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Not a real nurse?

Psychiatric   (12,425 Views 34 Comments)
by Iris34 Iris34 (New Member) New Member

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Whispera is a MSN, RN and specializes in psych, addictions, hospice, education.

27,905 Visitors; 3,458 Posts

I think those who specialize are quite aware how their specialties differ from others. It's not a matter of "us vs. them." All are at least a bit unique. That doesn't make us different professions...

I'm a teacher in addition to being a nurse. I've taught elementary school, middle school, and now teach on the university level. There are differences between being an elementary, middle school, and university teacher. Each is still a real teacher. I think this is analogous to the definition of real nurse.

Edited by Whispera

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13,275 Visitors; 2,801 Posts

Suggesting clearer differentiation between types of nurses doesn't mean that I think any one kind is better, more legitimate, more important, etc. "I'm a nurse, too" doesn't really mean more than both parties have gone to nursing school and passed boards. And despite the reality of the wide range of nursing out there, there is still the conception WITHIN much of the nursing community that 'real' nursing is bedside acute care. My suggestion is simply that acute care nursing be habitually called acute care nursing so that it doesn't get mistaken for being the very essence of what 'real' nursing is.

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13,275 Visitors; 2,801 Posts

Here's a thought about the OP's experience. The L&D nurse may have interpretted the OPs introducing herself as a nurse as being a self-aggrandizing proposition "I'm one of you so you should treat me differently than the average visitor." And thus the rude, defensive response "You're not one of us unless you've done this type of work".

I'm *not* saying that's what the OP meant or that it would justify such a rude reply.

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644 Visitors; 5 Posts

I just recently started my first job as a PSYCH nurse, and I love it. It is just as hard as any other nursing field out there. I love working with the clients that I come across each different, and everyday is always different. I was so surprised how much I actually learn from the clients especially about there medications. So one thing I can say about PSYCH is that I'm a real nurse taking care of business like every other nurse.

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Doreen NY has 25 years experience and specializes in med-surg, psych.

1,810 Visitors; 8 Posts

I have great respect for nurses who work with the psychiatric population. Psych nurses need to have an excellent background in medical conditions as well. It is rare to have a psychiatric patient without some coexisting medical condition, be it diabetes, hypertension,heart disease or even pregnancy. All nurses should have excellent assessment skills, being able to predict and deal with emergencies. These patients are heavily medicated and psych nurses need to know how each of these meds affect the physiological functioning of the body. It is due to the astute assessment skills of these nurses, that physicians determine whether psychotropic meds are working or not. Nurses care for their patients on a holistic level, and psych nurses deal with families, work with community agencies and provide limitless education to patients and families. Psych nurses really need to be excellent communicators and it is not as easy as, some people think to talk to someone who is suicidal or depressed, or who refuses to speak at all. Today geriatric psychiatry is a specialty that deals with numerous medical issues, as well as psychiatric conditions. Many nurses feel comfortable performing treatments but are unable to communicate effectively with their patients. Every nursing specialty is unique and beneficial to society. The great thing about nursing is that we are free to chose to work in an area where we can be the most productive. Be proud of what you have achieved and ignore those who are ignorant of what psych nursing is all about.

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SammiJoRNBSN has 1 years experience and specializes in Med/Surg - Internal Medicine.

2,288 Visitors; 49 Posts

Kind of funny that they said a psych nurse "isn't a real nurse". Last time I checked...psych is a HUGE part of the entire field of nursing, because we assess for psychosocial issues with each patient! I applaud you for dealing with the psych population because there are so many ups and downs from patient to patient. Best wishes on your Master's!!!! :) :nurse:

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Davey Do has 35 years experience and specializes in Psych, CD, HH, Admin, LTC, OR, ER, Med Surge.

14 Followers; 1 Article; 75,091 Visitors; 6,064 Posts

Hi. My name is not really Dave. And I'm not really an RN. And I don't really work in a real Hospital. My Patients aren't really patients. But my paycheck is real. And that's good enough for me.

Thanks.

