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'Why are qualified nurses trying to put me off?'


Can you advise this student nurse?

”I have just finished my first year in adult nursing and am so excited to qualify despite how daunting it can be at times.

“I respect honesty and really value other opinions, but on my last placement there were a few nurses who complained so much about their job – even in front of patients – and didn’t seem worried that the students were listening.

”One nurse in particular sat down with us one shift and said if she had her time again she would absolutely not become a nurse and that we had no idea what we were getting into.

“I understand she is fed up, but we were all so eager and passionate, so is it fair to dampen our dreams so early on? I feel like I am getting told not to become a nurse from every angle. Has anyone else had this problem?

Please use the comments section below to share your advice



Readers' comments (10)

  • If you are that desperate to do this poxy job you can have my qualifications.

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  • I was an Adult Registered Nurse but had to take time three years off to look after my disabled daughter when she became critically ill. I got onto a Return to Practice course but on my placements I was met by nurses wanting to know why on Earth I wanted to get back into nursing, and the lack of enthusiasm to help and evaluate my practice for my placement assessments was an understatement. It was so demoralising, and after a couple of incidents where I was made to feel so inferior, I left. I feel I have been robbed of my career, while these so called caring nurses carried on, but still continuing to criticise their own profession - why don’t they leave and let those who do want to nurse, to do so, instead of demoralising others.

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  • Maybe you should look no closer than politicians who place such impossible demands on nurses who are already over worked and underpaid and on universities who tell potential nurses nothing more than a load of porkie pies when it comes to what's really like in the real world. Twenty six years I've been in this job and you would think things would have got better not worse. There have been days and there are days when I am ashamed to be a nurse because of the way someone has or is being treated.

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  • I am too a student Nurse and whilst on my first placement in my first year a similar situation happened with me with many staff on the ward telling me to stop my training and look at alternative jobs and questioning whether I was sure I really wanted to be a Nurse.

    In a way I appreciate the honest and open reviews as so often as a student I think university and mentors do not tell us the full truth of what it is really like to work as a registered Nurse with the NHS pressures, however agree with the point made about us being new and passionate and is it fair on us to damped our spirits so early on?

    As a third year now I look back at this situation often and think of how far I have come, academically and in confidence and perhaps impressionable at that early stage in my training.

    Nursing is hard, but we should be encouraging individuals in a truthful manor to our profession rather than deterring and perhaps pushing personal opinions onto new students.

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  • I wholeheartedly agree with the nurses who try and put you off. They're only trying to help.

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  • This happens to me every single placement and every single bank shift within mental health. If the job is too stressful or you’re in the position where you’re trying to put off students, you should really be leaving the profession! Go do something else!

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  • I am about to qualify and I have got to say that the nurses I have had the pleasure and honour of working alongside are:
    1. Demoralised
    2. Under valued
    3. Feel unappreciated
    4. Overworked
    5. Under staffed

    Now all of these factors combined in reality would be enough to make anyone question why they do what they do!

    I think they are just being honest with you about the role of a registered nurse, you must realise that you are about to enter a workplace like no other, and that the demands on you will be great.

    But still they, I and you will continue because that’s what nurses do

    Good luck

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  • Patience is not unlimited, but Patients` Expectations are...

    The NHS is on its knees and the demand on nurses has never been greater - years ago the government was warned that 50% of nurses were approaching retirement in 10 years. Nothing was done to address replacing these nurses - experienced ones, at that. Care homes have ruined themselves with greed based additional tasks and hours to save use of agency - like some companies lengthening day shifts to lessen agency hours on nights - and the nurses are spent - simple as. It is sad, but true. I`m a uni registered mentor, because I like and value the worth of our future nurses - our students - teaching new keen minds is great, and instilling confidence in the wary student, and the not so confident student is what i like best - we all needed help as students and I always said I would be kind to students if I ever qualified, having had some not so kind experiences myself as a student - I entered training almost 35 years ago - and I also like it when a student asks something that I do not know the answer to as it gives me the motivation to find out. I share the finding out - both student and I agree to meet up next day with what we managed to find out and compare it. It is such a shame that greed has demotivated nurses...long hours, poor pay, no thanks for the job, high patient complaint levels and relative expectations - they are the reasons nurses leave - nurses are also human...

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  • I'm one of the ones who will be gone in less than ten years and my advice is that if you love it stay. If its tough at times - those times will pass. Nursing can be hard work but its also incredibly rewarding. This is a great time to be a nurse. Nursing has changed beyond all measure since I first put on that uncomfortable uniform with the starched collar and my little paper hat. Nurses now do things were once unthinkable, we have nurse specialists doing an amazing job in diagnosing and treating patients. We have nurse led clinics. At the heart of everything we do are our patients. We see them at their worst, ill, frightened and distressed and we need to offer them kindness and compassion. We also need to be kind to each other. Good luck in your career and remember to nurture students and junior nurses.

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  • I used to hate this as a student, but unfortunately after being qualified a few years, I can totally understand why people would try and warn you off nursing.

    Most days you leave feeling completely unappreciated, if not by patients, then by management and colleagues. Nursing is incredibly draining most of the time, emotionally and physically, and it’s very easy to become burnt out.
    Obviously you might experience this as a student but the pressure is nowhere near what it is when you qualify and become responsible for patients.

    I leave my work every day feeling I have let patients down as I can’t give them the quality of care that they deserve, due to restraints on time, staffing etc. I know most of my colleagues feel the same.

    I wouldn’t tell you not to become a nurse because ultimately I’m still doing it, and there are so many opportunities to try other areas which may be different, but I do think at times of the other career paths I could’ve taken which may have better rewards and leave much less stress. Just be aware of what you’re getting into and that no part of nursing is easy.

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