APNA President Susie AdamsA Message from the President

May 2015

Originally sent to APNA members on May 6th, in honor of National Nurses Week

When posed the question, “Why are you proud to be a psychiatric nurse?” I initially paused, feeling uncomfortable to identify anything that reflected on my professional accomplishments. Upon further reflection, what I feel proudest of is my sense of gratitude for being in a profession that offers hope to individuals at their most vulnerable moments.

Susie Adams with ClientRegardless of circumstances or situation, as a psych nurse I suspend judgment, listen with empathy, affirm differing abilities, engage in a dialogue to help that person find meaning and purpose to their life, respect and support that individual’s mental health recovery journey, grieving process, or end-of-life transition. Collectively, my intent is to offer hope – the critical factor in recovery. “Hope is the anticipation of a desired event or condition—the expectation of something good happening in the foreseeable future. Hope springs from a sense of ‘the possible.’…and having someone who believes in you can and can envision you accomplishing personal goals” (Adams & Partee, 1998, p.31). 

I have been humbled and inspired by individuals and families’ resilience coping with mental health and/or substance use disorders, traumatic life events, and disadvantaged home, educational and community experiences. I am similarly humbled, inspired, and proud of the collective work of psych nurses across the country in initiatives to reduce the use of seclusion and restraints, improve suicide risk assessment and management, promote safe inpatient psychiatric treatment environments, support integrated and holistic health care delivery systems, reduce stigma and advocate for and with individuals with mental health and substance use disorders.

Help us tell others about the hope and healing that psychiatric nurses offer - and at the same time celebrate our profession!

I am grateful to be a psych nurse who offers hope in ‘the possible.’ I invite you to share your stories of gratitude, hope, and pride in being a psychiatric nurses. Your stories enrich our shared history and sense of humanity.



Susie Adams, PhD, RN, PMHNP, FAANP

Help us tell others about the hope and healing that psychiatric nurses offer - and at the same time celebrate our profession!

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