Discrimination of Men as nurses? - page 2

by bonestAx

6,372 Views | 28 Comments

I have seen a post or two or more that talk about Men being treated differently than women in Nursing. I am just wondering. Does this really happen that often? Is this really a problem? I have bee in and around nursing... Read More


  1. 1
    I think male nurses are very attractive. There is nothing wrong with a guy being a nurse. Why would there be? And why on earth do people automatically assume male nurses are gay? (Honestly I've never heard anyone assume that though). That reminds me of high school, everyone used to make fun of any girl who played softball because they assumed she was a lesbian. Which honestly isn't the same because its not like nursing is a feminine thing. I used to be a PCA on a medsurg floor and one of the nurses was male. He was really buff and all the nurses and female patients just loved him. He was total opposite of gay, and he was one of the best nurses on the floor. I applaud all male nurse, straight or gay, we could use more of them in this field!
    Orca likes this.
  2. 0
    Kdrenee,

    The "gay" thing is an old stereotype. Since nursing was initially exclusively for women, when men first began to enter the field it was assumed by many that no straight man would go into a "woman's" profession. You don't hear it much anymore, but it was prevalent for quite a while.
  3. 0
    Oh I believe it, it's sad that it used to be that way though.
  4. 2
    Maybe I'm living in a bubble, but I have never been asked about my sexuality, never faced negative treatment, and have always loved my professional female colleagues . I have seen them put up with male's crap though-that's a different thread though.
    zmansc and somenurse like this.
  5. 1
    During the Crusades, nurses were men who rode around on horseback, treating the ill and injured.

    Not sure if they were gay, though, and it probably did not matter then as it does not matter now (except to those who thrive on division of people into groups of their choice).
    TheSquire likes this.
  6. 0
    I started my career as an LPN doing home care nursing in pediatrics. A father of an 8 year old girl asked if I was gay and when I said no asked me to not come back. He though I was a pedophile because that is the only reason I wanted to work with kids.

    I think you see this in certain specialties. It's unfortunate, but as an RN I still see it.
  7. 1
    I think there's still some prejudice against male nurses. (I'm a female.) The nursing home I worked at hired a male nurse just out of nursing school. He was the nicest guy you ever met, hard-working, always cheerful. And our manager treated him like absolute garbage, practically followed him around looking for stuff to write up. Hey - new nurse - straight out of school - that's not the way to treat people. (And - no - she didn't treat brand-new female nurses the same way.)

    At the same time, a significant percentage of our elderly residents (or their family) don't want a male nurse treating them.

    One of his first shifts (night), he was walking down the hall when he heard one of his patients calling for help. He goes in and finds the elderly lady, stark-naked, crumpled on the bathroom floor. He immediately called for one of the CNAs to come get me. I was just at the end of the hall so I was there within 30 seconds. He was kneeling next to her, asking if she had any pain, etc. etc. - normal questions. As it turns out, no injury, everything was fine.

    Next day, the resident's family complained that he had seen their mother naked. The manager formally wrote him up and told him he should have put a towel over her before doing anything else.
    Humando likes this.
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    Very interesting thread. First thing that comes up in my mind is Gaylord Focker from Meet the Parents ​haha. A lot of the nurses I work with especially in the ICU are 1) all straight and 2) have a gf, fiance, or are married and they are AWESOME nurses. I've seen some of the female nurses which comprises of like 99% of the DOU and man, some of them are sloppy I guess? I know that DOU and ICU have different levels of care but it's easy to spot out when one is sloppy/doesn't care and one that does care.
  9. 0
    Most of the discrimination I have witnessed against male nurses came from patients. Especially older females who are fearful of a man seeing them naked. I have had families a couple of times refuse to allow a male RN help turn and clean morbidly obese female patients. One even stood outside the door saying loudly "don't you worry mama we won't let no man clean your bottom." It becomes difficult at times especially when we only have 4 nurses on the whole floor to keep from saying too bad he is helping, but we try to honor those requests. Some patient's have also expressed to me how surprised they were that their male nurse was so kind. Again most of these patient's are older people who grew up with very rigidly defined gender roles. Many of them call the male RN's and techs doctor, no matter how many times they correct them.

    As far as discrimination from fellow nurses I have not really seen that myself. I have seen male nurses treated badly by other female nurses but these were nurses that treated everyone like crap, so I do not think it was gender related. I will say that when faced with a violent patient I will grab my male coworkers. I don't know if it is just the fact that they are male or their voices are just more authortative than mine but they are almost always able to get the patient under control. They are often asked to help move large patients by the other RN's as well.
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    I find it's one or the other with elderly women. Some just don't care and they are happy to have someone care for them or...they don't want men near them. For the latter, my explanation is that women in their 80's and 90's grew up in a different time. They were raised to be wives in the home and the nurturers of the family. Men didn't change diapers or do laundry. They went to all-girl schools and universities. Their mothers were considered hussies if they showed ankles under the dress. Some of them were taught that rock-and-roll was satan's music, which would cause pregnancy and sex-crazed delirium. Not all of them experienced the 60's with women's right and personal freedom. They grew up in a time where water fountains were segregated, which is insane. (I can't believe how racist some elderly people still are today. It's all they knew....sad.)

    There is no way some elderly women are going to allow a man to care for them when the only nurses they knew as children were nuns.
    There is no way some elderly women are going to allow a man to care for them when they slept in a room with two beds... with their husbands. There is no way some elderly women are going to allow a man to care for them when men weren't even allowed in the delivery room. And they aren't going to change. But it's ok. Everyone has the right to their own morals and beliefs.

    However, there is another pt who is cool, laid back, and grateful to have a man care for them. They don't even think twice about. They were the ones who went out into the workforce, who picked up the roles of absent fathers, who grew up listening to the Beatles and the Doors, who embraced the right of personal expression and discovery, and who say "Honey, you do what you gotta do. I stink and I need a bath. And, oh, if I was 50 years younger, You'd come home with me ." Coolest patients ever...

    Old men are not the only perverts.
    Sugarcoma likes this.


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