58 years old - Am I too old to start nursing school?? - page 8

Dear Nurse Beth, I have no way of knowing if some nursing schools are more difficult than others, but I am undecided as to whether I should proceed. Let me explain. I have had good grades and... Read More

  1. by   BombiRoseBSN
    When I started into nursing school 23 years ago (45 yrs old then) we were told nurses had an expected longevity of ten years before burnout and leaving. That was not true for me. My husband had already told me I would need a nurse by the time I got to be a nurse. He was wrong, too. At whatever age you make the decision to do something different with your life, you should do it. Only if you've carefully thought it out and are committed to work at it. I have worked nearly 20 years as a RN and enjoyed/hated it all. Love/hate relationships with nursing are common where I live. I got my BSN at age 61 and worked another five years. Go for it if you want it I worked in the same hospital the whole time. Started as CNA, then LPN, and did the nursing internship thing, too. Kept my grades up and wore the honors gold cords at graduations. Husband did finally show some pride about it but doesn't let on.
    Last edit by BombiRoseBSN on Apr 14, '16 : Reason: more info
  2. by   mountiemom
    It sounds to me like your body is 'talking' to you. I don't think it's a question of chronological age but how much your body can take. RA is what knocked me out of nursing. Nursing jobs are physically very demanding (if not grueling a lot of the time). You say you want to help people so maybe now would be a good time to take a step back and explore other possibilities. Good luck!
  3. by   NurseDiane
    Don't bother. While it may be interesting & you think it is a good career & want to help people, it isn't worth it. You will never get a job. New grads that are half your age can't get jobs. It isn't worth spending that amount of money on a degree you'll never use. Take the money, renovate your house, buy a car, go on an extended vacation. All of those things are a better use of that money. If you get physically ill & are unable to sleep because of the stress of schooling, it is definitely not worth it. There are lots of different ways you can help people other than nursing. The healthcare system is not the same as it was 25 years ago. It has turned into a for-profit business that treats nurses like flight attendants or restaurant servers, not the life savers that they are.

    At this point, you're closer to the end than to the beginning. Enjoy yourself. The only thing we can't get back in this life is TIME. Make the most of it. Don't waste it on nursing school. They'll gladly take your money & you won't get a job.
  4. by   subee
    Personally, I agree with NurseDiane. If you can afford to put the money you'll spend on education into an ash tray and light it up, nothing lost. There are hundreds of ways to help people that are not so dependent on your physical condition. Retirement is still expensive and I wouldn't be throwing money into the wind at 58.
  5. by   Sippie
    I think the OP should do what is in her heart as long as she is healthy. Maybe see her health care provider and get a thorough exam just to be on the safe side. Then, if she isn't in shape, try a walking program or join a gym, get enough sleep, and eat healthy and see if that doesn't help her with stress. Certain hobbies also can help with stress. Yoga is helpful for me as is gardening.

    I agree that she should either volunteer or work as a CNA/PCT first or while in school. It will help her network and also see what she is getting into. I volunteered in a really busy ER on the seedy side of town that got a lot of action. That led to a CNA job in that hospital which led to getting picked over thousands of applicants for a coveted Summer Nurse Extern Program which led to working as a nurse extern which led to job offers from that and many other hospitals before I even graduated. It also made me very very comfortable as a new grad. I ended up moving due to dh's job to the Midwest (from Phx) so even in a new environment where everything was different and the way they did nursing was different, I still had confidence that I never would have had, if I had not volunteered and worked before graduating.

    When I was in nursing school, there were 2 people who were "older" in my class. One was 55. Both were successful and got hospital jobs. There was also a student in the class ahead of me who was 65. She still got hired after graduation. This was a BSN program and the times were a little better for new grads getting jobs so that might have made a difference.

