Should I "surrender"?

  1. OK heres my current dilemma, I dont know what I should do:
    I started orientation in the OR in December. I have had a few medical problems, leading to 2 loa's of 1 month each, plus a few other days. Yes, alot, I know!!!! Now, my managers have had the "talk" with me, saying straight out that I might want to think of other "options" , that it seems like the OR and me are not a good fit,as it seems to be impacting my health, meaning it is too stressful for me (their interpretation). There is NO problem with my peformance,however. The thing is, I disagree, the OR is not impacting my health, my ilnesses are have not been stress related, and I want to continue my training there. They cannot terminate me,at this point, it is a unionized hospital. But, I dont want to be where I am not wanted, either, know what I mean? At this meeting they mentioned that they "cannot extend the orientation too much longer".But how I see it is, they are not "extending" it, as in I have completed it and need more time, it is just inturrupted and will be finished with the same amount of days as if I was there continuosly.Right? On the other hand, I completely understand this is less than ideal, but I and the hospital have invested 7 months into training me, and I would like to move on and complete orientation...I really like it there....Please advise!!!!
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   augigi
    I think they just need reassurance that in the near future, you will be a productive staff member. If you have trouble talking to them, write a letter explaining that your health problems were in your opinion not related to the work area, that you remain committed and enthusiastic about learning and contributing to the unit, and that you appreciate their support and look forward to a positive relationship continuing.
  4. by   LoriAlabamaRN
    Could you maybe provide them a letter from your healthcare provider to the effect that your health has been stabilized and he doesn't foresee any further loas?
  5. by   RNOTODAY
    Quote from LoriAlabamaRN
    Could you maybe provide them a letter from your healthcare provider to the effect that your health has been stabilized and he doesn't foresee any further loas?
    I supose I could, but their concern is with my abscences I have allready had.......what would you do? would you walk away gracefully, or stay?
  6. by   Jules A
    Quote from RNOTODAY
    I supose I could, but their concern is with my abscences I have allready had.......what would you do? would you walk away gracefully, or stay?
    It depends on your state of health. If your health problems are chronic and likely to re-occur (stress related or not) then I probably would do what is best for the team and resign. If the problems you had are totally behind you and you are confident that you won't be missing time and causing a strain to your team mates then I would get the documentation like LoriAlabamaRN suggested and possibly write a personal note as well to assure them that your problems are in the past.

    Obviously no one knows for sure what health stuff will come along in the future however if you KNOW you have something going on that will result in missed time,the OR is not the department for you, imo. There are other positions that might be a better fit and like you said being somewhere that you aren't appreciated and respected isn't where you want to be. Good luck!
  7. by   llg
    I agree with the other posters. If you know that your health problems are behind you and your really love your job and are willing to fight for it, then get the documetation from your physician and write a letter letting them know that your attendance problems are behind you. Then try to wow them with both your attendance and performance.

    If, on the other hand, you are not confident that your health problems (and the resulting attendance problems) are behind you .... it would be better to resign before you put any "permanent black marks" on your record. Don't wait for them to have to fire you.

    llg
  8. by   rach_nc_03
    I've had to leave 2 jobs because of medical problems- one voluntarily, the other involuntarily (got fired while I was recovering from surgery because my specifically non-bedside position miraculously changed to a bedside job).

    Sadly (and I'm not saying this is the case where you are, as i don't know the situation), many employers will assume that *any* medical issues causing you to miss a lot of work WILL cause you to miss more in the future. If you've provided information to them that confirms your statement that these issues were finite and won't cause additional work issues for you- and they're *still* giving you a hard time- maybe you should find another position. You might stay and discover that they're kinda waiting for the other shoe to drop, so to speak, and looking for a reason to let you go. I've heard this sort of thing discussed openly by management about employees- 'she's going to be a risk, we need to find a way to get rid of her' type statements.

    I think the key is finding an environment where the leaves of absence won't be held against you in the future. Is this that environment? From your post, I don't think so, but only you can answer that question. I had four nursing jobs in the span of one year because of medical problems, and it sucked that I had to start over *every* time, yes. But I eventually found a place were I thrived. Interestingly, the hiring manager was a reservist who'd been deployed overseas twice, and he told me his employer at the time was clearly resentful; I think his experience made him much more understanding of the fact that *life* sometimes interferes. Granted, if your medical issues are a safety hazard, as was my situation in one instance, you owe it to the rest of the staff and your patients to resign. I had a problem that made me fall a lot, and I was working with babies- not safe, so I left. But, if you truly aren't compromised in your performance because of your past medical problems, then you have to weigh the issues yourself and decide.

