First and Last Year in Nursing - page 2

I've been an RN for six months. I had a half-a**ed orientation to the SICU that I work in, and have been off orientation for about 2 months. The work load can be ridiculous, the pay stinks, and it... Read More

  1. by   RNLisa
    Quote from CTRNTOBE
    All I have to say is: What exactly did all of you expect? Flowers and balloons at the beginning of each shift and a foot massage at the end?
    Wow, thanks for being sympathetic dude. I don't think this was called for at all. If you have nothing to offer as far as advice or a "shoulder", then lay off.
  2. by   youngatheart
    kellerpatty, You described just what I have been going through. I am a new nurse just having graduated in June 2006. I really question my career choice sometimes. I had a bad orientation and feel like I am still on my own.
  3. by   dear3535
    Quote from kellerpatty
    There are realizations that this profession will be different from many others they might have experienced before, but the few things that I specifically didn't expect were: 14 hours shifts, no time for food of any kind even though they dock your pay 30 minutes every shift for meal time, peeing once a shift because there's just no time, managers messing around with your schedule without asking or even telling you, patient families that threaten you, coworkers that don't show up or show up and do nothing, co-workers that reek of alcohol, co-workers that leave patients in terrible condition and no supplies in the room (at all), no recourse to any of the above because the "bigshots" go home at 17:00, being hit, spit on, kicked, changing unconscious patients' bedding at least twice a night, no techs to help..
    Wow.. kellerpatty, you described the exact my work environment.. that's how I spent my night's at work day after day.. it's sad.. really sad.. I do not hate nursing and enjoy working with patients - but poor condition of nursing environment with hardly any support is driving me away from nursing.. Well, today is my last night at work.. As being a nurse, I have tremendous respect for all nurses - I personally think that it is above and beyond of we give to our patients.. I wish we could get more support..
  4. by   kellerpatty
    Dear Dear 3535:

    Thanks for the note, I'm glad I'm not alone in the way I feel. I worked hard to become a nurse and also enjoy being one. I also really want to help my patients and their families get better. I'm sorry to hear that one more nurse has become disillusioned and unhappy enough to leave. I really I wish you the very best in whatever your future holds. Maybe someday you will reconsider nursing and return...maybe things will have improved, or you might even find a better area of nursing. Anyway, take care and good luck!
  5. by   laughing weasel
    I am LVN and work home health care. The pay is a little better and the hours are better also. Before you waste your education try that. Try to find someone who actually works for the agency that you are considering. Home healthcare visits are another option they are very flexible. Good luck. Don’t leave we need more nurses.
  6. by   RNSacht
    Quote from CTRNTOBE
    All I have to say is: What exactly did all of you expect? Flowers and balloons at the beginning of each shift and a foot massage at the end?
    Just a question: Why do people insist on making comments about something they know nothing about??? This comment very obviously does not come from a nurse
  7. by   DolphinRN84
    I just wanted to wish you all the best. I am a new nurse and believe me...I know how you all feel. There are days where I feel like I just can't do this...though I like patient care..and don't mind the "dirty work." It's just so overwhelming....we do need more nurses...there are other options out there for nurses. All the best to all of us. :icon_hug:
  8. by   hlgarrett77
    I am in my first year in a SICU. The thing I noticed the most is the old saying that older nurses "eat their young". I think it's especially true in critical care. No matter how much I know and how many inane little questions I answer correctly, I still get hounded and treated like a baby. Just reading this board makes me realize that nursing could be in a much worse position soon if current nurses don't make a huge effort to treat new and existing nurses with respect and compassion. I guess what we new nurses can offer is the vow to give nursing a real try and not give up without a fight, after all four years was a long time to go to school for something. We also need to remember what we are going through and not put anyone else through the same thing. We may not be able to make the providers treat us well, but we sure can do something about ourselves and fellow RNs. Whew! I think I'll just step off of my soapbox now.
  9. by   RNsRWe
    Quote from CTRNTOBE
    All I have to say is: What exactly did all of you expect? Flowers and balloons at the beginning of each shift and a foot massage at the end?
    Gosh, that's IT! That's EXACTLY what the spring crop of new grads expected, thanks for reminding us.

