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Does anyone else get emotionally exhausted from this job?

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by Blue_Moon Blue_Moon, BSN, RN (Member)

Blue_Moon has 18 years experience as a BSN, RN and works as a Registered Nurse.

1 Article; 4,751 Visitors; 429 Posts

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I don't find my job too physically tiring at all but I am mentally drained by the end of the day. I find myself counting down to every day off, every holiday break, etc because I need it so bad. I'm sure it doesn't help that we have a higher percentage of kids living in poverty than not.  I never seem to have energy to do anything fun either unless we happen to have a 3 day weekend. I spend so much time on the weekends catching up on housework and taking care of my own family and kids I don't have much time left over for anything extra. Does anyone else feel that way?

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BunnyBunnyBSNRN has 13 years experience as a ASN, BSN and works as a School Nurse.

1 Follower; 12,468 Visitors; 794 Posts

yes!

I carry so much of these kids home with me - despite the fact that I often come off as uncaring or uncompassionate.  This is my 5th year as a school nurse and I still carry kids from my first year more than 10 years ago.  I wonder what happened to them and where they are. 

The only thing I can say is, if it really drains you in a way that seriously detracts from your quality of life, then you may need to find a new line of work.  Nursing is hard, especially for those of us that connect on such a deep emotional level with others.

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SaltineQueen works as a School Nurse.

1 Follower; 5,690 Visitors; 671 Posts

Yes!  I have a relatively "calm" school.  Only about 300 kiddos, no major health issues.  But when I get home I sit in my chair & could easily crack off a nap most days.

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beachynurse has 33 years experience as a BSN and works as a School Nurse.

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I totally get you. I am in a large high school, about 2100 students. I don't have a lot of poverty, it's a more affluent area, but the juggling that I have to do in order to keep the parents happy, the kids happy, and my administrators happy leaves me totally wiped at the end of the day. The only thing I think about is my couch. Our motto here is "we don't want to piss off the parents", so I have to do a delicate dance. It's not fun when I have an MD order that they forgot to sign, but has his /her name printed on the order, and I can't accept it. Try telling the parent, who goes to my administrator, (not medical), who then comes and tells me that I WILL take that order and medication.. It's so rediculous. I'm told that I am being difficult when they are trying to make relationships with the parents. I am so tired of wasting my breath over and over again.... So I feel your pain....

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ruby_jane has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN.

2 Followers; 7,402 Visitors; 2,113 Posts

Yes. What helps me is 1) Not caring more than the parent does; 2) having a good rapport with both the administrator and your boss; 3) discussion with the administrator about what s/he wants/expects so that even if you disagree, you'll know up front and s/he will defend you; and 4)  the knowledge that I only have 36 school days left before summer break! WOOHOO!!!

I started going to the gym in the AM (school starts at 0800). It's helped some. I also have my Fit bit trigger me when I am sedentary so I get my steps in every hour. It's helped....some.

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BiscuitRN has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN and works as a School Nurse.

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13 minutes ago, beachynurse said:

Try telling the parent, who goes to my administrator, (not medical), who then comes and tells me that I WILL take that order and medication.. It's so rediculous. I'm told that I am being difficult when they are trying to make relationships with the parents.

Oooh boy do I relate.  We (as a school) also have a very customer-service based relationship with parents.  I've had to explain multiple times that I'm not just being a stickler for rules, I am following the law and protecting my nursing license.  To go against our policy would be putting my integrity and my career on the line.

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beachynurse has 33 years experience as a BSN and works as a School Nurse.

850 Visitors; 77 Posts

9 minutes ago, BiscuitRN said:

Oooh boy do I relate.  We (as a school) also have a very customer-service based relationship with parents.  I've had to explain multiple times that I'm not just being a stickler for rules, I am following the law and protecting my nursing license.  To go against our policy would be putting my integrity and my career on the line.