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NPvampire has 11 years experience as a MSN, RN, APRN and specializes in Psych, Geriatrics.

3,290 Visitors; 164 Posts

Yeah, I've heard that before too...they just should try to do the day I had to do today and they would be quitting before dinnertime! "real nurse" indeed!

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drmorton2b has 2 years experience and specializes in Sub-Acute/Psychiatric/Detox.

6,835 Visitors; 253 Posts

One could argue that an L&D Nurse isn't a real nurse because they take care of the "well". Then of course internally in L&D they argue or you work Postpartum that's not real LABOR&DELIVERY nursing the Delivery nurse might say...Then the NICU nurse arrives and says.. you have it all wrong you haven't done any real maternity nursing until you worked in the NICU it goes on and on. Then the Trauma Nurse says... It goes on and on and on and on and on... Its a never ending argument.

I get that jealous/scared oh I'm just a psych nurse feeling all the time... its annoying... Most nurses who approach me say I couldn't do you do job for a day and I say the same thing right back at them.

Especially in the adults there are a lot of co-morbid disorders with psych. Diabetes being one of them.. On top of other things...

In most psych settings we aren't just handing out Zoloft and calling it a day.. especially in an adult setting the MAR med lists can be easily just as long as a list at a hospital or nursing home.

Other professions argue too.. Campus Police aren't real police.. State Police only patrol the highways... the FBI Agents are basically lawyers with guns...

Its the specialty that clicks with you and with me is psych/detox and maybe eventually some home care and when I build myself stronger maybe some day hospice..

Would you want to do L&D? I don't doesn't mean its a bad thing. All aspects of nursing are at risk for cuts and changes and at the end of the day unless your an APRN or Teaching or in Administration..what matters is that you have a nursing specialty you feel comfortable in. Look at some of our more senior members.. Some have been everywhere... which is awesome.

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nursemelyn specializes in Med-Surg, Psych, Rehab.

2,003 Visitors; 32 Posts

This makes me SOOO mad! I just quit my job as a rehab nurse (blah!) so I could transfer to psych, my dream job. All the administrative nurses say, "Oh psych? Hmm. Wow." Like psych nursing isn't a valid career choice. I'm going to do what I enjoy people! And psych nursing is part of every area in nursing! I just can't believe how rude people can be about our career choice to be psych nurses.

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Davey Do has 35 years experience and specializes in Psych, CD, HH, Admin, LTC, OR, ER, Med Surge.

14 Followers; 1 Article; 75,091 Visitors; 6,064 Posts

Allowing other people, especially people's viewpoint on which we disagree, to cause us to question our importance as a Nurse, or cause some other negative reaction like anger, indicates misplaced priorities. In essence, it's we who give another Individual power over us when we make another's opinion more important than our own.

Really, when it's all said and done, who do we answer to? Who do we sleep with? The answer is: Ourself. We are the one who has to listen to our Internal voice or our conscience. We have to sleep with ourselves.

To even consider giving credence to Another's negative parochial perspective is a precursor for neuroticism.

Get real here, People! To have to question our own professional importance or seek support from a bunch of Non-Entities is what stands out here.

However, bashing Naysayers is fun though, isn't it?

Dave

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1,217 Visitors; 29 Posts

I am a psych nurse and proud of it. I tried working M/S and couldn't handle it so I'm in awe of hospital nurses but I know that we are all important and valued in whatever field we choose. However, my issue is with my family (husband, in-laws, etc) who ALWAYS have to point out that I'm a nurse to any healthcare provider we encounter, especially when one of us is hospitalized. It embarasses me. Don't misunderstand...I'm not at all embarassed about being a nurse. I just feel like they're saying in code "watch what you do...my "daughter in law, wife, or whatever is a nurse and she's WATCHING YOU!!" Then I respond with "well, I'm a psych nurse" which almost sounds like I'm demeaning myself but it's really just that I don't want them to think I'm gonna critique everything they do. Oh well... I wish my family wouldn't do that, guess I just need to tell them!:o

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