Nurses are Pathetic!! - page 21

I have been reading thread after thread on this forum and I have come to one conclusion. We are all a pathetic bunch. We take abuse that most other human beings would not put up with. We are... Read More

  1. by   MidLifeRN2012
    Quote from EGKB
    One of the posters wrote, "everyone in their perspective professions eats a fair a mount of sh*t, regardless of what you do for a living."

    AMEN!!!! Take it from someone who left a dog-eat-dog job in corproate finance to go to nursing school, there isn't a field that exists where people escape feeling abused, frustrated and undercompensated. When I started sounding like the original poster of this message, my father told me to "learn to deal with it" or "get out of it." I knew deep down that corporate wasn't for me, so I got out of it.

    TO THE POSTER OF THE ORIGINAL MESSAGE: There's no shame in admitting that you have had enough. It seems like no matter where you go, you're going to run in to the same problems. I can emphathize with your rantings, and I know what it's like to be in your place! But the fact is, if nothing else is going to change, for the sake of your own sanity, YOU have to change. If you can't change your attitude (I couldn't!!!!), then you have to find another way to survive. The great thing about the field of nursing is that you can take your wealth of knowledge and apply it in other areas. If you aren't opposed to leaving the clinical aspects of nursing behind, you can make a great living applying what you've learned in a corporate setting. (I know, it sounds funny that I am recommending a shift to corporate, but a lot of people love it - I just don't happen to be one of them.) Working for an insurance company or as a legal nurse consultant takes away most of the concerns of patient care and frustration of interaction with doctors. Plus, you'll have regular hours and weekends off! :-)

    Not to go off on a tangent, but while it might be true that at Wal-Mart you won't have the responsibilities of being a nurse, you also won't have the benefits and pay, either. And don't be fooled into thinking that working in retail isn't free of stress and abuse - just ask anyone who has had to work a register the day after Thanksgiving! OK, I know this is not the point of the post, but EVERYONE thinks they're overworked, underpaid and unappreciated! Ask the shoe salespeople at department stores, whose pay is reduced from $10 to $6 if they don't make their sales quotas, in spite of the fact that the number of employees in the store often outnumber the shoppers! Or how about the TEACHERS who work FAR more hours than those spent in the classroom, and have to deal with being disciplinarians in addition to educators, and who are routinely abused verbally by parents and students! But I ramble.

    I don't expect the field of nursing to be free of the politics/double standards/outrageous expectations/lack of support or general abuse from supervisors/other miscellaneous sh*t I had to put up with in my corporate positions, but at least I will have the satisfaction of knowing that, at the end of the day, no matter how frustrated I might get with my boss or co-workers, I will still have helped people, every day. AND I will have the luxury of working a schedule where I will be able to spend time with my family.

    I know I am lucky and blessed to have the opportunity to start over. Good luck.

    Thank you... I am also leaving the corporate world for nursing school in a few years (taking pre-reqs now) We also have alot of backstabbing, angry bosses, underpayment, long hours and underappreciation. We also have frequent layoffs (I have survived 3). But with automation taking over human jobs and jobs going overseas..the only secure work environment seems to be nursing. Can't automate them. Can't send them overseas. And if you do lose your job, it probably wouldn't take 6 mos to a year to find a new nursing job like it usually takes to find a new finance job. Just move on to the next hospital/clinic.

    Not to mention the feeling at the end of the work day of comforting someone or at least trying to. Helping someone recover from an illness seems alot more rewarding than helping the CEOs with their bottom line-hoping to MAYBE get a bonus check and 3% raise at the end of the year.
    I know that the medical industry is also run by corporations now, but the human element of caring for others is still there.

    I know...the grass seems always greener..
  2. by   annie4747
    Quote from stressnexcited
    I may only be a naive nursing student in the eyes of many of you, but I have a background in social work. I listen and read posts of how nurses are so grossly underpaid - and I wonder, how many of you really know what underpaid is. I am not saying the nursing profession couldn't be paid more or respected more by doctor's.

