In need of some words of encouragement from my fellow RN's

  1. 0
    So I feel like I need to rant and get other people's opinion on my situation--what better place to do this than on All Nurses?! Here's a little background on me: New nursing graduate who rejoiced when I found out I passed NCLEX on the first attempt and after a long, difficult search, I was ecstatic that I had found out that I had landed my dream job on a Postpartum unit. I "orientated" for 15 total shifts before I was off orientation. During this orientation period, I had 9 different preceptors (which when I saw a document on hospital policy as far as # of preceptors throughout the whole experience was to be THREE maxium). Anywho, all my preceptors have extremely different routines, ways of doing things, etc. Only one out of the nine preceptors I had actually made me feel welcome and took time to answer my questions, share their experiences, what works best for them, show me around the unit etc. As far as the others--whenever I arrived for my shift I would walk up and they all would literally be arguing to not take an orientee (I kid you not they said it right in front of me "I'm NOT orientating anyone, are you kidding me? I have better things to do!") Have I mentioned that I spent one day playing unit clerk because no one would be willing to orient me?

    So far since I've been off orientation (this past week) I've had an extremely difficult patient load--for example my first night off I had 2 fresh c-sections(one that was near unstable with a hemoglobin of 6.8, had an EBL of 1100 in OR and who passed both a tennis ball and softball sized clot), a mother of twins who was being monitored for postpartum depression and was extremely agitated/upset/unable to care for herself or her babies on her fourth day postpartum). By the way--this was one of the "easier" pt loads I had. Naturally, I was determined to do the best I could to manage this patient load and when I asked for assistance from my "resource person" replied "Oh, you need to learn how to manage your time on nights like this" and left me to figure all the orders and interventions on my own. (At this time, I demanded that she come show me how to PROGRAM an IV pump since the opportunity never came up during my "orientation"--this is how useless my 15 shifts prior were at teaching me anything)

    I'm normally not a complainer, and these environmental factors of my co-workers don't seem to bother me, but I am just curious as to if anyone has any advice for this situation? I told my manager that I don't feel like I'm getting the support needed to help me progress into my own role and had a disagreement because she thinks I'm "in denial" of thinking that I'm ready to be off orientation. I'm concerned about the safety of my patients. I'm contemplating searching another job but don't want to make any premature decisions or not give it enough time, but I finally broke down and cried tonight after another horrendous night and I'm not sure if I can handle the stressors of everything work-related. My manager and preceptors were fully aware that I'm a new grad with no experience except for a 4-week rotation in OB at a different facility. (I still don't know how to work a breastpump becuase no one wanted to "dirty" a clean one to demonstrate to me). Suggestions anyone? I need some words of encouragement!
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  5. 4
    Oh, my, you've landed among some charming coworkers. I feel for you. I've seen that kind of bitter, selfish experienced nurse, but I had hoped they're fading away. Maybe they all got together at your place.

    Is there a nurse educator running the preceptorship program, or is it more of a seat-of-the-pants operation? Is there a way you can go up the chain of command and assert your desire for continuity and dare I add, support? I am not there to see for myself what you're dealing with, but it's possible that the way you're left to twist in the wind is dangerous to your patients and/or your license. You need to watch your own back, hon. Don't trust that manager who apparently just wants a warm body to put on the floor, because she may not be documenting your concerns. It wouldn't really be in her interest to document that you're getting such lousy orientation. (Really, they can't bother to teach you how to use an IV pump? Wow. What's the name of that place, "Biff's Lube, Oil Change and Delivery Suites" ?)

    Get it on the record that you're requesting more training, better training, continuity of trainers, dignified professional preceptors, etc. Meanwhile, start looking around for another place to work. Have an escape plan. It's not great to change jobs quickly, but it's also not great to stay in a place where you're not learning, in this important phase of your career, how to think and organize and anticipate, which you can't learn if you're struggling alone without a mentor or preceptor.

