Why are nurses disrespected so much? - page 3

Hi all! I just started our clinical this week as a new nursing student and there is something that's been bothering me and I just can't seem to come to terms with it... why are nurses so... Read More

  1. by   Horseshoe
    In my entire career (22 years), I've probably worked with only one "mean girl." And disrespect is not something I have been the target of many times, either. Occasionally, sure, but I shut that down pretty quickly. As Dr. Phil says, you teach people how to treat you.

    It's a mystery to me how you could think you have it all figured out without so much as spending one day yet as a nurse, and only a very short time as a student. Might be time to hold off on all your judgments until you actually have more data.

    And the mods can help you change your screen name.
  2. by   fitfabfunnurse2b
    Quote from ItsThatJenGirl
    That's quite a strong opinion based on very little experience.

    Give it time and focus on the good things.
    I am simply stating what I observed. thanks for your advice!
  3. by   fitfabfunnurse2b
    Quote from Lil Nel
    Maybe the OP could elaborate on what he/she meant by disrespected. Maybe the OP saw outrageous staffing ratios and took that as disrespect (it is).

    Like many of you, I have met wonderful patients, and rude, lazy, non-compliant patients. People are just people. Just because they are hospitalized, doesn't mean their basic personality will change from bad to good.

    And yes, Mean Girls In Scrubs is a very real thing. I met one of them while working on a cardiac floor. She was the most popular senior nurse on the floor. My guess is she was so popular because nobody wanted to be her target. But she trash talked LOTS of nurses. The nurses I worked with in psychiatric nursing were very supportive. And the night shift nurses I work with now on med-surge are very supportive. But I wouldn't work the day shift at my hospital because again, there are plenty of Mean Girls in Scrubs.

    I prefer to spend my caring for patients and learning new tasks as opposed to watching my back at times. The latter is too time consuming.

    For what it is worth, I didn't feel disrespected by the OPs comment. But I would like further explanation of disrespect.

    THANK YOU. I was not disrespecting the entire nursing profession. I don't know how someone came to that conclusion. My point was this, I saw the way nurses were talking towards one another and I'm simply stating that "mean girls in scrubs" do exist. Not everyone. Also, I saw the way some of the nurses treated the students and it was very unprofessional.
  4. by   Workitinurfava
    Just get out of nursing before it is too late, you have to be strong and no-nonsense.
  5. by   nursel56
    Quote from fitfabfunnurse
    Hi all! I just started our clinical this week as a new nursing student and there is something that's been bothering me and I just can't seem to come to terms with it... why are nurses so disrespected? I've seen nurses treat other nurses like dog crap and the pts treat them like slaves essentially-- ungrateful, degrading, etc. I'm shocked that this is the way the heirarchy is structured... Dr's are gods, nurses are peasants. We've worked way too hard in school and beyond to be subjected to this treatment. I guess this is also my phlegmatic personality coming thru... but wow!! Nurses are literally like Mean Girls. Sometimes I wonder, how did I end up choosing this profession again? It sickens me the way HCP are supposed to nurture and support their PTs yet they can't even treat their own coworkers like human beings... I guess I have "thin skin" but yikes this is not the kind of work environment I want to be in! Why can't we all show compassion towards each other? I'm a very kind person and I feel like I'm going to get spat on in the nursing world... rant over.
    What did they have you doing on your first week of clinicals? Just curious because your description of your clinical site sounds so medieval.

    Did you share your concerns with your instructor or at your post-clinical conference?
  6. by   fitfabfunnurse2b
    Quote from Workitinurfava
    Just get out of nursing before it is too late, you have to be strong and no-nonsense.
    What makes you say that I should leave the nursing profession altogether? I can't really give up or quit, I just started my BSN program and I have 4 semesters left (if you're counting this one). I'm at least finishing up. That would be dumb to not graduate and get my RN.
  7. by   AceOfHearts<3
    In the two jobs I've held at 2 different facilities I have come across 3 doctors that could be total pricks to nurses. Two of them actually ended up leaving. All the other doctors and residents I've worked with (and there have been plenty) have been nice and respectful. Many learned my name, would say hi to me in the hall (or even stop to chat briefly) even when they weren't assigned to any of my patients.


    I've had a couple of patients treat me pretty poorly. I've calmly told patients "I'm here to help you and I don't deserve to be treated like this". It's rare and I've only done it about twice, but I have asked to not be assigned a certain patient again. I've gotten better addressing poor behavior by patients- I think it's the culture of my new unit and that I see plenty of other nurses call the patients out on their behavior. I did just that the other day when a patient was being very demanding in a nasty tone. I had the patient again the next shift and I went in with a good positive attitude and we didn't have any more issues.

    I've met maybe a couple of nurses that I didn't care for, but I've met people outside of nursing that I don't care for too. I just let it roll off my back. You are going to find coworkers you don't care for in every single profession. Nursing is my second career and I couldn't stand the guy I shared an office with in my old career.

