why do nurses eat thier young



  1. I have been reading the posts on these boards for a while now and I am just wondering why do nurses eat thier young? I wonder if this is something that we are instilled with in nursing school considering how the instructors that I know are continually picking out certain ones to "weed" out. They then deny that there is any "weeding out" going on. I am so glad to be finished and finally an RN and I don't want to treat others any different than I want to be treated.
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  2. 14 Comments

  3. by   sherry_nachnani
    I too just finished reading the posts regarding "why nurses eat their young," and was extremely disappointed, but not surprised, with the replies and words of advice. It concerns me that we are very much aware of this problem, and choose or suggest to our fellow nurses to "hang in there," "transfer to a different unit," don't go in looking to make friends," but most of all that we have not made these abusive nurses accountable for their actions. I'm tired of the excuses we provide to these abusers, instead of protecting the victims. Our profession is parallel to the Battered Woman's Syndrome. We create excuse after excuse as to why these nurses "eat their young," and we choose to look the other way, enabling the pyschological abuse to continue. Perhaps there are too many female hormones in this profession!
  4. by   meownsmile
    I agree that there is way to much of this kind of peer abuse going on. All i can see as an answer is that as we graduate nurses grow into the ranks of experienced nurses that we dont allow ourselves to treat the new nurses like we have been treated.

    Burnout aside, there is no excuse for people to treat others the way i have seen and read about. Maybe is time for us new nurses to take the ones responsible for the treatment at hand and make sure it doesnt happen to others in the future.
  5. by   prmenrs
    FUTURE RESEARCH: Is there any correlation between those nurses that "eat their young", and those nurses that never get lunch breaks? Hmmm... Food for thought.

    Now don't get going on me, just thought I'd add a little levity....
  6. by   OBNURSEHEATHER
    LOL! :chuckle

    Heather
  7. by   prmenrs
    Oh, Heather, I probably shouldn't have done that..... :imbar
  8. by   pebbles
    Joke or not, it may be true....

    correlation does exist between burnout and working conditions....

    then leap to burnout and helping a student... not a big jump.

    Buddying with a student is a skill all its own. You still have to make sure everything is being done for the patient, and make sure the pt is safe, do all your own assessments... at the same time as letting the student in on the game. It's like twice the work - especially when the instructor who is with the students is busy or not as attentive as she should be!!! (Don't ask) It's easy to get exasperated - and students naturally don't know what is most important in care, etc and have NO sense of real responsibility yet (of course not, they are only learning)... - so communication is a BIG issue. But still, exasperated or not - to take it out on someone lie I have read about in these threads is shameful....
  9. by   Fgr8Out
    Originally posted by sherry_nachnani
    I too just finished reading the posts regarding "why nurses eat their young," and was extremely disappointed, but not surprised, with the replies and words of advice. It concerns me that we are very much aware of this problem, and choose or suggest to our fellow nurses to "hang in there," "transfer to a different unit," don't go in looking to make friends," but most of all that we have not made these abusive nurses accountable for their actions. I'm tired of the excuses we provide to these abusers, instead of protecting the victims. Our profession is parallel to the Battered Woman's Syndrome. We create excuse after excuse as to why these nurses "eat their young," and we choose to look the other way, enabling the pyschological abuse to continue. Perhaps there are too many female hormones in this profession!
    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

    I could not have said it any better, Sherry.... AND, you used my FAVORITE word: ACCOUNTABILITY. I see far too much passing the buck, and not enough standing up to the bullying and belitting I see occurring in my Profession. It is not acceptable behavior, does nothing to further the Profession, and is certainly responsible (in part) for the shift away from Nursing as a career.

