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OCNRN63, RN 39,343 Views

Joined Aug 27, '10. Posts: 7,189 (75% Liked) Likes: 27,667

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  • Feb 20

    I would not go to work on a Sunday waving a letter that told me not to practice.

    I would rather take the hit of a call off gossip than advertising the do not practice letter to regular staff.

    This needs to be presented to the right level of management which is unlikely to be there on Sunday morning.

    I can't imagine how complicated this may or may not be but I think trying to 'work' even as an observer is not a good move.

  • Feb 10

    Let's please try to remember that there ARE a multitude of different
    types of settings. The OP possibly does work in a facility where it
    is possible to sit down for a few minutes or perhaps longer with her
    patient.

    I know that I do, and I consider myself very very lucky, after some
    of the fiery pits of hell that I have worked in previously.

  • Feb 7

    Quote from foggnm
    I didn't read through your whole post, but if you're discontent with your preceptor, ask for a different one. You are right that orientation in ICUs and ERs is generally not pleasant or enjoyable, but there is only one way to fix it: either live with it or ask for a change. If your preceptor is truly being a difficult/unprofessional person then you should report it. It is just a job and you're entitled to work with pleasant professional people without being harassed or belittled. You could also confront your preceptor directly about your concerns (which would be my first tact) and see if she can accommodate your needs. I don't know what to tell you except nursing can be a weird environment. Just stay professional, learn, be good to yourself, be good to your patients, and everything will work out.
    What, really? I find this the complete opposite. At least on my unit all of our preceptors are awesome and experienced nurses. Probably a little bit OCD about how they like things...but i had a great orientation. Although i was mostly with 1 preceptor i sometimes changed days and was placed with other nurses...all who were great.

  • Feb 7

    Quote from vanessaem
    I just don't understand why some of you feel that anyone who is "new" should put up with foul treatment from older staff members. Nursing as a profession is stressful enough for all sorts of other reasons. No one has time to deal with toxic, bullying behavior from coworkers. Being rotten and disgusting towards fellow staff is not cute nor should it be tolerated. We're all supposed to be grown people here.

    As a preceptor, they are there to teach and/or lead by example and if not, get out. Some of these folks act like someone forced them to take on this role. If that was the case, please don't take it out on the preceptee. They've got problems at home, with their job or with life in general? Please don't take it out on the preceptee. They're not there to be their personal punching bag. They are there to earn a living just like them.

    No, the OP should not have to suck it up and just take it. And so what if she's not liked by others for standing up for herself? This is a job not a popularity contest. That preceptor was unprofessional and unhelpful. The OP will never learn this way...period.
    No one should put up with continued foul treatment from another. But the OP is new, and she doesn't know if this is simply a good nurse, employee and preceptor going through a very bad time or someone with a perpetually sour outlook. The reality is that many preceptors ARE forced to take on the role. THIS particular situation looks like one in which there is such a dearth of qualified preceptors that they cannot even offer the OP a regular preceptor or three.

    I wish all the orientees out there who are expecting to be taught/mentored/led by example and if the preceptor isn't up to snuff they'll just go away would be as considerate of the preceptor's feelings as they expect the preceptor to be of theirs. Sometimes preceptors are living through truly awful life circumstances and they don't get a choice to NOT precept. Precepting makes a shift three times as difficult as just going in there and taking care of your own patients, and some preceptors just don't have the extra energy for that right now.

    The nurse who was back to work within two weeks of her son's suicide because she was the sole breadwinner for her family and she needed to keep up the health insurance because her husband was in ICU waiting for a transplant. The nurse who just moved her mother into her home with her because Mother has Alzheimer's and can no longer be trusted to live on her own -- but Mother wanders all day and all night and the nurse cannot get any sleep because mother will (has already proven she will) wander into danger. (I tried taking care of Mother at home -- trust me, Mother can get into life-threatening situations of her own making quicker than you can fall back to sleep after rescuing her from the last one.)

    Give every preceptor the benefit of the doubt; especially if you've only been with them once. You would want the preceptor to give YOU the benefit of the doubt.

  • Feb 7

    Quote from foggnm
    I didn't read through your whole post, but if you're discontent with your preceptor, ask for a different one. You are right that orientation in ICUs and ERs is generally not pleasant or enjoyable, but there is only one way to fix it: either live with it or ask for a change. If your preceptor is truly being a difficult/unprofessional person then you should report it. It is just a job and you're entitled to work with pleasant professional people without being harassed or belittled. You could also confront your preceptor directly about your concerns (which would be my first tact) and see if she can accommodate your needs. I don't know what to tell you except nursing can be a weird environment. Just stay professional, learn, be good to yourself, be good to your patients, and everything will work out.
    Your critical thinking needs work if you're thinking to offer advice on a post which you admit you haven't even read.