    Oh yeah, "encouragement". You seem to be a person who's going to be a skilled and compassionate nurse, and the hellhole you're in in no way deserves to have you. So consider yourself encouraged to have faith in yourself and encouraged to protect yourself, but in no way am I encouraging you to stay in that workplace.
    Last edit by Piglet08 on Jul 30, '11 : Reason: adding
  6. 1
    Quote from lil_miss_sunshine27
    So I feel like I need to rant and get other people's opinion on my situation--what better place to do this than on All Nurses?! Here's a little background on me: New nursing graduate who rejoiced when I found out I passed NCLEX on the first attempt and after a long, difficult search, I was ecstatic that I had found out that I had landed my dream job on a Postpartum unit. I "orientated" for 15 total shifts before I was off orientation. During this orientation period, I had 9 different preceptors (which when I saw a document on hospital policy as far as # of preceptors throughout the whole experience was to be THREE maxium). Anywho, all my preceptors have extremely different routines, ways of doing things, etc. Only one out of the nine preceptors I had actually made me feel welcome and took time to answer my questions, share their experiences, what works best for them, show me around the unit etc. As far as the others--whenever I arrived for my shift I would walk up and they all would literally be arguing to not take an orientee (I kid you not they said it right in front of me "I'm NOT orientating anyone, are you kidding me? I have better things to do!") Have I mentioned that I spent one day playing unit clerk because no one would be willing to orient me?

    So far since I've been off orientation (this past week) I've had an extremely difficult patient load--for example my first night off I had 2 fresh c-sections(one that was near unstable with a hemoglobin of 6.8, had an EBL of 1100 in OR and who passed both a tennis ball and softball sized clot), a mother of twins who was being monitored for postpartum depression and was extremely agitated/upset/unable to care for herself or her babies on her fourth day postpartum). By the way--this was one of the "easier" pt loads I had. Naturally, I was determined to do the best I could to manage this patient load and when I asked for assistance from my "resource person" replied "Oh, you need to learn how to manage your time on nights like this" and left me to figure all the orders and interventions on my own. (At this time, I demanded that she come show me how to PROGRAM an IV pump since the opportunity never came up during my "orientation"--this is how useless my 15 shifts prior were at teaching me anything)

    I'm normally not a complainer, and these environmental factors of my co-workers don't seem to bother me, but I am just curious as to if anyone has any advice for this situation? I told my manager that I don't feel like I'm getting the support needed to help me progress into my own role and had a disagreement because she thinks I'm "in denial" of thinking that I'm ready to be off orientation. I'm concerned about the safety of my patients. I'm contemplating searching another job but don't want to make any premature decisions or not give it enough time, but I finally broke down and cried tonight after another horrendous night and I'm not sure if I can handle the stressors of everything work-related. My manager and preceptors were fully aware that I'm a new grad with no experience except for a 4-week rotation in OB at a different facility. (I still don't know how to work a breastpump becuase no one wanted to "dirty" a clean one to demonstrate to me). Suggestions anyone? I need some words of encouragement!
    Lil Miss Sunshine27,

    Hi, I too am a new grad and have recently found myself in a difficult situation with one of my co-workers. I needed help big time and was feeling overwhelmed during one of my shifts, and she was the charge nurse that day. I actually had a good orientation and know how things are suppose to be done, but I could not get things completed in time, because I had so many things go wrong that morning. My computer did not work properly, so I wasn't able to scan medication when they needed to be administered. Also, for some reason I was unable to access narcotics out of our pyxis system, and that problem took at least an hour and a half to resolve pushing me further behind. I had circumstantial things happen to me that day that really threw my entire day off and to make it 10 times worse, the charge nurse just used everything I needed help with or was behind in as an opportunity to complain about it to my other co-workers trying her best to make me look bad.

    With all that being said, I definitley know what it is like when you are not getting the help that you need. It is stressful and can be dangerous depending on the circumstance. Just keep you spirit up and seek out a friendship with someone. There has to be some workers there who will embrace you and support you. If not than maybe that place isn't good for you. As a new grad it is really important to have help when you need it.

    In regard to not being sure how to use the IV pumps and breast pumps, I too was never shown how to program an IV pump, because one of my preceptors didn't take the time to show me. If you have't done so already, go on Utube and type in what you need a demonstration on. I learned how to program an IV pump by watching a utube video.