    We ARE Family....
  10. by   sbic56
    Sherry
    Welcome to the boards. Great post!! I agree with the battered woman's parallel you cite. Just as the only way to stop domestic violence is to stop the cycle of abuse within the family, nurses must treat students and new nurses with the respect they deserve. Each one of us has felt the humiliation of being put down by someone higher in the ranks at some point in our career. Felt like crap, right? So why continue this sick cycle? Hmmmmm?
  11. by   Shell5
    To me, it is completely ridiculous. Thank God I have changed my life becuase if I was talked to at home by 2 of the nurses that talk to me like dirt at work I would kick both of their butts to no end. They would never talk to anyone again the way they do. A person I talked to said what I am going through is called "transference," where I am experiencing the same feelings that my grandmother elicited inside me when she emotionally abused me and criticized me. Call it what you will, but when a nurse tells me to "BE QUITE, I'M THE BOSS!":angryfire Another nurse tells me, "You should have known that already" when no other nurse knew how to do the task, it irritates me to know end. I finally told the one nurse to not talk to me like that and the other nurse to get off my butt. I ended up writing a letter to the nursing supervisor and suggested a hospital wide inservice on how to talk and treat each other in word, tone and deed. If we don't know how to treat and talk with each other how are we treating the patients??? Please, Let's all grow up and treat each other with respect and professionalism. THIS BUSINESS ABOUT NURSES EATING THEIR YOUNG IS BULLCRAP AND YOU ALL KNOW IT. SOME PEOPLE ARE NOT GOING TO PUT UP WITH BEING TREATED LIKE CRAP. TREAT OTHERS THE WAY YOU WOULD HAVE THEM TREAT YOU!!!!!!!:trout::spin:
    NURSES NEED TO SUPPORT EACH OHER AND STICK TOGETHER!!!!!!
  12. by   NewNurse16
    SERIOUSLY!!!! I am so happy that other new nurses are sticking together:spin:. I recently started my job and although I have not spent much time on my floor due to required classes, during the time I have spent on my floor I found myself making a great effort to introduce myself and smile at my future coworkers with minimal response. The ones that have made an effort to speak to me are the brand new nurses and those that have been there for about a year. I understand that it may be a pain to have new people, however doesn't anyone remember what it is like to be new? Were these people born with their nursing knowledge and experience or did someone have to teach them the way they will have to teach us? One girl told me that I didn't have to write down report the way I was writing it down....I felt like saying "Is this affecting your work in any way?, cause if not then back off!!!!Apparently, I am told that I am working on a "great unit where everyone works together" but the jury is still out on that one and can only be determined with more time on the floor. Maybe my anxiety level wouldn't be so high if I had come in contact with more smiling people All I know is if the new nurses keep treating other new nurses with respect and hospitality then it will come full circle and at least the newer nurses will build a great team!!!!
  13. by   mellowyellow0526
    great thread everyone! I have been getting more involved in this website as my graduation date is getting closer (May 2nd!). I find it very disappointing that even on this website there are nurses who use this website as another avenue of being "snotty" (for lack of a better word) and make very derogatory comments towards new RNs and student nurses. Do they think that we can't all read their comments? Or that reading them will make us want to be excellent nurses and accepted into their gossiping, members only club? Not for me. There seem to be only two kinds of experienced nurses: amazing, kind, nurse-like, competent, motivating, encouraging nurses (yes they do exist)...and imposed upon, snotty nurses. We can make excuses all we want for why they are the way they are but the truth is its a choice. The encouraging nurses can get as much success out of their students as a non-supportive nurse. I really really am trying to be positive about graduating and finding a great unit of nurses...but I was very disappointed reading around on this website some of the comments that nurses are saying about new graduate nurses. I understand not all new grads may be of the same quality...but they do have potential! I want to say thank you to the nurses out there who make this profession respectable, and who accept and are excited for new graduates join in on the rewarding work!
  14. by   amj12
    I feel as though a lot of nurses forget that at one time they were in the same place as us. Even in school, when I would get a real snotty nurse and would say something to my professor she would point blank tell me "she's forgotten she was you 20 yrs ago". We were all there as a new nurse so instead of treating the new nurse the way you were treated 20 yrs ago maybe you should be a little more available and a little more responsive to the questions instead of passing judgement and then talking about the nurse w/the other experienced co workers.

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