Why are new nurses treated poorly? - page 4

by rnckr

I am a new RN. I am also a 46 year old man. I graduated in May, passed NCLEX and started work in July. I started in a new nurse bridge program that was basic but nice and informative. I worked in several units before ending... Read More


  1. 0
    My demographics are exactly the same as yours, I also am a 46 year old man, new to nursing.

    I have found the same to be true.

    I also have realized that the worst offenders in this regard are nurses in their first two years of practice.

    I work in a medical step down. The question I love is, "when was the patient trached/PEGged?".

    Unless it was within the last couple days this is not information that is going to impact their care for the next twelve hours, and you can be sure if the patient was LDA'd in the last 48-72 hours, I am going to tell you.

    A lot of it is just bullying.

    All I can say is hang in there, it's probably not personal, they're just insecure people trying to share their own misery.
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    Quote from BostonTerrierLoverRN
    What is "cowtoe?"
    Actually it's Kowtow (cowtow) Kowtow, which is borrowed from ku tu in Mandarin Chinese, is the act of deep respect shown by kneeling and bowing so low as to have one's head touching the ground.
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    Without reading your post first, and just answering the question you presented, my knee-jerk thought was "because you let them."

    A way to avoid interrogation would be to keep giving report as you have been because you seem to give a very comprehensive report!
    If they were to ask me if a valve replacement was tissue or mechanical I would have just said: "Im sure that information is in the chart." If they replied: " Don't you think that information is important to know?" I would have replied: "Yes, that's why you should look it up in the chart."

    There is a difference between giving a good report and doing their work for them, which is what they are having you do. They need to get off their butts and look it up themselves!!! You need to learn to be assertive but not rude....

    If that person reported it to the charge all they could say was: "He told me that I could go look in the patients chart to see if he had a mechanical or tissue valve replacement during report!!!" I'm guessing your charge nurse would roll her eyes, as any good nurse would do! I'm pretty new myself. For all of the nurses who try to "eat their young" you have to make sure your chewy and no fun to eat!
    anotherone likes this.
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    Quote from roser13
    I read a response once here that has really stuck with me. If someone starts to interrupt your report and interrogate you, calmly put your paperwork down and just look blankly at the interrogator until they stop talking. Showing no emotion, just say "I'd like to finish my report please. If you still have questions after I've given it, I can answer them then."

    As long as you stay calm and matter of fact, they really have no option other than making a scene vs. complying with your request. And you can bet that the 1/3 who are doing this are not really interested in knowing the answers to their questions. They're likely not even listening to report because they're too busy trying to think of questions to trip you up.

    Hang in there.
    While this approach probably works great for an experienced nurse, the OP is a newbie. Some of the questions these nurses are asking him are probably real questions, intended to help him to critically think things through. (Not everyone who is trying to teach a point comes across as helpful, as kind or as nice as they probably intended and may even think they do.) The approach you're suggesting just brands him as "having an attitude", which can be very difficult to overcome.

    My advice to newbies is to put up with the "rudeness" and let it roll off your back. You haven't been there long enough to really understand who's trying, however ineptly, to help you out and who is just plain nasty. With each of these interactions, take the point out of the interaction and forget the process. You'll learn a lot more that way, you won't risk alienating potential mentors and you won't get that "attitude" label.
    anotherone likes this.
  5. 3
    Quote from trueblue2000
    The valve question is VERY important because it determines which kind of meds the patient will be on for the rest of their lives. So there is a lot of patient education riding on that answer. She was right about asking that question but she should have cut you some slack knowing you were a new grad and taken the opportunity to teach you about pig/artificial valves. View this incidence as a learning opportunity. You didn't know about the relevance of the type of valve and now you, thanks to the mean nurse who exposed a gap in your nursing knowledge. Hey, what if patient/family had asked that question (and they will)? That mean nurse actually did you a favor for saving your face next time a patient asks you that question since you will now for sure know the answer. Let me add that I am a new male grad and also experience the same problems. I think it has to do partially with gender; you know, we are breaking into their exclusive "girls club" and some of them resent that intrusion. But hey we knew it was female dominated profession before we got in so we can't complain too much now.
    I was going to "LIKE" this post because your answer about the valve question was great advice. Then I got to the part about gender.

    A third of our staff is male. Even though, with over 30 years of experience, I'm one of those "mean old biter nurses" who actually worked in an exclusive "women's club" years ago, I don't know any female nurses now who resent male nurses in the work place.
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    Quote from AtivanIM
    Without reading your post first, and just answering the question you presented, my knee-jerk thought was "because you let them."

