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New Grad with Family Issues


Specializes in Registered Nurse. Has 2 years experience.

I'm a new grad, and I've been working on a very acute/stressful surgical unit for the past 4 months. The ward is constantly short staffed and lacking resources, and nurses frequently miss breaks and leave shifts late. While my mom supported me throughout nursing school, now she just seems frustrated and annoyed when I come home from a shift upset, stressed out or exhausted. Working full time as a new grad has definitely been a huge adjustment for me - everyone on my ward is extremely supportive, but I'm still finding myself to be socially isolated at times due to working weekends/nights, and I'm exhausted and lonely. I'm fully aware that I chose a profession that is stressful and has unusual hours, and I love nursing, but I just don't feel like my mom gets it...it's quite discouraging because she makes me feel like I'm coping poorly with my work/life balance, when in reality I think I'm doing a pretty good job for a new grad. I find venting my feelings to be healthy, instead of bottling them up, but my mom acts like I should just tough it out and be grateful that I have a job (which I obviously am).

Any advice from anyone with regards to how to deal with parents/family who seem like they've run out of sympathy for the stress than RNs have to deal with on a daily basis? I have very supportive friends, but it's quite hard to deal with a parent who doesn't seem to have the desire or patience to listen to my problems...

I think you are just in a situation where you try to balance family and work, before it was school and family. First, its good you are venting all your emotions. Second, Just do your best as a child to let them understand your situation: communication despite rejection - i mean if they seem not to listen - well its still good to let them know. Well, nowadays you can choose to be independent and live on your own - or you may try to stay and live and try to do something about it . If they dont reAch out .. its you who needs to work things out ;) You can do it !

RedInScrubs, ASN, RN

Specializes in Medical-Surgial, Cardiac, Pediatrics. Has 3 years experience.

Man, wish I had some good advice. I'm a new grad working crazy hours at the hospital and home health, but my friends here in the area totally get it, and my mom is a good ear, because she was a single mom and a nurse, like me. We actually spend hours now bemoaning the crap that nurses have to deal with in general, though her stories always top mine, since they usually involve climbing on gurneys in a white dress during a code or having her nursing cap knocked off by a random swinging patient at midnight, haha.

Good luck! Hope some good advice comes your way with it, and things get easier. I'm sure they will, one way or another, with time. :)

MedSurgRN193, BSN, RN

Specializes in Registered Nurse. Has 2 years experience.

Thanks for your post! My mom is also a single mother, and I have several other siblings so I get that she has a lot on her plate to deal with. I think it's just tough because although she has a stressful job also, she'll never be able to fully comprehend what a nurse has to deal with during a shift....I know the first year of nursing is always the hardest, so I'll just have to do my best to tough it out. Thanks again for your response :)

Ruby Vee, BSN

Specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching. Has 40 years experience.

Your mom doesn't get it and you know she doesn't get it, so stop expecting her to get it. You're going to have to look elsewhere for a support system. Friends? Coworkers? Allnurses? My parents never understood that my nursing job involved more than sitting around the nurse's station drinking coffee while the "aides do all the work." Not even after Dad's 10 day stay in ICU. Over the years, they said some pretty insulting and hurtful things. The worst was probably when Dad was agitating for legislation forcing all healthcare workers to wear their HIV status on their name badges, never mind that a health care worker is FAR more likely to get HIV from doing patient care than a patient is to get it from a health care worker. (Unless, like the dentist in Florida, the healthcare worker is actively TRYING to infect people.) I learned not to talk about my job with my parents. It saves a lot of stress.

You have a real job now, you have the option of moving out of your mother's home and making a home of your own. Perhaps get an apartment with co-workers or other new nurses.

not usually, but I am going to be even tougher than Ruby....not. her. job. to understand. if you need to stay in her home, find another outlet for your angst. if you are sharing expenses, negotiate with her.