Quote from Mashira
I'm a new grad RN that will be starting orientation on Valentines.
I will be working 11p-7a shift. Something that I've been wondering... are any of you at times afraid of your patients or your job?
From time to time there will be a patient w/ Schizophrenia or DID that just scares me. I don't know why. I guess the bodily harm more than anything, but also just a 'creepy' feeling. I really hope that I don't get flamed. I understand that these patients have a disease process going on just like any other.
I guess I'm just trying to see if I'm alone in this or not. The night shift is lovely, but I do have a little bit of anxiety going into it because of this (I'm your classic afraid of the dark girl, in a place where I might have a pt that scares me). It's not uncontrollable anxiety, just an odd feeling of alarm if they get too near.
Thoughts? Opinions? Experiences? Suggestions? Anything would be lovely!
Note: I'm not afraid of them in the day time, just the night. Could this just be my fear of darkness/night projecting onto the patients themselves? ARGH... I dono...
Fear's normal and at times an excellent red flag to take seriously. At other times, a red-herring, often hard to to tell. Also normal: ambiguity, self-doubt, frustration, anger, intimidation, etc. The big deal is what you do with these feelings we all have.
For what it's worth, All the (very few over ten years) times I've been successfully attacked, I had no fear and got taken off guard. "Out of the blue" events: got punched a few times (once a little old lady got me good in the TMJ - I was as impressed as I was surprised!) , my glasses crushed once without warning. Other than the surprise and some mild discomfort, no real harm done. But maybe, just maybe, if I'd been less oblivious and over-confident, more worried, I'd have been better off.