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About to start the nursing...Help!! is this really for me?

Nurses   (1,972 Views 11 Comments)
by Encast Encast (Member)

1,439 Visitors; 28 Posts

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Ok....well I finished all my pre-reqs for nursing, applied, and now I start the program in the fall.

I have been in school since 2004, changed my major many times. Nursing was what I started with and always in the back of my mind. I wanted a job that meant something not just making money for my boss. I wanted to help people and love the idea of doing IV's, delivering babies, learning as much as I can about the medical field.

However I have read several post that discourage me from being a nurse like the idea that doctors think they are "gods" or that nurses are disrespected ect...

I am going to be totally honest...I hate being disrespected or looked down on. I don't tolerate it at all if someone makes me feel dumb I will snap no matter who they are or what kind of authority they have over me. I am easily disgusted by body fluids I often talk my way out of changing my son's diaper (even though I feel like I can overcome the body fluids once I am expossed to it). What I know I can never tolerate or change is my intolerance for disrespect from patients, doctors, or anyone else.

I am on a loan and well changing my major again will be like starting all over......should I continue with nursing or change my major again???

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roser13 has 17 years experience and works as a RN.

50,583 Visitors; 6,504 Posts

Truly, it's up to you. I look at your statement:

"I don't tolerate it at all if someone makes me feel dumb I will snap no matter who they are or what kind of authority they have over me. I am easily disgusted by body fluids"

and I wonder if you are cut out to be the one who must look at the big picture and allow for someone else's needs to take priority over yours.

There is no shame in being unable to handle others' issues. Life is what it is.

The only shame is in not admitting what you cannot handle.

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5,505 Visitors; 410 Posts

I am going to be totally honest...I hate being disrespected or looked down on. I don't tolerate it at all if someone makes me feel dumb I will snap no matter who they are or what kind of authority they have over me. I am easily disgusted by body fluids I often talk my way out of changing my son's diaper (even though I feel like I can overcome the body fluids once I am expossed to it). What I know I can never tolerate or change is my intolerance for disrespect from patients, doctors, or anyone else.

Have you considered working as a CNA, or volunteering in a hospital to see what nurses do, and how they're treated?

A lot of people have bodily fluid issues. You may very well be able to get over that with repeated exposure, although not being able to change your son's diaper is a little disconcerting. The bigger concern, however, is what you say about your ability to tolerate being spoken to harshly.

Occasionally, a doctor may speak to you in a manner you don't like because you have forgotten an order, or haven't paged when a change in condition warranted a page. Does it suck? Absolutely. Do you ever forget to do X, Y, or Z again? Absolutely not, because you never forget the embarrassment of feeling like you're being scolded.

Not all nurses are spoken to poorly by doctors. Occasionally, in a code situation, your co-worker may say something a little more harshly than you'd like because of the intensity of the situation. Not an okay time to pop off and smart back. A life is on the line, and teamwork is more important than your need to make sure that you establish your dominance.

Sometimes, nurses are spoken to poorly by patients and families, and you have to take it. There's no room to snap, or your job is out the window. The patients are ill and may be confused, in the case of the geriatric population, and treating them with agitation and disrespect does nothing to remedy the situation. In fact, it may just serve to exacerbate it. If you don't feel that you'll be able to tolerate any type of disrespect at all, even unintentional, then no, nursing may not be for you.

Edited by chloecatrn

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1,690 Visitors; 137 Posts

Learn how to handle unpleasant situations; it's called conflict management. If someone is offending your persons, handle it as a mature adult and talk to them. Don't just snap at them for "disrespecting" you, that will make you look childish. Besides, who likes being belittled? I don't but I'm not going to stomp my feet and point fingers. If you're easily disgusted by bodily fluids then nursing is not for you because there's a whole lot of "other people's fluids" that you have to handle. Nurses are professionals. Thus, one should exude professionalism. I know I'm sounding harsh, but if you truly want to become a nurse these are things you need to consider. If you don't expect to help clean up vulnerable people from their accidental spill of bodily fluids then I don't know what type of nursing would interest you. I don't know how else you can "help" people in the hospital setting. Maybe community health nursing is more of your forte? Then again, maybe you don't understand what the nurse's role is. I suggest that you do a thorough research regarding nursing roles... don't just google nursing roles but actually go to your state's nursing regulatory body's website and look at how they define nursing and nursing roles. Good luck.

