Have you heard this one? There once was a call nurse who wandered through the unit screaming, “Tetanus! Measles! Typhoid!” She liked to call the shots.
Nurses have great senses of humor. They like to make jokes about themselves, other nurses, doctors and, yes, patients. Professionalism dictates, of course, that they never make these last where patients can hear them.
Sigmund Freud, the Father of Psychoanalysis, claimed that jokes as well as dreams are one of the few ways that the conscious mind can communicate with the unconscious. According to Freud, the unconscious mind is a repository for thoughts that are socially unacceptable. Humor, however, provides a socially acceptable vehicle for those taboo thoughts.
Scientists say that jokes and laughter increase the secretion of endorphins, opioid-like substances that are the body’s own way of relieving pain. Laughter also increases the secretion of dopamine, which is the neurotransmitter that controls the pleasure and reward centers of the brain. Both these responses are ideal coping mechanisms for people who are experiencing high degrees of stress, and there are few jobs more stressful than nursing.
Like many people who work in high stress occupations, nurses’ senses of humor can be quite quirky and very naughty. Black humor and risqué jokes are both ways of blowing off steam. In a very real way, nurses’ warped senses of humor make them more caring and compassionate, and that makes them better at their jobs.
Three Nurses At The Pearly Gates
Three nurses died on the same day, and ended up in front the Pearly Gates at exactly the same moment.
There they met St. Peter. “Who are you ladies?” St Peter asked. “And what have you done to earn entrance to Heaven?”
The first nurse said, “I was a nurse in a pediatric ward in a large metropolitan hospital. All day long I struggled to ease the suffering of afflicted inner city children.”
“You may pass through the Pearly Gates, ” said St. Peter. “Welcome to Heaven.”
The second nurse replied, “I was a nurse in a refugee camp on the border of a war torn nation. All day long I struggled to ease the suffering of people injured in a great civil war.”
“You too may pass through the Pearly Gates, ” said St. Peter. “Welcome to Heaven.”
The third nurse said, “I was a nurse at an HMO.”
St. Peter thought about this for a couple of seconds. Finally, he said, “You can pass through the Pearly Gates –”
“Whew!” said the third nurse. “For a moment there, I thought you weren’t going to let me in!”
” – but you can only stay three days!” the good saint continued.
Work is Hell
Did you hear the joke about the nurse who died and went to Hell? For the first one thousand years, she didn’t realize that she wasn’t at work anymore!
You know you’re a nurse if you find yourself checking out other shoppers’ veins on the checkout line at the supermarket.
Not All Bad
You know you’re a nurse if you don’t think all patients are annoying. After all, 30 percent of them are unconscious!
With Friends Like These…
A woman asked her best friend to come along and sit in the hospital waiting room when she went to the hospital for liposuction and a facelift. After her surgery, the woman was in quite a bit of discomfort, so her nurse gave her some pain medication.
As the nurse was leaving her patient’s room, the patient’s best friend accosted the nurse.
“How is she?” asked the concerned best friend.
“Well, she’s a little dopey,” said the nurse.
“Oh, I know that!” said the best friend. “I mean, how is she health-wise?”
A little chuckle from a good joke can ease the stress in the workplace. It’s not uncommon to find a funny cartoon posted in the break room to lighten the mood. While nursing is serious business, it doesn’t mean that you have to leave your sense of humor at home. A good clean joke can ease a patient’s anxiety and boost their spirits even if only for a moment. As they say, laugh and the world laughs with you.
- License: Creative Commons image source
Susan Brown works as a registered nurse in a hospital and enjoys helping patients feel at ease during their stay. Susan recommends checking out www.Accelerated-Nursing.net for more information on getting a degree to become a nurse.