Foul language at work...what do you do?

  1. I have recently started a new job as a RN on a busy floor at a large hospital. I enjoy all aspects of the setting- but find one thing disturbing.........there is a fair bit of foul language being used. Don't get me wrong they are not using it around the beside- BUT- I have heard it at the nursing station, staff room, med room, etc. AND THEY USE THE "F" WORD ALL THE TIME! These are RN's and this is an acute care setting. So far I have said nothing, went the other way, etc........but I wonder...am I alone in noticing this problem? It also seems to be the younger nurses that are the worst offenders.
    Any input would be appreciated!

    JMP, RN
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   night owl
    Sometimes anger makes you say the darnest things and most people regret it later. BUT to others around you, it can become quite offending after awhile! Sometimes you just have to tell them,"watch your mouth!" They usually get the idea.

    I once had a head nurse that let her anger show and never thought twice about it. An employee came out of her office mumbling under his breath and apparently she heard him. He went walking down the hall and she came out of her office and yelled to the top of her lungs, "Well eff you too!!!" Everyone just stopped what they were doing and stood there with their mouths open. Now for the head nurse to do something like that was just waaaaaaaaaay out of line. She at least apologized to the staff afterwards. She was no spring chicken either!

    People have to remember that they are professionals and should act that way at least for 8-12 hours while at work and learn to control their language. Most pts and family look up to the staff as these wonderful angels of
    mercy . I'd be alittle dubious if I heard my caretaker saying those wonderful four letter words and would lose alot of respect for them.
  4. by   P_RN
    I too have had !@#$%^&*( said in front of and TO me. Best response I think is "I don't like that language." and walk away.

    However if they take the Lord's Name in vain, then......it's "DO NOT USE THE LORD'S NAME LIKE THAT!"

    It will get you the rep of being a prude, but who cares. They don't talk to me like that.
  5. by   Janet Barclay
    Guilty, guilty, guilty,
    As an offender, all I can say is, "if I offend, please let me know and I'll try and clean it up in your prescence". Nursing is an incredibly stressful profession and a lot of us "blow off steam" in rather less than appropriate ways.
    The best line that I've ever heard is "do you kiss your mother with that mouth?"
  6. by   prmenrs
    I'm in favor of gentle confrontation. How about this at a staff meeting:
    "Ya'know I noticed lately that we have all been guilty lately of forgetting that we are professional nurses, and we have all been getting into a very bad habit of using language that does not reflect the image to which we should aspire. Let's start a quarter jar. Whenever we hear ourselves using bad language, we owe that jar 25 cents."
    Later, the money can be used to buy something that is selected by and for the unit, perhaps a book.
    If you get the nurse manager behind it, you won't feel all alone, and most people KNOW they're messing up. This will give them a reason to clean up their act.
  7. by   fergus51
    If it isn't in the patient's earshot I could care less. With all the other stresses we have to deal with, I can't say swearing rates high on my priority list.
  8. by   lpnandloveit1
    my own personel opinion..........for what its worth. I see a lot of talk about professionalism and work ethic, It is much easier to get along professionally with all of the staff when we call each other miss, mr. mrs. ms. etc. and keep our language clean. when the nursing unit sounds like someone is auctioning a mother effer, is it any wonder that staff pts and pts family tell us to eff off? I know it sounds old fasioned and prudish but it works. by the way I have 4 kids and 3 of them are over the age of 18 there is nothing I haven't heard seen or bandaged. I haven't blushed in 30 years. My mom always said that people who use foul language are too stupid to think of a proper word.
  9. by   kewlnurse
    Originally posted by JMP
    I have recently started a new job as a RN on a busy floor at a large hospital. I enjoy all aspects of the setting- but find one thing disturbing.........there is a fair bit of foul language being used. Don't get me wrong they are not using it around the beside- BUT- I have heard it at the nursing station, staff room, med room, etc. AND THEY USE THE "F" WORD ALL THE TIME! These are RN's and this is an acute care setting. So far I have said nothing, went the other way, etc........but I wonder...am I alone in noticing this problem? It also seems to be the younger nurses that are the worst offenders.
    Any input would be appreciated!

    JMP, RN
    Do you work with me? As long as the pt's can't hear, I dont give a sh&^. A great person (besides me) once said "Joke em if they can't take a f&$K"

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