Unimpressed and confused

  1. I could use some advice.

    I am coming up on my last semester of an ABSN program. This is my second career and I am in nursing after *thinking* I wanted to do this most of my life. My intention has been to eventually continue my education and likely go on and become a nurse practitioner. In fact, I always thought I wouldn't stop at my BSN, although I wanted to gain some experience and was leaving myself open to whatever...I mean, what if I loved nursing and wanted didn't want to go on?

    Anyway, here I am, after experiencing various Med/Surg floors, a MICU, ER, a specialty/step-down floor, psych, and nothing is really calling my name. I found general Med/Surg to simply be unappealing, with it's random assignments of c-diff and detoxing, angry patients; the MICU was okay when it was busy but mostly I found it really depressing; I liked the ER (again, when we had action), but then I got really down about the crazy number of patients using it as their primary care or walk-in clinic (and likely not ever planning to pay). The specialty floor was probably the least frustrating for me because patients were receiving long-awaited for transplants and many left quite excited and happy to start their "new life." It had a different feel. But still, it also had its share of random patients, when other floors got full, and the ratios were tough.

    I don't think I'm interested in working with kids. I do find myself enjoying talking to and connecting with people, although I can get worn out like anyone else. I just can't seem to figure out my sweet spot. Either that, or this profession is not for me.

    I am confused about whether or not I will even like nursing at this point. I am starting to wonder if I just haven't found the thing I will like? Or will I dislike it all and I should bail? Or should I continue on to school and hope that advanced practice will suit me more???

    I would appreciate any thoughts or ideas.
  2. Visit Polly Peptide profile page

    About Polly Peptide

    Joined: Jul '15; Posts: 162; Likes: 160
    from TN , US

    3 Comments

  3. by   Rose_Queen
    First, a disclaimer- as you are still a student, you should not be using RN in your username per the TOS of the site. Had you added 2B or something similar at the end, you would be fine.

    Second, as to your question: acute care is not the niche for everyone. Nursing is an incredibly diverse field, and one of the benefits of the US nursing education system is that nurses are prepared as generalists, not specialists as some countries are. Have you taken time to check out the specialties forums? You may find some information in some of them that would lead you towards a path that you would like.

    Then again, real world nursing is nothing like nursing school. You never know- one of those specialties you dislike now you may actually end up enjoying as the real nurse.
  4. by   Polly Peptide
    Quote from Rose_Queen
    First, a disclaimer- as you are still a student, you should not be using RN in your username per the TOS of the site. Had you added 2B or something similar at the end, you would be fine.

    Second, as to your question: acute care is not the niche for everyone. Nursing is an incredibly diverse field, and one of the benefits of the US nursing education system is that nurses are prepared as generalists, not specialists as some countries are. Have you taken time to check out the specialties forums? You may find some information in some of them that would lead you towards a path that you would like.

    Then again, real world nursing is nothing like nursing school. You never know- one of those specialties you dislike now you may actually end up enjoying as the real nurse.
    Thank you. I changed my user name recently (as my previous one was a bit too close to my real name) and then I realized the website wouldn't let me change my name again within a certain amount of time. So I am waiting (correct me if I'm wrong).

    Yes, I've read and read (and read) over the Specialties forum.

    Thanks again.
  5. by   llg
    I am a big believer in the power of expectations and that the cognitive dissonance that results from having reality not match our expectations can be pretty powerful.

    When you imagined being a nurse in the past ... what type of nursing did you imagine yourself doing? What was that type of nursing like in your fantasies? What is different about reality vs. those past fantasies? If you can think that through and "grieve" those fantasies -- as being fantasies, not realities -- you may be able to look at reality with fresher eyes. (I hope that makes sense.) You might be able to "move on" with your thinking, assessing the different types of nursing with a more positive outlook and perhaps, find a specialty that appeals to you.

    I have to admit, the specialties you mentioned in your original post would not fit me well either. Had I been forced to work some of those units, I would have left nursing long ago. (Found my niche in NICU nursing ... and then in teaching and Professional Development)

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