    Stay positive, and know that you can succeed even without those nurses support, but don't stay there if you are really unhappy. There has to be someone there who will be willing to take you under their wing, if not than don't feel bad for seeking out employment somewhere else. If things don't change than seeking out employment at another facility might be the right thing to do. Just take one day at a time.

    Good luck,
    Jewl
    Nurse_Hagatha likes this.
  7. 3
    This is so sad....having to go to YouTube because orientation isn't enough, and not tailored to your needs.
  8. 0
    a very sad situation for you. I have seen this happen so many times. The good news is almost anything you want to learn is on you tube. So get busy and teach yourself. One of the nurses I know taught himself how to do iv starts using an ultrasound, on you tube.
    It sounds like you are in a very toxic unit, so learn all you can and then start looking for a better job. If and when you leave though, make sure that you tell HR and risk management what type of orientation new nurses are getting though. Because the attitudes on that unit are dangerous.
  9. 1
    Seems like a very unprofessional unit and people fighting over not orienting you. Usually someone is assigned to orient a new person as the main preceptor. The manager isn't leading!

    There should be a system in place for consistency in the orientation process and also coworkers should be resources. Essentially 3 weeks orientation seems skimpy to me to a brand new grad on a specialized floor and then top it off with no regular preceptor and coworkers flat out refusing to help you. That is just so wrong!

    What do you mean your manager thinks your in denial about being off orientation? Was it your idea or hers to take you off orientation? If it was yours, I think it was premature. But for it to be fruitful you need a consistent preceptor, one who treats you with respect and wants to do it. There's no one there that wants to volunteer to precept you? It doesn't make sense.

    If this isn't resolved you would be better off getting another job, look for a hospital system that offers a new nurse residency program.
    Nurse_Hagatha likes this.
  10. 0
    Quote from gonzo1
    a very sad situation for you. I have seen this happen so many times. The good news is almost anything you want to learn is on you tube. So get busy and teach yourself. One of the nurses I know taught himself how to do iv starts using an ultrasound, on you tube.
    It sounds like you are in a very toxic unit, so learn all you can and then start looking for a better job. If and when you leave though, make sure that you tell HR and risk management what type of orientation new nurses are getting though. Because the attitudes on that unit are dangerous.
    Yeah, but did you pay tuition to YouTube? Is YouTube paying your paychecks? YouTube isn't accredited.

    Wow.... no wonder 5 or 6 patients feels like a lot.
  11. 1
    Hey Lil miss Sunshine!

    Hang in there and hold on! The first ride is the hardest!
    My first RN job was on a busy med/surg unit, i had a week in orientation and my first assignment was 5 TURPs fresh out of the OR with irrigation running a mile a minute and a cardiac guy who coded within the first 30 minutes. I cried. It was awful. I remember it clearly to this day....24 years later.
    First things first..... patient safety is of PRIME importance. If you aren't sure of a procedure or how a piece of equipment works, find your supervisor and make her listen. You have to be safe.
    Secondly, you're tough, you can do this, but you have to have the tools and skills. Skills come with time. Is there an experienced nurse around who is approachable?
    Working on the floor can be a complete circus at times and its then you have to know how to prioritize care and know which patient needs you next.
    Find all the support systems you can, be it on Allnurses or in your workplace and constantly ask questions. Its how you learn.
    You're doing what you trained to do, all you need is some guidance.
    It's gonna be ok
    SneakySnake likes this.
  12. 0
    Man, they all suck. I really feel for you. Is there not one you can talk to that might listen? One that won't turn around and stab you in the back?

    Your manager is a crappy one at that. She should be telling them to shut their pie holes and preceptor. Makes you wonder if they are getting extra monies to preceptor. There must not be that much of an incentive.

    The sad thing is, even though you will soon get your own routine down, do you want to work with these women? I have a feeling you will always be the odd man out because they seem to be total witches.

    Sad to agree, but head to Youtube for some training. Should you have to? Heck no! But..in this situation, it sounds like you might need too.

    In the meantime, I think I would head to HR and have a chat with them and complain about your orientation.


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