She doesn't want to hear that. When I tell her that she rolls her eyes and tells me how difficult I am. I can't stand it that she just barges into my office and will interrupt wheatever I'm doing to raise her voice at me. She has no experience in the medical field, and has no idea what responsibility we hold in our hands. We have to protect our licenses, the students, and the school. Thats a huge load to carry, and she doesn't get that by tryng to undermine me by trying to make me do soemthing that I simply can't do only makes her look foolish. I am sooooo exhausted just dealing with her...

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BiscuitRN has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN and works as a School Nurse.

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1 minute ago, beachynurse said:

She doesn't want to hear that. When I tell her that she rolls her eyes and tells me how difficult I am. I can't stand it that she just barges into my office and will interrupt wheatever I'm doing to raise her voice at me. She has no experience in the medical field, and has no idea what responsibility we hold in our hands. We have to protect our licenses, the students, and the school. Thats a huge load to carry, and she doesn't get that by tryng to undermine me by trying to make me do soemthing that I simply can't do only makes her look foolish. I am sooooo exhausted just dealing with her...

Wow.  That's horrible that you have to deal with an administrator who tries to steam roll you.  She sounds incredibly immature to not understand there are legalities in nursing.  

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ruby_jane has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN.

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5 minutes ago, beachynurse said:

She doesn't want to hear that. When I tell her that she rolls her eyes and tells me how difficult I am. I can't stand it that she just barges into my office and will interrupt wheatever I'm doing to raise her voice at me. She has no experience in the medical field, and has no idea what responsibility we hold in our hands. We have to protect our licenses, the students, and the school. Thats a huge load to carry, and she doesn't get that by tryng to undermine me by trying to make me do soemthing that I simply can't do only makes her look foolish. I am sooooo exhausted just dealing with her...

I am waiting for Old Dude to chime in here. Bottom line - no non-medical person can direct my nursing care. If she raises her voice to you, can you say "I'm happy to talk with you when you're calm. Raised voice is not appropriate in the school setting." Document the pants off of that. I'm sorry. It truly must be exhausting. Does your nursing manager know?

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beachynurse has 33 years experience as a BSN and works as a School Nurse.

850 Visitors; 77 Posts

13 minutes ago, ruby_jane said:

I am waiting for Old Dude to chime in here. Bottom line - no non-medical person can direct my nursing care. If she raises her voice to you, can you say "I'm happy to talk with you when you're calm. Raised voice is not appropriate in the school setting." Document the pants off of that. I'm sorry. It truly must be exhausting. Does your nursing manager know?

Unfortunately, she is my manager. Our nurse manager is an indirect supervisor that has no say about anything that goes on in the schools. She just directs thge program, that's it. I am just over her. I know she's over me, but I refuse to back down, I can't. It's my license, my livlihood, not hers. 

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Blue_Moon has 18 years experience as a BSN, RN and works as a Registered Nurse.

1 Article; 4,751 Visitors; 429 Posts

Yes exactly! I can relate to all of this. Worrying about the kids and what they are living with and then trying to make people understand we have rules for a reason. I've had to explain so many times why I need an actual dr's order and no I can't make an exception and yes you have to make the effort to get your child to the dr and why is that so hard when you have a medical card and a car and don't work for goodness sake?

I've also had to deal with other principals in the past and wanting to please the parents and make it easy for them. Beachynurse you have to stand your ground and say it's state rules, not your own and you're not risking your career because a parent doesn't want to do their job. Or maybe if you have a nurse manager she/he can talk to her for you. It's really hard being the only medical person because the staff are always shocked I have a separate license I have to protect and all these rules that go along with my practice. One teacher was shocked that I have to chart on every single student I see and said maybe I should quit sending you so many. You think?!!

I'm glad I'm not alone! Thanks for all the responses!!

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Flare is a ASN, BSN and works as a School nurse firefighter.

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yes - to all of this.  I hear you and feel you.  i think it's good to know that so many of us have the same type issues.  I am a stickler for rules and laws.  I won't bend or break them simply because a parent is crowing to an administrator about it.  At the end of the day, it's my license, it's my livelihood.  I'm sorry (not sorry) if you don't like my painfully high standards.  but that's what keeps everyone safe.  

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