"Eating Our Young" and Ethics - pg.3 | allnurses

"Eating Our Young" and Ethics - page 3

Hello: We are a group of RN students in a BSN program in Northern California, and we are exploring the ethical implications of experienced nurses "eating their young". We would like to hear the... Read More

  1. Visit  Dia0813 profile page
    0
    It's very unfortunate, this "eating of new nurses," but it does exist. Someone mentioned that established nurses often feel threatened by new nurses, this may partly be contributed to their idealism and optimistic outlook on their new nursing careers, which has unfortunately been jaded in the experienced nurses due to lack of appreciation and support of nurses by the medical and administration systems we work under. Having worked as a critical care nurse for 18 years, and now as a nurse practitioner, I can say that nurses, in many respects, are their own worst enemies. By this I mean, physicians stand together and suupport one another in moving their careers forward. Many nurses, particularly experienced nurses, and ones in specialty units, promote intense competition among themselves. It's wonderful to promote higher education and learning experiences, but not to the point we shut others out and make it impossible to reach our standards. We need to spend more time and effort on working together, to promote the strength of our profession as a whole, to gain recognition and acceptance from the medical profession that nurses are a force to reckon with on a professional level. We will not make that step to the next level if we don't help and support each other, not isolate one another. It starts with the new nurse, and we must recognize that they decided to become nurses for the same reasons we did --- because they care and want to make a difference in patients' lives. So let's welcome and support them, and if you as the experienced nurse feel threatened, try to look inside yourself and figure out why. It's called self-actualization and your never to experienced or to old to try and attain that goal. None of us know everything, we all have questions, and maybe new nurses can provide some new and enlightened insights, which we most definitely need in this profession.
  2. Visit  fraulein profile page
    1
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by RNsToBe:
    [B]
    Hello:
    We are a group of RN students in a BSN program in Northern California, and we are exploring the ethical implications of experienced nurses "eating their young". We would like to hear the perspective of experienced nurses, new grads/novice nurses and nursing students on this topic. Why do you think this behavior persists (ie., what are the dynamics or other factors that contribute to this behavior). What are your suggestions for breaking this attitudinal/behavioral cycle and for bridging the gap/improving relations between experienced and novice nurses? What do you think are the ethical ramifications (if any) of experienced nurses deliberately withholding information/support from novice nurses? It seems to us that supporting new nurses would be beneficial not only to the novice nurse, but also to the experienced nurses and to the unit as a whole. It seems that the team and unit would function more efficiently and the quality of patient care/patient safety would be better as a result. We acknowledge that there are many caring/supporting nurses working in the field and that "eating of the young" is a practice that is not practiced by the majority of nurses. However, we also acknowledge that it does persist; therefore, the purpose of this project is to better understand the reasons for and the repercussions of this behavior.
    We appreciate your viewpoints.
    Thank you,
    RNsToBe

    It may not be practiced by the majority but it is far too common. Some of the other posters appear to be in real DENIAL. And DENIAL is why it persists. DENIAL is the key to understanding its origin. I'm sure if you do your homework thoroughly you will discover that those nurses who eat their young are either alcohol/drug addicts or the adult children of same. The reason why they become nurses to begin with is not to "help" out of compassion but compulsion. This is not necessarily a bad thing. It merely means that there are alot of nurses out there who need help themselves and are in DENIAL. I think nursing schools really ought to have a rep. from ACOA (Adult Children Of Alcoholics anonymous) come in and do a whole lecture on the topic. Even the professors might learn something.

    Signed,

    Been Burned BAD by SEVERAL Untreated ACOA


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    BeachyRN2Be likes this.
  3. Visit  oramar profile page
    0
    Originally posted by Shelly23:
    I am going to graduate in a couple of weeks and know what you are talking about. I have actually been told that this happens! I have seen what the RNs, LPNs, and even CNAs do when there is a new face on their unit. I think if the nurses that are doing this were asked to remember what it was like when they started it may help the situation. Everybody was a student, new grad, or even a new employee at one time in their lives so I think reminding them of that may help. I think that it is also very hard for other RNs LPNs and CNAs to have new nurses that are younger then them as charge nurses or even coworkers. I think that this is also a problem. I think that a way that this can be corrected is to make a promise to ourselves that we will try never to make all new nurse feel welcome and treat them with respect.
    At the beginning of my career, in the middle and at the end, the number of people who went out of their way to help me out numbered the ones who were difficult by at least 3 to 1. Things always go smoother when the enviroment is supportive but what do you do about people who are born with difficult personalities. There are non nuturing personalities everywhere and in every profession, I do not believe there is anything special about nursing in this respect.

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  4. Visit  pandora profile page
    0
    I find it difficult to come to terms with the fact that this kind of unprofessional behaviour goes on in this day and age. If there are any nurses out there who are guilty of victimising new graduates this way, you should be ashamed of yourselves.

    Our job is to work and act in the best interests of our patients. We are not supposed to use our job as a means of satisfying a mean streak as a result of insecuritites felt due to the presence of new staff. These nurses need the benefit of our experience, but perhaps most of all, to feel that they have someone caring they can get support from whie doing what can be a scary job when newly qualified.

