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oseibonsu oseibonsu (New) New

Why do people think that nursing is for females only. Even in most nursing books it is always she. Why are they not using he since we also give care to the sick. Give me your answers

MedSurgeMess

Specializes in Med/Surg, ICU, educator.

I think because it's a predominantly female profession. But that still doesn't make it right

I think we can talk about it and make it right.

Edited by UM Review RN

Virgo_RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Cardiac Telemetry, ED.

Because nursing has historically been a predominantly female profession. Males did not begin entering nursing in the U.S. until comparatively recently. Only 10% of my graduating class was male.

Conversely, if you read any academic text, chances are that it will refer to people in terms such as "he", "him", "his", and humankind as "man" or "mankind", etc. There is no commonly accepted gender neutral term, though it would be nice in this day and age if there were.

Because nursing has historically been a predominantly female profession. Males did not begin entering nursing in the U.S. until comparatively recently.

Wrong. Women didn't begin entering professional nursing in large numbers until just over 200 years ago, and it took Florence Nightengale necessarily disenfranchising men in nursing for that to happen.

Men have been nursing since before the time of Christ. Schools just do a lousy job of teaching including the history of men in nursing alongside that of women.

Moogie

Specializes in Gerontology, nursing education.

Conversely, if you read any academic text, chances are that it will refer to people in terms such as "he", "him", "his", and humankind as "man" or "mankind", etc. There is no commonly accepted gender neutral term, though it would be nice in this day and age if there were.

I think it's sexist whenever I pick up an academic text that refers to people by using masculine pronouns. Conversely, I can see why a man in nursing would similarly be offended when he picks up a nursing text that exclusively uses feminine pronouns. It's awkward and grammatically incorrect, but I would rather see gender neutral terms such as "he/she", "him/her" or "himself/herself" used not only in academic texts but in common usage of the English language.

BTW, good point, MurseMikeD, about the history of men in nursing. That's a fascinating---and often overlooked---part of the history of our profession. Schools of nursing don't teach nearly enough about the history of nursing and that's a blasted shame.

The fact is, English doesn't give us the choice of a "neuter" gender. And if it did, we'd likely complain about it. Reading he/she, him/her, etc. is very cumbersome. I'm female, but have no problem thinking of myself as part of "mankind". There's an old saying that "it takes three generations to make a gentleman". It's just going to take some time, and all the great men in nursing, to eventually have no one assuming nurse=female. Be patient, and fight bigger battles. It's certainly happened for doctors.

Virgo_RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Cardiac Telemetry, ED.

Wrong. Women didn't begin entering professional nursing in large numbers until just over 200 years ago, and it took Florence Nightengale necessarily disenfranchising men in nursing for that to happen.

Men have been nursing since before the time of Christ. Schools just do a lousy job of teaching including the history of men in nursing alongside that of women.

Excuse me. Perhaps I should have stated "Modern" nursing.

Virgo_RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Cardiac Telemetry, ED.

I think it's sexist whenever I pick up an academic text that refers to people by using masculine pronouns. Conversely, I can see why a man in nursing would similarly be offended when he picks up a nursing text that exclusively uses feminine pronouns.

I didn't say it wasn't sexist.

Moogie

Specializes in Gerontology, nursing education.

I didn't say it wasn't sexist.

I know you didn't. I apologize if I inadvertently offended you. My intended target is the grammar police.

rpric7990

Specializes in telemetry, long-term care, oncology.

fewer than 6% of the 2.9 million rns in the us are male (aacn, 2002). i agree that our textbooks should be gender neutral as all other texts. however, english grammar used the male pronoun to be inclusive for many a year so one should not assume a sexist attitude. i am a part of mankind, though i'm a female. thanks.

american association of colleges of nursing [aacn] (2002). “2002 american association of colleges of nursing annual state of the schools. retrieved june 14, 2009 from www.aacn.nche.edu/media/annualreport02.pdf.

Virgo_RN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Cardiac Telemetry, ED.

However, English grammar used the male pronoun to be inclusive for many a year so one should not assume a sexist attitude.

Why does the English language use the masculine as an inclusive pronoun? Have you ever studied that history? Fact is, had events long ago simply turned out differently, we could very easily be using the feminine as an inclusive pronoun. If you think sexism is not at work, you are mislead.

Mike A. Fungin RN

Specializes in Trauma ICU, Peds ICU.

Fewer than 6% of the 2.9 million RNs in the US are male (AACN, 2002).

The more recent numbers are 6.8% or above nationwide, depending on the source.

California's doing even better. I was at a conference a couple months ago where Ruth Ann Terry, the California BRN's executive officer, let us know that the latest numbers for California are 10% of RNs are male and 18% of nursing students are male.

nerdtonurse?, BSN, RN

Specializes in ICU, Telemetry.

The reason they use the female pronoun is the same reason they used the male pronoun on everything when I was working in computers. If I had a dime for everytime someone thought I was the secretary instead of the analyst, I'd be rich. By the time I left the cube farms, it was more balanced, but back in the 80's, I was often the only woman on the project. I got used to it, and pretty soon, didn't even notice it anymore -- except when I was moving equipment that was designed for someone with upper body strength that women usually don't have (like putting 50 pound computers on computer racks higher than your ears).

You really will get "deaf" to it over time.

Until the number of men in the profession increase you will most like see "she " used most of the time. I also find "he/she" cumbersome if I have to read that each time.

The males nurses I work with frequently are assumed to be "doctors" by some of the patients. This happened just recently while I was working. A new admission came and she was assigned to one of our male nurses, as charge I went in to help and the patient stated in answer to a question " I just gave that tall doctor in the blue scrubs my medication history".

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