Why do some nurses hate it in others pump at work? - page 2

I was working tonight, when a traveler nurse literally walked off the floor when she was asked to watch out for another nurse while she stepped away to pump. There were words exchanged and pretty... Read More

  1. by   AutumnApple
    I too have seen this exact problem come up.

    What I witnessed was: Some days, the nurse would go and "pump" and there was not a whisper about covering for her or anything else. Other days, she'd go in the bathroom and venom spewed forth as if she'd suggested killing someone's first born. Not kidding, the reactions were as polar as can be sometimes.

    I still believe the reactions were, for the most part, arbitrary or the result of whatever was going on with the covering nurse at home. But it may not have been entirely the covering nurse's problem. I did cover for this nurse one night and two patients called out for pain meds. Before I was done with that, the aid had to go in and assist someone to the bathroom.

    That can happen to anyone. But I did get the impression that perhaps the nurse should have rounded on her patients before asking for someone to cover for them. This nurse was not one who I believed would avoid taking care of patient requests and dumping it on others so, I didn't say a word and let it go. That was the only time I covered for her (I usually had an orientee with me so, I think she avoided asking me because of this).

    So, I guess I'm just saying: If people are resenting covering, perhaps there is a reason other than the covering nurse having a bad attitude.
  2. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from Sour Lemon
    I don't think it's an uncommon resentment, although her reaction was probably more extreme than most. Some people may feel it's unfair because they don't get the same allotment of time for their own personal needs. In other cases, staff is already stretched so thin that any additional work becomes a major irritant. And some people just don't see it as important. Maybe they never did it for their own kids and they can't understand why others feel the need to.
    Most people don't mind covering for someone who is considerate about who to ask and when to ask -- I'd rather cover for pumping than for someone's every two hour 15 minute smoke breaks. But here's the thing -- the pumper (or the smoker) aren't always considerate. A 30 minute pumping break every two hours PLUS a 30 minute lunch break and two fifteen minute "coffee breaks" means that nurse is off the unit a significant portion of the shift, leaving someone else to cover.

    It is considerate of the pumper to round on her patients before she goes, making sure that they won't need something foreseeable for the next half hour or so. IVs have enough fluid, call light and water within reach, etc. I've seen nurses give a bottle of mag citrate and then disappear to pump, leaving a colleague to deal with the results. (And without warning the colleague.) Another nurse went to pump while my patient was coding. Just popped her head into the room, said "I'm going to pump now," and disappeared before I could object.

    I'm not saying the traveler was right, but if she has had to deal with messes an inconsiderate pumper left behind, I can see the reason for the anger.
  3. by   Ambersmom
    At my last job we had alot of nurses who pumped, they used the managers office, didnt ask anybody to cover for them, and if an issue came up (but they also did it at a lull in the day), someone would handle it. There are bigger fish to fry than a nurse who pumps.
  4. by   SobreRN
    I don't get that, either. When my kids were babies you couldn't do this at work and she is just pumping, not like asking another nurse to cover for her to make a Taco Bell run. Does the other nurse have kids? Maybe her perception is that new parents ask too much. That being said why wouldn't regular staff step up.
  5. by   blondy2061h
    I have worked with nurses that have spent 2+ hours a shift pumping- for 18 months. It's great to allow mother's time to provide breast milk for their kids. It's not so great to strain the rest of the staff in that mission.
  6. by   Irish_Mist
    This nurse walked off the floor AFTER accepting report on her patients and never returned? Pretty sure that's abandonment and the BON should be notified ASAP.

    As far as pumping is concerned, when I pumped, it only took about 10-15 minutes per session. As long as the pumping nurse is being considerate of other peoples' time and access to rooms not to mention attempting to choose down times to pump (0900 med pass isn't exactly a good time), it really shouldn't be an issue.
  7. by   Accolay
    I've never seen resentment over a coworker who pumps.

    Only thing is they don't understand that we're not supposed to get breaks.
  8. by   kakamegamama
    Quote from Davey Do
    Uhhh.....Davey Do, I don't think the OP was talking about this kind of pumping...... :-)
  9. by   Ohm268
    I am an advocate for "breast is best" especially as a future midwife but I also believe that every family is different and has different circumstances that might make breastfeeding difficult. So how you feed your child is up to you and your partner and I will do my best to support you which ever way you decide. But that is not the point of this thread.

    I think consideration goes both ways. If a fellow nurse is kind enough to cover for you while you pump, then please be considerate and don't take an hour to do so. On the other hand, pumping is essentially providing food for my child. I am not going to deny you food when you are hungry so please don't deny my child his or her food as well. At my hospitals some of the nurses use an empty L&D room but we also have lactation rooms all over the hospital as well so a pumping mom can have privacy and quiet while she is pumping.
  10. by   anitalaff
    [QUOTE=Ruby Vee;9672281]

    I've seen nurses give a bottle of mag citrate and then disappear to pump, leaving a colleague to deal with the results. (And without warning the colleague.) Another nurse went to pump while my patient was coding. Just popped her head into the room, said "I'm going to pump now," and disappeared before I could object.
    QUOTE]

    Just WOW.
  11. by   chacha82
    I think it's unreasonable for someone to take multiple, extended pump breaks. And I breastfeed and work med-surge, so I know what a strain that is to ask people to cover. It is not cool to just tell someone you're going to pump as they have an admission coming, someone else returning post-procedure, someone else with tube feeds and q 2 turns...etc. I worked with a tech who was great about tidying everything up and then going to pump, and she didn't abuse breaks. It was a good example for me. I'm sure she wasn't 100% comfortable at times but hey that was being pregnant and working as well right?
  12. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from SobreRN
    I don't get that, either. When my kids were babies you couldn't do this at work and she is just pumping, not like asking another nurse to cover for her to make a Taco Bell run. Does the other nurse have kids? Maybe her perception is that new parents ask too much. That being said why wouldn't regular staff step up.
    Regular staff might not be stepping up because the pumper in question has been abusing them. It happens.
  13. by   alexaway
    This doesn't seem fair to me at all. Mothers have the right to do what is best for their children

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