I'm a student nurse. I'm in my second year, and I have to say so far I enjoy every minute of it. I'm happy and satisfied that I have chosen the right course and right future career for myself. I'm so proud of it and I can't wait for the day that I finally become a registered nurse.
But... I've been feeling down these few days, ever since one of my acquaintance, let's call her "S", struck me with this question... "S" is a medical student in Russia. This is approximate what "S" said to me--
"I find nursing is stupid. If u wanna become a nurse, u might as well choose to become a doctor. think about it, u've got to know what the doctors know, like u've got to learn anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, microbiology, pathology, nutrition..... Some more u need to do all those dirty jobs like wound dressing, bed making, changing diapers, cleaning patient's anus, feeding, bathing, getting scream from the patients, and all those stupid admission, discharge, inventory paper works. Let me ask u, do u really like cleaning people's anus? do u really like serving urinal and bedpan all the time? do u really like getting scolded by the patient for no reason all the time? u've got to know at least 60% of what the doctors know, but the doctors no need to do all these jobs. and a doctor's pay is much more higher than a nurse. U might as well just study harder and become a doctor like what i do!"
I was so angry when she said that because i really love nursing. And yes, I never love cleaning people's anus. But then nursing is actually a lot more than just giving urinal and bedpan.
I was quiet. Yes, I should've just opened my mouth and fired her. But, I couldn't think of anything to say at that time....
My heart was broken.
Jun 11, '09
I would just stop listening to her. Unfortunately there are people like this around and they feel they not it all when they don't. Nursing for most of the time is a great profession to be in, there are moments when you hate it but usually because of people like this.
As long as you enjoy what you are doing then that is all that matters
Jun 11, '09
she's a medical student in russia? doctors, your acquaintance must not know, study intensely difficult subjects like anatomy and physiology on a level much more advanced than we nurses get, physical examination techniques, human biochemistry, human neuroanatomy, differential diagnosis, and they delve deeply into the pathophysiology of diseases. if we had to know 60% of what doctors know, then why do doctors need 4 years of classroom work and another 3 years of clinicals (7 years total) and we most of us can get our rn licenses in 2 year programs? not bad for learning (according to her) nursing + 60% of what the docs learn. what are doctors learning in those 2 years of classroom + 3 years of full time clinical practice after we've graduated gotten our licenses and are working as rns? the other 40% she "thinks" they still need to learn? she's got it all wrong, wrong, wrong.
i came out of an earlier era of nursing when a lot of doctors used intimidation tactics to get one-upmanship over nurses. i would expect someone such as a medical student trying to impress you with their newly learned medical knowledge to fire off all kinds of medical learning at you in order to talk down to you. i think its usual that this person would give a nursing student a mouthful about what a nursing student learns rather what she is learning in medical school. that would indicate to me that (1) she probably knows a lot about nursing (2) that she may not really be in medical school at all because in her whole conversation and her saying "become a doctor like what i do!" she never really mentions what she knows or does as a doctor, does she? and (3) they must treat rns in russia like crap.
i would have asked her what else she's learned in medical school beside what she spouted off to you! if what she is learning is what nurses do, that's not medicine! i have two relatives that went through u.s. medical schools and they didn't learn much about nursing school! nursing and medicine aren't comparable. first of all, in nursing school we learn a few things about the most commonly seen medical diseases not all of the medical diseases. we learn what the doctors do to commonly diagnose and treat those diseases, but not everything about them. one reason is so we can recognize abnormal dosages or weird and out of place treatments that a doctor might order so we can question them and not accidentally assist some goofball doctor in performing malpractice, not to know what doctors know or to even come close to 60% of what doctors know!
nurses are not just doing clean up and dirty jobs. when ever i did a clean up i was also using my assessment skills to make observations about the patients. we are managers of patient care and problem solvers. that is why we learn the nursing process. we learn basic nursing care in the first semester of our nursing programs. the remainder of the coursework is how to manage the care of patients and solve problems that arise. that is what our value is as rns. that makes us highly regarded in the working community because we are able to think and make decisions. maybe the nurses in russia aren't required to do that so they are seen as little more than butt wipers, but we are more. if american rns ever leave this profession they can easily make the transition into other professions as supervisors and managers because of this training we have in problem solving using the nursing process. american rns, amanda loo, are highly skilled and admired the world over for our thinking skills, not necessarily our technical skills, although we can perform some pretty awesome stuff. tell "s" to match her russian nurses against that!
yes, i should've just opened my mouth and fired her. why should you have fired her?
