Big bad nurse bully - page 2
Do bullies have value in the workplace? I would love to know the answer to this! How do nurses deal with bossy, histrionic and narcissitic nurses who are harsh in their relating with coworkers but... Read More
May 22, '06Quote from Blee O'MyacinNot every place does this though...I worked at a small hospital that had M/S, ortho, telemetry, OB, etc all on the same unit. One of the charge nurses used to assign patients according to nurses' specialties, regardless of patient load...sort of makes sense, but there were nights when the OB nurse had six patients while everyone else only had one...same with the ICU nurse...she would end up with five patients who were on tele, while everyone else only had one or two each. The same nurse would give new admissions to whoever happened to be caught up...you could have six patients, but be caught up and would end up with a new admission because the nurse who had four patients went outside to smoke twice, talked to her daughter on the phone for 15 minutes, used the computer to look for something on eBay, etc while you ran you *** off. Not really sure if I would consider that being a bully, but it sure made you dread working with her.I'm wondering who makes the patient assignment if you feel that you are unfairly loaded upon? Our day shift charge makes the assigment for night shift and vice versa. We all switch off as charge, and will discuss the assignment for next shift - ie - everyone taking a fair patient load, etc.
May 22, '06I've learned that the best thing to do is just leave. I know, I know, easier said than done, especially since I'm only a CNA (I quit the nursing home and am currently making more money with much less stress and a more flexible schedule at a restaurant).
At the nursing home, bullying extended to management. The DON was a Lady Hitler whose path to success was probably littered with the skeletal remains of anyone who got in her way. I found out the big problem was race. I know it sounds cheap to pull the race card, but she was pro-African American to the point of racism (don't you just love the hypocrites who blame others of wronging them, yet do the exact same to others while hiding behind the shield of victimhood). I was ostracized from day one by several bad-attitude CNAs who would give extreme amounts of attitude. I realized that race was a part of it when I got an eyeroll and, "I know this little whitey isn't trying to be the boss of me," after I tried to ask another CNA to PLEASE help me pass out trays while she was looking through the latest Mary Kay. The charge nurse and another aide egged her on, saying, "Tell it like it is!" I reported this behavior to the DON, and she called me a liar, telling me that I was lazy and that I would have to earn her trust and help her, and that I needed to start doing my own work. The two of them laughed as I left. This treatment didn't just extend to me. I had quite a few staff members warn me about this trend when I first came to the nursing home, and one girl who quit apologized to me, saying that it was going to be my turn to be the ostracized minority and the DON's chewtoy because she was leaving.
I realized then that they wanted me to become an Uncle Tom, so I quit, knowing that I wasn't going to get any support, and I'd be blamed for being a bad CNA no matter what (because we all know that if an aide has enough time to sit around for 3 hours at a time, it means that she has her work done, right?). Many aides were terrible people who would leave dirty diapers all shift long and spend all their time chatting on their phones. When reported (I didn't at first out of fear of retaliation), the nurses would just say, "Ah well, that's what to expect of them," and the DON would just let them off with a smile and a, "I know it's hard work, but keep trying." Occasionally, there would be meetings in the DON's office, which were brutal, nasty, Jerry Springer-esque gang-ups, often on some of the wonderful, caring CNAs with genuine concerns. The workloads were also ridiculous (I sometimes cared for 30 fully dependent residents), and nobody would back me if somethign happened. I submitted a letter of resignation, but they shot themselves in the foot by letting me off before it was up.
End rant.Last edit by PeachPie on May 22, '06
May 22, '06It's sad that some of us have to work with people like that and I have called in when I knew one particular person was going to be doing charge (which she absolutely hated) especially in the begining of my first year. Then, and I don't really know what happened, but, one day I told her to just shut up and she hasn't bothered me since.
Bullies and bossy people definately break down a "team" environment. Who wants to willingly help them when they are rude? Not me. I am transitioning from one hospital to another right now and definately, if asked, why I am leaving would state the fact of this one person as not making it too hard to switch.
May 22, '06Quote from arbluntI don't know if you can prove that someone is a bully, but from personal experience, I believe it is best to nip it in the bud, so to speak, early on in your employment at a new place. Being an ol' softy, the natural response is: ahh, they did not mean it. I need to have tougher skin, I can weather this. But when you do this, the bully just smells blood: they have their target and they will keep going until you leave. If the behavoir seems like it is indicative of the whole management culture in a facility, go early on and don't look back. If it is just an individual, lay down the law early: I may just be a NA, but I am a person, and therefore address me with respect.but the big question is how do you prove that you're being bully? and they say people don't get fired for the fun of it o yea. can you lose you license or cna because of bullies in the work place?
Understand that the bully has problems, or they would not be doing what they are doing. Usually there are big relationship issues in their personal life. Pray for them. Show them mercy. NO need to be mean or bully back, BUT be tough as nails in resisting any form of abuse.
Unfortunately, as NAs we are at the bottom of the barrel and are considered easy to replace. I read somewhere the average turnover for a NA in a LTC is about three months. I am so bull headed, I hang in there even when they beat me off with a stick, but I have learned, it aint worth it. Arblunt, you seem like a NA who really cares. I hope you go on for more education.
Let's face it, we have to really love what we do to keep going!
May 22, '06This is one of the first concerns I had when I came to this forum and thankfully found asst with this situation. Had the same problem worked with someone who is a bully and a drama queen...since my original posting of my problem here, that particular nurse has found a new full time job elsewhere and is sooo gone, she will unfortunately be someone else's problem now. Funny thing though, now that she is gone and I have worked the since her moving on...there is an air of relief...and things seem more positive which I am happy about because our floor is a difficult place to work anyway...there is like a different "vibe" now. It is amazing how someone like that can just suck the life out of the workplace. When they are gone, life starts returning, hopefully it will continue to prosper. I know it has a lot to do with us and that we do not need to tolerate that type of behavior.
