Jump to content

Stop Hating on Psych Nurses

Posted

Specializes in Community Health, Med/Surg, ICU Stepdown. Has 8 years experience.

Hi all! During covid19 my hospital received funding from the government to cross train RNs to other units in case of a surge. Mostly it's been Med/Surg, PACU, OR training to ICU and Stepdown. I've been training a lot of people! Our manager asked who from Stepdown wants to train in ICU and picked a few people who have been in Stepdown for a while and were interested (not me!).

I've been going to inpatient psych to help with covid pts. I like it! Their manager asked me to cross train. I'm excited to train but my coworkers are laughing at me and about how everyone's going to ICU and I "got sent to Psych". As if ICU is superior. They're asking why I want to go there, it's no skills, "why do I want to deal with those people", it's just babysitting.

Most don't know I have a psych issue so it's insulting on a double level, to me personally and to psych nursing in general. Psych nurses are amazing and help people in need of compassion as well as treatment. I like seeing people go from hallucinating, depressed etc get better with meds and therapy (although I know it's not always butterflies and rainbows!) It gets me down to see my patients cycle through substance use, withdrawal, go out and drink/do drugs, come back, etc. without addressing the root of the problem. Has anyone faced this situation and what can we do to combat it? All areas of nursing are important

Don't let others' problems get you down. Not always (but often enough), the people who find it necessary to disparage something like your enjoyment of psychiatric nursing are primarily doing so as a means of shoring up their own feelings about themselves. It isn't as if they're knocking your choices for a legitimate reason such as being unethical or illegal.

I would argue that this behavior isn't insulting in the least. What they are saying has nothing to do with anyone but themselves. It's unfortunate that they haven't found more pleasant ways to feel good about themselves.

Sour Lemon

Has 9 years experience.

49 minutes ago, LibraNurse27 said:

Hi all! During covid19 my hospital received funding from the government to cross train RNs to other units in case of a surge. Mostly it's been Med/Surg, PACU, OR training to ICU and Stepdown. I've been training a lot of people! Our manager asked who from Stepdown wants to train in ICU and picked a few people who have been in Stepdown for a while and were interested (not me!).

I've been going to inpatient psych to help with covid pts. I like it! Their manager asked me to cross train. I'm excited to train but my coworkers are laughing at me and about how everyone's going to ICU and I "got sent to Psych". As if ICU is superior. They're asking why I want to go there, it's no skills, "why do I want to deal with those people", it's just babysitting.

Most don't know I have a psych issue so it's insulting on a double level, to me personally and to psych nursing in general. Psych nurses are amazing and help people in need of compassion as well as treatment. I like seeing people go from hallucinating, depressed etc get better with meds and therapy (although I know it's not always butterflies and rainbows!) It gets me down to see my patients cycle through substance use, withdrawal, go out and drink/do drugs, come back, etc. without addressing the root of the problem. Has anyone faced this situation and what can we do to combat it? All areas of nursing are important

I wouldn't take it too seriously. It sounds like normal workplace banter, to me. Different departments talk trash about each other all the time. Even different shifts on the same unit are not immune.

I work behavioral health, med/surg, and occasionally help out in ER. I hear it all, but I hear nothing. 😉

To piggyback on my other comment, the other side of this is that we often crave others' approval inappropriately; we mistakenly ascribe personal meaning to their words and actions. This is wrong and it's difficult to mentally combat. A good tactic is to briefly review what they've said (about us), pondering it to the extent necessary to come to a conclusion about the truth of it, and then relegate it to its proper place.

In this case, the proper place is with the one who spoke it. IOW, it is nonsense.

Only if it actually means something should you consider applying it to yourself personally.

Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 28 years experience.

Psyche is a specialized field of Nursing that doesn't appeal to a lot of people. I'm certainly one of those. I can't stand Psych. Sometimes I find myself making fun of the whole psychiatric industry. I just don't have a lot of respect for it, since there is so much subjectivity in it. It even seems politicized.

So, if you ever hear me making fun of Psych please don't take it personally. For my part, I'll try to restrain myself.

Salisburysteak, ADN, RN

Specializes in Long-term Acute Care.

Bless you for doing Psych! That is one area I cannot do. This is why nurses are needed everywhere. One specialty is not better than another.

As a previous poster has stated--it is their problem not yours.

I worked with a nurse awhile ago in SNF, he was to put it nicely not a good fit, would miss labs, not medicate elevated BPs, etc. I saw him a few years later working at one of the Behavioral Health facilities and, he was a changed nurse! He wss great with the patients and I coud tell the patients trusted him. He had found his niche! So what I am getting at is tht you have found an area of nursing that maybe your niche! Go for it! 🙂

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 10 years medical. Has 42 years experience.

18 hours ago, Emergent said:

I can't stand Psych.

Ooooooh...

So you're a "Anti-Psych-Type", eh emergent?

It is good that you've come out of the closet.