    I am sorry to hear that some of you don't recieve the respect for this profession that I already have been able to experience. I am only in school and when friends, family or even strangers hear that I am in nursing school they go on and on about what a fantastic profession it is. How we need so many more good nurses, and how nurses made their recent hospital stay a more pleasant one. People fall all over themselves admiring the profession that I have now chosen.

    As far as the pay, I worked six years in the human service field (Bachelors in Social Work). I had kids punch, bite, scream, throw trash cans at me, and even had my hair ripped out of my head (in a massive clump). I had all of this done to me with not making more than $10/hr. My highest paying job in the human service field was a "case managment" position at $33,000/yr (and I already had a little over 5 years experience). That job was a piece of cake comparitively (to previous social work positions), I only had 12 hour days, drove my car for hundreds of miles a day to transport clients to and from every imaginable appointment only to be reimbursed .29/mile with a cap of $300/month. I was on call for a week at a time every fourth week - no overtime time, no comp time - NOTHING. So I am sorry that I can't relate to the woes of nursing not getting paid when on average the starting nurse base salary is $39,000/yr. That is $6,000 more a year as soon as I graduate - no experience.
    WOW!!! where are you located at; it certainly must not be in the southern section of this country? LOL
  3. by   annie4747
    Quote from RavenC
    Is it really helpful to lorstar to tell her she should go shop at Kmart while you're living on "Knob Hill?" I'd quit in a heartbeat too if I lived there. Being a widow for 16 years, I don't have a husband to bring in another paycheck. I take care of myself, my dog, my two cats and am raising my grandson. I don't have any new DVD's or CD's and I do shop at Target and Kmart...and I don't put down the people who shop there. You're assuming she's never been poor and ought to live on don't know her situation. She was talking about work, not money. She does it for the money because why? She needs a new ball gown for the country club or she's putting food on the table...which is it? We don't know.
    Yes you can make a difference in someone's life and it's great that you want to do that...but it's not for everyone and you can't always know that ahead of time. Lorstar needs understanding and encouragement...not platitudes. Couldn't anyone hear the pain in her 'voice?'

    Yes! i hear it;and know it from experience, and it ain't a good feeling. The tears become bitter after so long and it takes a long long time to find your way back to that good place that once lived in your heart;but it's not impossible to do. Hang in there Lorster, you'll find that good place again.
  4. by   annie4747
    Quote from Pedsccrn