    I think it should be a disciplinary matter when well established staff deiberately withold information from new nurses. What happened to team work and working together for the good of the patient?

    If this behaviour persists in your clinical area then you should try and do something about it. I can only think that this goes on in a department because the management are short-sighted or just don't care.

    Let's remember that we are professionals and should be able to rise above this kind of behaviour.

    Give the new nurses a break and support them. You may find you learn a thing or two from them.
  5. Visit  spitfire profile page
    0
    WE PROBABLY ALL HAVE MET ONE NURSE THAT HAS MADE THAT BAD IMPRESSION ON US,INTIMIDATED OR MADE US FEEL LIKE AN IDIOT. THANK GOOD FOR THE ONES THAT HAVE CONFIDENCE IN US,AND CAN TRUELY TEACH. LIFE IS TO SHORT TO BE CRUEL, FOR AN AWESOME ARTICLE ON EATING OUR YOUNG GO TO: http://springnet.com/content/nursing/9902/eating.htm STAND UP FOR YOUR SELF AND CONFRONT THEM FOR THEIR BEHAVIOR,SOMETIMES THAT IS ALL IT TAKES. spitfire
  6. Visit  MARTRN profile page
    0
    Originally posted by RNsToBe:

    Hello:
    We are a group of RN students in a BSN program in Northern California, and we are exploring the ethical implications of experienced nurses "eating their young". We would like to hear the perspective of experienced nurses, new grads/novice nurses and nursing students on this topic. Why do you think this behavior persists (ie., what are the dynamics or other factors that contribute to this behavior). What are your suggestions for breaking this attitudinal/behavioral cycle and for bridging the gap/improving relations between experienced and novice nurses? What do you think are the ethical ramifications (if any) of experienced nurses deliberately withholding information/support from novice nurses? It seems to us that supporting new nurses would be beneficial not only to the novice nurse, but also to the experienced nurses and to the unit as a whole. It seems that the team and unit would function more efficiently and the quality of patient care/patient safety would be better as a result. We acknowledge that there are many caring/supporting nurses working in the field and that "eating of the young" is a practice that is not practiced by the majority of nurses. However, we also acknowledge that it does persist; therefore, the purpose of this project is to better understand the reasons for and the repercussions of this behavior.
    We appreciate your viewpoints.
    Thank you,
    RNsToBe

  7. Visit  susanc profile page
    0
    I am a nurse educator working in Australia, and I can tell you, the problem is universal. I work with my students to try to end this professional jealousy/rivalry that exists and would welcome suggestions from students as to how I , as an educator, can prepare or assit the student with this problem. My own believes and observations on humans in general and nurses more specificaaly, is that it is a very deep seated gender socialisation thing and is actually (a very effective) tool that keeps nurses from standing together to be recognised as a force to be reckoned with. While I relaise I cannot change the world, I take me commitmment very seriously and do what I can to help the next generation of nurses to A. abolish this childlike attititude ( my children get sent to their room when thet deliberatly act like that ) or B possibly more realistically, to help prepare the student nurse for this so that the persoanlly and professionally survive this "running of the gauntlet". Comments welcome
  8. Visit  el profile page
    0
    I work on a med/surg floor in a large hospital. I precept and orient new rn's very often. I do see the lack of compassion at times by other nurses for new nurses. However in their defense, nurses today are so overwhelmed simply by their job that precepting and orienting is really difficult. I have seen nurses with over 20 years experience drowning with an assignment of 8-10 very ill patients. I have spoken to them and they feel like they are barely able to properly do their job, which is very hard for them, to add to that the stress of showing someone can be just too much. People talk about staffing and leave out that the acuity of the patients in the hospitals now is much higher than it used to be. The more experienced nurses aren't used to having to run their tails off just to get out meds, let alone if several patients need dsg changes or some other type of treatment. It is a sad case, but don't be so hard on the more experienced rn's, and let them know that you respect them, even if it is only because they have been doing this job for many years and that takes huge commitment. They would love to help and often it is the circumstance that keeps them from doing so. I think that as a profession, we need to start supporting each other and often if we consider what the more experienced nurses are going through, it is harder for them to accept the conditions in hospitals and they are the ones that can't leave and go elsewhere because of the time they have put in. I feel sorry for more experienced nurses, they are watching changes happen that are disturbing and they can do nothing. Just thought that you might like a different perspective on this.
  9. Visit  2LTCnurses profile page
    0
    While I'm sure that some preceptors DON'T start out on a positive note, in my experience, most do. However.....a LOT depends on the way the information being taught is recieved. Attitude is EVERYTHING!!!!! Yes we were all new at one time but we all didn't have a cocky "know it all" chip on our shoulders. We always laugh at work when someone starts nursing school from another position because they immediately become "experts" who point out to us all the things we are "missing" "OH boy...here we go!!" We recently went through ten days of hell orienting someone who always knew more than us, refused to take good, KIND advice and constantly looked for any "not by the book" mistake we made to point out to us. Yes we make mistakes, but the way for someone on their first couple of days on a job to makes friends is NOT to look for mistakes so they will feel less inadequete!(sp?)It's very hard to offer information and advice to someone who already knows everything and to be "blown off". One thing I've noticed is that no one on here is really addressing this issue in depth. You simply CAN'T teach or orient an unwilling person no matter how hard you try. A new grad is of course up to date with all the "newest" info, techniques, etc. which most of us are glad to learn, but just realize that because it's newer doesn't mean it works as well in the "real world".
    Just keep an open mind......remember that the "perfect" hospital or LTC facility exits only in the books, and remember that these people will be your co-workers and hopefully friends for a long time. In the long run, every new person we orient is more staff to help our jobs run smoother, we REALLY don't want to lose you!!! Just check the attitudes at the door!
  10. Visit  JennieBSN profile page
    0
    Bless your hearts...as one who has been on the receiving end of 'nurse-eating,' I always try to be kind, patient, and supportive of students and new nurses alike.

