Peds is NOT easy! - page 2

by Ashley, PICU RN

10,965 Unique Views | 42 Comments

I just had to post this in response to the dozens of posts I see from nursing students or new graduates that want to work in peds because "kids are so cute," and "I want to take care of babies," and "I don't want to change adult... Read More


  1. 4
    yup, . . .Nothing like having Phenergan Syrup coughed in my face, something akin to getting peppersprayed. That said, he was a cute little booger, and it was easy to forgive!! I did learn not to get right in their space and do that "jet plane coming in for a landing thing!". . . .although he really got a kick out of that.Peds, but I know God made "Ped Nurses" to take care of them. Thank God for that!!!!!!

    Boston
    JKindRN, GuntherNP, Vespertinas, and 1 other like this.
  2. 7
    I just posted something on the Easy job?? thread that could very easily slip in here.

    We could actually start a whole series of threads, with titles such as "ICU is not easy!" and "OB is not easy!" and "Med-Surg is not easy!" and "Dialysis is not easy!" and "Wound Care is not easy!"....

    Etc. etc.

    Like I've said many times, the easiest job in nursing is one you have never had any responsibility in.
  3. 4
    I believe what you say you hear but I have always heard the opposite. No one wants to take care of sick kids, too scary!

    My big nursing student misconception was that L&D would be so easy! The doctor delivered the baby, the mom pushed it out, what in the world would a L&D nurse do?

    Then I became the 11 pm to 7 am house administrative nurse. I still have nightmares about phone calls from L&D... "we need OR for a stat c-section." Or "six active labor patients just walked in.....we need more help!"

    Now I have the utmost respect for that "easy" area of nursing.
    GuntherNP, skyegirl, Gold_SJ, and 1 other like this.
  4. 2
    Well said, Ashley. I, too, was quite amused by the thread about the student who was going to work in peds because she didn't want to change gross adult diapers. Like I said on that thread, that person will be in for a rude awakening if she actually ends up in peds and gets assigned an incontinent 13 year old with her menses. Throw period blood and pubic hair into the mix and it's likely worse than granny's diaper.

    I love being a pedi nurse and can't imagine doing anything else. I have worked in a children's hospital for 4 1/2 years (last day is Sunday), recently started working at a boarding high school and am starting next week doing pediatric skilled visits/case management for a VNA. But peds is definitely NOT for people who want to do it just because they think kids are "cute". That cute kid can turn into a devil when she doesn't want to take the Tylenol you've come to give her. I had to help hold down one of the cutest kids I've ever taken care of last night for that very reason.
    kids and Gold_SJ like this.
  5. 7
    The family DRAMAAA is what kills me. And the parents that think you're being mean because you make their child take their medicine. Or all the parents that want to reason with a toddler. Because toddlers are sooooo cooperative once you present them with the logic of taking their medicine. Ughh...
    misscherie, GuntherNP, KelRN215, and 4 others like this.
  6. 2
    I'm with Wooh it's the family that can really drain you in paeds. Sometimes they'll shadow you all day asking this or that and you spend hours in reassuring and educating. Meaning when you get home you're deaded. Couldn't even think or desire to speak as you've totally used up your maximum word usage for the day lol.

    Also here parents don't have to stay and it's a single nurse run unit (9 bed). So unless I have over four children I can have small ones trailing after me, or needing to nurse babes to sleep, or sing or entertain them whilst still get all my other work done. We don't have aids here all cares is attended to by the nurse.

    I enjoy my work and being in paediatrics, but overbearing family who must question everything you do/give/know what feels like three or four times before it's accepted does get tiring.

    Hey anyone had children with mouth herpes? Now those little ones are nightmares when it comes to giving oral meds.
    Last edit by Gold_SJ on Apr 5, '12
    wooh and Vespertinas like this.
  7. 1
    I am in nursing school, and I know I have just had to roll my eyes at a couple classmates who have stated from very early on that they "just want to hold babies"......cause yeah, that's all peds nurses do.

