You know, I've been thinking....
Dangerous pastime, apparently, because the more I think about this, the madder I get. I am not doing my blood pressure any favors here.
I have been a member for a while now, read these threads even before I became a member, and I have noticed a disturbing trend. I am wondering if anyone else has as well.
It all our fault.
I don't care what happens, who does it, who causes it, the nurse gets blamed. Management backs up the customer-cum-patient, admin backs up the managers, HR backs up the admin.
So, I dreamed this little warning label of sorts up for all those wide-eyed, fresh-faced nurses-to-be out there. I wish someone had told me what I was getting myself into.
Dear Soon-to-Be Nurse:
A Friendly Warning. It's all going to be your fault.
After school, you'll get a job. You'll be ready to take on the world. Get ready. It's coming.
You'll get asked for medical advice by every family member, friend, relation, acqaintance, and person you don't even know that gets wind that you are a nurse. One of 4 things will happen:
1) You will advise them, they will not follow the advice. They will not get well. And it's all going to be your fault.
2)You will tell them that you would rather not advise them, that they need to consult their regular doc. They won't do it amd that won't get well. And it's all going to be your fault.
3) You will advise them and the advice will not help and the y will not get well. And it's all going to be your fault.
4) You will advise them, they will get well, pass along the advice to a friend, who had a DIFFERENT problem, and he will not get well. And it's all going to be your fault.
You will go to work. You'll go in to meet your patients for the day (or night). You'll smile and be perky. They will complain because they just found out that they have a dreaded disease and they don't want to be smiled at. And it's all going to be your fault.
You'll go in to see your next patient, still upset by the reaction of your first, and are a little less upbeat. They will complain because they have had a bad day and they think that their nurse should be happy just to serve them. And it's all going to be your fault.
The doctor did not order the pain medicine that Patient Number 3 ordered because the patient is a known drug abuser who is only in for his fix. The doctor explicitly states in his orders that he is not to be called for orders for pain. That patient refuses to accept this. And it's all going to be your fault.
Patient Number 4 is NPO, and Aunt Katie can not understand why he can not have something to eat. After all, he's hungry, and you are starving him to death. All the other nurses fed him. You're just mean. And it's all going to be your fault.
The doctor comes in to see Patient 4 and finds him wolfing down pizza that Aunt Katie brought him because she knows what he needs better that you do. They snuck the pizza in as you were coding Patient 5. Patient 4 now has to reschedule his surgery since he ate. And it's all going to be your fault.
The doctor will call the supervisor to tell her how incompetently run this floor is and how no one ever does what they are supposed to do. The supervisor will pacify the doctor and the patients and family. She will tell you to be more careful in how you present yourself, because the patients perception of you, while not measurable, is important. Never mind that you have done everything by the book, to the letter, and that, Oh yes, nuber 5 is alive, thank you. No, no, we have to work on our image and smile, smile, smile, (except around patient 1) even though you may have just herniated your umbilicus doing compressions, because our patients have a perception. And if it goes to heck, it's all going to be YOUR fault.
No, the above did not happen. Maybe I am just jaded. That's why I got away from the bedside, and why I am getting my NP. I want to be a manager that has my nurse's back. That will say, "No, Mr. Loudmouth, you may NOT have 4 cheeseburgers. You may NOT call my nurses foul names. You may NOT help yourself to any and everything on this floor like it was your own personal mini-mart." If I ever acted the way I have seen some sups act, "Well just watch how you present yourself.", I would hope someone smacked me!
Flame me if you want to. I really do think newbies should be warned about things. I think they should be trained how to handle it, not sold up the river. Maybe this would also help with the shortage. Just maybe. Thanks.
May 13, '08
Quote from futurecnm
You do sound a bit jaded, that is coming from a new graduate. However, maybe you are taking it as a personal thing when people are just not always nice. I'm sure dr's are asked for medical advice a lot too, and often it is their fault!
But thanks for the uplifting post!
It gets a bit more that just taking it personally. I hope it never happens to you, but the sad truth is, it probably will.
Hope I haven't scared you away!
Last edit by AngelfireRN on May 13, '08