fellow classmate of mine, a young (20) CNA, was assisting me change an elderly woman who had urinated on herself, and I was disgusted by the abrupt handling of the patient by the young CNA. She was almost to the point of being rude.


    Her attitude seemed to be "Alright, you old bag, you pissed yourself again. Let's get this over with!"

    When, really, what was the bedridden patient on dieretics supposed to do about it?
    Some of what we do as nurses is far less than glamorous. I do believe that those who work under our licenses, need guidance as to the processes that are taking place. No patient should be made to feel guilty or taxing just because of what is normal, even if medications (diuretics) are involved. Personally, if it were me, I'd have let the CNA get out the door and appologized for the rough treatment, and explained that the CNA would be talked to. Very early on I decided that every one of my patients would be treated as if it were me in that bed. How would this CNA have felt if it were her mom or grandmother in that bed under those circumstances? How would she have felt if it were her urinating all over herself and not able to control it? I think the younger nurses, and those that are in the medical field need to have guidance in this area, and taught tolerance and understanding by those of us that have been around it a bit more and have more life experience. I try and put myself in that bed with my patient, try to understand what they are going through. It's tough to do when you have a million things going on, and an unending amount of work to accomplish, but sometimes taking a few extra seconds to explain, "we're really busy and have far too much to get done, so we're going to do this quickly, but we applogize if it seems like we're rushing." Most patients will appreciate the fact that you even spoke to them, and especially that you explained what's going on. And remember guys, it only takes 2 seconds to make a patient feel special, valued and appreciated. A simple gesture of placing your hand on theirs after changing, and letting the patient know you'll be back in to check on them soon, and if they need anything in the mean time to use their call bell, goes a long long way.

    Half of what we do is customer service. It may not seem like it, but it is, they are a customer, they come to us needing a service which we provide. Without them, and their "urination" problems, we would be out of a job. It is our job as licenses to correct problems when we see them. This CNA should have gotten a talking to about it. If nothing else, she should have been asked why she became a CNA. Most of us don't go into this line of work for the money, although it pays decent, it doesn't compensate us for what we do, it compensates us for the licenses we hold. Sometimes a few minutes to be made to reflect on why it was that you started yourself into this field, is enough rejuvenation to mark an inner conversation of "that nurse is right, I was a bit rough with that patient, I should appologize to him/her and remember why i'm here..."


    Wayne.
  3. by   postmortem_cowboy
    Quote from eldragon
    The thing is, this woman (girl) has been rude to me from the start of our classes, and I get along with everyone. I have just been blowing it off, because at age 43, I've seen my share of messed up individuals. But she always corrects me, and stares at me, etc. Even yesterday, when the instructor asked her to go with me to change this woman's diaper, the woman (girl) told me to go get a trash bag. I asked her to wait for me before she did anything with the patient, as I am new to this field. She said "Haven't you done anything today?" I said "yes, I've done many things today, but my two patients are ambulatory and do not need assistance with toileting."

    And then, when we were rolling the patient to change her diaper, the woman (girl) said "grab that side!" and I answered,"it's still fastened," and she said "you should have unfastened it earlier!"

    And, I mean, she's not nice about it. Finally - she slammed the diaper pad down and - didn't wipe the woman at all. The diaper was on, and she walked out, slamming the soiled one in the biohazard container. I stood with the patient for a second, making sure she was warm enough, etc.


    I have an idea that I might incur a problem with this girl, whether I want to or not. So what if she has taken a 6-week CNA class and knows how to do those skills? I have had a lifetime of accomplishments, many of which are very impressive.

    Thanks for listening, guys.
    Two things el...

    #1 Just because a person can do the "job/tasks" of a CNA, doesn't make them good at it.

    #2 Just because they are a fellow student of yours in a program, doesn't make them a good student nurse.

