Are there any social workers who have left social work for nursing? If so, can you tell me why?
How about anyone doing both? or anyone have gone from nursing to social work?
I am really interested in both and have to make a decision soon. It seems that they are related in some aspects such as doing assessments etc.
Any input would be appreciated.
May 25, '04
I'm leaving social services to become an RN.
Social services is a great field. It requires you to look at a client holistically; you will be making decisions that can greatly improve a person's life.
Much of what I do, though, is information and referral. After a while, that gets kind of tired. It's also a high burnout field. Sometimes, you'll have clients that you know you can help become "better"/ live a "better" life, but they won't help themselves. The fact that you often are watching a generation of people who are maladjusted create ANOTHER generation of maladjusted persons (we sarcastically refer to this as "job security" where I work) can be, to be honest, quite depressing.
I think that there are many overlaps with nursing and social services (despite the fact that I've seen a lot of animosity between nurses and ss professionals). Nursing is a holistic profession. You are making decisions that can mean life-and-death for your patients. It is a high burnout field, and depending on your area of practice, it may become repetitive. You may face patients that don't want to change.
They also complement each other greatly. I have no doubt that my skills as a social services professional -- client relations/ crisis intervention/ grief counseling/ family counseling/ patient and family education/ assessment skills -- will make me a better nurse initially over students who need to develop those skills "from scratch" during their internships.
For me, the difference between the two is that I WANT to return to a medical field. I crave that knowledge; that practice base. Some people don't care for the medical side of things-- it's too "messy". I find it challenging, and my "turning point" in my career was when I found myself listening to a client discuss their history, and I perked up most when they discussed the medical background.
Both are worthy professions. The best thing for you to do, I would think, is to shadow someone in both social work and nursing. Explore what interests you the most. What do you see yourself doing with patients/ clients? What would you most like to help a person with? Are you a person who enjoys dealing with more acute cases (if you work in a hospital, the majority of patients will leave you when they are healthier, and we all know hospital stays are shorter and shorter), or do you like working with the same patient for a year or more, often on the same issues?
Last edit by hellerd2003 on May 25, '04