Was told by an aide that I'm not CUT OUT for Nursing

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Yesterday was a horrible day for me. I am externing on a Med-Surg floor and was told by an aide that she didn't think I was "cut-out" for nursing. I just came off of orientation and have worked a total of 4 days on the floor and she said that I'm not "cutting it." That maybe I should re-consider my career choice and that the medical field is not for everyone. I'm devastated. I have doubted myself constantly about my capabilities.... to the point that I completed my first year of nursing school and then dropped out this semester. I thought maybe externing would give me some much needed confidence and keep things fresh in my mind for when I start back next fall. Now.... I'm not even sure if I should waste any more time with this at all. I mean... she must be right. If I can't handle the duties of an aide-- then surely I won't "cut it" as a nurse.

I just have a hard time "prioritizing" my time and not sure of how the "flow" of things are suppose to go. I get so nervous sometimes and really lack self-confidence. But I love people... and truly care about making a difference. I just don't know what to do. I am 4 classes away of becoming a RN. I don't know if I should finish or take this aide's advice and throw in the towel now. :sniff:


1,078 Posts

Specializes in Trauma ICU, MICU/SICU.

Hi Tabby,

I'm sorry you're having a rough time. I wouldn't pay that aide any mind. Perhaps she's very jealous of you. You've only been on your own it takes a very long time, to get into a good flow with time management, prioritizing, speed, etc. Focus on giving good care. Tell her to worry about her job and you'll worry about yours.

Take care & trust that it will come.

Specializes in Rural Health.

She's right, nursing isn't for everyone, BUT only you can decide if it is for you. If it's your passion, calling, desire, etc...you'll make a good nurse. Everyone has to learn how to do it and everyone struggles in some aspect or another and everyone wants to throw in the towel from time to time. No one is perfect. Over time, practice and patience, you'll learn to become a good nurse if it's in your heart to be one.

I wish you luck in whatever decisions you make but don't let the opinion of 1 person drag you down and make you give up something you really want.


73 Posts

So far, my experience has been that the aides feel threatened by us nursing students and will do anything to make themselves feel better and like they have a higher rank than you. For instance, the aides at the place where I am doing clinicals will try to make you do their job. I just put my foot down and let them know what I was here to do and not to do.

I think you should use the same strategy. You said that you were there doing the externship to build up your confidence and clinical experience for the day you do become a nurse. So long as you know that you will be a nurse someday, hold your head up high, plug yourself into a couple of nurses (not aides) who can show you "the ropes" and learn from them. Know what you're there to do and do it!:)


173 Posts

I wouldn't pay any attention whatsoever to the aide's opinion. Who knows what her agenda is; but be certain that it isn't your best interest. Pay much more attention to what feedback you get from your nursing instructors, and your own gut instinct. The "prioritizing" stuff, in my opinion and personal experience, comes with time. I didn't learn it in school, and I wasn't good at it until I had been a nurse for a while.

Good luck.


180 Posts

And this aide is an expert in who will be a good nurse because........

Relax, give yourself a break. Everyone is a little unsteady at first. This person has no idea what kind of nurse you are going to be based on a couple of days. Don't let her negativity get to you. Build up your self confidence, take pride in the little things that you do every day. Keep the faith, one day you will look back at all of this and see that it helped you become an even better nurse.

boulergirl, CNA

428 Posts

Specializes in Home care, assisted living.

Umm...just curious as to why you're letting a nurse's aide make your career decisions for you. Just because you may not make an efficient aide has little bearing, I think, on your ability to be a good nurse. You have to make this decision for yourself--and get some confidence!

Years ago, I let my mom talk me out of nursing school. She said she expected certain qualities in a nurse and said I didn't have them (except for compassion--how nice). After hearing her beg me for days to drop out, I gave in--I never even set foot in class. Since that happened, I lost focus in college and abandoned my college education.

The point here is, don't let one person decide your future for you.

Specializes in Psych, Med/Surg, Home Health, Oncology.


Your note made me so ANGRY!!:angryfire How dare you allow someone to get away with saying something like this to you!!

You have only worked what, 4 days!!! It is up to you to decide what is best for you!

Never, Ever let someone else have that much influence over you.

She is a CNA and perhaps feels threatened by you; or maybe she is jealous of the fact that you are really doing it--going for that RN! Who knows.

Only you can decide what is best for you. Other people--people you trust, your instructors, your fellow students, they can all give you feedback, but NO ONE makes that final decision but you.

Remember to be kind to yourself. Do you think that we all became what we are in a day?? Even when you finish school, it still takes time. No one just walks into the job and is perfect!!

I had been a nurse for about 12 years when I started to work the nite shift, it felt like I had never even worked one day, I was so disorganized. It took a long time before I finally was able to prioritize and organize my time. Now, after many years, people ask, How can you get it so together? Well, it is all time!! Give yourself a chance & take the time.

Remeber that the people who question themselves are usually the people who absolutely belong!!

Do not give up before you've even started. Please.

We need Good, caring, compassionate people in this profession.

We need people who care enough to question weather or not they are good enough.

Please, do not let this person decide your Life!!!

Mary Ann

Maggie in NC

1 Article; 392 Posts

she must be right. If I can't handle the duties of an aide-- then surely I won't "cut it" as a nurse.

. :sniff:

She must be right? She is an AIDE-not an instructor, not a nurse, not a doctor, not a peer. Please don't sell yourself short over one person's opinion. I am not putting down the fact that she is aide. I am trying to point out her vantage point isn't one that would be considered in evaluating your performance so why let her? EVERY NURSE has issues in the beginning. It's common. It does not mean you are not cut out for it. It may mean you're in the wrong setting, she's an idiot, you need to feel more confident in yourself, or you just had a bad day.

Constructive critism does not make you feel the way you have described this woman making you feel. It should be done in a manner that is caring and considerate and tries to TEACH you something NOT attack you. Every time someone makes you feel like you're not "cut out for this"-just shut them off. Worry about the evaluations you get in class and from your preceptor.

Four classes to finish? GET CRACKIN and don't let anyone stop you. You fit in or you wouldn't have gotten this far.

You should consider posting her on the "who would u tazer" thread.

OK, now, I'm stepping away from the motivational speaker's platform....


353 Posts

Specializes in Rehab, Step-down,Tele,Hospice.

ah yeah... I totally agree with boulergirl, who the heck is this aide to be judging you? Did you ask for her opinion or was this "unsolicited advice"? Up hers. Follow your heart and finish school.

I am the queen of low self confidence but guess what? the more you accomplish (even making mistakes) the more confidence you gain.

I was an aide for like 2 seconds in nursing school, hated every minute of it, but I am now finishing orientaion and have been told I will make a good nurse.

Good luck to you and forget the negitivity, people will always be there to put you down, you just have to get a thick skin and rise above it.

boulergirl, CNA

428 Posts

Specializes in Home care, assisted living.

Maggie in NC is right. If you couldn't hack it as a nurse--your instructors would have weeded you out by now. Just a thought. ;)


4,177 Posts

learning ANYTHING is a little like riding a bicycle...everyone wobbles a little at first...but if you are this close to finishing your studies you had to have had some motivation...listen to others but turn it over in your own mind...did they see the best of you, what are their qualifications for making a judgement on someone else's career. what do you see your self doing in 10 years...self esteem comes with knowledge and practice and look around:every nurse you see was once in your shoes

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