Thinking about leaving hospital nursing, need advice

  1. 9
    Hello all!

    I have been a nurse since May 2009. I don't want to give too much info here, but I basically am fed up with hospital nursing. I currently work ER and due to an incident that recently happened, I am seriously thinking about leaving hospital nursing all together. No, it was not a med error or anything like that. It was simply I was personally attacked by another RN who was going on a "reputation" that she said I have of being snotty, stuck up and anti social.

    I have already filed a written complaint with my director and I am seriously thinking of going to HR. I feel this is creating a hostile work environment since this girl is part of the "clique". I simply choose to stay to myself, I speak about work related things only, I pinch in and help out when needed, but I simply do not engage in gossip or telling my personal business. I spend most of my downtime reading up on protocols and work email. I am professional with my co-workers but they don't know much about me and I prefer to keep it that way.

    I feel my work reputation is under attack here. I did approach this person and let her know how offended I was and I was going to file a complaint with the director and HR. She did apologize, but attempted to make "small talk" with me and I just didnt feel comfortable speaking with her at all on a personal level.

    Now, I don't look forward to going to work at all. I'm sick of the politics in the hospital and I'm ready to go back to a more professional environment that I came from. I have been applying for non-hospital jobs so I can have a peace of mind.

    I have an interview for a phone triage position at a very well establish company and I'm some what excited about it and I'm some what sad about it. I do love being in the ER, but I really don't want to work for another hospital if it's like this at majority of them. I'm quiet, I'm a hard worker, I'm a team player, and I'm good to my patients. I really don't understand why I can't be left alone to do my job and simply go home without all the drama.

    Any advice? I'm sorry so long. And yes, I would rather nip this mess in the bud because I take "deframation of character" issues very seriously.
    tokidoki7, OCNRN63, VivaRN, and 6 others like this.
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  3. 33 Comments so far...

  4. 6
    Please don't enable this individual to reduce your employment and career opportunity.
    In this economy we all need to think very carefully before leaving an acute care environment.
    Don't let her bully you out.

    I would look at her behaviour and find examples that can be clearly linked to HR policy.
    You might find there is provision for defaming an employees reputation. There is at the organisation I work in.
    If this does get to HR, it would be a good idea to make sure you are forearmed with these kinds of examples.
    I wish you all the best - doesn't sound like a very nice situation
  5. 5
    You're talking about YOUR career here. No one needs to tell you that it's hard to find jobs period not to mention one that pays like nursing. Take some time to step away from the situation, write her a letter that you never intend on giving just so that you no longer hold onto what you're feeling. You're a nurse,, it's not a job it's a calling! Don't let someone cheat you out of what you're meant to do.
    Last edit by abrown527 on Feb 3, '11 : Reason: spelling error
    AnaCatRN, Bella'sMyBaby, Pfiesty, and 2 others like this.
  6. 1
    Quote from pedicurn
    Please don't enable this individual to reduce your employment and career opportunity.
    In this economy we all need to think very carefully before leaving an acute care environment.
    Don't let her bully you out.

    I would look at her behaviour and find examples that can be clearly linked to HR policy.
    You might find there is provision for defaming an employees reputation. There is at the organisation I work in.
    If this does get to HR, it would be a good idea to make sure you are forearmed with these kinds of examples.
    I wish you all the best - doesn't sound like a very nice situation
    Thank you for the advice.

    I will still remain PRN to keep up my skills. However, this is not the first time this has happened to me. I left the ICU for the same reason. As hard as I tried to put that experience behind me, it's happening all over again.

    I simply don't have a reason to converse with co-workers unless work related. Somehow, that's seen as a bad thing. I have been told to "talk more" or "smile more" which I do smile and speak when eye contact is made.

    And did I mention, it was my very FIRST time working with this person. And it wasnt even a complete shift. So, I feel like there is a preconception floating around about me that can only have came from ICU. I know for a fact, things are being said about me because specific things that I spoke with someone in private about came back to me.

