What's with the chip on your shoulder?

  1. I was in the hospital visiting a friend who just had a baby. As I was walking by the nurses station in postpardum, things seemed to be quiet. I decided to stop and say "Hello". ONE nurse (mind you there were about 12 nurses total) gave me that put out, what do you want look and grumbled in the most cold, "I HATE MY JOB" voice, "WHAT DO YOU NEED?!"

    Needless to say, I was quite taken back by her attitude. In my naive, nurse-to-be brain, I thought all nurses were kind, caring and compassionate people that love their job or they wouldn't be doing it, right? Looks like I have ALOT to learn.

    The worst part is, the other nurses that were there saw her attitude and how rude she was and didn't say a thing! Then again, what should they of said?

    Now my question: If you had a bi*chy co-worker that was rude like that, how would you handle it, or would you?

    Last edit by proud2bme on Apr 23, '02
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  2. 44 Comments

  3. by   Level2Trauma
    You answered your own question........"In my naive, nurse-to-be brain" Wait until you hit the trenches before you start to judge.
  4. by   Q.
    Maybe you just caught her off guard. Post-partum nurses have a difficult job, but alot of times are seen as having the BEST job, because they work with babies.

    She probably assumed you were coming up to her to ask with breastfeeding, or to ask for water or juice after *she just left*, etc etc. She probably assumed too much, I'm sure. Maybe she just sat down to drink or eat and you walked up and caught her. Odd thing, on MY floor, which is OB, often times we have patients or family coming up to the nurse's station and we feel guilty if they see us eating or sitting for that ONE moment in time. Sometimes it reflects in our attitude. Rest assured it is not intended.

    Let me remind you that NO, nurses are NOT *supposed* to be the most caring, compassionate people in the world. Some of us are just people, with issues like being tired, ill, having a sick kid at home or going through a divorce and are effected by it just like any other Joe. While bad customer service shouldn't be expected, I don't think nurses should be put on a different level than human beings.
  5. by   SKM-NURSIEPOOH
    ...no matter what's going on...you didn't deserve that!!! you probably did the right thing by not saying anything else to her...you're probably seen as just an annoying student in which some people aren't cut-out to deal with or teach & think they can take their frustration out on. this certainly is no way to set examples to such students & future nurses. :angryfire

    the unit or department acuity has no bearing on the amount of rudeness & unprofessional behavior this nurse displayed!!! i would inform your instructor about what happened & request not being assigned to her again. as far as those other nurses not saying anything, it would've been inapproriate for them to say anything to her, especially in front of you; but my guess is that someone just might've spoken to her privately though.

    there's no wonder why people are leaving the nursing profession in droves...& having difficult time attracting new ones too !!!
  6. by   P_RN
    I'm sorry you were spoken to like that. Please don't judge all by that one. Resolve to do your best when you graduate to NEVER emulate that one person.
  7. by   proud2bme
    Thanks for your reply's. Don't worry, I know better then to think that all nurses are that way. I know there are a few in a crowd that have an attitude no matter what the situation is. It has always been that way in or outside the medical field. Afterall, nurses are human too-SUPER HUMAN! LOL!
  8. by   CEN35
    ok i am the first to say never be bias, never stereotype, never generalize...but i couldn't help myself on this one!!! seems to me, during nursing school, cliicals, and after during the real life thing.....post partum nurses have always seemed to have an attitude, and not like their jobs in the slightest? why? i have no idea? sorry not trying to make enemies here....honest

    me
  9. by   Teshiee
    Regardless of what your specialty is rude behavior is not acceptable. I have days that I am mad at the world and I know that I chose this profession and I owe it to myself to be at least cordial to my patients, co\workers, and family members. Apparently she may had a bad day and just lashed out with frustration. When I do not feel like being cheery I keep myself busy but I never talk nasty to anyone because they did not put me that mood in the first place.

    I wouldn't do anything. I feel it is not my job to critique nurses with their behavior. It starts with yourself. In every unit there is an evil b**ch ready to lash out. I would not take it personally nor would I tolerate it either. As a charge nurse I would tell her in a polite way leave the desk if you have a problem because unfortunately people tend to loop you in a group based on individual acts of another.
  10. by   nursesteph
    'k, I coud tell you a long story here, but it would bore everyone but me. Nursing is like any other caregiver position, either they're sweet or *****y, no happy medium, but then again I had a bad experience.
  11. by   nightingale
    There is no excuse for treating each other badly. I am sorry it happened to you...

    Hence, one of the reasons I prefer agency... we do not get involved with the poltics... unfortunately... "it happens"
    B.
  12. by   VickyRN
    To Rick---
    I once worked L & D part time in a very busy level III teaching hospital (VERY acute OB pts--i.e., lady pregnant with triplets on strict bedrest and THREE ext fetal monitors, the laboring pt with SEVERE preeclampsia, about to SEIZE, etc, etc). I have mostly fond memories of the nurses ("troopers") there--they ALL loved their job (some were outright passionate about OB--studying to be midwives) and they were USUALLY very professional and KIND to laboring pts, their families, and coworkers.
    I now am in a float pool at a much smaller hospital in my hometown and INFEQUENTLY float to the postpartum/L & D/newborn nursery unit (an enviable unit in the hospital, hard to get into). The nurses there are generally kind, awesome in their abilities, professional and seem to LOVE their jobs. They have some nurses on that floor who are approaching 70 years old!!!!!
  13. by   aimeee
    originally posted by cen35
    ok i am the first to say never be bias, never stereotype, never generalize...but i couldn't help myself on this one!!! seems to me, during nursing school, cliicals, and after during the real life thing.....post partum nurses have always seemed to have an attitude, and not like their jobs in the slightest? why? i have no idea? sorry not trying to make enemies here....honest

    me
    what you experience colors your perceptions. i did my clinical rotation on the same unit i gave birth to my two children in. the staff were wonderful, helpful, instructive, friendly. i have nothing but good things to say about them. i would have gone to work there in the blink of an eye if there had been any openings after nursing school. unfortunately, that unit is now closed. i have no experience with any other units.

    have no idea what this nurse's problem was. hopefully it was an isolated incident due to a bad day. that doesn't excuse the rudeness.
  14. by   CEN35
    to healing touch:

    i know what you mean. like i said, personal experiences leave one thinking a certain way. i saw it in clinicals where i was at in school, and i had two kids of my own. i saw it there too....kind of a bummer.
    however, i realize there are people out there that have had that same experience with "er people" also, and probably think the same about "us".

    just my two cents......

    thanks...



    me





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