  • Jan 30

    I was sad, but guess what? The med/surg preceptorship (which was my second choice after NICU) helped TREMENDOUSLY with NCLEX prep (passed the first time, 75 questions in under 90 minutes). And, when I got my first job out of nursing school (which, like many other new grads, was in med/surg), I was able to hit the floor running with minimal training. Earned eight months of solid adult med/surg experience and now I just celebrated one year in the NICU.

    Although I was very upset, looking back at my experience, I am glad I started off in med/surg as it has made me appreciate the NICU SO much more than many of the nurses who know nothing but. I feel more well-rounded, and my resume is sure to start conversation (You are a med/surg nurse AND a NICU nurse? Say what?!?). To this day, I still work my med/surg job PRN as I know if I want ever want to advance my education or leave bedside nursing for family-friendlier hours, I will have more doors opened than not.

    So look at this as an opportunity to expand your knowledge base and be prepared to get a job in med/surg out of school. While I love working in babyland, it is very niche, hard to break into, and difficult to leave if you happen to not like it.

  • Jan 27

    [/QUOTE]There different definitions of bullying in the literature as to what constitutes it. I'm actually looking at the continuum of mistreatment from incivility to bullying. I use the term here because it is recognizable by more people than workplace mistreatment. [/QUOTE]

    And that's the problem then. By doing that you are lumping everything under the "bully" category when, in fact, by your own admission it isn't all bullying. This dilutes the meaning of the term "bullying" and minimizes what people who have actually been bullied go through. Not only that but by your mischaracterization of bullying behavior you allow people to redefine it into whatever makes them feel uncomfortable/sad/hurt/angry when in reality it doesn't even come close to their actually being bullied. Trust me, those of us who have experienced bullying in the true sense of the word don't appreciate it being watered down to include such things as not being greeted in the hallway (which was a behavior dramatically presented as evidence right here on all nurses and when we disagreed WE were accused of being bullies).

  • Jan 27

    I have grown to hate the term "compassion". It seems that in current usage, it means no more than "I didn't get when I wanted when I wanted it, BOO-HOO! That nurse totally lacks compassion. Where is the compassion for MEE?" Or "I am the kindest, most compassionate nurse ever, no matter that I've flunked the NCLEX 7 times. The stupid test can't tell what a compassionate, wonderful nurse I am."

    It seems that newer, especially younger nurses entering the field today have an idea of workplace relationships based on television sit-coms. Employees bond as "brothers and sisters" and spend not only their work hours together but their off-hours as well. Everyone likes everyone and no one ever has to work with someone whom they don't respect (or worse, doesn't respect them.) New staff who find less cordial workplace relationships then complain that their new colleagues are mean to them, don't like them, pick on them or lack compassion. They don't seem to realize that they must fit themselves into the workplace culture; it is not up to the workplace to change to accommodate their preferences. They don't seem to realize that work is work, and you are unlikely to meet your new best friend forever in the workplace. They don't seem to realize that giving them much-needed negative feedback and helping them to correct errors or weakness in their practice IS compassion. They don't seem to realize that the preceptor is under stress, too, just like they are and that compassion flows two ways. If you show a little compassion for that overworked preceptor who is taking you on with no warning and possibly against their will, they are more likely to show more compassion for YOU. It's NOT all about the new employee.

    Starting out in the float pool must have been brutal, and I'm sure that your orientation period was less than stellar. Blaming your colleagues seems like misplaced blame, however. Your manager should have ensured that you were up to the task and understood what you were getting into -- and maybe should not have hired a new grad in the first place. My own first year on the job was harsh -- I was the first BSN hired in a hospital that usually hired their own diploma graduates. The diploma graduates who were familiar with my Medical/Tele floor chose not to work there, and I wasn't savvy enough to understand the implications. I didn't even have a preceptor until my second job; my mentors at my first job were the LPNs and nursing assistants who took pity on a clueless newbie and showed me how things were done.

    I have said over and over that I know there are bullies in nursing. I've met two of them in forty years. Bullies aren't popping up everywhere (unless you count the new grads who are looking for them and seeking to "make them pay" for not giving them the kind of mentoring experience they expected and seem to believe they deserve.) The majority of claims of bullying we see here are nothing of the sort. Unless, of course, you believe that bullying consists of complaints such as: "My preceptor won't have lunch with me," "She won't discuss her marriage issues with me even though she does with her FRIENDS," or "she's picking on me just because I made a measly little mistake on that insulin dose. What's an extra zero, anyway?"

    With all respect to your imminent PHD, I believe we do new nurses a disservice by continuing to discuss all those mean bullies out there who will pick on them and drive them out of a career. Instead, we should be discussing negative feedback. It's important because new people (and everyone, really) make mistakes and the stakes are too high in our profession to let them go. New people will make mistakes; we all understand that. What doesn't seem to be understood is that it's the job of the preceptor to correct those mistakes before they get to the patient. It is ideal to do so privately, but imperative to do so before a patient is harmed. Some mistakes will be corrected publicly, and they may be corrected in a tone or manner than the newbie feels is unjustly harsh. That isn't bullying. That's a preceptor who isn't good at giving negative feedback or a preceptor who is overly stressed and under-supported or a preceptor is fed up because you've made the same dangled mistake four times already today. We should be discussing how to receive negative feedback, how important is is to your career to incorporate changes into your practice, how vital it is to be perceived as someone who welcomes negative feedback and is open to making changes in practice. And yes, we should be learning to deliver negative feedback more effectively.