Jun 11, '09
Nursing is a wonderful profession, and though i'm not a nurse yet, i've seen a lot of dr.'s get BS from patients, too. So she should really get off her high horse because she doesn't seem to be very in touch with reality. You get bs in every profession, job.... the important thing is, is that you love what you're doing and that you're happy. It's your life! If she gets rude again, tell her to worry about herself because you're very content with your life. I think some people just like to put down, or are just nasty. I think when she's finished with school, she'll see what it's like to really be an M.D. and may not find it as wonderful as she thinks.... when i was going to my pediatrician about i dunno maybe 10 years ago or so, i rememeber her telling me this: don't become a doctor. It's stressful and just not worth it. She was even trying to convince her own daughter from not going to med school-- she was very serious when she would say this to me. I mean, don't get me wrong, haivng Dr.'s is essential, but nursing is equally as important. Never make anyone make you feel that what you're doing doesn't deserve recognition and praise. It's beautiful what you're doing
P.S. lets just say i saw a dr. put his finger up someones hole, and scoop some stuff out lol
So.... there ya go!
I think everyone in the medical profession is going to come across something that isn't so glamorous.
Jun 11, '09
Daytonite, great answer!!!!!
Jun 11, '09
let me ask u, do u really like cleaning people's anus?
I think that's going to be my new away-message for a few weeks
Jun 11, '09
I really enjoyed to read Daytonite's post.
Concerning that "S" student, let me tell you, Amanda, she is really wrong. RN nurses have no way to know "60 %" of what medical doctors study in the medical school. In Russia, as soon as you finish high school you can apply to medical school if you pass chemistry, biology, and physics. It is quite easy. And "S" thinks that it is easy to get into a medical school in US as in Russia. She is just wrong. Second, there is no way to be ashamed to delivery heath care to residents. However, I understand that it might not pleasant. But anyway, I am myself actually proud that I chose this career and can't wait to start my classes.
BTW, I am from Russia too, but I guess I have different way of thinking. Just ignore her.
Jun 11, '09
i don't think she's someone you really want to have further interaction with. as well, it sounds like she doesn't respect nurses. my brother told me(he's a doc working in california) that he's found that his nurses love working with him.
why?? he respects their opinion, he's married to an rn and he knows that 98-99% of the nurses are there because they truly care about patients. if they don't, they don't stick around long.
i had a doctor come into a room i was in yesterday and thank me for feeding a patient. i thought to myself, "that was so nice of him to say". i was just doing what was expected of me. but his words showed that he recognized, that even as a student nurse, that the caring enough to sit and take the time to feed an elderly woman, calmly, quietly, not rushing her made a great difference to her, whether she was able to express it or not. sure it was a small gesture on his part, but it made my day, and made me respect him.
Jun 13, '09
Thanks everybody! I feel a LOT better now
Daytonite~ u are right. Thank you!!
Koyaanisqatsi~ haha i know.. it sounds funny right?.. but it wasnt funny at all when i heard that.
Jun 13, '09
And yea,, I decided to ignore her. I think she probably thinks that a nurse is just a better-paid maid u know...
Jun 13, '09
Agree with all above. However there are no limits on your education as a nurse. I don't intend to stop at a certain level of pathophysiology. I intend to keep studying and learning after my RN on my own. So what if it creeps in to MD level knowlege. I learn what I choose to learn. I have access to needed resources. After all we spend more time with the patient. I want to have excellent assessment skills.
Dr.s are a strange bunch. Their world is changing fast especially if IM/hospitalist. It's not such a rosy picture anymore for them. Some fields of MD are motivated by crazy ideas that make good nurses more and more necessary. Again good if you become top notch in your assessment skills for the sake of the patient.
Jun 13, '09
When I was initially applying to nursing school I wanted to be a midwife (before I had my baby--now being on call doesn't sound so hot!). When I asked a physician I worked with for a recommendation he said that if I wanted to deliver babies, I should go to medical school.
If I wanted to go to medical school, I'd go to medical school! My undergraduate grades are certainly high enough to do so! But I don't want to be a doctor, I want to be a nurse. And in a country whose infant mortality rate trails behind most other industrialized nations, maybe more obstetricians isn't the answer.
Jun 16, '09
Oh, my favorite comment was a co-worker of mine stating that nurses don't do anything, except do paperwork and walk into the room and look like they're doing something.
I just thought to myself that if he ever ends up in a hospital, he gets the best nurse on the floor.
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