    Isnt that deframation of character? Purposely "bashing" my work repuation? It's never nothing about pt care, but about how I am seen by others as far as personality goes.
    pedicurn likes this.
  7. 4
    Your co-workers are your family now...dysfunctional as most. You will not see eye to eye on all days but they need to know you a bit more and honestly I believe I will make the team work better. You must be friends with someone at work. This Bitter Betty may have a lot on her plate (not at all excusing the behavior) and if you are as professional as you present yourself to be she may be threatened by you. Stick it out and prove yourself as the best nurse you can be and your co-workers will come around. I agree with the other post. DO NOT let them run you off. Leaving anywhere needs to be your decision and never on bad terms. This type of nurse and person is encountered everywhere. I have encountered so many that will not apologize so the fact that she did is a good sign. Bend a bit and you may see her and them come around. In the end it is about the patient but when the patient leaves your "family" is still there.
    There is BS everywhere you go and you just have to decide how much you can deal with. I have been a nurse for 14 years and 12 years of hospital experience...lots of stress and chiefs wanting to run the show. ER is a place I see that alot. The good news is there are places/departments that will make you happier and team members that care about the professionalism that you bring to the team. If you find ER is where you want to be badly then stick it out. I thought I wanted ER when I first got out of school but quickly learned the patients forget you and the staff turnover/burnout is great. I prefer the floor and seeing my patients for a few days. I like getting to know the family and seeing my patients go home after a hospital stay.
    Good luck in your career and keep up the hard work. It doesn't get easier just more rewarding.
  8. 1
    It's insubordiante and hostile for a nurse to be that way. But yes unfortunately that title may follow you. I have been labelled as "getting to personal" and no matter how many times I have proven my professionalism my supervisor continues to bring up the past behavior. I know I am a good nurse and my ethics and that is what is important. That doesn't make it easier when you encounter this behavior but if you know in your heart you provide the best care for your patients then it doesn't matter what they think.
    Bella'sMyBaby likes this.
  9. 5
    afrocentricrn -

    marc here - i want you to know that i am sincerely sorry that this has happened to you.
    i have seen it many times.

    i do not know why nurses do this evilness to one another. also why nurse educators,leadership and nurse administrators over the years have not clearly recognized or addressed this dysfunction.
    it does occurs in other professions in my expirience, however it is not to the severity or propensity it is in nursing. professionally it has not been recognized for as being delatorious and in its affect on patient care,indivigual nurses and overall professionally destructive.

    it is often tolerated tolerated by managements lack of recognition and failure to address the reprecussions. only recently when lawsuits have been brought and won large financial awards on the merit of "hostile work enviroment" has some administrations been addressing this issue.

    afrocentricrn -sometimes we have to know when to detach. when to leave a situation for ones own sanity and safety. it sounds as if your being rallied against for doing right by your patients and professionally you reflect a genuine comfortableness with your nursing practice despite this oppression.

    you deserve better that this situation. i have had to learn reconize and know when it is just too much of a situation to fight.

    acknowledge and trust your gut in knowing when it is enough.

    trust your abilty to self care and perserve your dignity. just as you care so well for patients in crisis do not be afraid to know the critical limits. each of us have a piont in knowing when we are being violatated. when our tolerance is being tested to the limit and when your ethics, your personhood, and your professional boundries are at risk.
    "do no harm" means not allowing any to our patients and just as so to ourselves.


    you simply will not win with these folks attitudes and these situations.it is too established and do you really want to try and change such ignorance?
    such senarios you described are dangerous and can have a very high price to pay. more than one nurse has been unjustly terminated- even reported to the bon due to a dysfunctional nurse and/or pathologies of "cliques".

    personally i have never been on the recieving end of this behaviour. but
    i have witnessed this type of " group narcissism" its affect on coworkers and being allowed by management. it causes detriment and division of staff this thinking/behaviour directly or indirectly always has had a poor influence on patients care. when i have seen this

    one of my favorite words of wisdom comes from the well known writings of
    max ehrmann called the desiderata. there is a part of this writing that says -

    "...keep interested in your own career, however humble;
    it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
    exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery.
    but let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism. ...."
    and further on in the verse it says --
    "and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul.".....

