Reply To: So unhappy!

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Salad H

So how long have you been working on the floor so far? My first 6 months were incredibly rough. I rarely left the unit before 9 or 10 or later (supposed to get off at 1930). I didn’t think I could continue and the care felt incredibly unsafe.

Since then, our matrix has improved, and my skills and confidence have improved. I will be a (working) RN for 2 years this coming March.

The horrible comments you will hear are unrealistic and unsympathetic. “It sucks everywhere” (Super negative and unhelpful), “Just quit” (also really unhelpful), “Here is what it was like when I started out as a new grad–we had to rewash our gloves and I had 20 patients that were way harder than any of yours” (Seriously? Being a new nurse is HARD for anyone, regardless of the situation), “Just pray and think about rainbows” (Seriously?).

Give it AT LEAST 6 months before even considering quitting. My one year mark hit and there was no big sigh of relief or moment of profound understanding. It came and went. There will be ups and downs like anything else. You will absolutely hate your job (even the people that say they have loved “every minute.”), and you will love it. But try and (suffer) through at least 6 months to a year before giving up on it entirely. And then, maybe, you find out hospital nursing isn’t your thing. Maybe you are a better fit for outpatient psych or a rehab unit or case management. Who knows. You have a lot of options.

As for physicians and older nurses or anyone who you perceive is treating you unfairly…Don’t let the bastards grind you down. Remember that this is more about your patients than you.

Nursing (or any other job) can kill or boost your self-esteem. If you feel like a complete and utter failure and like you are losing your mind, I recommend reading some Brene Brown. Not always able to relate to her examples, but good “life advice” anyway…The gifts of imperfection is a good one. All about shame and vulnerability. Has helped me out lots! And funny. 🙂

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