    Until you are a nurse in a facility with a full patient assignment and then have to take on nursing students on top of your regular assignment you really don't have any room to complain. I don't get nursing students in my ICU, but when I was a tele nurse we had nursing students on my unit 4-5 days a week sometimes. That meant we had days with not enough WoWs or our spare ones weren't charged. The students were significantly slower pulling meds and a lot of times I had to then review the meds with the students, so I wasn't saved any time (it just cost me precious time). I had to review their charting and co-sign it. I had patients with beds left up high, no bed alarm on, and side rails down. Sometimes we had a really great batch of students (one particular group did not have a single student I did not like), but most of the time there was at least one slacker. I'm not going to hunt down the student- the student can look at the board to see my assignment and find me. It was also exhausting keeping up with meds- what meds is the student giving, did they see the new order, why is X med 2 hours late (was it given and not charted, was it not given and why, are they still planning on giving it or should I just give it myself, etc.)? I really enjoyed having the students and teaching them when I had the time, but the reality was that was a very rare occurrence on my unit with the acuity and patient load. I could have 2-4 different students in one day with my patients- that's a lot of extra work that I wasn't paid for.

    You are just starting clinicals- you haven't had a chance to observe much and I think you are being a bit premature in your judgment. Go in with an open mind and remember there might be more going on then you are aware.
  8. by   Jory
    There are three types of people that treat nurses the worst:

    1. Other nurses (we are our own worst enemy and I blame this for the reason we are not more organized as a profession).

    2. Physicians...most of which could care less about us.

    3. Hospital administration...who sees physicians as indispensable and everyone else as replaceable.

    In terms of everyone else, I haven't experienced that. Yes, you'll occasionally get the rude patient or family member, but that should not be par for the course. You'll find rude people everywhere you go.
  9. by   CrunchRN
    There are "mean girls" in every profession. I don't think it is more prevalent in nursing. And I have seen disrespectful pt's & rip doctors and administration a new one too. However, the majority of coworkers and pt's and families have been fine and appreciative and respectful.
  10. by   Lil Nel
    Quote from TrashPanda
    "I guess I have "thin skin" but yikes this is not the kind of work environment I want to be in!"

    Then before you waste any more time or money on a profession that is obviously not optimal for you, I would suggest you change your career choice. I guarantee you will not find a unit that is devoid of individuals that do not appeal to your need for continuing compassion and endless warm fuzzies. I would suggest Zen garden sand tray raking.
    Is this response supposed to be helpful, serious, or simply a show of your snappy snarkiness?

    You choose.
  11. by   kkbb
    Nursing is my second career. My first career was in debt collections. People would call and yell at me, calling me all sorts of awful names because they were sent to collections when THEY did not pay their bill. They would behave as if I sought them out to pick on them. I really did try to be nice and understanding, but some made it very hard. Then there was the attorney I worked with for years who had no idea I existed. And then there was our office manager (wife of the boss) who also handled billing that did not actually enter any of my billing for a few months and I ended up being let go for not ever doing billable hours. Mean people exist in all walks of life.

    I am a new nurse, but my hospital and unit are very supportive. I met weekly with the manager just to check in and "to know she is there for me." The other nurses ask me regularly how I am doing and if I need help. Or they also ask if I have ever done a skill they are going to do and see if I would like to get more experience (but not like they are trying to get out of doing something).

    OP: while on clinicals you might see some things that you don't like. You are there to learn, and sometimes part of the learning is knowing where you do not want to work, both in specialty as well as facility.
  12. by   aflahe00
    Perhaps it's the place but this isn't uncommon. Your seeing the real deal world of nursing and it's not ever what you'd expect. Your not respected. Senior nurses do eat there young why I do not understand either. Just be the nurse you would want to work with. Be the nurse who doesn't turn their back on the nursing students, be a nurse who can remember what it's like to be a beginner. Those of the ones who inspire me.
  13. by   fitfabfunnurse2b
    Quote from kkbb
    Nursing is my second career. My first career was in debt collections. People would call and yell at me, calling me all sorts of awful names because they were sent to collections when THEY did not pay their bill. They would behave as if I sought them out to pick on them. I really did try to be nice and understanding, but some made it very hard. Then there was the attorney I worked with for years who had no idea I existed. And then there was our office manager (wife of the boss) who also handled billing that did not actually enter any of my billing for a few months and I ended up being let go for not ever doing billable hours. Mean people exist in all walks of life.

    I am a new nurse, but my hospital and unit are very supportive. I met weekly with the manager just to check in and "to know she is there for me." The other nurses ask me regularly how I am doing and if I need help. Or they also ask if I have ever done a skill they are going to do and see if I would like to get more experience (but not like they are trying to get out of doing something).

    OP: while on clinicals you might see some things that you don't like. You are there to learn, and sometimes part of the learning is knowing where you do not want to work, both in specialty as well as facility.
    Yes, thanks for giving me a new outlook. I am definitely learning and getting my feet wet, so to speak.

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