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To wonder what it's like being a nurse?

(10 Posts)
superstarheartbreaker Wed 19-Nov-14 22:21:49

My mum wanted me to be a doctor and told me not to be a nurse. I feel that I would have made a fantastic nurse as I'm good at biology and like to help people plus I'm good with my hands.

I'm now a ta and might go back to teaching. I am 36 and I am thinking of a possible career change when I'm 40. Nursing is one such career. Dd will be 10. Is anyone here a nurse and do you like it? What are the pros and cons?

oddsocksmostly Wed 19-Nov-14 22:36:40

Well I can see that being good at Biology and liking helping people would fit, but not sure about being good with your hands.... do you mean you are practical?

hiddenhome Wed 19-Nov-14 23:05:09

I'm a care of the elderly nurse in a care home.


It's nice to help people - you always feel useful.
You're never bored.
Every day is different.
You get to multitask and use your brain.
You became a very good problem solver which easily extends into your own life and is very useful.
You develop excellent communication skills.


You never have enough time to get everything done - some of the choices you have to make are stressful and guilt inducing.
People expect you to be a miracle worker.
You're endlessly frustrated by all kinds of things like colleague's laziness and incompetence, managers' unrealistic expectations, equipment that doesn't work or is missing and endless arguments over who works Christmas Day.
Relatives blame you for everything and make hundreds of unrealistic demands.
If you slip up, someone could be seriously harmed.
People often lack respect for you and don't trust your judgement/skills/competence/knowledge etc.

Over all, it's a great job and I wouldn't ever want to do anything else, but it's always frustrating and it can get to you sometimes.

You need to be very patient and have a good sense of humour.

Good Luck with whatever you decide smile

redautumnleaves Wed 19-Nov-14 23:21:56

I think being good with your hands is a good quality to have (if you mean you are dexterous). Taking blood and inserting cannulas, catheterisation, sorting out various wires and tubes that are involved in caring for the very sick - good if you are dexterous.
I am a nurse. Done my time on the front line in A&E. What is it like.....?
It can be hell, it can be scary, it can be depressing, it can be soul destroying. But it can also give you the most immense sense of satisfaction like nothing else can, it can be amazing to finish a 12 hour shift with no break but knowing you have helped someone who is very sick to be comfortable and be at ease. It can be funny and surreal. You learn so much. It makes you grateful for being healthy. And so much more. I am very proud of being a nurse, I wish my pay reflected how hard I worked but jobs like nursing will never be paid properly which is sad.
Good luck, what ever your choice.

slippermaiden Wed 19-Nov-14 23:33:45

There was a thread last week called are there any nurses around please? It had 50 odd replies, should give you a better idea of what it's like x

Jolleigh Wed 19-Nov-14 23:37:46

I'm not the OP but thanks to those that replied...I'm starting an access course in January to get me into a nursing degree at uni, hopefully to become a paediatric nurse.

RedButtonhole Wed 19-Nov-14 23:41:15

There's the thread slippermaiden was talking about. Hope you don't mind me marking a place on your thread, I'm applying to do my nursing degree in Sept 2015 and I'd like to hear some experiences.

SecretSpy Thu 20-Nov-14 07:51:31

I also replied to the other thread smile
it is very hard work. But very satisfying too. I too work in elderly care now and my residents are very important to me. I often find I ring up to make sure xyz was done or to see how someone poorly is.
The pay is poor for what we do but as jobs go it is not poorly paid IYKWIM, I couldn't earn the same in any other job (that I would be good at)

Cyclopsbee Thu 20-Nov-14 07:58:18

Its flippin hard work, after some 13 hour shifts I can hardly put one foot in front of the other.
But the good times outweigh the bad,and job satisfaction is so good......
but you have to work at xmas

divegirl77 Thu 20-Nov-14 08:56:33

Being both a doctor and nurse are hard work. I guess you need to work out which is best for you.

1st what first degree/grades do you have this may limit your choices?

2nd do you prefer following a protocol for medication, treatment or assessment or do you like the challenge (and risk) of thinking outside the box and making the diagnosis and responsibility for treatment choices knowing the buck stops with you (rather than "doctor informed").

Any good Dr or nurse will advocate for their patients, equally there multiple of both who are less than ideal.

I have known known several exceptional nurses who were frustrated in the nursing role whom have gone on to enjoy great careers in medicine similarly I have known fantastic nurses who were amazing to work with but felt satisfied within their roles and medical students/ junior doctors who felt unable to cope with the autonomy and responsibility who have been much happier in other careers despite the academic aptatude.

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