Too Cute!

  1. I am in a LPN program and I was talking to a friend of mine that is a Correctional Nurse and told her that I was maybe intersted in getting into Correctional Nursing and she started LAUGHING and said I was too cute, cheerful, & young(I will be 25 when I will be done with school)

    I dont know if I am offended or to be thankful she told me that! I dont want to sound selfcentered but I am very good looking and I try to always have a good attitude...I always thought that was a + about me!

    I just thought Correctional nursing would be a good way to gain experience & also good pay....to help pay for my RN bridge program
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    About Coloradogrl

    Joined: Dec '05; Posts: 438; Likes: 50

    14 Comments

  3. by   jamangel
    I don't know about where you live but full time pay as a correctional nurse LPN doesn't pay that well. I guess it may depend on whether you are working in a county jail or state prison but it also matters WHO you work for (meaning what company has the contract).

    What your friend probably meant is that with your personality you would easily be taken advantage of or just that your personality doesn't suit it. I will tell you this I approach every inmate as cheerfully as I approach my coworkes and anyone else I meet. But I am not easy to fool either. I've had enough experience professionally and personally to know when someone is BS'ing me. I have not changed who I am and I do well in corrections. You do every once and a while come across someone who will try you with BS ailments or may even try your patience by being down right rude. In those situations the guys that have been there know I'm straight up and will tell that person to chill out because I'm not like that.

    I don't tell them lies like "the medical doctor/psychiatrist/dentist will see you tomorrow" just the straight truth. "There are 200 odd inmates who have sick call slips in and the most urgent will be seen first". That's just an example. They may not like it but the truth is good.

    There WILL be times when you will have to be firm andstand your ground. There will be times when you may have to have someone locked down but you can be you and still be firm.

    Make sure you go somewhere that gives you proper training where security is concerned because they're there to protect you even though they can be *******s. I don't tolerate mistreatment of patients and I don't want to be witness to any. I let security know that right off the bat. I will not lie and I will not compromise my license because I can find another job but another profession is something different.

    Now security sometimes can be a hindrance more than anything. I had more problems out of security than inmates (in the county jail). Prison was a lot better because I didn't need security as much to carry out my duties as I do at County.

    Lastly, you are probably an attractive girl(which in this case doesn't matter) and most of these guys haven't seen a woman outside of the CO in a while. That combined with you being brand new you will hear the hooting and hollering and even some obscenities. I had to orient a nurse who had curves for days and a butt that would put JLO to shame and she went up at the first pill call with her jacket on and they hollered. The last pill call she did not and it was very obvious the size of her behind and we were already up doing the pill call before she realized it was a bad idea. I told her it was but she found out soon enough and we had to stop pill call for her to go retrieve her jacket.

    The owrk is easy and you will be able to study. Just consider the facts and ask someone at your local facilities and see what they tell you.
  4. by   nurseT
    Quote from Coloradogrl
    I am in a LPN program and I was talking to a friend of mine that is a Correctional Nurse and told her that I was maybe intersted in getting into Correctional Nursing and she started LAUGHING and said I was too cute, cheerful, & young(I will be 25 when I will be done with school)

    I dont know if I am offended or to be thankful she told me that! I dont want to sound selfcentered but I am very good looking and I try to always have a good attitude...I always thought that was a + about me!

    I just thought Correctional nursing would be a good way to gain experience & also good pay....to help pay for my RN bridge program
    She probably wasn't trying to insult you. Correctional nurses and ER nurses as well are just a different breed. We are more straight up with others and don't have time to pussyfoot around "feelings". She was most likely remembering herself at your age or nursing level. Looks don't mean anything. You could be a real dog and have the ugliest clothes. All men only think about what's under those clothes. I'm not bad to look at myself and pretty much wear what I want. Never anything outright sexy. That would be in bad taste in any setting. Sometimes I wear scrubs, sometimes business casual with a lab coat over top. If any inmate makes any kind of stupid remark to me the officers would intervene immediately. I've been called 2 things by the inmates: " You're pretty and That red headed Bee-eye-tee-cee-h". You will need to have good assessment skills. I would never suggest a new nurse start out in Corrections.
  5. by   Mudwoman
    Here is an easy way to test to see if you have what it takes to be a correctional nurse IMHO.

    Go to any big Honky-tonk bar and be a waitress for a week. If at the end of the week, you have been nice to every customer, NEVER wanted to give your phone number to anyone, NEVER felt flattered by a comment and your body language told them that if they touched a hair on your head, the police would be looking for their body parts for the next 50 years, you'll be okay.

    Then go to a large Truck Stop and do the same thing.

    Then go read on this forum "Don't Do It".

