Support Group for Nurses - page 2

I am an RN working to start nursing support groups at the hospital where I work. Do any of you have support groups for nurses at your hospital and would you go if it was offered? We are hoping to give nurses a place to talk and... Read More

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    Quote from firefly443
    I am an RN working to start nursing support groups at the hospital where I work. Do any of you have support groups for nurses at your hospital and would you go if it was offered? We are hoping to give nurses a place to talk and destress. Any ideas would be great! Thanks!
    Have you started this group and how is it going? Where are you located? What State? I am thinking of starting a destress group in the SF Bay area. Any suggestions?

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    I need some kind of support group just for the fact that I work the night shift, it is the only one that works with my schedule right now. I mentioned this to a coworker and all I got from her was "maybe you need to find a day job!" and she wasn't nice about it. I got the feeling I wasn't wanted there anymore or something, like maybe they were tired of me being tired? I don't know. Working with a bunch of women is very hard. There are a lot of personalities and not everyone has the attitude to help each other and team work and get along with each other. Most want to look out for themselves and do whatever it takes to better things for themselves! It gets harder and harder to WANT to help others, like trade shifts for them or even work extra shifts when they need off when no one returns the favor or ever considers what my needs are when they come up. Nursing is a very tough profession and, yes, we DID choose our career but could we have possibly known exactly what it entailed when we started college or dreamed of being a nurse? I have a friend I tried to talk out of being a nurse. I tried to explain why, she just didn't understand. When she finally went to work and would call me crying on her way home from her first few weeks of orientation saying they were chewing her up and spitting her out. I told her "THIS is why I didn't want you doing this!!" Women can be SO mean and we have ALL been there! Being new at this, being scared, not knowing something, making a mistake, etc. It is really sad that I try to talk ppl out of becoming a nurse. But, shes moving on to become a nurse practitioner. Much smarter than I am! I don't know that world, maybe it will be better. Don't know.

    Anyway, didn't mean to ramble. I guess I'm bored! LOL
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    Stress in nursing and the idea of support groups is near and dear to my heart, but I too have felt resistance in my workplace to the idea of creating one. During my MSN studies I spent a lot of time researching stress and nursing. I am of the mindset that hospitals and LTAC/NHs need to have, what I have dubbed, the "nurse counselor" on board. This person would be a nurse with bedside experience, who also holds a degree in counseling. Then this person would be available to the staff nurses/PCTs through the EAP program to help staff work through difficult situations such as sexual harassment, death of a patient, abuse, and family-work stressors. I think there is something about nursing that is can be as stressful as police work and firefighters that needs to be attended to.

    However, you may have more luck helping out your facilities nurses by focusing on another area that is showing more and more positive research, breaks. I was surprised by the amount of research that is starting to happen on the positive effects of nurses actually getting to take a 30 minute lunch break. This may be a great opportunity to do an EPB project for your hospital and I guarantee staff will be more behind a lunch break initiative than a support group one.

    In reference to the support group and its main prerogative, is there a bulletin board you could use to create an information center for stress reduction? Perhaps listing the benefits of the EAP (my last job allotted for 2 counseling sessions a year, but I wouldn't have know if I hadn't asked), night shift routines to decrease stress, who to talk to for patient issues like harassment etc?

    Best of luck!!

    nrsang97 likes this.
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    On the one hand, your idea is very kind. On the other hand, I think that having a support group would increase the potential for a nurse being flagged for HIPAA violations. When nurses vent, it's usually about particular patients and their families, and in general the venting is done with just one or two trusted friends. Having an organized vent session with everyone invited would give those with less than good intentions lots of ammo against a nurse if she happened to reveal anything she shouldn't while unloading some of her frustrations.

    Call me cynical, I know.
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    I have been so stressed I went to EAP. I had 6 or so sessions and then if I wanted to continue I had to be referred to behavioral health and develop a relationship with a different counselor.

    I like Tait's idea of a nurse with bedside experience and counseling degree. That would be wonderful.
    VivaLasViejas likes this.

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