Is this high school?

  1. While I am sure that there have been posts somewhere else along the line, I haven't see any lately that I could pull up. Could anyone give any encouragement or advice on how to deal with coworkers that behave like high schoolers. This is not to offend anyone in high school of course, but rather to describe the backstabbing, gossiping, socializing that goes on in a unit. One day your in one day your out. It may be a large unit, and a lot of different people have to work together to get things done, but it seems so fake to be able to talk one or two people and then someone else will come in and then you have to stop talking for fear of them making fun of you, etc. Some say it is the culture of the unit. It depends upon who is working together on how the shift will go. The best lesson is not to engage in it but it hurts to see that other people are being shunned or put down behind their backs, or that I may be too but don't know it. This is not about eating our young. I have never seen this before in a work place. Anything that your teenage daughters would come home and tell you about, it could be happening on the floor here. So is there any way to keep from getting picked on, because some people are "bullies" but high performers. Some are allowed to precept and then are only nice to you until they get their self evals back. Buttering people up, asking for their "expert" advice, seeking them out for education does not seem to be working. We have a lot of new staff, so we are getting a chance to have new friends, but some shifts it's terrible. Anyone one of you that have worked in similar situations or other careers with the same problem? I am wondering because I am so nice and tend to take explain myself more than I need to that I am an easy target. I don't want to do things wrong and I am a great nurse but I do know that I still need help/advice with things so I am really at some people's mercy. Thanks
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    Joined: Feb '09; Posts: 122; Likes: 66


  3. by   RedhairedNurse
    That's so sad that people behave like this, horrible! I don't know what to say, I know these people exist every where. All I can say is what goes around comes around, people will reap what they sow. Just sit back and watch, these are probably very miserable people and they will have their reward/payback one day. For yourself, just do what is right and try to stay out of their 'clique'. Don't ever lower yourself to their level by trying to be accepted.
  4. by   SummerGarden
    sadly, i think it is a unit thing.... i used to work on a unit (ldrp) as a tech and later as a nurse extern that was very high school!! i hated going to work everyday because i hated engaging my co-workers. if i could work by myself, i did so and did not complain! from the unit clerk to the charge nurses, everyone was in a gossipy, backstabbing, finger pointing, circle... if you were not in the power circle you were on the outs and you knew it! i can safely say i am soooo happy i did not return to that floor as a nurse!!! if i had returned, i know would be screaming for a transfer right now because of their behaviors!!!

    this is not to say that other floors do not have similar people, but i have noticed that since the ldrp at my hospital is not a high trauma unit and can only take particularly healthy patients, they have a lot of down time (which also contributs to bordom)!! in fact, when a mother is laboring many of the l&d nurses and techs are sitting outside the room gossiping about the patient!!! the only way i survived that floor for over a year was to conform and be a part of the pretty people.

    i am not kidding, i was like the red headed chick in “mean girls” (i forgot her name, lol). i changed my looks after six months of being tortured as a tech. by doing this i was able to befriend the pretty people that ran the unit. afterwards, the others were nice to me to my face and mean to me behind my back (this was fine with me because i was able to get my work done in peace....)

    if you plan to stay you need to grow a thick skin and/or conform! kissing butt will not work... you have to become one of them... you have to become one of the ones that runs the unit (this does not mean that you have to act like them... i did not act like them)!

    btw, i have not noticed this behavior on the busier units. why? my co-workers and i are too busy!!! this is not to say that i have run into nurses trying to eat their young while working on other floors. i have run into those nurses too, but they are not able to do the eating as easily as a slow unit because they are too busy working! in fact, i have noticed that i am able to pretty much avoid the eaters and haters on my unit most of the time.

    plus, though the small circles of friends exist, they hook up before or after work. during work, i have access to everyone and do not have to worry that i am not his/her best friend to get help. the reason being, there is an unwritten rule on the busy units that if a nurse or tech does not want to help me out now, they risk not getting my help later!!! karma plays out on these units pretty quickly! good luck!
    Last edit by SummerGarden on Apr 25, '09