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Need some encouragement

First Year   (2,029 Views 18 Comments)

4,340 Profile Views; 105 Posts

I'm feeling so overwhelmed. I'm approaching my last few weeks of orientation...nursing is not what I had ever expected. It's a big slap in the face. I don't feel like I'm helping anybody or "making a difference." I often find myself wondering why anybody stays in bedside nursing, or rather HOW they stay. I find it extreamly stressful and difficult to juggle 8 patients (and I know some of you juggle more). I feel I cant be the nurse I want to be for these people. I'm very disappointed that this is what reality is. If I had known what it was really like, I dont know if I would have went through with nursing school. I'm afraid that I won't stick with it. I'm just absolutly exhausted. Does it get any easier???

:(

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1 Post; 369 Profile Views

Hang in there and it will get better. I wanted to quit the first year out of school but since I was in the military this was not an option :) You sound like you are a caring person so please stick with it because we need people like you in this profession!

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NotReady4PrimeTime has 25 years experience as a RN and specializes in NICU, PICU, PCVICU and peds oncology.

16 Articles; 7,356 Posts; 71,463 Profile Views

KayCeeLeeRN, you are in good company. Most new nurses had absolutely no idea what they were getting into when they graduated. Nursing school fails everybody when it comes to the realities of our profession. They like to focus on the emphemeral, theoretical and ideal, but that's not what we do. Who has time for therapeutic communication, back-rubs, patient teaching and other very worthy pursuits when we hit the floor running every shift and don't even slow down to pee? Those of us who went into the profession fully aware of what it's all about (like me, having a medically-complex and oft-hospitalized son) had a much easier transition to working life. This disconnect between the education and the reality is the root cause of why 20% of new nurses leave the profession before they've completed their first year. If you look around this forum you'll find many, many kindred souls. It's really cold comfort to know you're not alone, and there isn't likely to be a fix for this in our lifetime, unless the faculties wise up to the problem and start revealing just what it is we're up against. That isn't likely to happen though because the majority of faculty members have been away from bedside nursing for so long (if indeed they ever were there in the first place) that nothing is even remotely the same. You will have to make the best decision for YOU in this situation. It will be a blow if you decide to leave the profession, but you ultimately have to look after you. :icon_hug:

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malire specializes in Transplant - Liver & Kidney.

26 Posts; 1,070 Profile Views

Wow! 8 patients! I'm a new grad, too. I just got an extra week of orientation and have only 2 weeks left. At my hospital we have 4-6 patients and I'm having trouble just juggling that. I don't think any more would be safe. I think most Magnet hospitals keep their ratios 6 and under for med/surg.

It's so much more than I was prepared for working as a nurse extern. But everyone keeps telling me that it takes about 6 months before you feel like you have a handle on things. I just look around at the experienced nurses around me and hope that I can whisk through a day like them someday.

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25 Posts; 1,167 Profile Views

I'm in the same boat. I just finished my last day of orientation yesterday, and I'll be on my own Monday. Yesterday was my worst day so far!! If my preceptor wasn't there, I don't know what I would of done. My pt. load is 5 on a med/surg floor, and I feel like I can't give good care, I'm over looking things, and my documentation is lacking. There is just not enough time in the day to do all you need to do. I'm so afraid to be on my own, and there is still a lot I haven't done yet! I wanted to quit too, believe me! I graduated in Dec. 06. I actually enjoyed pscyh so much in school, I applied for a a job on a psych unit a couple of weeks ago, and got hired!!! Yet, something in my gut, and other people, told me I was running because I was afraid and thats not a good reason plus, I could really benefit from the experience on med/surg. So, I TURNED THE OFFER DOWN!! Believe me, yesterday, I wish I took it. Everyone tells me it will get better, and I just keep telling myself that. My preceptor was great and told me I'm not Super Nurse, it comes with time! So know you are not alone!! There are many of us feeling the exact same way. Ultimately, you have to do whats in your heart, and what you feel is best for you. I stayed in med/surg because I knew on my good days, when I felt like I did have some time to give the best care, I went home smiling, and thats why I chose nursing in the first place. Hang in there, I'm trying to. Feel free to email me if you need to chat, I can relate!!!!;)

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Anjann is a RN and specializes in M/S/Ortho/Bari/ED.

135 Posts; 3,353 Profile Views

I feel you!

Every single day I want to quit. I have gone from speedy enthusiastic new grad, to apathetic 15 hour a day zombie. It absolutely disgusts me how big the disconnect is between what they spend time teaching us in school, and what we get hit with when we get on the floor.

I got into nursing at 35 to fulfill a lifelong calling, and to have some kind of decent income and decent hours (I thought!) but now, I work more than I ever have for the same money I was making when I quit my IT job 3 years ago, and I feel like my patient care stinks because I am so overwhelmed all of the time.

The worst part is that I routinely have techs coming up to me complaining that patients have not been washed and ice has not been passed out! As if I have time to worry about that!

I spent 3 years getting through school and now I am unhappier than ever.

I don't want to quit because everyone keeps telling me that my feelings and experiences are normal, but that doesn't make it right or acceptable!

It makes me feel like I am a sucker for caring about people enough to get into this field in the first place.

I hope someone out there can honestly tell us that it does get better...

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25 Posts; 1,167 Profile Views

I know exactly how you feel Anjann. I was so excited to finally become an RN and now, I question my career choice every day. I still love to take care of my patients and having the interaction but, I can't keep up and I feel like I'll never be a great nurse. I come home feeling exhausted, frustrated, overwhelmed, and many times crying. I keep hanging on to the hope that things will get better. It helps to know others feel the same way.

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crb613 has 7 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Med Surg/Tele/ER.

1,632 Posts; 12,617 Profile Views

I have been a nurse for almost a year.....and it does get better. I still have a lot to learn, but when I look back I know so much more than I did almost a year ago. You will get faster, and little thing won't seem like such a big deal. Just take your time, and be safe...if you don't know how to do something ask. It will get better!

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malire specializes in Transplant - Liver & Kidney.

26 Posts; 1,070 Profile Views

Thanks, crb! All the nurses on my unit keep saying it takes at lest 6 months before you start getting the swing of it. I have no choice but to believe them after 4 years of classes and nursing school there's no quitting yet. I knew it was going to be hard but nothing really prepares you for what it's really like to run around like a mad woman for 13hrs only to be told you missed this and you missed that. All the little things that you don't want to miss because that means you're a bad nurse. It sucks not being able to provide your patients with the quality of care they deserve. It just seems impossible to get all the urgent things done (like meds, vitals, assessments, d/c, admissions, etc.) and still pay attention to the little things.

Here's to hoping it really does get better!

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jill48 is a ASN, RN and specializes in Med/Surg, Geri, Ortho, Telemetry, Psych.

612 Posts; 4,446 Profile Views

You don't have to stay with bedside nursing. There are many other ways to make a difference and help people. By your post I can see that you have a good heart. Do something else within nursing.;)

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202 Posts; 3,248 Profile Views

:uhoh3: I thought the OP need encouragement. This thread has scared the HeBeBaJeeBees out of me. I guess we'll see. I've read so many post where people say it will get better, usually in about 1 year.

Please don't give up :beercuphe Just take a drink and hang in there!!!

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