    I got eaten biggie time at my first job, and consequently left the position because of my EVIL preceptor that rode in to work on a broom every morning... It was horrible. I cried to my husband and friends, I had knots in my stomach driving to work. I didn't sleep. I felt like a total failure. Why I gave so much power to this evil preceptor I will never know, but she succeeded in chasing me off, which I believe wholeheartedly was her goal. Since then, I've learned to defend myself and stand up for myself. Nipping 'young-eating' in the bud is the best solution.

    I have received many letters of thanks and commendation from nursing instructors because of my patience and willingness to teach the students. I can't stand to see other nurses get snippy and rude when a student asks a question or asks for help. People need to remember that we were ALL students at one time or another. It's the ones who forget that little tidbit that are doing the 'eating.'

    Stepping off the soapbox....
  11. Visit  Rustyhammer profile page
    0
    Most of the time I am glad to have a new grad on the floor. Its a nice prospect to be able to teach someone the ins and outs of the biz but it's a double edged sword. You WANT to show them the right way but you are lucky to get out an hour after your shift has ended and getting called away from your charting to answer that same question for the third time gets old. As nurses it is our nature to be helpful and patient. We should remember to be that way with our "young" as well.
  12. Visit  SusieQ1243 profile page
    0
    In two days I start my refresher course to change my LPN license from inactive to active. I can't wait. After spending a great deal of time reading posts on this wonderful board I feel a strange sense of urgency to return to nursing... to 'rescue' my fellow nurses from this terrible predicament and try to help.

    Having not worked in a clinical setting for 5 years there is much I will have to learn and re-learn pertaining to all the changes in procedures and new equipment. I'm scared.

    But you know what scares me the most? Other nurses. Back-stabbing, two or three-faced premenstrual nurses!!!

    When I left nursing to open an assisted living facility I swore I would never go back. In my experience (I have worked a grueling med/surg floor, home health and LTC) nurses were the biggest bunch of B's I had ever met.

    It is not in my nature to back-stab or be two-faced. And if I ever get out of line an earnest apology follows quickly. I am a sensitive individual and have always tried to put myself in the other person's shoes. I like going out of my way to treat the new person with kindness and helping her to feel welcomed. However, in too many situations I was not treated with the same respect. In fact, I consider some of the deliberately cruel tactics downright evil.

    I think every last one of us needs to examine her/his behavior and ask ourselves how we might have contributed to this nursing shortage. Could it be there are a million nurses sitting at home because of the politics between nurses? Sensitive people who went into nursing to help and make friends with other helpers and found out that the nurses (and doctors) who treat their patients like gold and turn around and treat each other like S--T?

    Who wants to work in that kind of environment?

    There is enough pain and sorrow in this world without having to spend 40+ hours a week enduring pain and sorrow from our fellow nurses.

    Treat your co-workers with professionalism and respect and the profession of nursing will be respected.

    (There is another great thread pertaining to this subject under "Nursing Issues/Concerns...": Shortage Solution.)
    Last edit by SusieQ1243 on Jul 7, '01
  13. Visit  Y2KRN profile page
    0
    Hello,

    I am a new nurse, I graduated last May, and I have to say that I have had positive experiences with preceptors. I am getting ready to get a new job soon I will be starting and ER position and of course I feel vunerable again. I have had to move once to CT, and started a new job, and now six months later a job in the ER has presented itself. I hope I get lucky for a third time and get a wonderful preceptor.

    I agree with other posters here with this thread, don't go into the situation feeling that you know everything, learn from those who have been there for a long time and enjoy teaching. Know in your mind that you have done the best you can do with the experience and skills that you have and know that you will continue to learn everyday. Don't be afraid to ask questions. I have seen older nurses not want to give others the time of day, and I have seen new grads who want to do it all their way, and I have only been doing this one year. "nurse eating" does exist at different levels, and hopefully we can continue to improve this. First we have to get and keep people interested in being nurses in the first place.

    I would like to thank all of the wonderful nurses out there who welcome the new nurses into the profession, and continue to practice with professionalism, and empathy for the sake of their patients and co-workers!! Call me an optimist but, I truely feel there are more non "young eaters" then there are "young eaters"
    that is just mho.

    Y2KRN


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