    I wish you the best of luck- and the best of health!
  9. by   RNOTODAY
    ahhhhhhhhhh
    thanks guys. It was just the one conversation so far,(with the managers) and when i go back I will be getting a verbal reprimand for going over the occurence allowance... as I said it is a union hospital, and it is a 5 step process to terminate someone for abcences. I just really wish they willl want to work with me, and not "look" for any excuse to get the ball rolling to fire me, like we all know they can do when they want someone out. I talked to a union rep, just to be sure they cant force me to leave, she said no, and that it sounded like to her that maybe they were trying to give me a way out, in case I was hesitant to say the job was too stressful for me.
    this place needs nurses baaaaaad... we are a large level one, 29 or rooms, working with a little over half the staff and mgmnt we need. But I guess it goes to show, when you have an employee that has alot of days out, they get reaaaaaaly nervous, and rightfuly so, of course. I heard 2 people just left the current orientation program. I guess I can just try it out when I go back, feel things out, as I am still on orientation....I just dont know. I has just been a real bad 7 months for me . I was beginning to feel comfy there, too.....
    rach, did the new employers balk at the idea of having to leave those 2 jobs for ilness? Were they hesitant?
  10. by   RNOTODAY
    ok, post back with a "GO" or 'NO GO"
    as in, should I even return there from my LOA, or just transfer out.....
  11. by   augigi
    Noone can tell you that, as it depends on what YOU want to do!! How much do you like it? If it's just a job, and giving you stress, then resign (with adequate notice). If you like it, and want a chance to prove yourself, then stay and change their minds!!
  12. by   rach_nc_03
    Quote from RNOTODAY
    rach, did the new employers balk at the idea of having to leave those 2 jobs for ilness? Were they hesitant?
    I apologize in advance for this being long...

    I took an unpaid personal leave of absence from the first job. I had a problem with my hip (and back, i discovered later) that made my leg go completely numb, so i fell a lot. When this started happening, I said I was leaving immediately, and had surgery scheduled two weeks later. Since I was working in peds, it would have been dangerous for me to keep working. My manager had a fit, saying I was leaving her in a bind, but I told her it would be unethical of me to do that job knowing I could fall- and drop a child- at any moment. She really didn't seem to care- she said she could only afford for me to be out for two weeks; after that, I needed to call her with updates periodically through my recovery, and she would see if she had 'space' on the unit when I was ready to come back. I kept my position only officially, so I could still have access to healthcare (had to pay the entire $500 a month, though). I still couldn't walk 2 months after surgery, so I resigned and took a management job elsewhere.

    Then, a few months after taking THAT job, I found out I needed urgent back surgery. (My year sucked!!) I'd taken that job ONLY because the manager knew I could NOT do bedside care- I was using 2 canes to walk. I told my manager what was going on, and she was fine with it- then she reisgned a few days before I left for surgery. While I was gone, the new DON told me I would have to be able to lift 50 pounds before I came back to work- and that had to happen within 2 weeks, or I was being fired. Nobody cared that I'd been in a desk job before- in fact, they fabricated a job description (I'd never been given one), then claimed my surgery was elective, so I couldn't sue under the ADA. If I'd been financially and physically able to deal with it, I would've taken legal action on that one.

    So, I've been burned. Badly. I don't trust any employer without getting things in writing. Luckily, I have a great job now (I work as a nurse consultant in insurance), and they hired me knowing I needed major hip surgery (surgery #5 over 2 years) and would be out for six weeks or more. Great disability benefits. I got everything in writing up front.

    Since you have union protection, your situation probably couldn't get as bad as that last one- but, if you decide you want to stay, please be aware that YOU are the only one you can count on to have your best interests in mind.
  13. by   kukukajoo
    I have had similar problems facing staying in school or leaving. Only you can make the choice- it has to come from your heart. It sounds to me that you are saying you like it there and are needed for sure.

    Talk it over with your doc to make sure s/he agrees with you about staying in that position and that you are capable of doing your job upon return. If not, discuss with supervisors and make the choice that is right for you.

    I had to fight to stay in school as first week out was hospitalized for 5 days with major lung problems. Tests are now pointing to an autoimmune disorder but I am staying put for now until it is impossible or I cant keep up.

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