Why should I become a Psych RN? - page 2

Hello! I am graduating soon from nursing school and I want to become a psych RN however I already have a job lined up in a doctor's office. I am extremely interested in psych and truly feel like I... Read More

  1. by   macfar28
    If psych is your calling, do it. I did psych straight out of school (15 years ago) and while I do sometimes feel at a disadvantage having not done med/surg first, there are always nurses at my facility who did. We all help each other. I know had I spent even 6 months in a med/surg unit out of school (or even now), I would end up being a patient at my facility!!

    Hope the NCLEX went well and best of luck.
  2. by   bellabarbiegirl
    macfar28 haha I feel the same way! I have a lot of respect for med surge nurses but I am not passionate about it like I am with psych. I need to go where I feel most drawn and that is definitely psych. Thank you for the comment!
  3. by   doomsayer
    I've enjoyed this thread. I, too am drawn to psych nursing. I did a recent VA rotation in clinical and LOVED it there. I also wonder if I should get some med-surg under my belt so that my options are open if I ever needed to change jobs. However, I am very drawn to this. In psych now, final coming up this week, and I am making better grades than I ever had. I feel like I "get this"- but I am questioning getting other experiences first.
    Any advice?
  4. by   jokead2k
    Its interesting been a psychiatric nurse, am also one. I would advice you go for t̲̣̣̥ђε̲̣ exams . Psychistric nursing bring out t̲̣̣̥ђε̲̣ real self in somebody its makes you to understand yourself more and your personality. I wish you t̲̣̣̥ђε̲̣ very best .
  5. by   albymangel
    Just go for it
  6. by   ruhzdyn
    Psych is a great specialty. No two days are alike. Everyone's illness seems to manifest a little bit differently with each individual having their own unique story. I like that I'm always on my toes in the specialty too. It can be a little hectic as well as depressing. In the medical hospital setting, we frequently have to push people through until they are able to be discharged due to the fixed reimbursements based on diagnosis from hospitals. In psych, we really get to know the patient because we want to be sure they are better before being discharged. In a medical hospital, their sentinal events tend to happen in hospital while in mental health, they tend to occur just after discharge(i.e. suicide).
    Furthermore, when digging into nursing theory, you'll find that many of our nursing theorists were heavily influenced by their own experiences with psychiatric clients. A lot of the theoretical basis for their work was built around the foundations of developing relationships with clients that are not always receptive. The deep roots that psych has in the nursing profession is huge.
    It's a great specialty. As you mentioned, the starting pay is not as high. I assure you though that there are plenty of oppurtunities for your income to grow within the specialty. Whether you will eventually end up as an educator for future mental health nurses, a practitioner, or in management, you will love the influences that mental health nursing will give you. Remember, before you can start anticipating fruits, give the seed a chance to grow and flourish first.
  7. by   lonestar9918
    I graduated last May and went to work on a very busy critical care/telemetry floor. For the most part I loved my job, but when I came home excited about a shift, I found myself most excited about the patient teaching and the connection I made with my patients. I told my husband constantly that I hated that I could not follow up. Did they become depressed after that MI, did they understand the new treatment regime, would more education and support have helped them? ( I LOVED the PSYCH aspect of the job!)

    Shortly after I settled into that position, the Associate Dean of our school called and asked if I was interested in going to Grad School. I began the fall after I graduated, and accepted a position as a TA. As a result, I had to quit my hospital job (here they don't allow you to work part time until you've been licensed for two years).

    While I love my job at the school, I still wanted a clinical job. I had an opportunity to work for a local psych hospital. I had always been drawn to psych, but I'm not going to lie, I left my clinical rotation at this facility.... and CRIED on and off ALL NIGHT LONG. Two thirds of the patients are children, and their stories break my heart. I had to do some soul searching before I accepted the job. Here's what I decided:

    Like many nurses/nursing students I'm a little neurotic, and a complete control freak! I felt like I could really help these kids!! But what could I do during one 8 hour shift a week? Ok... but if I feel like I can help these kids, that I can be a stable supportive person in their lives... then maybe, just maybe, its my responsibility to be there. And if I don't complete trust everyone else to do it, then maybe I don't have a choice!

    I took the job.... I LOVE my job, our facility has its issues, and the new CEO and DON are working to make some changes, but I was made to do this. I am working on my Master's in Nursing Education, and believe that soon after I will work toward an PMHNP certification.

    I know this is long, and I'm sorry for that, but what I mean to say is.... if you feel a calling, at all, give it a shot. These people need help, and not from someone who is just looking for a job, but from someone who can be dedicated to a therapeutic relationship, be supportive, uplifting, teach coping skills, care about their lives and their future. I didn't hate medical/bedside nursing, I wasn't turned off by working the floor, but I very much enjoy psych, and I am excited to be there.

    One thing seems to be very true about psych.... you love it or you hate it. And if you love it, you may never be able to do anything else!! Best of luck to you, congratulations on your graduation!

    I just realized I was signed in under my husband's name :/ Oopsie!
    Last edit by lonestar9918 on Mar 14, '13
  8. by   TerpGal02
    I've been a psych nurse for just about a year now. I started in community mental health (working on a ACT team with the most chronically ill and unstable patients in the community). I knew I wanted to be a psych nurse before I started nursing school, and my psych clinical only cemented that for me. I was calm and comfortable in my psych rotation. I was a deer in headlights during med/surg and found myself really more interested in pt teaching and creating a therapeutic relationship with the pts was more rewarding to me than procedures in med/surg. In fact, most of ky assignments in med/surg were people with psych issues. In my first job I was not only responsible for meds, assessments, teaching, etc, I also carried my own caseload for case management stuff. These people were usually in our program long term (years, most of them), so I really got to know a lot of them, which was extremely rewarding. I had a lot of time to spend 1:1, which I know isn't usually the case working inpt, which I am doing now. I just started orienting on Mon. At my current facility, we care for aldults, children, and adolescents. I only have experience with adults, and many times the adults trauma histories are so horrific it lakes you have second thoughts about humanity. I think it will be harder with the kids who most of them have endured unspeakable abuse. If you truly belong in psych, you will know it. Pay depends on where you work. In ky area, working at a full service hospital with a psych unit is a little higher paid than at a private psych hospital, and definitely better paid than working at a nonprofit community agency.
  9. by   shannarini71
    This sounds like the ideal nursing job to me! I am interested in psych/counseling (always wanted to be a therapist actually but it never came to fruition for various reasons). Thanks for your story!