    Case in point... in my own nursing class we had a gentleman, and i'm using that term very very broadly with this person, who was a proclaimed "skin head." He blatantly professed to not liking anyone of any color other than white. This is the completely wrong profession to be in with someone of that attitude. You cannot pick and choose your patients, you cannot pick and choose which ailments they do/don't have. And yet, this person referred to his patients as "monkeys that he flicked pills to." One thing you have to understand is that the instructors knew about this problem and let him continue, but yet made sure he had no white patients to boot. He cheated on tests, to which i'd found out he'd cheated off mine on a couple of occasions, which I promptly moved my seat after i'd found out what was going on, and quit being friendly with him. He was a decent "student nurse" however, he wasn't a good nurse at all.

    Now... let someone with this type of attitude get their license, do you really think they will survive in our society with this kind of an attitude and keep the license they worked so hard to get?

    I guess what i'm trying to say is, do what you need to do to be a great nurse, not an okay one, a great one. Don't let someone elses problems be your own. If someone else is taking a road that isn't along the path of a good nurse, you need to speak up to your instructor or DON of the school and let it be known how she is. People like this will tend to dig their own grave. In Michaels case he dug his own grave and nailed the lid on without much assistance from me or anyone else. And this type of thing isn't tattling... it's patient advocating. You have the duty even as a student nurse to appropriately report someone/anyone mistreating a patient.


    Wayne.
  4. by   eldragon
    Thanks Wayne.


    I really think this girl in my class is digging her grave as we speak. I noticed today that she was alone most of the time, whereas usually she is with her buddies outside smoking.


    As I said earlier, if she has a problem with me, she has a problem with just about anyone.
  5. by   postmortem_cowboy
    El... this might just be the case, you have to let it go and be the best nurse you can be. No matter what you say to a person such as this, it won't be good enough.

    Michael burnt bridges with alot of people in my nursing class, the "monkey" comment enraged alot of people as well as alot of his actions throughout nursing school. Just know that you can be better than that. And then be better than that.

    Our class had 2 distinguishing honors, a valedectorian, and a Nightingale award. I didn't care about the valedectorian, that just said you had the highest grade. What I strived for was the Nightingale. Because no matter how good of grades you get, if your a "Nightingale" you can have the worst grades, but be the most compassionate nurse. Sometimes compassion is overshadowed by book learning and grades and even in nursing school. Everyone wants to be the best student, have the higest GPA and shine. Be your Nightingale. I didn't win mine, but i'm a better nurse because I didn't care what my grades were per-se, but I strove to be a great nurse. Nightingales are a great honor, they say something about who you are, not the grades you got. This girl.... will never earn a Nightingale with this kind of attitude.

    It's very easy to pick out the one's that are doing this for the $$ and that alone.


    Wayne.
  6. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from postmortem_cowboy
    El... this might just be the case, you have to let it go and be the best nurse you can be. No matter what you say to a person such as this, it won't be good enough.

    Michael burnt bridges with alot of people in my nursing class, the "monkey" comment enraged alot of people as well as alot of his actions throughout nursing school. Just know that you can be better than that. And then be better than that.

    Our class had 2 distinguishing honors, a valedectorian, and a Nightingale award. I didn't care about the valedectorian, that just said you had the highest grade. What I strived for was the Nightingale. Because no matter how good of grades you get, if your a "Nightingale" you can have the worst grades, but be the most compassionate nurse. Sometimes compassion is overshadowed by book learning and grades and even in nursing school. Everyone wants to be the best student, have the higest GPA and shine. Be your Nightingale. I didn't win mine, but i'm a better nurse because I didn't care what my grades were per-se, but I strove to be a great nurse. Nightingales are a great honor, they say something about who you are, not the grades you got. This girl.... will never earn a Nightingale with this kind of attitude.

    It's very easy to pick out the one's that are doing this for the $$ and that alone.


    Wayne.
    That is an interesting touch...a Nightingale award...never had that in my school. It sounds like you should receive a spiritual Nightingale prize!
  7. by   linzz
    El, I made a mistake earlier, I noted that I left for the lack of $$ but that was not why. I decided that I would not risk my licence. If there was even one other nurse, even another LPN in the building I would have stayed even for the little $, I was being paid. Just not willing to risk my licence trying to monitor unstable LTC's even though I was told they were retirement placements.

