New nurses wanted. - page 9

by GrnTea | 26,163 Views | 117 Comments

I have just read a post in a Nursing Specialties forum on Staff Development that makes reference to the need to recognize and nurture new nurses because the nursing-eat-their-young attitude is so widespread. I went to respond to... Read More


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    I graduated as an LPN in 2003 at the age of 20. I have intermittently been harassed and belittled by other nurses throughout the years. The vast majority of nurses I've worked with have been "normal" human beings, but a few have really been rude and just plain nasty to me. Management didn't care that I was being sexually harassed by an older female nurse. This was the same management that asked me to falsify records! She would scream and throw things and make fun of me (for being young and pretty) in front of other people, especially men. It was a completely hostile working environment. I almost quit nursing for good.
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    @joanna73- I have plenty of life experience, as I am over 40. I was on my own at an early age, 16yrs old to be exact. I have lived in places and hung around people that most people turn their back on. I can tell you the whole "nurses eat their young" not only exists but is alive and well. You might not have experienced it, but that doesn't mean that others havent! I am alittle rough around the edges myself, so trust when I say it does exist.
    netglow likes this.
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    Just because it's researched, doesn't make it necessarily accurate or truth. Depending on your topic of interest, there are all kinds of studies one can find that would support their particular claim. Certainly, horizontal violence exists in nursing, just not nearly as often as people claim. Perception is everything, and based on various comments posted throughout AN, younger nurses can be just as guilty. Remember, when someone is not responding exactly the way you'd expect, this is not unprofessional, or "eating the young."

    If you're looking for bullying, or you're someone who takes on the victim role, you will surely find it, in nursing and just about every other field there is. Keep in mind that we all work with different personalities. When I read various comments such as, "They wouldn't give me the time of day in report" or "This person was mean.."

    Possibly. But I have to wonder....is that person showing up prepared to work? What kind of effort are they making to solve the problem? Conflict involves more than one person.
    Last edit by joanna73 on Feb 23, '13
    Ruby Vee, elkpark, SoldierNurse22, and 5 others like this.
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    Quote from joanna73
    Just because it's researched, doesn't make it necessarily accurate or truth. Depending on your topic of interest, there are all kinds of studies one can find that would support their particular claim. Certainly, horizontal violence exists in nursing, just not nearly as often as people claim. Perception is everything, and based on various comments posted throughout AN, younger nurses can be just as guilty. Remember, when someone is not responding exactly the way you'd expect, this is not unprofessional, or "eating the young."

    If you're looking for bullying, or you're someone who takes on the victim role, you will surely find it, in nursing and just about every other field there is. Keep in mind that we all work with different personalities. When I read various comments such as, "They wouldn't give me the time of day in report" or "This person was mean.."

    Possibly. But I have to wonder....is that person showing up prepared to work? What kind of effort are they making to solve the problem? Conflict involves more than one person.
    So what do you presume the abundant amount of accumulated research means if this wasn't a common problem? It actually happens more than people think, which is it is being reported and recorded and studied.

    I would think that researchers would devote south literature and effort to such a thing as nurse-to-nurse/workplace bullying if its occurrence was minimal and insignificant. That seems apparent to me. If the issue is contained to be minimized and labeled as a non-issue, then it will continue to worsen until something happens that can't be denied and ignored and must be addressed.

    So it is really of little value if individuals, now, view this problem as a non-issue now (no matter how apparent it may be) because people at large do view it as a developing problem and eventually it will be addressed and some people might not like the results, on both sides.
    lovelylady3, netglow, and milfordmom like this.
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    I have to wonder if the nurses on here denying the existance of bully/catty behavior, are they the ones perpetrating it? Just a thought hmmm )))
    lovelylady3 likes this.
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    Quote from milfordmom
    I have to wonder if the nurses on here denying the existance of bully/catty behavior, are they the ones perpetrating it? Just a thought hmmm )))
    ^ Negative.

    My issues are with "perpetual victims"...people who have inner struggles and project their issues out. We as nurses assess this in our pts, yet at times, we don't do the assessment pieces that we learned when it comes to our benefit.

    I've been on both sides. I've used those skills that I learned in Mental health courses to state how I learn, what I struggle with, my background, etc. I also expect my orientees to do the same, because I ask those questions, and I expect when you are done, to be confident enough to take care of our pts, to seek assistance without doubt, and to advocate for yourself and the patients that we take care of.

    If one is struggling with that, has a history of low self esteem or a history of self-doubt, then forced into a new environment, the stress is there, and can turn people that are usually calm, cool, collected into a person suffering from hypersensitivity.

    It happens-let's not ignore that aspect when dealing with conflict as well...both sides have ways of coping, or not; regardless, both of these resources are available at most places that I have worked, including at my new job. If that is not happening, I behoove people to become agents of change, present the EBP and make a plan. We have a CHOICE...choosing to "remain a victim" does more harm that good, especially to the person holistically.
    GrnTea, SoldierNurse22, and joanna73 like this.
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    Quote from milfordmom
    . . . . All I can say is WOW! I guess you are a member of the crusty old bat society!
    Based on the context, it appears you intended that as an insult. It isn't. The phrase was coined by someone who was thanking and grateful for the "crusty old bats" she worked with. You've inspired me to put that back on my signature!
    poppycat, metal_m0nk, joanna73, and 1 other like this.
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    Quote from milfordmom
    I have to wonder if the nurses on here denying the existance of bully/catty behavior, are they the ones perpetrating it? Just a thought hmmm )))
    I agree.
    milfordmom likes this.
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    New nurses have no business holding onto a defeatist, victim attitude and wailing, "Nurses eat their young!"

    Buck up, show a desire to learn, be respectful, THANK ANYONE AND EVERYONE WHO GIVES YOU FEEDBACK (yes, even if it is critical, devoid of the sunshine and rainbows you think you deserve). Go in with the right attitude, and you will be fine.

    No one is entitled to kid gloves and nurturing. It's nice, but you are responsible for your own success and your own mentality.
    Ruby Vee, joanna73, poppycat, and 2 others like this.
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    Well said. And reiterates why many nurses end up pursuing nursing education. (And why I would like to in the future after more experience). We need good nurses! Eventually, like you said, it will be you, or a family member in that bed, and you want a good nurse. Behind every good nurse is (usually) a good teacher or mentor that taught them something that they will take with them every day (night) to work. Now that I've been a "go-to" person, I think I'm ready to take the step to be a preceptor. Not yet, but in the coming months . Great article, GrnTea!
    Altra, joanna73, poppycat, and 1 other like this.


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