I desperately need advice - page 2

by ElseeRN 2,628 Views | 18 Comments

i am a fairly new rn, of about 1 yr. my current position in the er is the first rn job i have had. i am bright and love asking/finding answers to my questions. i feel like my position enables me to learn new things on a daily... Read More


  1. 1
    Quote from nursemike
    I have a couple of questions, but I want to assure you that I don't mean to be insulting. Frankly, I don't even need answers to them, but I hope you will try to answer them honestly to yourself. First, is it possible that someone might really have seen your behavior as odd? I ask because I work nights, and I sometimes see things I'd be very concerned about on days, but only mildly concerned about on nights. If I see a coworker starting to nod off, I've done it myself, so my first thought isn't that they are on drugs. My assumption is that they didn't get enough sleep, which happens to all of us at one time or another.
    So we back each other up to make sure drowsiness doesn't impair judgement, then all is back to normal the next night. If someone were excessively drowsy on a recurring basis, we'd probably look at finding a more suitable shift before we'd think about drug testing. Anyway, is it possible something along those lines is causing concern?
    Perhaps more pertinently, you mention that this is your first job. Are you sure you are ready for it? ER is a tough place to start out. Usually, people have a fair amount of acute care experience before moving into a critical care position. Are you often swamped? Overwhelmed? (I think I would be!) Is it possible you might need some med-surg experience, or even (like me) you're better suited to a med-surg environment? The behavior you've described by your manager doesn't exactly inspire a ton of confidence, but is there a chance you could discuss with her the possibility of transfer to an acute care floor? You can learn a lot when you have the opportunity to follow a group of patients through a few days of care. Each assessment builds upon the previous one and you get a much better picture of what's going on than I think you could assessing and then sitting on a patient for an hour or to. Maybe following the process a bit longer would help you access your ability, eventually, to see the "big picture" at first contact.
    Just a couple of thoughts, and best wishes. I hope it works out for you.
    I think the problem here is that her manager did not broach the subject of assigning her to a different shift or another area, but immediately jumped to suspicion of drug use. If there was indeed, a problem, it was immediately escalated to something else. I would second other people's recommendation of seeking legal counsel.
    kwnde844 likes this.
  2. 4
    Let me ask you: is it possible a diverter is trying to use you for a smoke screen?

    =====

    Another question: has anyone come up to you as if they were your best friend really concerned for your welfare, and said "OTHERS are talking about you?"

    If so, there's a high likelihood that person is the one who started the trouble and who is keeping the fire lit.

    The reason they'd approach you like a true friend would be to get you to confide in them so they could have more ammo to press the attack.
    Last edit by anonymurse on Jun 30, '10
    Not_A_Hat_Person, TDCHIM, canoehead, and 1 other like this.
  3. 0
    I believe that a manager can probably ask you anything they wish to ask and it is your right to refuse to answer. As for being suspended I would request pay for those days. Be calm, cool and collected. I would also ask for specifics about what behavior they feel you are displaying and what course of action is appropriate for you to follow. Do you have an eap (employee assistance program) a few sessions to discuss these behaviors and your willingness to do that should help.
    I agree that something sounds a weird about your whole experience.
    If the behavior they are talking about is legit, you may be doing something that you do not even realize your doing.
    Do everything in your power to clear it up. Nursing is a lifetime career.
  4. 0
    ElseeRN, Yup... the old witch hunt and then try to blame their incompetence for hiring a new grad without ER/ED experience on you. You do need to get legal advice (first visit advice only is usually free) then get a card from that attorney, type up your demands and expectations letting them know that they crossed the line, with the card attached, and copies made of everything, give this to the manager. If you do or say something without a witness, they can claim anything just to cover themselves. This is not legal advice, just know that it has happened to others and sounds like some of your posting mentors have also experienced it or seen others who have. In your letter, I would suggest that there may be a need for management evaluation, if it took them a whole year to figure out you did not have enough training and also that you insist on being paid for your inappropriate suspension, and also appropriate placement within the facility or the needed orientation to get you up to speed. Atleast you will have something to go back on if things go wrong. Keep smiling and know you are in my prayers...it takes MOXY to start out in ER!
  5. 1
    I appreciate every-one's opinions, helpful hints and tips, and reality checks. Every word written on here was taken into consideration. I apologize for the delay in my response, but sadly we had a death in the family right in the middle of all the "crap" (for lack of a better word) BUT, I have a meeting today with someone that I have known for a long time, and will be FAIR.... I'm not looking for favoritism, just FAIRNESS. I will let everyone know how it goes... PLEASE KEEP ME IN YOUR PRAYERS, TODAY IS MAKE-IT OR BREAK-IT. EITHER THINGS CHANGE OR I WILL. Thanks everyone, I wish you all could see my true sincere appreciation for all of your kind and helpful words.
    leslie :-D likes this.
  6. 0
    I understand why you might want to look for another job elsewhere but I would encourage you to return to work at least for a few shifts. Nursing can be a small world and the rumor mill is fierce! If people start talking about you getting fired or quitting due to drug use, even though your results were negative it's going to stick with people as if you were guilty. If you return to work, hopefully people will remember that when it comes up again in conversation later and either be what proves the allegation wrong or at least puts some doubt in the perceived guilt. You never know which of your coworkers may be the person supervising or hiring you down the road.
  7. 0
    I'm so sorry you're in such a horrible situation. Here are my suggestions:

