DUI's & Licensure - page 4

OK Here goes. Ten years ago I got two DUI's. Now I'm pretty sure that those two won't affect me with licensure as long as I petition the boards effectively. Just yesterday I found out that I was... Read More

  1. by   geekgolightly

    I am so glad that you are pushing forward and taking these steps to ensure that you get the help you need and that you can continue to pursue your dream.

    Even after I quit drinking, for a number of years, I was convinced that my problem wasn;t "bad," and that I was not drinking because I was just sick of the hangovers. After many many years of sobriety, I can say with full confidence that I am an alcoholic, and I was a fool to think otherwise.
  2. by   sbn8tv
    Thanks Geek. It is nice to have your karma helping with the push forward.
  3. by   jacolaur
    Originally posted by passing thru
    Sounds like A LOT ?? For YOU?

    When I think of all the people I know whose lives

    have been destroyed because of drunk drivers.......................,

    well, just excuse me, I cannot muster any sympathy for you.
    I felt the same way then I sat back and thought .....hmm....I certainly am no saint, she is getting herself together, ....but then jeeesh... "3 DUI's", no matter how how far apart, is causing red flags all over the place for me.

    As we all know nursing in itself is so strenuous and taxing. Is she ready to stay tuff under the pressures of this career? Nursing school is no walk in the park but it is NOTHING compared to being out in the real world and working as a nurse....as long as she is being totally honest with herself..not just saying what a bunch of strangers on a bullitin board want to hear ...and truly facing reality maybe she is ready. I hope she is not saying that this was just BAD LUCK.. Instead she should be saying "this is a serious problem I have with alcohol, it is destroying my life, my families life, and G-d only knows the innocent people around me's life when I'm tooling around in a car with just a couple drinks under my belt ". She took a chance and got caught, how many other chances were there that she wasn't caught..you never play chance when other peoples lives are at stake...and in nursing it is daily that other lives are at stake..I'm sorry making nicey nice with the school and BON isn't enough...wait list yourself then do everything you say you are going to do and start nursing school next year with a clean slate. When I was in nursing school I barely had time to pee....let alone if I had needed to see a therapist, and all the other things she needs to do to get herself truly well.

    One year is not that long prove to yourself and everyone around you that this problem is finished, over, and conquered. Prove to yourself, your family and everyone around you that you are whole, healthy, and ready to pursue the dream that you so badly want. Prove that you had the strenghth to overcome and you are ready to be the best nurse, co-worker, wife and mother that the world has to offer. Maybe then I'll be in awe and more forgiving.
  4. by   colleen10
    I just wanted to add that I thought Jacolaur's perspective was interesting, unique and one that I had not considered.

    Nursing School, aside from as Jacolaur mentioned, is emotionaly draining/straining, etc., also requires a significant amount of fortitude, sacrifice, maturity and judgement.

    According to your user bio. here on the board you are in your 30's (years old). Old enough to know, even without your prior history, that drinking and driving is a serious issue with serious consequences. Despite whether or not you have issues with alcohol or a "gene" for it, your actions on July 4th show that you used poor judgement, did not sacrifice your needs and wants for the safety of others and lack a level of maturity necessary to keep you from getting behind the wheel of a car intoxicated. A level of maturity that most would have thought you would have reached the first two times you did so in the past.

    I think you realize all of this, and are probably feeling a multitude of emotions such as guilt, embarrasment, stupidity, etc. True, everyone makes bad decisions, but what makes the difference is learning from those bad decisions so that you don't make more in the future. So far, it does not appear that you have learned from poor choices made in the past.

    If you can learn from this experience and try to understand the issues you have with alcohol and why you made a bad choice and how to use better judgement in the future and gain maturity from it, then I think you will do just fine in nursing school.

    Otherwise, if you cannot, I truly do not belive you will be successful in your academic endeavors. As one of our instructors says, "you'll be out on the floor, do something or say something wrong, and your clinical instructor will say "UNSAFE" and off the floor you'll be."

