I apologize, for this is long. But this post struck a chord in me.
*note: the quoted sentences in my post are not taken directly from anyone's post.
You know, no one would ever look at me where I work (ICU) and question my nursing skills or judgments. The physicians I work with respect my opinion, My nurse manager has said "I don't have to worry when I know you are doing charge." I say this not to make myself sound better (because I have several wonderful coworkers who do just as good of a job), but to prove my point.
There were times (when I was a new nurse, before I switched areas) that I would think to myself - This Is Not Safe. This FACILITY is putting MY license at risk. At one point I left work every morning and cried all the way home. The stress and anxiety made me miserable. And yet every single mentor, nurse manager, coworker was telling me what a good job I was doing. (I was skipping all of my breaks to get my work done. If you have eight patients, five of which are incontinent and turns, three of which get pain meds every four hours and one of which is getting multiple units of blood, you have no nursing aids to help, no charge nurse to help because she takes nine patients too, you kinda loose site of "lunch." The workload was insane. Even the experienced nurses I worked with had a hard time getting out before 8.)
Everyone thought I was doing "just fine." Like many new nurses the above poster mentioned they know.
By July of my 1st year (I graduated in June) They made me charge nurse. And what business does any new grad have being in charge? You can imagine what this did to my stress level. But I plowed through, everyone continued to tell me what a good job I was doing, and I continued to cry all the way home. And I started to have panic attacks. Because it wasn't safe. And the whole time feeling conflicted because I wanted out of a profession that I loved.
Then I switched areas. I went from Medsurg to ICU. And it was like I could BREATHE again. Not because I had no stress (on the contrary, a day in ICU can be VERY stressful.) but because the work load was acceptable.
Now, somehow I don't think you would look at me and say "You're just not cut out for nursing." Because guess what? I am cut out for it. I am darn good at what I do.
Its not as simple as "well, they just weren't cut out for the job." No. We are good nurses, with good skills and gifts to offer this profession, but some of us have standards we refuse to stray from. I expect to be able to practice SAFELY, without putting my license at risk every time I clock in.
Granted, there are people out there who are not cut out for the job. Goodness, I've worked with some of them But to chalk it up to "Well, they're just not cut out for it. Sink or swim." That's not the attitude to have. We are loosing many GREAT nurses too. You need to be given the tools to build a good foundation before you are expected to hold the entire building up. How can new nurses build that foundation if we don't give them the tools?