Satisfied with Remaining an LPN?

  1. A similar subject was brought up in one of the other allnurses forum, so, I want to ask it here out of curiousity...is there anyone satisfied with being an LPN and has decided to remain one?

    I ask this because of the age-old threads of people not considering LPNs as nurses, etc...

    I wanted to be a nurse for a long time, and learned the difference between the LPN and RN about 10 years ago, when I attended medical assisting school. I made the choice way back then that while I have the highest respect for RNs, I never wanted to be one...I just wanted to be a nurse.

    Two years ago, my job (I worked as a Patient Care Associate-the equivilant to a Medical Assistant in my hospital), offered a program that allowed those chosen to attend college to become either an LPN or RN while on a complete leave of absence with pay while paying tuition as well. I was on many committees at my job and was very active, so, I applied and was accepted along with about 100 other people (over 600 applied). I told them immediately that I wanted LPN, not RN. I had a competitive GPA (3.6), and my job continued to try and convince me to become an RN, but I vehemently refused, because I did not want their responsibility, even though the money is better. What I was mainly looking for was mobility, not status. People looked at me like I was completely insane, because they felt that since there would be no out of pocket cost to me, then I should have gone for RN. But, I felt that I should not do it simply because it was there, and why kill myself, even for free for a job that I don't want??

    Anyways, I completed the LPN program and graduated Salutatorian of the class and I returned to my job where they had to give me a job since they sponsored my education. The first thing I continue to hear is "When are you going for your RN?" or "Why do you just want to be an LPN...you did so well". Well, it is INSULTING to me. I am not out there robbing people of their hard earned money, nor am I disgruntled about my position. For one, while I am extremely grateful that I was offered this opportunity, and am happy to be a nurse, I have to say that I absolutely HATED nursing school. Being crowded with students that were petty, jealous and competitive and seeing how the instructors I had were disorganized butt holes, and such, I had made clear decision that I would complete this program and never enter into another nursing program, even if it killed me. I didn't even attend graduation to receive my awards, because I hated it so much and was glad to be away. By the way, I never once regretted not attending.

    While, at first, it was really annoying that some people really didn't consider me to be a nurse, it became less and less important to me when I began to see the stress that the RNs are under (whether they were good or bad nurses) and I know that I want nothing to do with their headaches and issues. Now, I have signed up at an agency on the side, and for the next two months, I will be a flu nurse, then, this agency also has wellness clinics, home care, detox assignments, nursing homes and other hospitals. This is what makes me happy...being able to go to other places to make extra money. I do well where I am working now...many of the RNs compliment me, but then, here comes the famous question..."WHEN will you become an RN?". It gets me to the point where I start to become almost insulting. I told the Staff Educator that if she is waiting for this to happen and decided to hold her breath, then she would certainly be dead...because it is NOT happening.

    This is not to insult any of the RNs, or the LPNs that are continuing to pursue their education...I can cheer all of you on...but for me, the buck stops here, because I want to adjust to this and reclaim my life. At first, I thought I was crazy, but, now, I realize, I'm NOT...I am doing what is right for me. But what I find to be annoying is that there are people that wish to instill uninvited advice into my life (that has ALWAYS been my PET peeve). ANyone else feeling this way?
  2. Visit pagandeva2000 profile page

    About pagandeva2000

    Joined: Sep '05; Posts: 9,297; Likes: 8,219
    Licensed Practical Nurse; from US
    Specialty: Community Health, Med-Surg, Home Health

    23 Comments

  3. by   traumaRUs
    There is nothing wrong with being an LPN (I was one too). Please don't be offended. At the hospital where I worked for 10 years, they phased LPN's out a few years ago. So...in my area, as an LPN your employment opportunities are limited. I think that is what a lot of LPN's have found out. When I became an LPN in 1992, I was told there were plenty of LPN jobs and they were right - I had my choice. Now when I became an RN in 1994, I had to keep my LPN license because there were no RN jobs available where I was living (Indianapolis).
  4. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from traumaRUs
    There is nothing wrong with being an LPN (I was one too). Please don't be offended. At the hospital where I worked for 10 years, they phased LPN's out a few years ago. So...in my area, as an LPN your employment opportunities are limited. I think that is what a lot of LPN's have found out. When I became an LPN in 1992, I was told there were plenty of LPN jobs and they were right - I had my choice. Now when I became an RN in 1994, I had to keep my LPN license because there were no RN jobs available where I was living (Indianapolis).
    I'm not offended :wink2: . When you became an RN, THEN, the jobs were limited?? Now, THAT is a shock to me... Did you always live in Indianapolis? I live in New York, and at this time, there are many opportunities, however, I do admit, that many of the hospitals no longer employ LPNs (I am hearing that this is because our scope of practice is ambigous), however, municipal hospitals employ them (that is where I am working, now), LTC, clinics and homecare. If I were to see that the road becomes narrow, I would probably try and move on, but I would have a sure enough attitude, because I never intended to go into it.
  5. by   Jules A
    Hi,
    It sounds like you are confident and happy with your decision so next time you are asked "When are you going to get your RN?" I would just smile sweetly and say "Never". That will probably nip it in the bud, lol.

    I am proud to be be an LPN. My value does not depend on someone's opinion of my title. I'm going on to get my RN simply to have more employment opportunities and also for the money. It seems to me that LPNs do almost the same work as the RNs (I said almost folks, so don't flame me. :wink2: ) but get paid about 1/2 as much so that is another motivation for me to continue. Like you, I hated the atmosphere of nursing school but will continue to trudge through.

