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CrystalJade Offline
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I don't like my new job as a CNA... - September 13th 2016, 03:58 PM

Okay, so I got my CNA license almost 5 years ago and it expired so I renewed it this summer and got a job fairly quickly at a long term care facility (nursing home). I was placed on evenings (2:45p-11p) and trained for about 10 days. My first night without a trainer I got there early to explain I was brand new and it was my first night alone and asked for an easier hall. A few CNAs and CMAs told them what hall to not put me on (the hardest) and begged them not to do it. They ended up placing me on the hardest hall in that area. I was literally running up and down the halls and was late for literally everything, dinner, getting people down, etc. My hall partner flat out refused to help me when I asked him to and was great at disappearing for long periods of time. We also had a float that was supposed to be helping but she was too busy hanging out with the Nurses and every time she saw me she'd grin and laugh at me. Near the end of the night I almost walked out because of how upset I was and I was very vocal about why I was upset. I was determined to not come in the next night and was going to quit that week. A nurse talked to me and promised to put me on the easiest hall the next day and said she saw how stressed I was by the look on my face. I went in the next day, was placed on the easiest hall, had a great hall partner, and did well. My residents understood the stress and were sweet to me but later talked with other workers about how it was bad for me.

I called my DON to ask to be placed elsewhere and to explain why but apparently someone beat me to it. She told me a coworker had talked to her and that she was sorry that happened. She also told me it was inappropriate what had happened. We worked together and now I'm on nights (11p-7a) in the memory care unit (patients have a degenerative brain disease). I trained 2 nights on this and am expected to be alone now. This unit has 1 aid and 1 nurse at night, each take a side with about 15+ residents each. My first night of training the guy didn't really show me anything. The second night was horrible. She showed me a lot but near the end of the shift it all hit the fan. Rounds are at 12, 3 sometimes, and 5. The second night at around 4 some residents started wondering (one guy wondered my whole shift and I had to basically babysit him so he wouldn't fall), a few people crawled out of bed and were on the floor, everyone was wanting up at the same time... It was crazy.

I also go to school so when in between rounds I study or work on homework. Other people watch shows or play on their phones. I'm having a hard time with school all day after working all night though and I'm so tired. I wanted to be a nurse but for a Doctor's office or I wanted to work in neonatal/OB. I'm so uncertain now though. All my residents tell me I'm going to make a great nurse but so far I hate this job, love the people though. I hate seeing how they are now vs how they used to be, when people cry because they've lost their independence, when they are confused as to where they're at and they believe a relative is picking them up, I hate having to use lifts on people and I hate lifting because I'm too weak to do it. Most of all, I hate that I honestly have no idea what I'm doing and I'm so scared. I do best when I have a partner with me but I won't from here on out. I don't mind cleaning up after a bowel movement, pushing to meals, feeding, brushing hair, being with them and there for them.

How long should I give the job before giving up? Should I just give up Nursing in general, maybe switch to Dental? What should I do?

I posted this on a Nurses forum hoping someone has been there and can help but all they did was berate me. I hope someone here can help.
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Kate* Offline
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Re: I don't like my new job as a CNA... - September 13th 2016, 04:41 PM

Hey there, I'm sorry you're having such a hard time. I've never done this work myself, but my friend has been working in long-term care since we were 15. From the stories she tells me, I'm not surprised that this was your experience. Before you quit, consider the type and amount of experience you already have. If you don't need this employer as a reference or have years of experience already, I don't see a reason to be miserable unless you can't survive without the income. In any case, it wouldn't hurt to start looking for a new job.

Don't give up on the whole profession because of one bad job that isn't even in the area you originally wanted. I'd also guess that these types of jobs at this level probably have a high turn over. Maybe look into something that better aligns with your interests. Good luck.

And yes, when I was still in school to be a counselor, I posted a question on the board of a professional organization and was completely shocked by most of the responses I got, and from mental health professionals no less. I don't know why some people are like that. Sometimes I wonder how some make it into certain professions, or when they become like that. It says more about them than you, try not to let it get to you.

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