    arocentricrn,
    you are a hero to your patients and the lives you have helped; look at what you wrote of your dedication and love of er
    sadly and tragically your not a hero that is recognized & even perhaps despised by some but the piont is this -

    you know.

    now do the right thing friend -recognize these people for who they are. rid your spirit, personal and professional life of such toxic dangerous people. you are so fortunate in that you have a choice - many others do not. you already know your needs are and how to
    take care of yourself.

    i so wish you well.

    marc

    ps - i would not hesiate to notify or carbon copy the hr dept. regarding this situation.
    such enviroments legally are very costly and i am sure hr would value knowing this.
    this coworker never anticipated the response you professionally gave her and i think that she is not sorry. as well these antics will continue onto others should you leave.

    also it is obviously clear that your nursing manager is ineffective in not being aware of such a situation and "cliques". woorse senario is that she is aware and tolerates and empowers staff by ignoring them.
    perhaps she needs to be educated on how to assess obeseve and influence her staff to prevent a hostile work enviroment. perhaps hr can educate and faciliate the nurse manager to "manage" the staff toward desired goals. those of being ethical professional and humane in thier nursing practice and creating a safe work enviroment for all.
    Last edit by SilentfadesRPA on Feb 3, '11 : Reason: spelling
    AnaCatRN, Bella'sMyBaby, Pfiesty, and 2 others like this.
  10. 12
    Quote from rierie
    Your co-workers are your family now...dysfunctional as most. You will not see eye to eye on all days but they need to know you a bit more and honestly I believe I will make the team work better. You must be friends with someone at work. This Bitter Betty may have a lot on her plate (not at all excusing the behavior) and if you are as professional as you present yourself to be she may be threatened by you. Stick it out and prove yourself as the best nurse you can be and your co-workers will come around. I agree with the other post. DO NOT let them run you off. Leaving anywhere needs to be your decision and never on bad terms. This type of nurse and person is encountered everywhere. I have encountered so many that will not apologize so the fact that she did is a good sign. Bend a bit and you may see her and them come around. In the end it is about the patient but when the patient leaves your "family" is still there.
    There is BS everywhere you go and you just have to decide how much you can deal with. I have been a nurse for 14 years and 12 years of hospital experience...lots of stress and chiefs wanting to run the show. ER is a place I see that alot. The good news is there are places/departments that will make you happier and team members that care about the professionalism that you bring to the team. If you find ER is where you want to be badly then stick it out. I thought I wanted ER when I first got out of school but quickly learned the patients forget you and the staff turnover/burnout is great. I prefer the floor and seeing my patients for a few days. I like getting to know the family and seeing my patients go home after a hospital stay.
    Good luck in your career and keep up the hard work. It doesn't get easier just more rewarding.
    I don't see how someone is threatened by someone who displays professional behavior.

    And I'm gonna have to disagree, my co-workers are just that, my co-workers. I go home to my family everyday.

    I don't mind being cordial, speaking. But when it's time to work,I focus and work. I don't like people in my personal business, and I don't ask others about theirs. I feel I should be able to keep my working life and personal life separate.

    I am a very private person and it takes me a while to warm up to others. This don't mean I'm rude or stuck up or unapproachable. I simply don't like engaging in personal conversations at work.

    I can exchange pleasantries and all that, but I don't care to discuss who I'm dating and what we did last night. I don't like gossiping about people behind their backs and then speaking and smiling with them in their face.

    This is the behavior I see and I do not want any part of it. If this makes me stand out, oh well......
    tokidoki7, Dreamer-RN, netglow, and 9 others like this.
  11. 1
    Quote from silentfades
    afrocentricrn -

    i am sincerely sorry that this has happened to you. i have seen it many times.

    i do not know why nurses do this evilness to one. moreso why nursing leadership and management over the years have not addressed this dysfunction. though it occurs, in my expirience, it is not in other professions to the severity or propensity it is in nursing. without sounding overdramatic
    it is evil in its affect on patient care, indivigually and professionally destructive.
    yet it is often tolerated by managements lack of recognition and failure to address the reprecussions.