    Hang in there! Jules
  6. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    I would be satisfied with being an LPN, but i also want to teach a nursing college class someday, and i can't do that as an LPN.

    I remember where someone on this board, also an LPN, was asking 'well if you didn't plan on staying an LPN, why didn't you just go to RN school, and give that spot in LPN school to someone who actually wanted it then?'

    I wanted to be a nurse. An LPN is a nurse. I honestly don't think i could have had any better experiences going straight for the RN, than i had during LPN school (getting a prime aide position on a med-surg floor that reinforced what i was learning in school), and after LPN school (getting a scrub nurse position in the OR, and now being the temp (by choice) ortho coodinator, and doing PRN in pre-op Ambulatory Surgery and ER.
  7. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from Jules A
    Hi,
    It sounds like you are confident and happy with your decision so next time you are asked "When are you going to get your RN?" I would just smile sweetly and say "Never". That will probably nip it in the bud, lol.

    I am proud to be be an LPN. My value does not depend on someone's opinion of my title. I'm going on to get my RN simply to have more employment opportunities and also for the money. It seems to me that LPNs do almost the same work as the RNs (I said almost folks, so don't flame me. :wink2: ) but get paid about 1/2 as much so that is another motivation for me to continue. Like you, I hated the atmosphere of nursing school but will continue to trudge through.

    Hang in there! Jules
    I wouldn't be the one to flame you, Jules, and I wish you the very best of luck in your endeavors!
  8. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from Marie_LPN
    I would be satisfied with being an LPN, but i also want to teach a nursing college class someday, and i can't do that as an LPN.

    I remember where someone on this board, also an LPN, was asking 'well if you didn't plan on staying an LPN, why didn't you just go to RN school, and give that spot in LPN school to someone who actually wanted it then?'

    I wanted to be a nurse. An LPN is a nurse. I honestly don't think i could have had any better experiences going straight for the RN, than i had during LPN school (getting a prime aide position on a med-surg floor that reinforced what i was learning in school), and after LPN school (getting a scrub nurse position in the OR, and now being the temp (by choice) ortho coodinator, and doing PRN in pre-op Ambulatory Surgery and ER.
    You sound as though you are successful, now, and you will continue to be successful as an RN. I wish you the very best of luck!
  9. by   traumaRUs
    In 1994, there was no nursing shortage. In fact (at least in Indianapolis) there were was a glut in the market. I worked as an LPN (and had a current RN license at the same time) for six months until I found a job at the VA Med Center.

    I will say though that once I made the decision to become a nurse, I should have gone straight for the BSN. I love nursing, but it is a physical job. It is fine when you are younger. However, as you age, you might find you want something less physically demanding. You might also want to work part-time and you will find that you need more money to live comfortably as you age.

    For those reasons, I continued on to an advanced practice nurse.
  10. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from traumaRUs
    In 1994, there was no nursing shortage. In fact (at least in Indianapolis) there were was a glut in the market. I worked as an LPN (and had a current RN license at the same time) for six months until I found a job at the VA Med Center.

    I will say though that once I made the decision to become a nurse, I should have gone straight for the BSN. I love nursing, but it is a physical job. It is fine when you are younger. However, as you age, you might find you want something less physically demanding. You might also want to work part-time and you will find that you need more money to live comfortably as you age.

    For those reasons, I continued on to an advanced practice nurse.
    I hear that VA is a strict work setting, is that true? And, you have given food for thought. Thanks.
  11. by   traumaRUs
    No - I loved the VA. However, I am a military vet, married to a military retiree and have worked in military and VA hospitals in three different countries. Loved it - the benefits were the best (they paid for your education too), and I loved the patients. Most truly appreciated the care.
  12. by   pagandeva2000
    Quote from traumaRUs
    No - I loved the VA. However, I am a military vet, married to a military retiree and have worked in military and VA hospitals in three different countries. Loved it - the benefits were the best (they paid for your education too), and I loved the patients. Most truly appreciated the care.
    There is a VA hospital that is a few blocks away from my house. I am hearing that they start LPNs off with about $45,000 per year, a considerable difference from most places I have inquired about. I have no real experience to offer them just yet, but plan to apply within the year, once I get some things to brag about under my belt. I work for the city, and heard that I can transfer my pension to the Federal government. If that is all true, then, I am actually gone when I finish my contract with my current job. Is there anything you can share about your experience working with them? Thanks!
  13. by   texas_lvn
    Quote from Marie_LPN
    I would be satisfied with being an LPN, but i also want to teach a nursing college class someday, and i can't do that as an LPN.
    I would love to be in your class the first day of school. You are a wealth of information, and a confidence that goes beyond most people. you tell it like it is. I am envious of the people who will one day be your pupils.

    As for staying an LVN, I want to be an RN, mostly as Marie stated the more options. I do not look down on anyone who is happy with what they do. The people who judge are the ones that need the sympathy. I am happy to know that there are people who enjoy their life. Good for you!!!!
  14. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    I would love to be in your class the first day of school. You are a wealth of information, and a confidence that goes beyond most people. you tell it like it is. I am envious of the people who will one day be your pupils.
    Thank you. And hopefully i won't corrupt them lol.

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