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Nursing student about to graduate who dislikes nursing--advice?

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Hi,

I will be graduating soon with my ADN. I went into nursing because my previous career had become very difficult to make a living at and is becoming obsolete (medical transcription) and I was newly divorced. I was also sick of working from home and feeling like a hermit all the time, chained to a computer. I felt I needed to go back to school to find a career that would allow me to support myself financially and offer me some sort of job security (I know, no job is secure definitely) and satisfaction--I really wanted to care for people. I always enjoyed medical, so I thought nursing would be a viable option, although admittedly I never considered it in the past. My real interest lies in counseling and therapy but after speaking to friends in that field and for various reasons (pay, up and down nature of client load, etc.) , I thought choosing nursing would be better.

Now that I am near the "end of the road", so to speak, for nursing school, I realize I am not liking nursing at all. I work in a hospital on a busy floor as a tech and I watch the nurses and see what they deal with--I realize I don't want to be a nurse! Feeling kind of conflicted on what to do next--I want to pursue a bachelor's to give myself options away from bedside nursing and possibly into counseling, but not sure whether to pursue a BSN and just do my time on a med-surg floor for a year and try to go to other areas of nursing or just get a bachelor's degree in something else altogether where my RN degree isn't wasted but I can get away from bedside nursing (I'm interested in nutrition, physical fitness, holistic health, counseling). I don't think I want to pursue an advanced degree at this point in the future because I'm in my late 40s and I'm tired! Sorry for the long post--I'm sure it is redundant as others have posted similar things, but I would ask for input from any who have contemplated the same and come up with any answers for themselves! Thanks :)

I don't have any words of advice to give you as I am in a somewhat similar position as you. You are not alone. I wish I did not change my career to study nursing.

Ever consider psych nursing? Lots of counseling, not so much of the medical stuff, and it might be a good experience for future jobs..

Yes, I have considered psych nursing. THAT does appeal to me much more than traditional nursing. I had thought of pursuing an advanced degree as a psych NP but I guess I'm a bit conflicted whether to pursue that...is it worth the time and money spent on an advanced degree? Are there enough jobs?

Also I am wondering if that old wisdom about "working at least a year in med-surg as a new nurse before pursuing a specialty" applies here--should I not just try to get a job in a psych facility out the door since traditional nursing isn't my bag anyway? Anyone "in the know", I would very much appreciate your advice.

Why not call up some of the psych hospitals and ask to speak with the nurse recruiters about the possibility of starting with one of them? I'd include your state hospitals here. I'm not convinced that everyone expects a year of med surg experience before specializing.

Thanks, that's a great idea. I appreciate it.

Yes, I have considered psych nursing. THAT does appeal to me much more than traditional nursing. I had thought of pursuing an advanced degree as a psych NP but I guess I'm a bit conflicted whether to pursue that...is it worth the time and money spent on an advanced degree? Are there enough jobs?

If you have some inpt psych experience and the psych NP degree (which might end up being a DNSc) you can go into private practice. Plenty o' work in my neck of the woods. :)

In many states you have a physician psychiatrist as an associate but you do not have to work for this person or share a partnership. You can get prescriptive authority or have a physician associate to write prescriptions if needed. Look up the state nurse practice act, the part that specifically talks about advanced nurse practice specialties, to see how that works. You might find yourself intrigued. You can also go to the Specialties tab at the top of this page and go ask the psych specialists.

Thanks, GrnTea! I didn't know you were a psych NP :) This idea really appeals to me--I guess I'm just tired right now so the thought of more schooling pains me, but it is necessary to get to where I want to be. Muchos gracias....

I'm not a psych NP, but I am doing a case that needed me to look up their standards and scope of practice for my client, so they're fresh in my mind. :)

OP, you are in control here. Nothing says you ever have to take the NCLEX. You can wait a bit too. Call around and see. Ask people to tell you "for real" ask if a NG has a shot at those positions. If your state is not putting money into mental health, then, you won't see much opportunity. Also, lots of psych facilities languish far more than your worst nursing home - at least in my area...

Once you become licensed as a nurse, suddenly all those peripheral job opportunities will vanish. Nobody wants a nurse, except a hospital and that's pretty much 2yrs thru 8yrs, you won't be considered many places until you have 2 years, and you need to start to watch your back after 8 years or so.

Meriwhen, ASN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Psych ICU, addictions.

Also I am wondering if that old wisdom about "working at least a year in med-surg as a new nurse before pursuing a specialty" applies here--should I not just try to get a job in a psych facility out the door since traditional nursing isn't my bag anyway? Anyone "in the know", I would very much appreciate your advice.

You do not need a year of med-surg first in order to have a successful psych career. It doesn't hurt, but it's in no way mandatory. Some of the best psych nurses I know went straight into the specialty.

So if you are interested in psych--or other non "traditional" nursing specialties for that matter--why not pursue it from the get-go?

Maybe you can consider working in a physician's office if you are not happy with using your profession in a bigger scale.

skylark, BSN, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 35 years experience.

Is school nursing an option?

I just thought that it probably combines most of your interests, and is definitely not bedside nursing : )

msteeleart

Specializes in Psych/med surg.

I am a new grad and I just landed a job as a psych outreach nurse. You don't have to be a bedside nurse and I so understand what you are feeling at this point. I gave bedside nursing a try in a nursing home and I really disliked the 12 hour night shifts. Med/surg and floor nursing is not for everyone. I originally tried to get a floor nurse job in a hospital but luckily I did not and I ended up finding an 8 to 5 mon-fri job.

Why not call up some of the psych hospitals and ask to speak with the nurse recruiters about the possibility of starting with one of them? I'd include your state hospitals here. I'm not convinced that everyone expects a year of med surg experience before specializing.

I agree with this

spizwink

Specializes in Home health, medical, pulmonary, psych. Has 20 years experience.

I never loved or really liked hospital nursing a lot either. I hated to be so busy and often behind that I couldn't sit and talk to a frightened or troubled patient. I did my time in medical though and loved doing charge. I really found my love in home health though-one on one, lots of education involved, time to really get to know my patients, their families, their needs. I came to understand why a lot of folks were frequent fliers when I saw their home situations. Its not for everyone but I loved it and when my kids grew up I did HHC as a travel nurse for awhile and got to see the country too. Just a thought...

Dear OP:

I had to laugh as i read this post!!! I could have written MYSELF!!! As such, I enjoyed reading all the responses and may consider psych nursing (though Im considering NP eventually). I graduated in dec 2010 and it took me a 1.5 yrs to find a job. i too am in my late 40's. ive now been a bedside nurse for a year (yeah i made it to the 'one year acute experience required')... and it sucks!!! i work in the med surg unit of a large county facility and cannot stand it. its not so much the direct patient care per se (i can deal with those who live on the call light, or demanding family members, etc); what's irks me is the amount of paperwork and how everything seems to be geared toward protecting one's license. they have whole departments of former bedside nurses whose job it is to audit charts and make all t's are crossed ,etc; if not, you can be written up. managers constantly coming up with stuff to do, or you can be written up! its like those in management have forgotten or dont care about the stress bedside nursing involves. like i said, the only thing that gets me through is the smile on patients' faces when i make them, or their meddling family members, happy. Thanks for putting up that post and thanks to those who've responded; its given me plenty of food for thought...