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Zookeeper3 has 17 years experience and works as a Travel nurse.

11,014 Visitors; 1,361 Posts

I'm challenged by your post, and it is an excellent one... you've done your research.. hear the good and bad.. and are rightfully worried about the "bad" that you won't tolerate.

Excellent, you already know your limits going in... you won't be a newbie mushie do as the doctor tells me.. stands down, doesn't stand up for their patients....

PLEASE, please sign on, we need more of you now, fast and yesterday!!!!!!

But, have a good plan of action to respond.. because with 15 years in, I still get a noobie doc that thinks they can intimidate me to shut me up, so I'll leave them alone.... WRONG... hang up on me... I'll STAT call you back... give questionable orders, you are dang sure I won't follow them, will question them and will do the chain of command.... You want to sit on a sick patient because you don't known what to do? I'll argue with you, teach you. explain what I need and why and fight, fight and fight..

I've learned the difference is that I could care less, couldn't care an arse lick of what they say and how they say it to me... but I will demand they care for their patients. You are the perfect person to turn this around because you are not intimidated by them to do right for your peeps. \

I stopped caring about the doc's my first year, I think you will too... it's so much more fun to do it my way, than be ticked at them... I simply don't care... I WILL make them do right. period.

food for thought... and If you don't do it, i'll be ticked... we need you and ten more of you... bring the battle on!

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happy2learn works as a Employed at a Level 1 Trauma Center.

7,751 Visitors; 1,118 Posts

However I have read several post that discourage me from being a nurse like the idea that doctors think they are "gods" or that nurses are disrespected ect...

I am going to be totally honest...I hate being disrespected or looked down on. I don't tolerate it at all if someone makes me feel dumb I will snap no matter who they are or what kind of authority they have over me. I am easily disgusted by body fluids I often talk my way out of changing my son's diaper (even though I feel like I can overcome the body fluids once I am expossed to it).

What I know I can never tolerate or change is my intolerance for disrespect from patients, doctors, or anyone else.

Well, personally, I don't think anyone should EVER have to "tolerate" being disrespected. That is no reason to not go into nursing. Too many people don't stand up for themselves. If you are going to stand up for yourself, in a professional manner, then please go into nursing.

Easily disgusted by bodily fluids, well, plenty of people have this problem. If you are willing to work on it, then it's a non issue. I gag at the smell of poo and vomit. I put Vick's under my nose to help cope with my issue.

I don't think those are issues. Your first concern is a valid concern. I feel the same way. I don't think anyone deserves to be talked down to. I don't care who you are. There are proper ways to address issues and concerns. One doesn't need to talk down to another to accomplish this.

Your second one, many people have issues with. You're not alone. Don't let that get in your way.

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1,439 Visitors; 28 Posts

Thank You soooo much for your input everyone!! Especially the encouraging ones...

Chloecatrn you made me see a whole different picture with your examples, of course if someone is coding I wouldn't snap. I've had many jobs and have never had an issue with anyone but they all knew I was the wrong person to mess with including the doctor I worked for.

So...I'm sticking to nursing I know if I didn't even a try I would regret in the future.

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17,157 Visitors; 1,338 Posts

Since becoming a nurse, I have learned how to deal with those whose seem to "think" they are putting me in my place or being "disrespectful", including doctors.

I had a situation just yesterday where the patient complained (along with his wife) about being "forced" to stay one hour post procedure due to being under general anasthesia. He was outright rude to me, along with his wife. So, I smiled at the both of them and told them very politely "when the doctor comes in, voice your concerns about the policy with him" and continued doing my work. When the doctor did come in, these two jerks were like "yes, doctor, thank you so much, blah, blah, blah, blah" like they were the model patients. I stopped the doctor before he left and turned to the patient and said "now, why don't you two tell the doctor what you told me right before he came in to speak with you". And guess what? They didnt have a word to say. I then proceeded to say "oh, so it's ok to be rude and disrepectful to the nurse huh" and they both couldnt say a thing.

You can stand your ground, but know when to pick and chose your battles. If I feel like a doctor is not listening to me, I will go right up the chain of command and get what I want for the patient. With patients and family members, I set firm boundaries and stay professional. Same with co-workers.