    This sounds a bit like what we are all talking about. I don't "answer" to FNP's just because they have that behind their name and if it is having nurses answer to you- maybe you should look at a nurse manager position. We are called a health care team, MD's, FNP's, RN's, OT's, PT's - one is not superior over the other.
    I think you forgot there are LPN's also. How easily we're forgotten and overlooked. LOL
  5. by   nibornanellup
    I just read alot of the coments and I thought I'd comment. N\Pathetic is a strong word but, most of what she writes is true. We really don't support each other, but quitting isn't the answer. Fist of all, alot of your anger should be directed towards the insurance companies. They dictate the financial status of most hospitals system and they are the reason for short staffing and poor working conditions. Yes we need to stand together. On our unit we developed a code H, when a nurse is being belittled by anyone, family, doctor or anyone they can call a code H and all staf in the area comes around them.. Se how quick bad behavior is stopped when there is a crowd around the bully. We do need to support and to continue to do what we can to stop the problems by coming up with solutions and don't stop till you make it better. I love being a nurse and have pretty much seen in all. Union, non-union its all the same, but if it works for you, great. It is the same all over (just moved from NJ to Florida) and it is the SAME. You just have to fight the battles you can and leave knowing you did what you could. Its definitely better as the years go on. Don't give up. Its not always greener on the other side.
  6. by   blady
    Quote from lorster
    I have been reading thread after thread on this forum and I have come to one conclusion. We are all a pathetic bunch. We take abuse that most other human beings would not put up with. We are physically, mentally and emotionally abused by doctors, managers, patients, and families. We work ungodly hours, skip our much needed breaks without pay for months and years on end. And this goes on and on and on. The stories are endless. Then we are all shocked when a nurse who has had enough finally cracks and administers 32 vials of Dilantin and kills a patient. Is this so different than any other human being who finally after years and years of this abuse, just cannot take it anymore? I think not. When are we all going to stand up and demand decent pay, decent working conditions, and respect? Well, the answer is never because we are not a solid group. We have no autonomy or solidarity because we are a weak profession. We pit one against another. We ***** and backstab. We deserve all the abuse that is dealt to us. In nursing school, we are taught to make beds, empty bedpans and clean dentures. Instead we should get vast lessons in how to deal with some of the real issues that face us today. We are understaffed, overworked, pushed to the breaking point. But yet, the martyr instinct kicks in, we get up and go back and endure more of the same. When is enough, enough? When are we all going to come together and and start shouting about our working conditions and wages? We make less than a crew on road construction or a plumber. And look what we do. We are responsible for peoples lives. I went to work down the road as my current employer is union and I felt that maybe the non union hospital down the road would be a better place. Well, it is not, it is worse. 13 nurses have quit in the 6 weeks I have worked there. I won't renew my contract. It is just too unsafe. The hospital is all about profit at the expense of some great nurses. They even charge for an individual bandaid. It is ridiculous. I have decided that as soon as I can afford to, I'm getting out. I will no longer be a member of a profession that eats its young while at the same time, taking unwarrented abuse from unapreciative doctors that we bend over backwards for. Its not about making a living any more, it is about retaining some self respect, free of abuse by doctors, managers and other nurses who have nothing better to do than put a knife in your back the minute you turn around. At least at walmart I won't have to worry about making a life threatening mistake because I'm overwhelmed by what is required of me each day.
    You're on the right track, continuing your education, after which you would have choices. All facilities are not created equal. Try a teaching facility where you would be exposed to a whole lot more if that's what you like.
  7. by   BillEDRN
    Why? Because in nursing school she was not not taught to. Unfortunately many of our new grads are comming into the clinical setting unprepared for the reality of the profession. It is very likely that the instructors, many who have little or no "bedside time" have sugar coated the difficulties inherent in the profession and instead of providing a real education on how to deal with these situations are told "it's all part of being a nurse." They are taught to "turn the other cheek" and "suck it up" instead of saying "hey, I am an intelligent and educated professional and I do not have to take the crap you are giving me." Of course, if you do stand up for your rights and self-respect, it is likely you will garner the attention of the administration and be branded a trouble maker. I have been a nurse for more than 20 years, and remember being asked to give up my chair so a doctor could sit down in the CT suite. My ability to "stand up" to his unreasonable demands and tell him to find his own chair did not come from nursing school. It came from "street" experience and my non-codependent, non-subserviant life experriences.
    Many nurses are co-dependant and unable to stand together for the benefit of THEIR profession and their professional goals. After working long hours for the nurses in union activities, I have come to the conclusion similar to the original poster. Not all nurses are pathetic, but many are! These same nurse who describe the silent suffering of nurses as "angels" are part of the problem. As a nurse, you would not condone, not tolerate this type of abusive behavior toward your patient, but would for your fellow nurses.
    Nurses, as a group, need to grow a collective spine and stand up for their profession. It is a sad commentary that the nursing profession, a profession dedicated to the social, mental, and physical healing of others cannot find a way to heal themselves.

    Quote from irisRN
    ok, so perhaps i will sound totally naive and very new-gradish, but...

    WHY didnt anyone stand up for that new grad? More importantly, why didnt that new grad stand up for herself? Something as simple as "if you have a problem, we can address it without an audience" or even simpler "please lower your tone". She should take it further and complain to anyone that gives her a few minutes of their time. This is ABUSE and the longer YOU tolerate it (you, the new grad, and everyone standing around listening and doing nothing), the longer it will continue.

    I find that it really is up to the culture of the floor. I have been fortunate enough to see a nurses hang up the phone on screaming physicians, I have seen nurses file official complaints...i have seen nurses have zero tolerance towards this kind of stuff, and you know what? no one takes advantage of those nurses.

