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First clinical and I want to quit

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Today I had my second day at our clinical site. We only take care of one patient each day and it's been miserable for me. I haven't had a patient that is up to talking or communicating and I feel like I'm doing everything wrong. I definitely learn something new everyday I'm there, but I can't help but leaving thinking how horrible of a nurse im going to make or how much I hate clinical. Any advice? Would I know that I had it in me to be a nurse right away or is it something that takes time?!

Do not take it personal, most people hate the fact that they in the hospital and want nothing more than to not be there. For everyone has days where they rather not speak. Just go about your learning and in time you will definitely come across others that all they want to do is talk and not let you go finish your work.

IVRUS, BSN, RN

Specializes in Vascular Access. Has 32 years experience.

Has your instructor said that you've been performing inadequately? If not, then why are you beating yourself up? I believe you have to ask yourself, "Why did I go into nursing?" If it was to help return people to wellness, if it was because you are a compassionate person, wanting to provide help, then just know that the patient you assisted, needed that help, and if you did the best with the knowledge that you have, what's the problem? You will get wiser, and one day, you should be able to talk care of the entire patient, to the best of your ability, and go home each day knowing you gave your all. If you are hating clinical, you must ask yourself why. If you are working with demented geriatric patients who were non-verbal, and you are not finding fulfillment there, then perhaps geriatrics aren't for you. But each clinical rotation gives you the insight as to which area may work best for you. Personally, I have had too many students who tell me that they got into nursing just to make a better salary. Auuugggghhh... Wrong profession for that, IMO!

datalore

Specializes in Cardiac/Tele.

Consider it from this angle: you're in an unfamiliar setting trying to learn names and where everything is stored, you've got a boatload of new skills you're still feeling new with, you haven't had a chance to find a "flow" to your day... and on top of that you're still learning to communicate with patients you just met (a skill that definitely takes practice). I wouldn't expect *anyone* with all that going on to feel comfortable! Some students feel a little more comfortable than others, but everyone feels anxious in the beginning. Evaluate how much you enjoy the field after things start to feel a little more familiar, then you'll have a better idea.

In the meantime, ask your instructor for feedback/ideas about building rapport with patients - they might have some tips/tricks to make at least that aspect a little less intimidating. Best of luck to you!

LoriRNCM, ADN, ASN, RN

Specializes in Hospice. Has 3 years experience.

Waaaaay too early to make that call.

Wave Watcher

Specializes in Community Health/School Nursing. Has 7 years experience.

I hated clinicals! Never had one clinical site I enjoyed. I had the same doubts as you. After I graduated with my ASN I made sure I enrolled in an online RN-BSN program that did not require anymore clinical hours. Now, I did enjoy bedside nursing once I graduated. It was different. I could focus on my patient and their needs without worry my instructor was going to jump me or thinking about all the care plans I was going to have to write that night. I am now a school nurse and LOVE my job. This is it for me. I have found my true love. Hang in there. It can take time.

Don't give up so soon! I am in my first clinical rotation too! I have had some patients that don't want to talk and some that talk my ear off. Talk to your clinical instructor, I am certain they can offer some insight. Maybe even assign you a different patient if need be.

Everyone had clinical days (heck, entire clinical rotations) that they hated. I agree it's 'way too early to be deciding you're not working out in nursing. Give yourself some more time to get familiar and comfortable with what you're doing. You can always quit school later on. :)

Everyone had clinical days (heck, entire clinical rotations) that they hated. I agree it's 'way too early to be deciding you're not working out in nursing. Give yourself some more time to get familiar and comfortable with what you're doing. You can always quit school later on. :)

totally me lol

You're going to be fine as a nurse. Know how I know? Nothing in your post talked about how you hate doing the dirty work or get sick of your patient. You don't dislike the nursing aspect of your clinical; you dislike the nursing school aspect of it.

Most people really don't love clinical days. I hate mine. I hate the uniforms, the fact that I have to wake up at 4:30 am, the loads of paperwork, the stress of planning my day around the 9 other students I'm sharing my 1 clinical instructor with, the fact that I get one patient and am thus bored a lot of the time. And yet, I've become comfortable with it. You'll get there, too, OP :). Just remember that the real world of nursing is very different from what you do in nursing school. This, too, shall pass.

Kathy H

Specializes in Psychiatry. Has 20+ years experience.

Today I had my second day at our clinical site. We only take care of one patient each day and it's been miserable for me. I haven't had a patient that is up to talking or communicating and I feel like I'm doing everything wrong. I definitely learn something new everyday I'm there, but I can't help but leaving thinking how horrible of a nurse im going to make or how much I hate clinical. Any advice? Would I know that I had it in me to be a nurse right away or is it something that takes time?!

My heart goes out to you but please realize that what you are feeling in your first couple of clinical days is quite normal. It's hard to know what to expect and then very easy to feel inadequate. I remember in my first clinicals; it was more like custodial care/cna type work along with the clinical aspect.

I would definitely say hang in there. We all went through the clinicals and the first experiences are not necessarily good ones. You have to get the basics down and no one expects you to be proficient from day 1. You will have other areas of clinicals that I bet you'll really like even when they're challenging.

Remember why you chose nursing and remember that nursing is not only a job, it's an art. And it will take time to find your niche. If nursing is not for you, it's not your first clinicals that will determine that. Nursing is so much more than that and there are so many specialties and areas you can go for once you're licensed. Good Luck and have faith.

Kathy

I felt like this with CNA clinical. I am not a super chatty person, and I got the sense that my instructor was not terribly impressed by me, so I asked her what I could improve on. Sure enough, she was critical of the fact that I wasn't engaging that much with the residents. I always had residents that did not seem like they wanted to talk, so I was at a loss. I went home and cried, honestly.

I am feeling much better now with nursing school. I still struggle a bit with keeping a conversation going, but you know what? If that's the worst thing about me, that's hardly the end of the world and that's something I am always going to have a chance to practice. I would ask your instructor for advice and try not to panic about it. Clinicals are awkward by nature.

Everline

Specializes in public health, women's health, reproductive health.

As others have said, this is normal. There may be some people out there who will claim they loved every single clinical day in nursing school. But most of us had our ups and downs. One of my first clinical days, I came home, got in the shower and cried. I actually never got to the point where I loved clinical. But I did have good days mixed in with the not so good. The problem with clinical for me was having a clinical instructor over me, judging me and with the potential to fail me at any wrong turn...or at least that's how it felt. I have since graduated and would not want to go back and redo all that again. But I do look forward to building my own nursing practice. You will get through. Just take it easy on yourself. This is new to you. Give it time.

NurseSpeedy, ADN, LPN, RN

Has 18 years experience.

Don't get discouraged because it's way too early and I know exactly how you feel. My first clinical day I had one patient (as did all the other students) I really lucked out because I was assigned to the combative dementia patient that they sat it front of the nurses desk in the hospital with a wheel chair and a bedside table in front (apparently she needed to be monitored 24/7). Well, when I finally got her to go into her room so that I could do the assessment she slapped me. Then when I tried to help her with a bath she poured the bedside basin all over the front of my uniform before I knew what she was doing! I didn't want to go back but I did. Eventually clinicals got better and I've been doing this for years. If I had given up nursing and went back for something different based on that first experience I would have regretted it. You'll do fine, just give it time.

I am sure most new nursing students feel the same about beginning clinical. Talk with your instructor. Be open about how you feel. Remember this is all new and can be very intimidating at first. Remember to ask questions if you don't feel comfortable with something and never do something you are not allowed to do.