    A way to avoid interrogation would be to keep giving report as you have been because you seem to give a very comprehensive report!
    If they were to ask me if a valve replacement was tissue or mechanical I would have just said: "Im sure that information is in the chart." If they replied: " Don't you think that information is important to know?" I would have replied: "Yes, that's why you should look it up in the chart."

    There is a difference between giving a good report and doing their work for them, which is what they are having you do. They need to get off their butts and look it up themselves!!! You need to learn to be assertive but not rude....

    If that person reported it to the charge all they could say was: "He told me that I could go look in the patients chart to see if he had a mechanical or tissue valve replacement during report!!!" I'm guessing your charge nurse would roll her eyes, as any good nurse would do! I'm pretty new myself. For all of the nurses who try to "eat their young" you have to make sure your chewy and no fun to eat!
    I'm fairly certain the nurse who asked about the valve was, perhaps ineptly, trying to help the newbie with his critical thinking.

    If that person DID report it to the Charge, I'm sure the charge would make a note to follow up on the new guy's gap in knowledge and critical thinking. Knowing whether the patient had a tissue valve or a mechanical valve IS an important piece of information, especially when it comes to patient teaching. It definitely has a bearing on planning the shift. If that patient has a mechanical valve and needs Coumadin and it isn't ordered, that's something I want to follow up on right away. For example, some hospitals have a policy that all Coumadin is given at 9 PM, and the PT's are done at a certain time in the morning. If the Coumadin isn't given at 9, it's difficult to titrate the dose to the amount the patient needs. A nurse coming on at 7 PM absolutely needs to know whether or not to follow up on the Coumadin order right away. Telling the nurse who is trying to teach something to "go look it up in the chart" brands the new guy as difficult. It's very hard to overcome the "difficult" label.
    wooh and anotherone like this.
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    Adding to what another poster said about the type of meds a patient will be on depending in valve type, I imagine that info would come in handy if a patient was ever ordered an MRI?

    I had a patient once ordered an MRI but the doc didn't realize she had this esophageal stimulator thing.

    Keep your head up, though. I'm a new grad too; my preceptor before orientation was over told me something that I tell myself before every shift: it's called practicing nursing for a reason. The more you learn, yeah? We're in a huge learning curve. This nurse just taught you something but in a less-than-preferred way.
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    Quote from OnlybyHisgraceRN
    This is EXACTLY what I have a problem a with. It should not matter if the OP is my age (23) or twice my age. The point is he is not dealing with family/friends, machines, fast food, or any other retail job; he is dealing with people and patients who lives are in his hands.

    Let me tell you from experience. When a seasoned nurse makes you feel like an idiot you become one. You start to loose your confidence, you start to have increased anxiety, you second guess everything you do.

    I understand that no one has power over you and etc. however, lets face it when you constantly hear these things it will affect you.
    You feel like an idiot and lose confidence because you let them. Sorry. I dont let myself get bullied. I had enough of that when I was younger. Instead, use the first encounter to learn something. What can I do in report to say the right thing? What kind of things are truly important when giving report the next morning/night ( cardiac floor think meds, procedures, pacer settings, etc etc ). Listen to how you get report and take notes from that for starters.

    Ultimately you have to realize that there are just some nasty people out there with a stick up their ass no matter what you do. You cannot please everyone. You can only come prepared and leave it at that. You are right this job is like no other, but that doesnt mean dealing with people should be any different.
    AtivanIM likes this.
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    Quote from That Guy
    You feel like an idiot and lose confidence because you let them. Sorry. I dont let myself get bullied. I had enough of that when I was younger. Instead, use the first encounter to learn something. What can I do in report to say the right thing? What kind of things are truly important when giving report the next morning/night ( cardiac floor think meds, procedures, pacer settings, etc etc ). Listen to how you get report and take notes from that for starters.

    Ultimately you have to realize that there are just some nasty people out there with a stick up their ass no matter what you do. You cannot please everyone. You can only come prepared and leave it at that. You are right this job is like no other, but that doesnt mean dealing with people should be any different.
    Once again, I don't think the" you let people make you feel this way" applies to everyone. I'm so glad you don't let people make you feel this way, not everyone is you.
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    Ruby,
    I never questioned the fact that the information about a valve is important. If it wasn't noted in an otherwise comprehensive report, and remembered on demand, then the oncoming nurse can go and find out the information for themselves. In a prior comment you mentioned to let the "rudeness roll of your back." I don't think putting up with rudeness and lateral violence under the cloak of -maybe they are trying to help you by tearing apart your self esteem- idea is a great one. You seem to have the same theme for new nurses who ask these types of questions: -take the harrassment or get out of the profession-
    RN2BKT likes this.


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