    I personally have no interest in peds. Love kids. Do not want to work peds nursing. Not disillusioned that its all hugs and lollipops. I think only thing I MIGHT have any interest in with peds is NICU/PICU (yeah have found that I love ICU nursing....and that MIGHT carry over into peds......though im sure PICU/NICU would be more frustrating in many aspects).
    wooh likes this.
  8. 5
    We get that in NICU too...oh they are so cute...yadda yadda. Come in and spend 12 hours trying to sooth a heroin-methadone-and whateverelsemymother took baby. Not so fun. Or that little preemie that suddenly goes south and circles the drain for your 12 hours before deciding to code on the 12th hour. Or that cute little feeder you have how suddenly turns blue and ends up totally septic and on the vent. I do my share of snuggling up those kids, but you usually have 2 sometimes 3 others depending on the acuity. I love my job, but I hate when people think it is a walk in the park! And the parents...the nuttier and more obnoxious they are, the longer they stay since most likely they don't work and have nothing else better to do than come in and want to be be entertained for the day.

    There is no such thing as an easy job in nursing, unless you are working for an insurance company doing blood pressures lol
  9. 17
    Interesting thread.
    Im not on your side of the fence yet, but let me say from the other side of the fence, that having a sick kid is really scary. Having a sick kid who isnt going to get better (ever) is horrifying.
    Knowing that a nurse can kill your kid with "one little decimal point" but having to trust them anyway, is hard.
    Having to ask for help from nurses you don't know when you want, as mom, to be able to fix it and make it all better, but knowing you can't....its tough to swallow.
    Being alone in a hospital (esp if its far from home) room with a small, sick child who does nothing but cry, and having no other adult to talk to but the nurse who comes in to check sometimes (bc you'd feel guilty if you rang her just bc you were so incredibly lonely, and you miss your spouse, and you havent seen your other children for days on end, and you don't want to ask for charity/food voucher but you havent got any money on you bc when you came in to ER the other night, you didnt expect to have to stay so long, and you havent gotten to go home).......its HARD. Really, really, really hard.

    So for those peds nurses who take care of that kid (and the kids family), thank you. Thank you for knowing that YOU know what meds the kid is allergic to, but listening to a nervous mom repeat, "Did you know he's allergic to PCN? And sulfas?"......thanks for not getting irritated.
    Thanks for noticing when mom/dad hasn't gone home, changed their clothes or eaten in two (or more) days.....and thanks for asking if they need something to eat, or showing them where the apple juice is.
    Thanks for knowing that parent is scared to leave the room, bc they know if they do, something bad might happen....thanks for patting the shoulder, and promising to watch the baby until mom comes back.
    Thanks.
    Thanks for being respectful and listening when that mom/dad needs to talk, or cry, at 2 a.m. when they are looking at their child all hooked up to wires, and monitors they don't understand.
    Thanks for listening to the experience that brought them to this point.

    I'm sure it can be irritating. I know it is hard. I know sometimes you probably have to bite your tongue, and that you are tired, and that sometimes, you might even joke about it with other nurses after work.


    But the fact that you do it, and you are kind, and you listen when that parent is worried, and double check everything anyway, even though you know you are already right....you do it anyway, bc you care. I know there is vomit, and diarrhea, and screaming toddlers, and spit out meds; I know you are tired, beyond tired, sometimes; I know you have your own families to think about and you wish you were home with them.

    You may not know it; you may not hear it often, but you mean the world to the parents of those kids you are caring for. You make a difference to that mom or dad; you are the difference between a night spent alone and scared, and a night knowing your child is being cared for by someone who is kind and empathetic. Thank you.
    meraki86, owlRN01, PedRN86, and 14 others like this.
  10. 3
    Kids who's parents never visit and child abuse cases are very difficult to deal with emotionally, and yes you will have the ick spewed on you just as you do with adults! Kind of a catch-22 on the unit I worked on, the healthiest kids tended to be the loudest, most powerful kickers, and alert to what color med is what in that syringe, "I want you to get out of heeeeeeeere!!!!!" Yay he's getting better!
    wooh, BostonTerrierLoverRN, and Gold_SJ like this.


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