Depressed and beginning to hate my job

  1. I am so sick of being a nurse at this point I am ready to quit. It seems like every single day for the past month, someone somewhere out there has gone to complain about me. Actually it has only been twice but of course due to management's anality -is that a word? - it drags on until it makes me turn blue.
    First a dr. says I didn't call him about a K+ level of 6.1 on a pt. I called, no return, next shift didn't follow up, the NEXT shift didn't follow up, dr. finds where I charted it but says he didn't get the call. If he doens't answer his pages, it isn't my fault, is it? It was probably after 2100, 2200 at night when this all started, and I went home at 2300. And yes , he WAS on call.
    Secondly, finally that is all done, and two nights ago I came in on 3 to 11 again, get report that abd films ordered on a pt in am, to be done today. Day nurse called xray at 1430 to remind them,, said they were swamped. Doing rounds, meds, etc. Family asks about xrays after supper. Call to xray, takes them literally six or seven minutes to get a real person on the line, they have the automated answering thing, and after so long and so many rings it hangs up or you leave a message. SEnt messages, finally got someone to answer. In the end xray came up to the floor around 2030. Family very sweet and pleasant to my face, as they leave, they find house supv and give a "very nasty complaint" per supv words. Supv comes and chews me out, says I should have called her and SHE would have gotten them up there ASAP.
    Maybe there is more I could have/should have done, but I felt like I was doing the best I could do. The first night with the K+ level, it was hectic, very hectic, major winter storm, people coming and going and trying to go home early, overhead announcements SEVERAL SEVERAL times during the shift that we could not go home until supv released d/t weather conditions and people calling in, etc, trying to get things done in case no one came, or we had to stay or we did get to go home, wanted to get all things done, etc. Very nerve wracking/brain frying.
    I am so sick of it. I am sick of pt families being so sweet, very nice and then complaining behind my back. If they were THAT upset, why didn't they say so???????? The reason for the xray was because no one was sure, for whatever reason, that the pt had a bm in the last week, although she had been quite ill and on cl. liq for past several days, had bowel sounds although a bit hypo.
    Also on first situation, unit mgr highly p.o'd, she wants the people on the floor to suck up to the md's, posted a note in break room about what md's wanted from nurses and one of the items we were to seriously remember was "the importance of the physician". Anyway, she has banned me from the unit while she decides what to do with/to me. Both these pts were new to me, and I don't know if I am losing it or if I have suddenly become greatly inept or if I am burnt out or if I need to just go hide and forget about nursing a while or what.
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  2. 27 Comments

  3. by   duckie
    Sounds like you work with a bunch of idiots. Next day off, job hunt, then tell them, "chow baby" as you walk out he door. You were looking for a job when you found this one and let's face it, nurses are in demand! As far as of what doctors expect of nurses, let me just say this. They aren't God and God spelled backwards is dog of whom I have more respect for than many doctors I have met. If just ain't worth the stress. If they have such a problem with you, let them do you job till they can fill your shoes. Oh but that would require coming out of the offices and staying off the Internet all day! Sucks to be them!
  4. by   VickyRN
    also on first situation, unit mgr highly p.o'd, she wants the people on the floor to suck up to the md's, posted a note in break room about what md's wanted from nurses and one of the items we were to seriously remember was "the importance of the physician".
    that really, really irks me. don't these anal business-management people know that it is the nurses who really run the hospital? that the reason patients come to the hospital in the first place is 24/7 nursing care????
    i am so sorry you are going through this, karo. sounds like you are a very caring and competent nurse working in a very hostile work environment. i can't tell you what to do, only what i would do--i would be out looking for another job asap! in this day and hour of severe shortage of nurses willing to work in health-care facilities, we really don't have to put up with crap like this anymore!!!!
    there are better nursing jobs--just have to look for them. in the meanwhile, take care of you.
  5. by   Q.
    If the physicians are so important, then I guess we can all go home and they can provide 24/7 nursing care.

  6. by   Tweety
    I hate those days, when your busy, stressed, working very hard, and despite all that people delight in hanging you.

    I made a solemn vow many years ago to support my peers, even in their mistakes. (Not that in your case you did).

    I have feelings like you do from time to time. It helps to try to get things in perspective. If the negatives outweight the positives, then it's time to move on. I've had to move on a time or two in my nursing career.

