Quote from Darjeeling22
I was asked the other day by an RN family friend how I could possibly be thinking about going into nursing when I couldn't even be selfless enough to take care of a child. Couple of weeks ago I was even told that patients wouldn't trust me as much if they thought I "hated men and children" (!!!!), and that getting hired would be harder since "family life shows that you're a reliable, caring person". These are just a handful of negative opinions I've been served, and they're certainly jarring.
I'm hoping this kind of attitude is just due to the region I live in now. But it's making me feel truly awful. Is it that strange to find a single, childless person over 30 in nursing? And is there really that strong of a general impression that a single woman is an inadequate caregiver?
The attitudes you are encountering are ignorant and reprehensible. Simply not having a husband or kids does NOT mean you "hate" men and children. Moreover, there are MANY single, childless people in health care professions. Have any of your detractors heard of someone named Florence Nightingale?
Additionally, there are also many wonderful, caring nurses who happen to be homosexual. Unfortunately, there are far too many ignorant homophobes, even among health care professionals, and anyone who dares to be different will likely experience negative remarks. A gay friend from nursing school endured discrimination from instructors and snide insults and comments from fellow students. It's been over twenty years and I am still outraged about how he was treated by members of a so-called "caring" profession. Have heard similar stories from lesbian nurses and students. :angryfire
To the OP, it doesn't matter if you're straight, gay, bisexual or asexual. It doesn't matter if you're married or single and it certainly doesn't matter WHY you are single. You need to be happy with yourself and your lifestyle. Anyone who tries to make you doubt your ability to care, simply because of your single lifestyle, is completely out of line and is projecting his/her own insecurities onto you. Go out there, become an excellent nurse, and show your detractors they are WRONG.
Quote from fuzzywuzzy
I think this has less to do with nursing and more to do with being childless in general. People without children get flack for it all the time, and I will never understand why it's so offensive to other people when someone decides not to have kids. The comments about how not having children is selfish are among my favorites... they don't even make sense. Plenty of people have children for very selfish reasons, and plenty of people choose NOT to have children for SELFLESS reasons. In the end, it doesn't matter whether you were selfish or not, because it's an effing personal decision and no one else's business! Are you HURTING anyone by being single and childless? I think not. Meanwhile there are people all over the world making babies who will be abused, neglected, etc., but YOU'RE the selfish one.
If someone wants kids, has them, raises them in a great environment to be good people, then power to them. But it has absolutely nothing to do with you.
Thank you, Fuzzywuzzy, for your eloquent statements. The decision not to have children can be one of the most mature, selfless decisions a person can make. Additionally, there are families that have fertility problems. Does that mean they're not "real" families if they have in-vitro, use a sperm or egg donor, adopt, or not have children at all? The stigma against childless couples is ridiculous. As you said so well, some people have children for selfish reasons and others don't take care of the children they have brought into the world. No one can make a blanket statement that someone with children is "caring" and without children is "selfish."
BTW, I have children and, ironically, I've had to put up with ignorant comments because I chose to leave nursing for several years to be a SAHM. "Oh, you'd be so much further ahead in your career if you would have worked all those years." Right. As a SAHM, I did no work---just sat on the couch, watched soaps and ate bon-bons all day. Whatever.