I am an RN with 7 years of sobriety. I'm sorry this is so long but I want to share my experience, strength and hope. I had used marijuana as a teenager but stayed away from the "hard" drugs mostly due to the fact that they scared the hell out me. I was an older student when I entered nursing school. I was serious about doing well in school and getting my Bachelor of Science in Nursing. As anyone who has gone to nursing school knows, it's very stressful. When my fellow students went out for drinks and to decompress, I usually didn't join them as I didn't like alcohol very much. I did though, start using marijuana again occassionally for relaxation purposes. This caused a LOT of discord between my significant other (who eventually became my husband) and me. After graduation I got a fantastic position in a specialty unit and I worked very hard to learn as much as I could, I was a sponge!!! I had been working for about a year when I noticed my unit didn't keep close track of narcotics. Patients used to bring narcs from home and these were not counted
? I began helping myself to pills which I took at work because I discovered that narcs had a paradoxical effect on me. I became SUPER NURSE
Eventually they stopped working very well and I graduated to helping myself to the leftover IV push meds that I was supposed to waste with another nurse. As I stated earlier, this unit was very lax and I took advantage of that. Most of the other nurses just said, "I trust you." At first I used the meds IM but I soon learned to inject them IV. Of course my addiction quickly got out of control and I was caught. I was allowed to resign and I was not reported to the BON.
I went to another facility, immediately started what I was doing before and was caught after only 3 months. This tme I was terminated and reported to the BON. It was also time for me to renew and in my paperwork from the state, there was info regarding a new program for impaired nurses. I met with the director and signed a 5 year monitoring agreement. Because I couldn't have patient contact for 2 years, I worked outside of nursing. Unfortunately, I was still in significant denial, so I didn't work a program of recovery. I just went through the motions. I went back to nursing after 2 years and only made it 2 years before I relapsed! What a suprise :smackingf I self reported, so I only received an additional year on my original contract but of course I was terminated. I continued to work at various nursing jobs, continued to be in denial so again I relapsed after 2 years
This time there were serious consequenses. My license was suspended and I was charged with a felony
I was blessed this time because I finally surrendered and I was able to enter a rehab facility for impaired professionals. I began to work a REAL program of recovery
I was eventually able to get my felony reduced to a misdemeanor after community service and probation. I signed a new recovery monitoring agreement, got my license back on a probationary status. I was able to get a nursing job but I still had a lot of anger issues so I was terminated basically for being ****** to my supervisor, how's that for gratitude? Again I was VERY fortunate to find another job in nursing but again I lost my job because of ego, how's that for humility? After being unemployed for 15 months, I was hired by a VERY understanding DON. Because I obviously learn very slow, I was asked to resign due to being a "loose cannon." So here I am now out of work and unemployable. I was able to get my license back to an active staus despite all the terminations so I decided to relocate after visiting my family in a southern state which has a severe nursing shortage. I was able to obtain my nursing license which was not as hard as I thought but suprise, suprise, I am having the same problem, being unemployable. I guess the purpose of this too long narrative of my history is to ask for suggestions as to what to do? I'm really struggling, depressed, not going to meetings, not even leaving the house unless I have to. If anyone has ideas, I'm open to trying almost anything. Thanks