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Am I the *******?

Nurses   (2,694 Views 44 Comments)
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As the title reads I keep on asking myself this question. To save your time from reading all my past posts, I would just sum up my experience briefly. I worked hard throughout my career as an LVN first then an RN under the overall umbrella of psychiatry/mental health, then became burnt out after a year into working as a staff RN on an inpatient psych unit. Tried a few career changes FROM NURSING (yes, you read that correctly) unsuccessfully, only to end up coming back to nursing being more miserable before. Even though I became desensitized to the difficult coworkers and patients I encounter, I am still unhappy with how working in psych is preventing me from working everywhere else including traditionally entry level specialties such as  med-surg and non psych nursing homes here in California thanks to its job market. I am beginning to think that the entire nursing profession wants to keep everyone in their current specialties and never give people a chance to transition to specialties that interest them more. Even when I socialize with people I avoid talking about work and lie about being an artist or something if I ever get pressured into telling others what I do for a living. I am tired of playing along at work everyday and saying that mental health is my passion and that's all I want to do when that is not. If I am completely honest with psych nurses I work with, they will call me an ungrateful a**hole for sure. Just looking for other opinions/support about my career long struggle. 

Edited by Seeing Myself Out

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If you do your job in a fairly cooperative manner, you're alright with me. You don't have to love it. I don't care.

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The fact that you lie about your occupation to people you socialize with tells me a lot. Those relationships must be very superficial. I can't imagine living like that.

I would advise seeking some sort of counseling.  Your discontent sounds profound. 

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Just now, Emergent said:

The fact that you lie about your occupation to people you socialize with tells me a lot. Those relationships must be very superficial. I can't imagine living like that.

I would advise seeking some sort of counseling.  Your discontent sounds profound. 

Are you saying that because I'm labelled as a psych nurse or because I am a crappy friend? Either way I am impressed with your ability to diagnose mental illness on a forum. You will do great starting your own practice. 

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42 minutes ago, Sour Lemon said:

If you do your job in a fairly cooperative manner, you're alright with me. You don't have to love it. I don't care.

I work part time so I am not married to my job and I have plenty of time to explore my non-nursing options/interests and make a career out of one of them someday. 

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2 hours ago, Seeing Myself Out said:

I am tired of playing along at work everyday and saying that mental health is my passion and that's all I want to do when that is not. If I am completely honest with psych nurses I work with, they will call me an ungrateful a**hole for sure.

Is there no middle ground there that you can settle into between pretending it's your passion or being an "ungrateful a**hole"?

I second what Sour Lemon said, as far as I'm concerned, I don't care if you don't love your job or it's not your passion as long as you don't visit your misery on me while we're trapped at work together. Why not just try to go to work with a fairly pleasant attitude, keep your head down and do your job, and continue looking for work elsewhere until another opportunity presents itself?

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10 minutes ago, Seeing Myself Out said:

Are you saying that because I'm labelled as a psych nurse or because I am a crappy friend? Either way I am impressed with your ability to diagnose mental illness on a forum. You will do great starting your own practice. 

Ok, so in answer to your question,  yes I think you are.

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10 minutes ago, Seeing Myself Out said:

Are you saying that because I'm labelled as a psych nurse or because I am a crappy friend? Either way I am impressed with your ability to diagnose mental illness on a forum. You will do great starting your own practice. 

That is not at all what I get from the response, and your reaction certainly seems quite out of proportion. You don't like nursing, yet you keep coming back to it. Sometimes, a little clarity with the assistance of someone trained can help- it does not mean at all the response is trying to "diagnose mental illness on a forum".

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2 minutes ago, Emergent said:

Ok, so in answer to your question,  yes I think you are.

You're entitled to your own opinion. Fair enough. 

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1 minute ago, Rose_Queen said:

That is not at all what I get from the response, and your reaction certainly seems quite out of proportion. You don't like nursing, yet you keep coming back to it. Sometimes, a little clarity with the assistance of someone trained can help- it does not mean at all the response is trying to "diagnose mental illness on a forum".

Got bills to pay and I applied to a fair share of non-nursing jobs to take a break or gain experience towards my non-nursing interests but couldn't get hired because they think I should stick with nursing... That's part of the reason why my career changes weren't successful in the first place. 

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My experience has been that prospective employers automatically question and place in a negative light attempts to find work out of nursing.  I guess that goes with a general public attitude that nursing should be everyone's 'be all and end all'.  I still would not expend too much energy trying to pretend at work.  Just be civil and as pleasant as you can be in a natural manner.  Don't give yourself an ulcer or add your own bent to others' attempts to bring you down.

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Could see if you can try an inpatient medical-psych unit. There was one at my old hospital. It is truly med-surg with some medically ill psych patients. From there, can probably branch out to other med-surg or ER or something. Your psych background could be seen as an asset for de-escalation type of units. Maybe even something like prison nursing where there is medical treatments and skills (I've heard some places take new-grads into that type of position). Dialysis nursing may work, too.

You gotta find a way to take what you've learned and how you can use that to build towards a future you want. I'll assume you need stepping stones or some luck finding what you want. Do you know what kind of nursing you want or are interested in?

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