    sometimes we have to know when to detach. when to leave a situation for ones own sanity and safety. it sounds as if your being rallied against for doing right by your patients and professionally you reflect a genuine comfortableness with your nursing practice despite this oppression.

    you deserve better that this situation. i have had to learn reconize and know when it is just too much of a situation to fight.
    acknowledge and trust your gut in knowing when it is enough.

    trust your abilty to self care and perserve your dignity. just as you care so well for patients in crisis do not be afraid to know the critical limits. each of us have a piont in knowing when we are being violatated. when our tolerance is being tested to the limit and when your ethics, your personhood, and your professional boundries are at risk. "do no harm" means not allowing any to our patients and just as so to ourselves.

    you simply will not win with these folks attitudes and these situations. such senarios you described are dangerous and can have a very high price to pay. more than one nurse has been unjustly terminated- even reported to the bon due to a dysfunctional nurse and/or pathologies of "cliques".

    personally i have never been on the recieving end of this behaviour i have witnessed group narcissism being allowed by management. not only to the detriment and division of staff this thinking/behaviour directly or indirectly always will poorly influence patients care.

    one of my favorite words of wisdom comes from the well known writings of
    max ehrmann called the desiderata. there is a part of this writing that says -

    "...keep interested in your own career, however humble;
    it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
    exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery.
    but let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism. ...."
    and further on in the verse it says --
    "and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul.".....

    you, afrocentricrn, know your a hero to your patients and the lives you have helped;
    sadly not a hero that is recognized & even perhaps despised by some but the piont is this -
    you know.

    now do the right thing friend -recognize these people for who they are. rid your spirit, personal and professional life of such toxic dangerous people. you are so fortunate in that you have a choice - many others do not. you already know your needs are and how to
    take care of yourself.

    i so wish you well.

    marc

    ps - i would not hesiate to notify or carbon copy the hr dept. regarding this situation.
    this coworker never anticipated the response you professionally gave her and i very much think that she is not sorry. as well these antics will continue onto others should you leave.

    also it is obviously clear that your nursing manager is ineffective in not being aware of such a situation and "cliques". woorse is that she is and tolerates and empowers those by ignoring them.
    perhaps she needs to be educated on how to assess obeseve and influence her staff to prevent a hostile work enviroment. hr should know the nursing directors lacking the recognition of such behaviours or worse the history of employing/tolerating folks who create a hostile work enviroment. such enviroments legally are very costly and i am sure hr would value knowing this.
    .
    perhaps hr can educate and faciliate the nurse manager to "manage" the staff toward desired goals. those of being ethical professional and humane in thier nursing practice and creating a safe work enviroment for all.

    and i totally agree with you 100%! this is why i am making the decision i am making. i'm simply tired of fighting. i simply want to be the best nurse i can be and go home. i don't want to be part of a clique, nor do i want to be harassed, because this is what i feel like.

    i've already typed up my complaint and will be heading to hr on monday. i am currently awaiting to see how my interview goes for the non hospital job before i put in my two weeks notice. it's not worth my sanity and the constant watching over my back because i know they are trying to find someone on me to get rid of me. once i leave, they can have at it.

    it's simply knowing when to pick and chose your battles.
    netglow likes this.
  12. 1
    *sigh* Alas, cattiness does not discriminate in any job field, it exists everwhere, lurking in the shadows. I'm sorta like you: a social butterfly but I don't like to delve into my personal business and non job-related discussions for the most part, especially while at the job setting. I've been attacked for it, for having a difference of opinion, for liking one band and not liking another. I laughed. Because it's very telling of people who have nothing better to do in life than to compare their pitiful lives to yours. And when you don't grant them that opportunity, they become clique-y and insist that YOU'RE the problem, you're the one that doesn't want to fit in.


    Last I checked, a nursing career is not effin' summer camp. Your coworkers need to grow up. And you need to do well to remember that you're kinda lucky because you have a job, and more importantly, a job you clearly love. Are you gonna let the summer camp mafia run you out of town?
    SilentfadesRPA likes this.


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