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946 Visitors; 7 Posts

I'm the same way; I have to be proud of what I do and can envision having a difficult time holding my tongue in the face of blatant and unecessary disrespect. That's not to say I can't take criticism, but I don't tolerate pompous jerks who get off on the pretense that they're god. It doesn't fly.

Unfortunately, in this world, every profession has to make concessions. We will all find ourselves in situations that grate against our ideals, sometimes even our morals. Figure out what you can live with, what you really want, and what you absolutely will not tolerate and stick to it. People will often treat you the way they think they can, and make the judgement by your actions. Be confident and concise, but admit mistakes and ask for help when needed. That's advice for life, not just nursing.

I'm also questioning entering the nursing field, as I've already faced some sneers of, "You want to be a NURSE? Ugh, why??". My family would of course prefer medical school and I prepped for that in high school and then.... never even applied to college. I've been running two self-made businesses and enjoying my life but am ready for a career change. I have absolutely no desire to become an MD, but sometimes I wonder if I'll be judged as inadequate by being a nurse. I've even heard from friends and family members that they consider nurses stupid. After going through the pre-reqs I thought that they were so wrong, until recently. My final pre-req is Microbiology and in my class are two students from a local diploma program. I didn't apply to it this year because I was under the impression that all of the non-NUR classes had to be completed before applying. After meeting these 2 students, I won't apply to that program. There is no way to put this nicely: they are as dumb as a box of rocks. Not only that, but they seem almost proud of it. They scraped out a C and a D on the first test and claimed to have studied endlessly for those results. In experiments, after listening to the professor's direct instructions, they both immediately fail to follow procedure every time and giggle whilst doing so. These are not young girls either. They're late 30's, in poor physical condition and overtly lazy. They don't represent the field well now so how will they represent it as licensed professionals? I admit it; I'm appalled.

If nursing wants to be known as a profession to be proud of, which it should, then these types of students can.not.happen. I felt so ashamed of my future career after spending time in class with them. Sorry for the hijack, OP. Just know that you're not alone. The positive side is that there are so many angles to the career. You can go into management, NP, CRNA, multiple spectialties to choose from... Everyone has a niche, I'm sure we'll find ours.

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utadahikaru has 20 years experience and works as a previously: Navy Corpsman.

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Interesting post. My thoughts on the matter are just this: Unless you work alone, you will have to make the effort to "play well with others". I think its just part of life, so we can all accept that there will be times that co-workers will do things that are annoying and totally irrational. However, what I think you are referring to specifically is what I call the "pigeon phenomenon" In business, people lower down the ladder get pooped on. They resent it, and yet when they move up the ladder, they often become the ones pooping all over everyone lower down" One thing about nurses is that they cost the hospital money, while doctors earn the hospital money. Nurses may lose their licenses for small violations or what is at least a arguably valid violation (such as living a lifestyle disagreeable with the BON or getting a DUI) while doctors almost never lose their license unless they do something really severe. Most importantly, nurses are easily replaced. Medical schools are careful to only crank out enough doctors every year that they will remain in demand. Nursing is overcrowded. My advice is if you are unable to ignore the small stuff, then choose a profession where you are top dog. In medicine, doctors are top dog; always. I have worked in health care 20 years and have seen doctors get away with some amazing stuff. I have also seen nurses and technicians reprimanded just because a doctor complained that something about that person annoyed them.

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1,439 Visitors; 28 Posts

No Prisoners I totally agree with you....

I have also encountered the "ughh nursing." My mother doesn't want me to become a nurse and my grandma feels sorry for me. I had to listen to comments like "why did she pick such a dirty career"....Personally it has been a battle within me all these years. I wanted to become a nurse since high school after doing my research I realized nursing wasn't so glamorous and I changed my major many many times..... Who wants to go to school for 4 years (6 in my case) and then once you graduate poeple will look at you as a waitress or personal maid. However, something always pulls me to nursing. I don't know how to explain it! I know what kind of stuff I will have to deal with and yet I still think "should I do it", "What if I do like it?" I'll change my major one semester and think maybe I should go back to nursing...

As far as the students, I have seen many that are obviously not cut out to be nurses. However, the program I entered is very competetive (BSN) and most, if not all, of these type of students never make it out of the program. I knew several that were taking pre-reqs with me and now nursing is not even an option for them at the school. They got lower than a B after taking the class twice....which automatically puts them out of the program for ever!!

In my case I think the only way to know if nursing is for me is to try it.....

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