    As far as finding bullies everywhere you look -- my own observation is that those who appear to be most worried about finding all those bullies everywhere seem to be the ones who are most likely to exhibit the behaviors commonly attributed to bullies.

  • Jan 27

    A knee-jerk reaction in me agrees with you. I work in NICU and see this stuff all the time. Parents on all forms of welfare, on drugs, working on their fifth baby before they are in their mid-twenties while more responsible citizens end up losing babies or struggle to have the ONE they have right now.

    But it is much more complicated than that. Poorer people oftentimes have limited access to birth control and sex education compared to their middle and upper class counterparts. Couple that with Republicans bringing war to women's reproductive rights and attempting to de-fund Planned Parenthood, it is no wonder poorer people are having so many babies.

    Education of women strongly correlates with the fertility rates and the quality of their children's lives. Simply telling these women to "keep their legs close" (which is disgustingly offensive) isn't the answer. Providing better access to birth control is a start. Improving sex education in our public schools would be awesome (abstinence-only education has proven time and time again to be inefficient).

    Also, we need to get it out of our heads that poor people don't pay taxes. Yes...many do. And if they aren't paying taxes, many (including those on welfare) are still working full-time jobs to support their families. They need our help, not our derision.

    Quote from RunnerNurse09
    When people talk about handouts, I am pretty sure they are talking about the masses that are poor and continue to procreate. Poor people have more children that those that are not. WHY IS THIS?? Why should these people be allowed to live off the system? Here's a novel idea: If you cant afford to raise children and provide them with adequate care and support on your own, dont have sex! Something needs to be done about this. I understand that sometimes situations that are out of ones hands happen (ie you already have kids, your spouse leaves, one income). However when you start having kids at the age of 15 and have 4 by the time your 22, theres a huge issue.

  • Jan 27

    Social Security is not a hand out. We pay into social security and we get it back it is not welfare.

  • Jan 24

    Why don't you try to work with managemt on when a good time would be, then work around that?

    Personally, I think both sides are unreasonable. To me, this doesn't sound like a team unit. The response you given was not very helpful, nor are your expectations. I was able to work out 10 days off of work by only taking two PTO days. But, I also worked with management on that.

    Work it out or leave the unit. If you like the unit, I would work it out. Your wedding is important and most employers should see that and be willing to work with you.

  • Jan 24

    How about you ask for just a few days to get married and plan a big, fun honeymoon at a later date? You could save up and plan for a really nice trip that way!

  • Jan 24

    You expected to get 2 weeks in July off? That's not very realistic in most hospitals. July is one of the most popular months for summer vacations and it is not realistic to expect to get 2 weeks during that month. I would never have requested it.

    But now that you have been denied ...
    1. You need to take a few deep breaths and come to terms with the fact that your request was unrealistic. It's OK to be disappointed, but don't blame your managers more than they deserve. You should have talked to them before setting a firm date to determine what would be possible.
    2. After you have calmed down, decide whether or not you want to keep this job. If you don't then plan on resigning shortly before your wedding -- unless you find a good job before that.
    3. Start assessing where else you might want to work so that you don't become desperate for a new job while you are in the midst of your wedding and adjusting to married life. If you can find a good job before your wedding that will allow you the time off you will want in July and August... go ahead and take it. If not, at least you will have done some of your homework before you really need a new job.
    4. If you decide that in the long run, you want to keep your job ... then talk with you manager about what might be possible. Perhaps you can get the week off after your wedding for a honeymoon. Or perhaps you can negotiate the week before your wedding off -- and take a honeymoon a month or so later. I've known lots of people who have done that.
    5. You might have to change your date. That wouldn't be the end of the world. Maybe a few family members won't be there. But again, that's not the end of the world. Think about the millions of people who have gotten married throughout history. Very few of them had "picture-perfect," fantasy weddings. Most people make compromises. Some great marriages begin in the office of a Justice of the Peace. Be willing to make a few compromises. Your marriage is the important thing -- not the fantasy ceremony and reception.

  • Jan 24

    July really is a busy month for vacations, and if you're one of the newer staff members on the unit, I can see how you'd get denied.
    If the date were super-important to me, I'd probably resign before the wedding and look for work elsewhere after the wedding. If my job were more important, I'd pick a new wedding date.

  • Jan 24

    Your facility must have a strict PTO policy if the sign up periods are bi-annual. Any other facility I worked in, it was monthly, with summer vacations limited to 2 weeks.
    You were aware of this restriction. You should have gotten your time off, then planned the wedding. Management does not give a rat's patooty what the time off is for. They do not care about employee work-life balance, they care about their staffing balance.

    I would bail before the wedding, but that's just me.


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