    Perhaps it is time to start changing the culture on your floor. I know, its much easier said than done, but you have to start somewhere...
  8. by   skipper64
    As a Firefighter/Paramedic I adore nurses. They make my job a heck of a lot easier. I was told in PM school to never step on the toes of an ER nurse. That does not mean I have not hesitated to speak with someone I feel is out of line. It means I respect and work with all nurses.

    Reading the orginal post, I instantly pictured a nurse that I often worked with when doing my ER clinical. Our program is different than all others in that we are in the field or in clinics for the entire 11 months of school. That equals an average of 800 patient contacts for each student in my class. At the trauma center where we worked, there was a nurse with a similar attitude to the original poster's. She was so burned out, she treated everyone like %$#@, including the patients. The good thing about it, was she would let me start all of her IV's, blood draws and assist the docs (who didn't like her either). While she thought she was getting away with something, my classmates and I were getting some great hands on experience in spite of her. I personally thanked her when we graduated. I even made her smile (which is something she never did)

    I am encouraged to see that the overwhelming majority of the list members do not agree with the post. Please know that you are appreciated very much! Keep up the awesome work you do!
  9. by   JPcanada
    I am a college student who just got into the nursing program at Kansas Wesleyan University. To read something like this saying that nurses are pathetic is not a very enticing thing to read. Hearing and reading how nurses do not do things to help better their working conditions and everything else is not satisfying and does not really make someone want to go into the field. I mean I realize that all people in professions have to put up with working conditions and have to maybe deal with people that are well less then friendly but, I agree with some of the others, I do not think nurses are pathetic.
  10. by   RN130
    You have identified and are reacting to some hard truths about our profession. Read Susan Gordans Book "Nursing Against the Odds". You are not alone.

    Any one who can get over their denial and dysfunction and realize that we (the Nursing profession) are in a hard place can get the the point where they know that Nurses are the ones who have to do something about it. I am working with my Union and on statewide legislation as well as at my work. But anybody can get their own back yard cleaned up first. What would you coach your friend or teenager to do--speak up, be kind, be direct, go to the person who has the power to change it. Understand the the social and economic interests working against you but don't stop at whining and blaming. Take some small piece of what ails you/nursing and make it right.

    HAve a good cry, then ask for what you want. This may, for some mean leaving nursing--alot do. Maybe you will just start taking your breaks and meals (try it-- it feels weird at first-then you get it--you feel better and reenegized when you go back to work (remember every one around you can sense your resentment-words need not be spoken). Maybe you will defend the next abuse you see against a coworker, maybe you will hold your criticism af a newbie (remember lateral violence happens because you are stressed out in the first place.) Whattever, you might be clumsy but try doing something towards what you think is the right thing.
  11. by   RN130
    Nicely thought out, try again with the Union --Look up Info on "The employee free choice act" If it goes thru you can have card check elections and won't have this experience and you won't have to go thru al the negative stuff employers throw at you to start a union.
  12. by   PANurseRN1
    Quote from Woodenpug
    Sry, I've had other things to do than follow this thread. If you do nursing for the money or a "pat on the back." You have other opportunities. Please use the skills you have to find another profession.
    I do not mean that things are perfect.
    I love nursing!
    Yes, it is a calling. That does not mean a 'religious' experience, but a job best left for people who actually like other people more than money.
    Just because it is a "calling" for you does not mean it is for everyone else. We need to stop putting nursing into something indefineable or ethereal. There's nothing wrong with going into nursing for very concrete reasons like being interested in science or even m-o-n-e-y. Altruism is all well and good, but it doesn't pay the bills.
  13. by   Tweety
    Quote from Marie_LPN
    Calling people 'pathetic' (as the OP did) doesn't sound so supportive and empathetic to me....
    No it doesn't. But it when explored deeper, as indicated in the other posts in which he/she recanted the word, it sounds more like burnout ready to get out and that is something which I'm empathetic and supportive. I certainly will never support the idea that nurses are pathetic, nurses eat their young, or nurses are catty (any more than I will suport that it's a "calling"), but I can read between the lines a bit and sense some serious burnout here.