    In the meantime, you may want to do some self examination and see if you think you really are prepared for nursing school. Not that you will never be a nurse, but perhaps right now just isn't the best time for you to proceed with school until you can pull yourself together, proove that you can make good judgements and have matured and know that you are 110% ready for school. Only then will you achieve maximum success in your education.

    "You did what you knew, and when you knew better, you did better." - M. Angelou
  5. by   Liddle Noodnik
    Hi hon, am posting this in the spirit of letting you know I'm a recovering alkie for 17 years. It isn't so bad; actually I have more fun now than I ever did drinking. Well, some good times are etched in my memory but they were only in the beginning.

    Anyway the following is rather dry but I thought interesting. In my experience in AA would a sane person get into a car when they have been drinking? Would a sane person get into a car when they've been drinking ESPECIALLY when they were caught before, and two times? Insanity is defined as doing the same thing over and over (and over!) expecting different results.

    I can find you the site (forgot to write it down) if you want, there is of course more stuff to read there, let me know if you need it.

    Bottom line tho', if you or anybody want to talk to me about this PLEASE private message me and I will be more than happy!

    I am not saying you are an alcoholic, alcoholism is the one disease that can only be diagnosed by the patient! Good luck!

    "hardcore drunk drivers" are individuals

    1. who drive with a high blood alcoholconcentration (BAC) of .15 or above,


    who do so repeatedly, as demonstrated by having more than one drunk driving arrest, and

    3. who are highly resistant to changing their behavior despite previous sanctions, treatment, or education efforts.

    High BACs

    While hardcore offenders constitute a relatively small number of drivers, they account for a disproportionately large share of drunk driving problems. For example, it is estimated that while drivers with BACs in excess of .15 are only 1% of all drivers on weekend nights, they are involved in nearly 50% of all fatal crashes at that time. In the United States in 1995, almost one-third (27%) of all fatally injured drivers had BACs in excess of .15, and they represent almost two-thirds (65%) of all fatally injured drivers who had been drinking.1

    ... . To reach a BAC of .15, a man weighing 176 pounds would have to consume seven drinks in one hour. Drivers with a BAC of .15 or above are over 200 times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than the average non-drinking driver.1

    Repeat Behavior

    Research has demonstrated a strong relationship between a high BAC and the likelihood of having a previous driving-while-intoxicated DWI) conviction. The 1995 Fatal Accident Reporting System (FARS) data show that previous DWI convictions increase in direct correlation with increases in BAC. For example, only 1.7% of non-drinking drivers had a prior DWI conviction compared to 12% of those with BACs of .15 to .19. This percentage increases to 16% for those with a BAC of .20 or above .1

    Estimates indicate that at least 35 to 40% of fatally injured drinking drivers had a prior DWI conviction. Looking more specifically at those fatally injured drinking drivers with previous DWIs, 80% had BACs of .15 and over and almost 60% had BACs of .20 and over. These estimates are conservative based on limited reporting data.

    Because the risk of apprehension for drinking and driving is relatively low (estimates range from 1 in 200 trips in high enforcement areas to 1 in 2,000 in others), some-probably many-hardcore drunk drivers go undetected and aren't reflected in any statistics.

    Resistant to Change Hardcore drunk drivers are highly resistant to changing their behavior. That resistance often is characterized by repeat DWI convictions despite the public's disdain, previous sanctions, education, or treatment. Approximately 30% of all drinking drivers arrested for DWI have already been caught in the past by the police and sanctioned by judicial and administrative agencies. While the number of drivers involved in alcohol-related traffic fatalities has declined 32% in the past ten years (from 20,702 in 1986 to 14,158 in 1996), there has been considerably less improvement in the record of the hardcore drunk driver. 3 , 4

    To illustrate, in 1986, 41% of fatally injured drivers in the age group of 25 to 45 had BACs in excess of .15. In 1996, this had declined by only 10%.

    Recurrent Characteristics

    Hardcore drunk drivers are not a homogeneous group. A variety of problems, issues, and situations leads to their drinking and driving behavior. Although they are demographically diverse, the majority are men (some studies show an increasing proportion of women) between the ages of 25 and 45.