    Best wishes and thanks for sharing.
  7. by   Allison S.
    Some days at our unit, it really feels like the docs work for the nurses. I frequently hear the question "What do you want me to order?" from the docs.

    They are very respectful, and also very generous with us, especially on the weekends, they bring pastries, buy pizza. I'm sure they know that while their work is essential, most of it couldn't get done without us. (And still, we have nursing vacancies--we're in Boston if anyone is looking.)

    As for two-faced family members, remind yourself that they are under stress, and are trying to do their best for their family members. This involves being sweet to their caregivers to curry favor, and also speaking strongly to managers to get them to do their thing. Sadly, this does verge on lying.

    One family member complained for days that the patient was losing weight, needed more feeding, etc. and then wanted to take him for a walk when it was time for his tube feed. I reminded her of his schedule and priorities and then she did what she wanted. Later she complained that I was rude, telling her how to take care of her family-memeber, AND that I was late hanging the tube feed.

    When they left our facility, she gave me a big hug and thanked me with tears in her eyes, yet I still have a complaint in my file.
  8. by   flowerchild
    Been there...depressed r/t job. QUIT! I did and it was the best thing I've ever done. The longer you stay, the longer your recovery. Don't hang around and let them beat you down. Get while the gettins good. Then decide what kind of working conditions you would like, what kind of patients you like to work with, etc. Find out what is most important to you in your career. Then find a job that matches your criteria. I did that and now I'm a very happy nurse in a postion that I absolutly love. Good Luck!
  9. by   RRMLPN
    Karo, my heart goes out to you and i am in agreement with the others, there's no reason you should have to maintain the level of stress and aggravation that you have, to many other positions open. Take a little time for you and consider all your options and realize your a very caring, compassionate nurse with a lot to offer to your pt's. will keep you in my prayers.
  10. by   oramar
    Everything what Flowerchild said and then some. You are describing the exact type of situations that caused the nursing shortage. You notice there are other departments that cause problems but it is always nurses that catch the hell. Why, because just like in your stituation managment does not properly support nurses.
  11. by   lindalee
    <<<<"Anyway, she has banned me from the unit while she decides what to do with/to me. ">>>>>>

    Find a new job. What a loser of a manager. I sometimes would love to be banned from my unit--LOL What a holiday it would be. Seriously, people who manage like this are incompetent and you don't need them. Allow her to fill your shoes while you are banned--and go find a job where you will be respected and treated like a professional. You don't need this, no nurse does and the sooner you vote with your feet the better off you will be. No job is worth being treated like a slave and you should not tolerate the lack of support for even one minute more. I would also write a letter to personell, risk management, perhaps the nursing director outlining how management is treating their front line staff, and exactly why you left. JMHO
  12. by   flowerchild
    I agree with lindalee except that I find it's best not to burn any bridges. Document the way you were treated and keep it for yourself and in case it may become useful one day. You never know. You may want to become employed again in the future by this hospital, things change. A letter like the one suggested might shut a door for you later. I'm not saying it's right. That would be the thing to do, for the sake of nursing, IF it would be used as a tool by the employer to improve working conditions. But thats not what they would do with your letter. It would sit in your personell file for as long as they keep it. And you would be labeled a disgruntled employee. Unfortunate but true.
  13. by   Pretzlgl
    Originally posted by 3rdShiftGuy


    I made a solemn vow many years ago to support my peers, even in their mistakes. (Not that in your case you did).

    Great advice 3rdShiftGuy. (For me that is). When I read your post, I thought "hmmm". I have been guilty of getting angry at my peers when mistakes are made. I think if we were all a little more tolerant in these busy, busy days then we could present a more unified front - and maybe gain a little more respect. Thanks for the thought provoking response!

    Beth (pretzlgl)
  14. by   Pretzlgl
    Karo - I agree with everyone else. Find a new job! Hopefully one where the NM respects his/her staff. I have a NM who is very similar. But recently when the shyt hit the fan, she did support me. Surprise, surprise! I think middle managers are "stuck". They have to do what is best for the profitability of the facility. (This is why I would NEVER be a manager). And some get sooo wrapped up in this that all they see is how to please the MD's so that they keep admitting their patients, etc. Instead of supporting you, your administration immediately believes the families! Or chooses to. It is just so frustrating when all we are trying to do is what is best for the patient.....Good luck to you...

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