Nurses...Miserable?

  1. 0
    I am finishing up my first undergraduate degree and starting immediately into an accelerated BSN. Most people don't understand why I have decided to make this switch. Until recently, I didn't let it bother me.. because I had done some soul-searching and I have a plan - one that I am quite happy with. Today, however, my friend made a stupid generalization that really angered me. I was talking about the nursing program I'll be starting and she said, "That's so funny, I really can't see you being a nurse. Every nurse I know is miserable." Now I know I will get some fired-up responses because of that line...and that's what I want to hear!! I want to know that my friend was wrong, that she made an uneducated, sweeping generalization. I know a lot of venting goes on in this forum, and after being on here a few months I've read both stress-ed out threads as well as ones describing greatly fulfilling experiences. I just want to be reassured that there are many nurses out there that love their jobs! I also really want to have a good attitude going into this program... any tips on how to approach my first clinicals? Should I be prepared to become thick-skinned? I know I'm going to experience some stressful situations as a student and I don't want to be scared away!

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  2. 96 Comments...

  3. 7
    Of course there are some people who love their jobs. However, there are also many of us who are miserable.

    This is a difficult time for the profession of nursing. The overall health care system in the US is under a great strain, struggling with many complex issues. Nurses are caught in the middle (on often on the front lines) of those issues and battles. The result is that it is a tough time to be a nurse.

    But if being a nurse is what you need to do to feel fulfilled in life, then be a nurse. Don't let our current difficulties decide the course of your life.
  4. 6
    Your friend didn't say all nurses are miserable- just all the nurses she knows. That may be a very accurate assessment of the current state of nursing. I would take it as a compliment- you are a happy upbeat person- it would be a shame to see a profession that so many people are miserable in take that from you. I wish I had talked to a few more nurses before I committed to this profession. I don't think I would be a nurse today if I had known then what I know now. The choice is yours, but I think it is a good thing to have a friend that is concerned about your future happiness- be grateful for her.
  5. 11
    I have been a nurse for nearly 20 years. I am not miserable. I have been unhappy occasionally, but I have never been a miserable nurse. I've been unhappy with the places I've been or the people I've been with, not with the work. Nursing is a wonderful profession and I have no regrets.
    RNSC, VivaLasViejas, pacifica, and 8 others like this.
  6. 1
    Not miserable, it's like everything else in life. It just depends where you are.............you know, being in the right place at the right time. I have worked at 3 very different facilities and still enjoy doing what I do. Not everyone you work with will be great, but then that's how life is.
    Bugaloo likes this.
  7. 2
    I am also in a second bachelor's degree program after first going to school for biology. I worked in a few different areas before returning to school. You're going to find people who are miserable with their job wherever you go. It's a matter of finding what is right for you and doing the best you can while taking care of yourself to avoid burnout.

    And I happen to really enjoy nursing school and the clinical experiences I've had so far.
    Last edit by GMcD on Mar 28, '08
    Not_A_Hat_Person and KrissyPRN like this.
  8. 2
    i went and got my BSN after getting a bachelors in biology. there is definitely a lot more to nursing than i originally thought but i love it. i love using my brain every day, i love my patients (most of them), i love my co-workers. yes, there are times where i am ticked off, have a bad day, etc. but that goes with any job. nursing school is unlike any other schooling. expect to work hard. my instructors were wonderful in school but they made sure i knew my stuff. and you will see in clinicals very quick which areas you like and which ones you hate. for me, i LOVE women's health! and the joy of nursing is that if you dont like something you can go to a different specialty. there is usually a niche for everyone. sometimes you just gotta look hard.
    lindarn and KrissyPRN like this.
  9. 0
    miserable is a strong word. i think some nurses may be unhappy or not so satisfied with their current job but in my opinion, miserable means you should not take care of patients. i really hate that the nursing profession has such a bad reputation. its not the easiest career choice but its definitely not the worse.
  10. 7
    Miserable is "her interpretation" of what she sees when she sees these nurses that she knows speak of their career.

    I can tell you that we had a lot of the accelerated BSN students and they seem to have a general feeling (I'm not saying ALL). Most of them felt unprepared by the accelerated program and from my experience with them as students on our floor, it was with reason. Accelerated is accelerated. Don't rely on your clinicals to prepare you. Sounds like you are self-motivated - use that to your advantage and learn what you can. The grads we hired from the accelerated had always admitted that they didn't feel the course prepared them.

    I can tell you that nursing brings a lot of stress, frustration, disappointment and all kinds of things and I would guess that many would use the word miserable. It's not nursing it is the environment of the job. I wouldn't use the word miserable but I am at my wits end with it and totally broken hearted, scared, fed up, tired of what I see that goes on, feel that it's not about giving good care or how you feel about being a nurse, it is definitely something else.

    After 15 years I have seen a lot and understand why so many are unhappy with the field. Not everyone is unhappy. At this point there are over 330,000 licensed inactive nurses and I think over 50% of them are inactive because of the disappointments and treatment. Of the remainder that are working a considerable number of them feel the same way.

    I loved my job in the beginning. I don't hate my job I hate how difficult it is to do on a regular basis and the lack of respect and appreciation. My granddaughter's dad said tonight that all of his aunts were nurses and hated it. One of the complaints was how doctors treated nurses. I have worked in the field long enough and in areas to see that change and it is the hospitals that are the problem.

    Hopefully you will be lucky enough to be that certain someone in that certain someplace that you won't feel this way.

    You will get positive and negative on that question. I think you know that.

    How about you let us know how it goes for you in your first job and orientation, one year out and 5 years out.
    ERJUNKIE4LIFE, chapril, kristenncrn, and 4 others like this.
  11. 6
    Nursing, much like life, is what you make of it.

    It's a tough, tough job and many times you are caught in the cross fires and you have no idea which way to run. You will work long hours, you will work until your back and feet break and you will work for what seems like no pay at all.

    But, you have choices. The fields and opps in nursing are endless. The education tracks and life choices you can make while being a nurse are just awesome in comparison to other professions.

    I'm not always happy with my job but I'm overall happy with my profession.
    chapril, RNSC, VivaLasViejas, and 3 others like this.


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