I am a male nursing student - What Did I Get Myself Into?!?!?

Updated | Posted
by nomadd917 nomadd917 (New) New Student

Specializes in Student.

I said it. I am a male nursing student. I am scared. At times, mostly all the time, constantly ask myself: WHAT DID I JUST GET MYSELF INTO?!?!?

I am currently working on finishing my Biology courses. I just finished an 8 week A&P-1 class,  I am starting another 8 week A&P-2 course and currently taking a 16 week Microbiology class. It is a lot of work especially with working full-time, being a husband, and a father to 3 kids.  

With these 3 biology courses taken in one semester, it feels overwhelming at times but certainly doable. How would this semester's workload compare to a normal semester in nursing school with the nursing classes?

I am starting a 2nd degree BSN program this Spring that is 5 semesters long. luckily the program is a hybrid online, evenings, and weekends and I can keep my full-time job while doing the program. 

Males nurses out there, what have your experiences been as being a male in a female-dominated profession? I am already surrounded by girls at home and that doesn't bother me. I honestly prefer to sometimes work with females over males as I find they have better work ethics than most men do. 

DrCOVID

DrCOVID, DNP

Specializes in psych/medical-surgical. Has 13 years experience. 461 Posts

Eh... I never remember taking 3 bio courses in one semester! Usually they were spread out. But I went 11 years ago now and to a different school of course.

By the way, the majority of advanced education now goes to females. I imagine only like engineering and other math fields would probably still be mostly men, but I haven't checked. I think most health related fields are mostly female. I read the other day most MDs are females now... I was incredulous when I looked that up the other day.

I don't want to scare you, but I did have issues with discrimination from female nurse "leaders" when I was active duty. As you know, men are the minority in nursing. The good thing about nursing is, the field is so diverse -you can do bedside, teach, research, and of course any specialty has nurses (hematology, dialysis, OR, anesthesia...etc). You will probably eventually want to become as autonomous as possible. I don't have any issue with discrimination anymore since providers toward the top of the totem pole. The discrimination and pettiness of inpatient nurses drove me to get a terminal degree and become independent and you will find other threads here about how difficult being a floor nurse is. 

You are probably right about the work ethic of women... some of the laziest nurses I have seen were older men... but psychologically speaking, women tend to rank higher on neurotic traits (anxiety, depression) and internalize it. That is also in the DSM. Men are generally less temperamental. I didn't make that up, it is well established psychological data. I never had any problem working with other men in the hospital... all of the "trouble" I got into was at the other genders discretion.

Edited by adammRN

nomadd917

nomadd917

Specializes in Student. 3 Posts

The nursing school I will be attending in the Spring only does 1 biology course per semester taken in order of A&P-1, then A&P-2, then Microbiology. The program is a 2nd degree BSN so all my classes are just nursing focused and most cannot be taken until you have completed the biology courses. By taking the classes through the nursing school it was going to add 3 semesters to my study plan and was not going to work with  my target date for completion. So I am taking my biology courses at a community college. The community college offers Anatomy and Physiology 1 & 2 as 8 week courses in the same semester and they let me into the Microbiology class without Anatomy and Physiology 1 & 2 completed. 

 

I just wrapped up my first 8 week A&P 1 class and did really well. So far I am doing really well in Micro and we just took midterms.  It is a lot of work, a lot of reading, and a lot of studying. I probably spend 3 or 4 hours a night 5 or 6 nights every week doing homework, reading, working on labs, taking quizzes, etc.... 

NICU Guy, BSN, RN

Specializes in NICU. Has 7 years experience. 4,066 Posts

Men are fully integrated into the nursing profession. The stigma of males in nursing has been for the most part been eliminated. Except for L&D, there really are no specialties that males would be excluded from. I have read on this board that there is some issues with male nurses caring for female patients, but I do not have any experience as to how widespread the problem is. I have no issues with the female patients in the NICU. 