    You have to have a quick mind and quick tongue. I had an inmate becoming more and more friendly in the hall-----actually a nice guy. Then one day he says "There's Ms. C, one of my best friends." I whirled around and told him real fast "Be very clear that I'm not your friend in any way. I'm the nurse here and an aquaintence and don't you be mistaken about that! If I ever hear you make that comment again, I'll write you up.!" At 25, you might just giggle and walk off or say thanks, and every inmate will know that by the end of the day----you are a target.

    Yesterday, I had an inmate put in an emergency sick call for groin pain following a basketball game. Thought is: maybe he has a hernia. Upon examination that didn't show anything, he says to me that he has had pain like this once before and the doc told him it was because he needed sex-----although he was a little more graphic. I didn't miss a beat and told him "well you came to the wrong place for that here. I guess you'll be hurting" Told the guard he could get him out of there. Then the inmate is a llittle miffed and says "don't I get something for pain?" I said "well, tylenol isn't going to help you, so, the answer is NO---OUT." He was holding his side and crying coming in: could hardly walk. He walked out just fine. At 25, you might have been embarrassed examining him. You might have fallen for "this is the worst pain I've ever had". You might have given him pain medication. If so, you are now a target.

    You have to be very aware of the fact that these are criminals. They are in prison for doing very bad things. They are in prison for the things they got caught doing, not everything wrong they did. They are the ultimate con artists. Some are just plain Evil. They want to play games. If you become a target, they know they can wear you down and get something from you. They have nothing else to do, but win the game.

    According to other employees I talk to, the women are even worse.

    Do you have the experience to be able to see the CON? Is the only person that flatters you, your husband? Are you quick minded? Can you put someone in their place with a razor sharp tongue without even thinking twice?
  6. by   jamangel
    Well, that was well put mud woman. That should be a sticky.
  7. by   Coloradogrl
    All of your advice really has helped!!!

    I consider myself pretty conservated and understand that they are criminals but I am not sure if I am "quick tounged" I hate to say this but I would most likely be a "target" ....I hate to admit this but I do have a nervous giggle...I giggle a lot(I hate to say this but I have notice that some guys do like it!)
  8. by   erichRN
    Having been both a CO and a correctional nurse, I echo what has been said so far. Not everything is as it seems and you can get in over your head real fast. It sounds like maybe it might not be for you.
  9. by   jamangel
    Colorado you might want to try something else.
  10. by   ex1140
    I was working with a NP one night, on my old job, and I told her that I wanted to be a corrections nurse. The first thing she said to me was...those inmates are going to love you. A pretty girl like you working in a prison...but be careful. I would say you will have to keep your eyes on the officers instead of the inmates...the inmates make their little comments, but none of them have disrespected me to my face...at my facility that will get you confinement. The worst thing I have experienced is "gunning"...oh boy!


    Do you remember the woman that worked in the restraurant from the movie "Mr. Deeds" starring Adam Sandler? She was big and burly and fought like a man... :smiley_ab

    Well, you don't have to be like her . It's true these people are in prison for a reason, but it's not my place to judge them for what they may or may not have done. I have heard of nurses being attacked, but the same story follows those incidents..."She was a mean nurse she didn't respect the inmate and she intimidated him every chance she got"...

    Follow your heart...and don't go into corrections for the money...if you are really interested I would say sign up with an agency that sends nurses to correctional facilities. That way if you don't like it then you can just ask to be sent elsewhere. And you should make more money if do corrections with an agency...I am strongly considering the same thing, because the pay will be higher and I wont have to deal with all the changes and politics.

    And remember being assertive is important no matter where you work as a nurse. The things that qualify a nurse for corrections is her know how and dedication to her profession...not her ability to man handle the inmates.
    Last edit by ex1140 on Oct 23, '06
  11. by   jamangel
    i agree
  12. by   HOOSIERNW
    Pay attention to the other posts.
    Get in 1 year of med surg.
    If you decide to work in a prison, skip the women's prison.
  13. by   hospicemom
    any one of my inmates make one remark about how pretty I am...I tell them that is inappropriate and next time they get a ticket. Gotta put your foot down right away and they know to be good boys from there on out.
  14. by   VegRN
    Honestly, I think it has way less to do with how you look and much much more with how you carry yourself (confidence!), how you take control of the situation, speak to and react to inmates. Initially the focus may be on your looks and naivatee but if you don't take any of their crap, they look elsewhere for targets.
    I would not necessaily dissuade new nurses from starting in corrections. Some nurses who have all the experience in the world would never make it in corrections-too trusting and easily manipuated, not assertive enough etc. . While other even new nurses have the personality for corrections,i.e straighforward, not afraid to say no, not easily pulled into games and flattery by inmates.
    I highly recomend you read the book "Games Criminals Play" by Allen/Bosta. Excellent book for anyone working with or wanting to work with the wayward members of society.
    Good luck!

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