Accelerated BSN = no life?

  1. I'm about to start an accelerated BSN program in a month and I'm terrified out of my wits. It's a 15 month program spread out in 4 semesters. As if nursing school on its own wasn't hard enough, I heard that accelerated BSN programs are practically soul-destroying. Basically, you would live, eat, breathe, and poop nursing and you have to kiss your life goodbye. I heard that many relationships went down the drain during accelerated BSN programs. Is this really the case? I have a friend in MED SCHOOL who still manages to party on the weekends. On top of that, she's even dating someone! Now, that might be partially due to the fact that she is naturally super smart... But anyway, I want to hear stories of people who got through it fine... I don't expect to have much social life, but I just want to get through the program with a sane amount of sleep (~7 hours on average) and maybe devoting myself to a couple hours of Youtube/netflix on Saturdays.... Is that too much to ask?!
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    About cn4207

    Joined: Jun '16; Posts: 25; Likes: 11

    8 Comments

  3. by   ambersplyler
    I work 45-60 hours per week between two jobs, have a husband who's a deputy and works 12-14 hour shifts plus has a crazy rotating schedule, and 4 kids between 2yr and 8yr plus am in an accelerated BSN program. I'm taking 2-3 classes per 8 week term. It's insane, not for the faint of heart and no - I have zero life outside of school and trying to squeeze in a few minutes of family time a week...
  4. by   VerticalHorizon
    Every person is different, some people are not good at managing their time or feel the need to study and do school stuff 24/7. Others can set aside time every day or week to have fun or spend on other stuff. Yes, ABSN programs are challenging and require a great deal of time in and out of the classroom but you should always have a few hours a week to yourself. I had a free day almost every week where I would spend the day with my gf or family, just be wise with your time and don't feel guilty about not studying 24/7.
  5. by   AceOfHearts<3
    I did an accelerated program that was under a year long. I still had a life and so did many classmates. I saw my friends every week (except during midterms and finals), visited friends out of town, etc. It's all about time management. The time away from schoolwork helped me recharge and do better in the program.
  6. by   Simplistic
    In my experience ANY nursing program means no life. Welcome to the club.
  7. by   Guy in Babyland
    I did a 15 month ABSN program. I worked 24hrs/ wk nights Friday and Saturday. School consumes most of your time. Out of my cohort, we only had one relationship fail and I doubt nursing school had anything to do with it. One classmate got married right after graduation and 2 others started a relationship with each other during school and got married the following summer. ABSN programs rely heavily upon time management both in school and your free time. Relationships are about quality time and not quantity of time.
  8. by   verene
    Quote from cn4207
    I don't expect to have much social life, but I just want to get through the program with a sane amount of sleep (~7 hours on average) and maybe devoting myself to a couple hours of Youtube/netflix on Saturdays.... Is that too much to ask?!
    In my experience, no, that is not too much to ask. I am currently in an ABSN, while I've had some very crazy weeks. I generally do have time to balance a life outside of school. It may not be as full and exciting of a life as when I'm not in school, but I do have time for friends and family each week, regularly sleep 8 hours a night, and typically take at least one day a week completely off from school related activities to recharge and enjoy life.

    Admittedly I am not trying to work while in the program, nor do I have small children at home. I think it would be much more difficult if I had more outside commitments. As it stands though, any time not at school or working on assignments/studying is my own.

    ABSN programs are busy, but it really comes down to time management and prioritization. I prioritize self-care and a school/life balance and make time for that priority.
  9. by   BizzyBeeNursing
    I graduated from an ABSN program (18 months) and it was very time consuming. Yes, you must strive for work/school/life balance (for your sanity) but your time will be mostly devoted towards school! Nursing school, accelerated or not, will take up the majority of your time, but with proper planning, time management and organization skills it's doable. I agree with Guy In Babyland relationships are about quality, not quantity of time spent. As long as a couple has good communication skills the relationship will not suffer. ABSN programs are time consuming but luckily it's only for a finite amount of time. Good luck on your nursing journey!
  10. by   fuller712
    First, you are in a good spot because clearly someone has sent up some warning shots that you have taken seriously. Fear of an accelerated BSN program's intensity is a good thing. I just got done with my first semester of the same program you are considering. Before I started, I had a CPR instructor tell me she did boot camp in the army, two tours in Iraq, one in Afghanistan, and went through electrical engineering training and to this day her accelerated BSN program was the most intense thing she has ever done. It scared the hell out of me but it also made me take everything very very seriously once classes began.

    Unfortunately, a few people in my class were not as prepared and got caught off-guard. They didn't make it through the first semester. Bottom-line, the fact that you even posted that question is a great start.

    To answer your question, it is exactly what you think it will be. There will be a small percentage of people in your cohort that have an easier time for various reasons. Some will have amazing photographic memories, some will be experts at efficient studying, and some will just be insanely smart. The vast vast majority however, will be like me. Someone who has to read everything three times and work insanely hard just to get a 3.4 GPA.

    I must admit, I laughed a little bit when you said "about 7 hours of sleep." Unless you are one of those people I previously mentioned that will not happen. I get 7 hours of sleep twice-a-week if I'm lucky. I think 4-5 on most nights is more realistic. Yes, you will be able to watch a couple hours of Netflix each week. Everyone has to relax for a minute eventually. Working out will be very difficult but just try to eat well and not gain any weight during that year. Eat well and go for short walks. Sometimes I take pictures of lab values I'm trying to remember with my phone and then walk around the block looking at my phone and reciting them until I have committed them to memory. I'm sure people think I'm crazy.

    What I am most nervous about now is that I have recently started dating someone in my class. It is going insanely well and we have had an amazing 4 weeks off together. Now we are going back to school and we will not be able to focus on anything else but school. At least we will be in the same boat and can study together. Also, neither of us like a lot of attention and we both care a lot about doing well in classes. I am definitely nervous that we will not be able to progress our relationship though. We'll see what happens.

    There are several people in my program who are married. One of them started complaining about her husband a lot midway through the first semester. Another one mentioned that his husband was feeling a bit neglected. So yes, I can imagine that relationships during an accelerated BSN program must be very difficult to manage. I would suggest making sure your significant other has realistic expectations and is prepared to battle through the change like you are. Remind them that it is only for 1 year and time will fly by.

    I would say this....accelerated BSN programs are as advertised. Absolutely crazy. But, if you know that going in and fear failure you will do just fine. The grading scale is difficult so never slack off. Remember, this is only 1 year of your life. Anyone can do anything for 1 year. It will be worth it in the end. Time goes by fast in accelerated BSN programs because you are so busy. You will think to yourself, how am I going to get through the next 10 weeks, then you will blink and it will be over. Let fear motivate you, view your classmates as teammates, and go give it 110%. You can do it.

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