Jason6915

Jason6915

Specializes in CRNA. 15 Posts

I like being a male nurse even though of the stereotypes 

CovidCohort2022

CovidCohort2022

4 Posts

testing.

Edited by Johnathan Tran
yup

SpaceCowgirl

SpaceCowgirl, BSN

Specializes in CMSRN. Has 7 years experience. 21 Posts

Male nurses get made charge nurse and nurse manager earlier/faster than females, therefore they make more money just like every other profession. ? You'll be fine.

FiremedicMike

FiremedicMike, RN, EMT-P

Specializes in 20+ years as a firefighter/paramedic, new ED RN. 279 Posts

I worked my butt off on those three bio courses, I can’t imagine taking them all at once.. 

I’ve personally only had two nurses that I would consider to be less than friendly, one floor nurse and one classroom instructor, but who knows if it’s because I’m a man or a student.

Anyhow, I don’t let it bother me.  I’m here with a goal in mind, and if their display of some power trip against me satiates some internal issues with them, who cares.

mgsalt

mgsalt, BSN, RN, APRN

Specializes in Emergency. Has 18 years experience. 1 Post

I've seen nursing perception of make nurses change over the 16 years of nursing I've done. At first it was still seen as odd to have a make nurse, now it seems to be a lot more accepted and respected. As with most careers you still have to "prove yourself" as a capable knowledgeable nurse but this is probably not limited to males. You see a lot more makes out there now so we're not seen as a oddity now...but makes are still seen as the nurse to call on to help with the heavier patients when muscle might be needed. I've also seen the patients that are known to be a bit aggressive being mainly allocated to the male nurse.. overall I love being a nurse, we are all an odd bunch of people at times with some warped sense of humours. 

NurseBlaq

1,755 Posts

On 10/20/2020 at 4:18 PM, nomadd917 said:

 

I just wrapped up my first 8 week A&P 1 class and did really well. So far I am doing really well in Micro and we just took midterms.  It is a lot of work, a lot of reading, and a lot of studying. I probably spend 3 or 4 hours a night 5 or 6 nights every week doing homework, reading, working on labs, taking quizzes, etc.... 

Add in clinicals and lab and you're in nursing school! You won't have a life so don't even think about making plans until you're done.

As for you being male, I don't care either way. I've worked with straight/gay/tall/short/transgender/etc men and didn't give a damn either way so long as you do your job and take care of the patients. No one else should care either. We're there to take care of the patients, not police gender.

I've also been the patient of male nurses and didn't care so long as they did their job and helped me get better and out of the hospital.

My point is, it doesn't matter that you're a man, all that matters is you do well at patient care but that's for any nurse regardless of gender, race, sexuality, religion, etc. Having said that, yes women nurses can be super catty but that's women in general, nursing title is no different. I suggest just staying out of scuttlebutt and you should be alright.

AF2BSN

AF2BSN

Specializes in Battlefield/Critical Care. Has 21 years experience. 46 Posts

Welcome to school, as @NurseBlaq stated. 
Honestly, men get treated better and usually end up rising into leadership faster. Aside from the odd patient who asks "Are you gay?", most patients seem to be super cool with a male providing care. Building rapport, being confident in your care, and moving the patient along in their care continuum is the focus. Nurses are the most trusted profession in the United States and you can feel that. 

If you end up in the ER or ICU, the ratio of male to female is balanced in my n+1 experience. A lot of female coworkers say they prefer working with males and the dynamic that exists. I can't say work ethic can be pinned to any gender. Competent people recognize competent people-- shitbirds get treated accordingly. 

Edited by AF2BSN

yesrun

yesrun, MSN, RN

Specializes in CVICU. Has 3 years experience. 53 Posts

I have no qualms with it. The only challenge I've come across is the few and far between older female patients who are too modest to allow me to do my job. Women in medicine and other sciences has added an incredible amount of value to the world. I'm happy to be a part of this increasing diversity in the same manner (of course males, without considering race/religion, haven't had to overcome the hurdles that women have to achieve these goals, I'm just making a generalized statement).