    This girl in your class sounds like a real witch. Her day will come esp. since she doesn't talk ever speak nicely to her patients, how will she know what is wrong. Sometimes you have to take a minute and drop other things, to talk even if it is just to ask "Does you arm hurt?" because at times the elderly deny pain and that hurt arm may be fractured. So yes, her ways will be her downfall sooner rather than later. We all have rushed days but if this is the way she is all the time, then she is going to make mistakes.
  8. by   Gromit
    We didn't have that award in ours either (first time I've heard about it). Like postmortem, I started out as an EMT as well, but came to nursing in a roundabout way -I went on to get my paramedics, and had a total of 16 years in the emergency services field before burning out and went on to become a long-haul truck driver (needed a drastic change of scenery). Eventually I longed to get back into the medical field -I like the challenges, but no more emergency services positions) I went through the nursing program in my late 30s, and many of my fellow students (who were quite a bit younger than myself -I saw somewhere that you mentioned you were in your early 40s like myself) -you may find that what looks like a lack of compassion or interest in your fellow students is basicly inexperience (no, I'm not including the girl you spoke so poorly of -that one would be an exception -and I think every class has 'em -we had two girls and one guy with that kind of attitude, and they were long-gone by the time our program reached its conclussion). I had an advantage or two over my fellow students (there were a few others in there who were my age, but most were fresh out of highschool) -one big one was that I had already had many many hours of patient contact, so interacting with ailing strangers was like 'second hat' and didn't bother me in the slightest. I'd already seen people at their worst. The second was that I also had (thanks to life experience) a pretty good idea of what to expect -and it can be very intimidating to others -each according to his gifts and all that, you know.
    As for the profession, I don't work for free. I expect to be compensated for my efforts -this isn't a hobby, its my livelyhood. Its how I put food on the table, and shelter over my family.
    You are a published author and by your own words, don't need the bread (or depend on it as much) thats cool, I have no issue with that (I will have a little envy though -I've often thought of writing, about different experiences and my perspective, but when I have jotted the material down, it looks dull - even to me -haha) suffice it to say that nobody does it strictly for the pay (it doesn't pay enough for that, and those who do, usually burn out rather quickly and go on to different pursuits) but by that same token its not a sin to expect to be compensated for your efforts.
  9. by   Bala Shark
    Once you are in the real world, dealing with 20 patients or more..You will not have too much time talking to patients because there is so much work to do..
  10. by   postmortem_cowboy
    Quote from pagandeva2000
    That is an interesting touch...a Nightingale award...never had that in my school. It sounds like you should receive a spiritual Nightingale prize!
    Thanks pagan... but the Nightingale for our class was fully due her honor, although I might see myself as "good" this girl was great. And although many Nursing programs may not give out this type of award, this is the type of person you should strive to be as a nurse. I always try and think that's why I got into doing what I'm doing. It's tough sometimes when you have patients that are screaming and yelling at you, or making complaints about you for one reason or another. Those types of things bring you down and make you seriously wonder why you became a nurse. But all it takes is one simple event to turn everything back around.



    Wayne.
  11. by   Gromit
    Very true, postmortem. I feel pretty safe in saying that many if not most have experienced that. At one time or another I'm sure we all question why we bothered to get into something, but then you will catch something that others missed, or be instrumental in some way in helping save someones' bacon or in their recovery, and you can kick back and think 'THATS why!'.
  12. by   S.N. Visit
    I'm not in nursing for the money either. My husband and I own an aluminum extrusion factory and a tool & die shop. I'm living comfortably. I'm in nursing because it's what I like to do. It's for my own personal growth. You couldn't pay me enough to work full time , holidays, eve or grave-yard shifts .
  13. by   MsLady06
    Well I am a people person and love helping people but I also got bills to be paid. Residents should not be treated badly and it is okay to ask them how they are doing and how their day has been but getting into their personal lives...no! I've seen nurses who kiss patients in their mouths..im not doing that! As long as i do my job and treat you with respect...we are all good to go.

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