    Research also has found that, compared to all drivers, hardcore offenders often are more aggressive, hostile, and thrill-seeking. They are more likely to have a criminal record, to use drugs, and to have poor driving records. But perhaps most telling is their pattern of alcohol-related problems. Compared with first-time, driving-under-the-influence DUI) arrests, 83% of whom never have a second conviction, repeat offenders tend to have higher rates of alcoholism and alcohol-related problems, more frequent non-traffic criminal offenses, and more severe mental health problems. In addition, some studies suggest that there may be two types of hardcore recidivists:

    (1) individuals who are basically inclined to conform to the legal system, but have a severe alcohol abuse problem; and

    (2) individuals who are basically not inclined to conform to the legal system, for whom alcohol abuse is just one of an array of antisocial behaviors.
  6. by   rebelwaclause
    Originally posted by sbn8tv
    OK Here goes. Ten years ago I got two DUI's. Now I'm pretty sure that those two won't affect me with licensure as long as I petition the boards effectively.

    Just yesterday I found out that I was accepted to a ADN Nursing School.

    New problem on July 4th I got a DUI again. This legally only counts as my 1st DUI but I know the boards will see it as my third and most recent and at the time I would potentially take the NCLEX this DUI will only be 18 months old. This new DUI will not affect me getting into school because they don't know about it and I don't think I should tell them until it gets close to the end.

    I have been waiting for three years to get into this school and I think I may have just screwed myself. Does anyone think I have a chance of taking the NCLEX and working? I don't want to waste the money if there is no chance. I haven't heard of anyone in my shoes and I just need some advice so I can go on with my life RN or not.
    My opinion? Get off the booze....duh? I don't think I'd prefer you as my nurse on any given "drinking" holiday. Get sober now and think about nursing as a career after a few years sobriety.

  7. by   2rntish
    I can't help but think about the student athlete that was caught in a random drug screen with marijuana in his system. He was 18 y/o. At a major crossroad in life. Due to the zero tolerance attitude at the school he was expelled and inellegible for any extracurricular activities. He died 3 years later of a heroin overdose. He had A LOT of time on his hands after being expelled. Would he have benefited from a counselor with empathy instead of anger at a "young man throwing his life away"? Would he have travelled down the same road regardless of being caught or who his counselor was? We will never know. It always scares me when I read stories and see replies that hint at "zero tolerance". Do I want an impaired nurse taking care of me? Obvious answer. While we are here we might define impaired. ETOH, narcs, uppers, diet pills, mood elevators, sleeping pills that have not quite worn off yet...Who do I want taking care of me? The nurse who had a few too many at the ballpark or the diet pill addicted nurse...Let me think about it. Again, my wife and kids travel the highways of America everyday. I DO NOT WANT IDIOTS DRINKING AND DRIVING but we should not expel them from school, revoke their license..We should shpw them that we care by not letting them own a car for several years ;-)
  8. by   Liddle Noodnik
    Originally posted by 2rntish
    . It always scares me when I read stories and see replies that hint at "zero tolerance".
    It always scares me when people deny the seriousness of 3 OUI's. That is very telling in a society that protects the rights of those who are using a deadly weapon, a car, under the influence of alcohol.

    Once is too many, but ok, we could perhaps call it a mistake. But TWICE? then a THIRD time?

    What if it was your family member that was on the other end of that machine?
  9. by   colleen10
    Hmmmm....... I might be able to forgive an 18 year old person who makes a mistake once, but a 30 year old person who makes the same mistake 3 times? That's a problem. Apparently high fines, a bad driving record, possibly having their license suspended is not enough of a deterent.

    There is a reason that Nursing Schools, the BON and also other career fields like education/teaching/police dept. inquire about offenses like this. It can set a precident for future behavior. Does it always? Probably not, but when you see the same offense three times, it does make you wonder. It does not mean that the person is terrible and will never amount to anything. It does mean that this person has a problem whether it be substance abuse, poor judgement or just plain stupidity and that they need to get it in check.