    Since you're still a student, I'm going to share a bit of something I've learned in the six months since graduation. Somehow, even with the uncountable hours committed to clinical care, nursing labs, study groups, and who knows what other projects everyone had to do in their various programs, NOTHING prepares you completely for what to REALLY expect. I say this as someone who is no newbie at life, at corporate jobs, or at hard work. I say this as someone who kept her eyes open during my clinical rotations, listened when the nurses talked (shop, that is), and still somehow thought it'd be different for me. Naive? No....just human nature. We all wanted to be nurses so badly, for whatever our own individual reasons were, that we were "prepared" to face down whatever challenges were thrown at us.

    Most of us still are. We just are kinda shell-shocked because with all the preparation in the world, NO student assignment has EVER come close to what we're actually expected to do on a day-to-day basis. NONE.

    So no, we didn't expect flowers and balloons. But for many of us, the harsher-than-even-we-expected reality is a personal crisis. Most of us will overcome it, I believe, in the end....and stay nurses. And some of us won't. During the time in between the first crisis and the final decision, a message board like this may be the only support the new nurse will receive.

    Please remember that.
  10. by   crb613
    Quote from CTRNTOBE
    All I have to say is: What exactly did all of you expect? Flowers and balloons at the beginning of each shift and a foot massage at the end?
    You mean thats a myth? I guess the Limo won't be picking me up either! :uhoh21:
    Back to topic....I am sorry you are having such a hard time. I am a new nurse too & I know how hard it can be. I am stuck on nights & simply hate I understand exactly how it can turn you & your "life" up side down! I hope you find an area that works for you soon! Good luck we are here for you! :kiss
  11. by   porterwoman
    You guys, I hope you will hang in there because, even though that first year is horrid, it does get better!
    I'm new too; I've been out of school only about a year and 1/2. It has gotten better. SICU is a very, very tough place to start out, and with an incomplete orientation, well, I'd imagine it's darn near hellacious. I think a change of setting is a great idea. How about ASU/outpatient? The pts are much more stable; they have their procedures, then they go home! Then after 8 hrs, you go home too!

    Without adequate support for new nurses, it's no wonder people want to leave.

    And I will echo this sentiment--it's true that school is nothing like the real world.

    There are so many other options out there that I hope you will try at least one different setting/area/facility before leaving nursing. I don't know if you're working nights..? Sometimes the switch from one shift to the other makes all the difference, too. Good luck, new grads.
  12. by   Sheri257
    Quote from CTRNTOBE
    All I have to say is: What exactly did all of you expect? Flowers and balloons at the beginning of each shift and a foot massage at the end?
    I wish my fellow students would shut up and quit saying things like this to new grads and veteran RN's alike. It's totally disrespectful to belittle the real problems that are happening out there. As students we will find this out for ourselves soon enough.

    I've been externing in addition to clinicals and, while it's still a far cry from having to do the real job, I can already see how tough it's going to be. As students, we have no clue what it's really like. It's nothing like doing the entire job yourself with your license on the line.

    These kinds of remarks give students a bad name.

    Last edit by Sheri257 on Dec 1, '06
  13. by   amy0123
    I am a mess at this moment. One second I think I'm doing fine and flying through the shift with everything done, the next I get phone calls at home with questions from other nurses about my patients. I forgot to sign a med on the MAR, a patient complained to the nurse that they've received a certain drug already or I read the insulin scale wrong and gave too much insulin. Being a new nurse stinks. I have so many patients to run around and complete tasks for. It's just not fair.

    I have all these loans to pay back from attending nursing school! Somehow it needs to be paid off!

    What do I do? What is a safe nursing job that I could get into without killing a patient? I want that job. I just can't do this...!