May 16, '09Re: bully,yes insecure and unhappy is right. My personal bully liked to get a few people around her and then procede with " her show". So I out foxed her with a co-worker and friend and a cell phone . Pic and sound came into view and she was reported to the DON, ADM, and head-quarters. You see ,she was so bad and belligerent she did this not only to me , but also my consultant same day same time Bully, went bye, bye, for creating a hostile inviornment ,abusive and intimidateing behavior.
May 16, '09Okay have a odd one....
We had a charge nurse in our LTC facility who would constantly blame the aides for all of her shortcomings.
The aides one by one would turn in their own individual complaints with the ADON. Even I was one who absolutely hated her.
She was rude and would accuse us of absolutely ludacris things.
This went on even after I left for 3-11. On 3-11 we had a new RN grad, we loved her..
Well eventually the ADON moved the rude and grumpy LPN from first shift. I was prepared to quit...but decided to give her a try.
Well she became wonderful even better than the new RN grad.... who was starting to develop her bully ways.
She was put on first shift and became an absolute terror. I would say that first shift is definetly more difficult then 2nd but this behavior to the aides was not necessary.
I think the grumpy LPN had gone from such a hard position this new one was a walk in the park. The new grad wasn't as experienced and new in the facility she did good but nothing compared to the LPN.
I think the real issue comes with the added work of working with the doctors during business hours and the deal with making new orders, etc.
May 16, '09I don't think Bullies start out that way most of the time. I've caught myself in what some call bullying from time to time- it is a slow to develpoe behavior that has its roots in frustration and powerlessness. I have a high standard of care for the patients on my unit. I get frusrtated when others don't share that standard and don't seem to care that thier lax care reflects on the unit as a whole- and therefore me. Management dosen't seem to grasp priorities in patient care and are not open to suggestions or concerns from staff. As a result- with no "real" power to change things for the better or correct problems that are compromising my patients I end up bullying. To all the managers out there- If you have skilled experienced staff that seem to be bullying- empower them to promote positive change rather than admonish them for trying to change things for the better byut but the wrong methods. I don't want to be a bully, but without any other options that is sometiimes the only way I can seek to advocate for my patients.
May 16, '09to anne74 no job is worth being so sick as to not to be able to go to work it sounds like you've toughed it out long enough it's not good for your physical or mental health. RUN!!!!! Good Luck
May 16, '09Quote from burn outwhere i work they make bullys the nurse of the year.mms (make me sick)
bullies in nursing????
some faculty members
didn't do their job
and weed-out these losers.
i don't see
where a bully fits into
the roles of
nurturer, healer, empath...
are found in
but i see a misfit
with a bully nurse.
May 16, '09I'll never understand why workplace harrassment/horizontal and vertical violence/bullying is tolerated in nursing. Usually, these individuals are not the best nurses, or even above average (after all, character does matter in an nurse) who do far more damage to the unit (low morale, turnover, call ins, etc) than could possibly be justified.
When the unit bully in my last job, an inpatient dialysis unit, was made permanent charge nurse, the bullying went from bad to worse. After her favoriate target, an LPN, retired (prematurely), she singled me out - the newest RN. Two months later I realized I could not do this to myself and quit (the other employees are great and supported me - however, they and the manager just put up with the bully and no one ever stood up to her!).
This was a year ago; since then, three (!) more nurses have come and gone. The unit has not been able to keep a new nurse in a decade (!) due to this individual, who is at best an average nurse (and this is not sour grapes; I would tell you if I thought she was good, because this might explain why they are keeping her). So why are they putting up with this?! Other than her constantly brown-nosing the manager, I wish I knew (imagine what this woman has cost the hospital in personnel turnover!) Unfortunately, she's the second youngest in the unit at 46 (the rest are 43-66. If she ever left or got fired, I'd be first in line to return.)
Frankly, I'm afraid now to look for a new job - which I must, however - because I wonder who the horrible bully of that unit will be (they don't tell you in the interview that they have such a toxic employee....)
P.S. An EAP counselor was brought in for a meeting regarding the bully and another nurse she harrassed viciously at that time; she must have considered this a hopeless case, 'cause she never came back for the follow-up meetingLast edit by DeLana_RN on May 16, '09
May 16, '09Quote from suannaI don't know if we share the same definition of "bullying". If you are telling slackers who are not doing their job to get with the program, I don't call this bullying. But if you are harrassing, intimidating and verbally abusing coworkers for no apparent reason - actually, being abusive with anyone - then I consider this unprofessional, unacceptable behavior.I don't think Bullies start out that way most of the time. I've caught myself in what some call bullying from time to time- it is a slow to develpoe behavior that has its roots in frustration and powerlessness. I have a high standard of care for the patients on my unit. I get frusrtated when others don't share that standard and don't seem to care that thier lax care reflects on the unit as a whole- and therefore me. Management dosen't seem to grasp priorities in patient care and are not open to suggestions or concerns from staff. As a result- with no "real" power to change things for the better or correct problems that are compromising my patients I end up bullying. To all the managers out there- If you have skilled experienced staff that seem to be bullying- empower them to promote positive change rather than admonish them for trying to change things for the better byut but the wrong methods. I don't want to be a bully, but without any other options that is sometiimes the only way I can seek to advocate for my patients.
More power to you if you're being a patient advocate and not putting up with poor care, laziness, etc. But if you're truly a bully as typically defined... frankly, there's no excuse for this, ever (you can always go up the chain regarding problem employees. But if you bully, then you're part of the problem).