    Life is full of choices everyday. Getting behind a vehicle after drinking and possibly causing an accident, injuring/killing others and/or yourself, getting arrested for a DUI is a no brainer. If you can't even make make the correct decision on something as simple as that, how can anyone think that you are capable of making a much more important decision?
  10. by   passing thru
    Patients I have personally cared for in ICU who were there as a result of a drunk driver:

    An 18 year old male - -his mother's only child - - brain dead

    A 16 year old female -her parents only daughter - - brain dead-
    the car in which she was a passenger was rear ended by a drunk, at one in the afternoon.

    Three teen males who were sideswiped/run off the road - at 3 o'clock in the afternoon. The drunk survived, the teens did not.

    A couple in their early thirties, pedestrians - ran down in the crosswalk by a
    drunk driver, "blind drunk", he never saw them. They died.

    Three daughters from one family- - killed at 10 a.m., by a woman who was on her way to a funeral, the driver had had a few drinks to "get me going."

    A 16 month old boy, killed by a drunk driver who ran a red light and broadsided the family car.

    Two teen sisters who died in our ICU. I refused to allow the drunk driver to be admitted to our unit or floor. He was taken to a step-down ICU. He said it was their fault, "they shouldn't have been in my way." His BAL 0.21. He survived to get another DUI.

    There's a dozen more I personally know of. The wails & cries; the shock and disbelief of the parents and families of these victims are burned in my memory.

    The original poster ..... she is NOT going to stop drinking. A couple of her posts are almost poetic, almost prose in her
    perception of drinking/quitting.

    She goes out to get drunk...hence, taking cabs.
    She isn't assuming responsibility, now or next year or the next.
    Reread her posts.
    Take my word for it. She is not quitting.
    Once she is out of court and knows how this DUI will be resolved, the
    pressure will be off....and it's time to "relax" with a drink.
  11. by   glow_worm
    A friend of mine had a DWI before nursing school, and then got another one while in nursing school. After she graduated, she got a license -- but then the board found out, and took it away. She got a lawyer, tried to petition it.... but to no avail. She took an ethics class, mandated by the board of nursing (and performed well). This happened several years ago, and she has still not obtained it yet. This led to a serious depression for her!

    It is considered a violation of public safety.

    All the above is in NC.
  12. by   txsugarlvn
    Wow, that's pretty sad. I am not sure that California will be so understanding as to let the 3rd violation go by with a fine, some classes, etc. I know the laws here in Texas are tougher but there are still some who slip through the cracks. I can understand that you have a problem with addiction. And I read your post about how this is the last time and you will never drink again it was just a slip and so forth. But, the 3rd violation was on July 4th??? Today is the 11th. That's 7 days since the DUI. A week does not a changed person make.
    I truly hope you are sincere about making a change and sticking with it. Getting not only counseling but a sponsor who will keep you straight when having a family hasn't done it for you. Is a DUI simply drinking and driving? I was under the impression that DUI meant Driving under the influence which included alcohol or drugs (legal/illegal) which impaired your judgement. From my understanding, a DWI is driving while intoxicated and a DUI is driving under the influence. I'm not sure how other states differentiate. Either way it's still wrong and dangerous.
    I wish you the best but I hope you take some off from going into nursing school. You need to get your life back in order. Also, jumping through the hoops, as you stated in a previous post, is the least you can do to get it together. You should be more concerned with fixing yourself instead of just fixing your situation to convince the BON and the school to let you in.
    You're in my prayers. I hope you are led to make the right decision.
  13. by   MelRN13
    Originally posted by txsugarlvn
    And I read your post about how this is the last time and you will never drink again it was just a slip and so forth. But, the 3rd violation was on July 4th??? Today is the 11th. That's 7 days since the DUI. A week does not a changed person make.
    I totally agree.

    Not trying to be a flamer, but now that I've read more of this thread, it seems like the original poster is trying to minimize her problem.

    Even if your previous offenses were 7 years ago, they were still serious legal matters. How many other times have you drove drunk and not got caught? I'm not trying to flame you here, but you need to take a hard look at your life and make some serious decisions.

    I know from personal experience that it is hard to break a "relationship" with alcohol. But if nursing is your passion, you have to. For the sake of your future career and future patients, please get some counseling, and decide what is best for you.