18 hours ago, Emergent said:

So, if you ever hear me making fun of Psych please don't take it personally. For my part, I'll try to restrain myself.

Just say that you're using humor in order to decrease stress and people will think you're being therapeutic.

Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 28 years experience.

14 minutes ago, Davey Do said:

Ooooooh...

So you're a "Anti-Psych-Type", eh emergent?

It is good that you've come out of the closet.

Just say that you're using humor in order to decrease stress and people will think you're being therapeutic.

I find that, when people have decided to be offended oh, they will be offended. A lot of people really enjoy being offended. It's sort of a conditioned response that seems to happen in many.

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 10 years medical. Has 42 years experience.

Just now, Emergent said:

A lot of people really enjoy being offended.

Yes I do and being a victim gives me something that inspires me get out of bed thank you very much.

RatchedAfterMidnight, MSN, APRN

Specializes in PMHNP/Adjunct Faculty. Has 7 years experience.

“To not crave the approval of others but to let it come from within is true freedom”

-anonymous

But we’re also better

I get the same remarks because I love SNF nursing. Who cares what other nurses think? I want a job where I can be somewhat happy and feel like I'm making a difference.

I think psych nurses/social workers/psychiatrists are angels! If you like it, go for it!

Uroboros, APRN

Specializes in Advanced Practice Critical Care and Family Nursing. Has 17 years experience.

You're absolutely right all areas of nursing are important. And as you're finding many make too light of the subject too often. These are often individuals who have not found their place in this amazing profession like yourself, or simply need to move onto another career. That's more of a reflective issue within themselves, and has little if anything to do with you. I began as a CNA in an ER over 25 years ago, and was attending an ADN program. All the ER nurses told me to do something else all together. After obtaining my ADN, I went onto acquire a BSN, while nurses told me it was a waste of extra time and money. Within three years I was finishing my MSN with an ACNP cert, while again nurses said I wouldn't find a job or make more money (most have since gone to NP school themselves interestingly). In the last 15 years since I've gone back for several other post-masters certs, and currently finishing a PhD.

For everything you want to do, right or wrong, there will be a group of people saying you can't. Point is had I listened the those burned out ER nurses in the beginning I never would have had a long rewarding career. You don't listen either. Wish you well.

Tenebrae, BSN, RN

Specializes in Mental Health, Gerontology, Palliative. Has 9 years experience.

I've made the move to acute pysch this year. I really enjoy it, and funnily enough find my med surg skills are still getting a work out.

I had a patient who was showing the signs of pyschosis however very atypical presentation. Also had severe COPD. Becoming unwell despite still taking the meds, wondered whether the patient may not be absorbing the meds due to the end stage disease. We decided to get the patients meds changed to subcut route, and lo and behold the patient's symptoms resolved.

Do what you find rewarding, who gives a *** what other people think as long as you enjoy what you are doing

klone, MSN, RN

Specializes in Women's Health/OB Leadership. Has 15 years experience.

My husband recently made a career change from hospice nursing to psych. He LOVES it, and is talking about taking the certification exam once he has enough hours.

Katie82, RN

Specializes in Med Surg, Tele, PH, CM. Has 39 years experience.

Sad to see that mental health still carries such a stigma, especially among "professionals". I would pick psych any day. I never liked ICU, either feast or famine. I enjoyed the pace when things were jumping, but I also did a lot of sitting around staring at monitors waiting for things to happen. Love working with "psych " patients in case management. Keep in mind that a lot of your co-workers are probably scared of psych patients.

cardiacfreak, ADN

Specializes in Hospice.

The wonderful thing about nursing is that there are so many specialties! Personally I hate Labor and Delivery will never work it and love that there are nurses who want to! I don't like ER and again I am glad there are nurses who thrive in this area.

I currently work Hospice and hear all the time , "That's so sad, how do you stand being around dying people all the time?". I have even encountered nurses who tell me they think all Hospice does is kill people. Everybody's personality is unique, so find what you like and to heck with what another nurse thinks of your speciality.

pixierose, BSN, RN

Specializes in ED, psych. Has 4 years experience.

It IS sad to see that mental health still carries such a stigma - psych is EVERYWHERE.

I feel extremely lucky in that my first position (and continued per diem position) was/is psych. Learning to talk, but most importantly to listen ... those skills are important and absolutely priceless. Patients with depression, or in psychosis, are in my ED. They’re in med surg, or those ICUs.

My ED coworkers were thrilled that I had that experience. I’ve heard them say that they wished they had it. When a patient says they want to hurt themselves, they freeze.

Hate psych all you want. We are the ones running in the rooms when everyone is or wants to run out of them. A behavioral code, if you will ...

OUxPhys, BSN, RN

Specializes in Cardiology. Has 4 years experience.

Meh, dont let it bother you. It seems like every area of nursing correlates to people's personality. ICU seems to be for people who have horrible people skills and generally not pleasant to be around (most, not all), MS/Stepdown for people who are more personable (they have their bitter people too) etc. Just keep doing what makes you happy.