    1. Go back till you can find another job. I agree with Pers, if you leave immediately after something like that happens, your former employer and coworkers get to set the story. I know how awful it is to go back after an event like that, but do it with your head held high and stay there until you find a good new job. The only caveat I'd place on that is if you find out or get the strong vibe they're about to fire you; at that point, quitting is better for your resume, even if it's harder on your checking account.

    2. Get a copy of the test results and a signed letter from your manager clearing you ENTIRELY of any suspicion of illicit drug use. You'd be surprised how often things like that "disappear." Protect yourself.

    3. Don't go into ANY meetings without recording the proceedings. Buy a digital recorder and save all the audio files. Alert those attending that you will be recording the discussion.

    4. As for the meeting you went through in which you were accused of aberrant behavior and illicit drug use, make sure you write down a record of it with every detail you can recall. It won't be worth much legally, but you want to be sure you yourself don't forget details of the event due to the passage of time.

    5. Find a (good) new job. You're being targeted and it won't go away. It sounds to me like you landed in a closed group that didn't like getting a new grad as a coworker and decided to teach you a lesson for being so "uppity" as to think you were qualified to joined their crew. Don't leave that place without documentation clearing you of their suspicions.

    I am really sorry this is happening to you. Certainly you may pursue your mistreatment legally, but you have to ask yourself if it's worth the time, money, and personal stress. It isn't fair for you to have to be the one to leave, but believe me, it's the easiest route for you to get out of a dangerous and ugly situation. If you stay there and try to fight for your job, they'll make up a dozen different ways to get you canned by next week.

    Please keep us updated on how things go. I hope you find a wonderful new job very soon.
  8. 0
    Just a quick update... I had a job interview last week for a dream position in a large hospital in one of the speciality ICU's...all went well...back the end of this week for my peer interview (any suggestions on how to ace this one would be appreciated), I ended up taking FMLA from my current position. Basically, my body just couldn't handle all of the stress from zero sleep and constant worry! At this point, I just wanted to get out, and I didn't care how! I am waiting on this other position in the mean-time. Will keep all of you updated as soon as I know anything. Thanks all-the war is not over, but with all of your kind and knowledgeable words...I've won this part of the battle
  9. 4
    update>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    i got the position at the big hospital in the icu!! i'm so excited! i am also thrilled that i've successfully and professionally got away from all the drama in my previous position. from what i've heard about that place... i got out at the best time ever! people are quitting left and right, because of a small (insignificant) group of people, who think they are all the staff the place apparently needs. (if you're not mean hearted and hateful like them, you're out!!!) fine, i would rather have my morals in-check, than to be so horrible like them.

    furthermore, i did not file any formal complaints on the manager/hospital. i know that i had every right to, and would have successfully won....but, i honestly just wanted to cut my losses, leave this behind, and walk out a bigger and better person.

    from the bottom of my heart, i thank those who posted their kind words, wisdom, and true concern for my well-being. i wish nothing more than the best for the kind angels watching over me. with love and admiration-:redpinkhe
    Hoozdo, TDCHIM, NeoPediRN, and 1 other like this.


Top