    Just another thought, the way many nurses are treated in America is similar to work conditions in some 3rd world countries. No bathroom breaks, food, drinks, way understaffed, working in unsafe conditions for nurses and patients. Then told to suck it up. Sounds like a sweat shop situation to me lol. We do get paid way better and have health insurance options. I guess that's the catch, but really, we need to band together and change this. Its really crazy if you think about it that nothing has been done already. I am guilty as anyone of going with the flow and saying, "Hey, I took care of 10 patients today! (Not counting the ones coming and going lol) and feeling proud of myself for making it through the shift and getting everything done on time somehow. How good was my care? These patients and the insurance companies are paying buku bucks to for a quality stay in a hospital ...way more than some super nice resort and all anyone cares about is how to give everything as cheap and as little as possible. Its shameful. OK end of rant lol.
  6. by   Millionstars1
    I to have considered going back to school. I am 58 to just turned 58! Been an LPN for 23 years in LTC. I've always been in management so I make more than the RN's do my employer is paying 100% now for those who want to return to school. I'm an mds coordinator and love doing this kind of work. I do think it will be a requirement for this position soon to be an RN I to wonder if I am to old. I can work circles around most of the other nurses younger than me. I can do 12 hours days with the best of them. The one thing that bothers me is the micro class I think that is my weakness. I am so undecided. I know I will work for at least 9 more years. I have been considering online school. Any suggestions?
  7. by   subee
    Quote from Millionstars1
    I to have considered going back to school. I am 58 to just turned 58! Been an LPN for 23 years in LTC. I've always been in management so I make more than the RN's do my employer is paying 100% now for those who want to return to school. I'm an mds coordinator and love doing this kind of work. I do think it will be a requirement for this position soon to be an RN I to wonder if I am to old. I can work circles around most of the other nurses younger than me. I can do 12 hours days with the best of them. The one thing that bothers me is the micro class I think that is my weakness. I am so undecided. I know I will work for at least 9 more years. I have been considering online school. Any suggestions?
    I didn't realize that one could even become an RN online.
  8. by   Millionstars1
    Lpn to rn program. Yes u can
  9. by   subee
    Quote from Millionstars1
    Lpn to rn program. Yes u can
    I could only fine two programs in a thread on allnurses: Indiana State which gives a BSN and Excelsior which also gives an ASN but the Excelsior program in not accepted in California. Are there programs other than this that are exclusively online?
  10. by   tallielassie
    Dear Am I Too d,
    What did you end up doing? I (currently 48) was tempted to apply to a fast track course and I decided to apply for RN and will work my way through to DNP. I will start school in August.
    Im anxious to hear about your progress.
  11. by   SecondAct
    This is an interesting topic. I, too, am an older nurse. I earned my LPN in 2014 and I have been able to practice nursing since then. I will be taking the TEAS exam soon and beginning RN studies. I must say, though, that I practice nursing on a part-time basis and it is a second source of income for me. My primary job is in an office setting. As an LPN at a SNF, we are ALWAYS understaffed, and if I did it full-time, I would be just as mean and bitter as many of the full-time, younger nurses.

    If you want to do it, do it. Take care of your body and guard your mind and spirit. For women, ageism is everywhere; but I refuse to stop enjoying my life and achieving my goals because "someone else" thinks I'm too old. People will ALWAYS have something to say, whether you've asked for their opinion or not.

    I also want to point out there are a lot more career opportunities for the RN. And I would like to pose a question: did you ever consider using your nursing knowledge to start your own health care-based business? Perhaps an adult daycare from your home? I believe you could make it work wonderfully with a nursing education in your arsenal.

    Don't let anyone make you feel badly. Look up and think creatively. The best is ahead of you!
  12. by   SecondAct
    Yes. Go for it!
  13. by   brandiep1982
    I disagree. If this is a passion for you. DO IT! You have one life. However, I would find a way to do it that is less stressful... instead of an AT course, do a three or two year BSN (usually AT is one year BSN), or even do your ADN first. Also, you don't have to make straight As. If this is weighing on your heart and something you feel you want to do, do it. Find ways to be able to do it without hurting yourself. It can be done. And don't let ANYONE tell you you can't or that it may not be worth it.

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