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This is a discussion on Do Nurses Eat Their Young? in Nurse Colleague / Patient Relations, part of General Nursing ... Here are the results of last months survey question We have all heard the saying "Nurses eat their...by brian Admin Apr 2, '02Here are the results of last months survey question
We have all heard the saying "Nurses eat their young". Do you feel this is true? :
Please feel free to read and post any comments that you have right here in this discussion thread by clicking the "Post Reply" button.
The below post was part of the original thread this one was merged with. It was made by Tweety
Sums it up for me.
This vile expression implies that experienced nurses do not treat new nurses kindly. My first problem with the statement is that it’s a generalization implying that all nurses are like that. Interestingly, whenever I hear someone utter the expression, I always say, “I don’t do that. Do you?” The person making the statement always says, “Oh no, I don’t, but many others do.” I’ve never heard even one nurse own up to doing this, although some nurses are willing to indict the entire profession. Every time that statement is repeated, it causes harm and casts a dark shadow on every nurse. Say anything enough, and it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
To students and new grads that are having problems with nurses, please take a moment to read the above lilnk. Is it really the entire profession, every single nurse, or do you need help with one or a few nurses? We will be glad to help you in dealing with those people, but let bury the phrase "Nurses Eat Their Young".
To experienced nurses who claim our profession eats it's young, please take a moment to read it as well and think about it. Also take time to teach, be friendly and nuturing to the new nurse and students on your unit.
End of sermon. LOLLast edit by Tweety on Nov 29, '07
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- Apr 2, '02 by SKM-NURSIEPOOH... "Nurses eat their young" but they also sometimes "Eat each other"
- Apr 2, '02 by nightingaleI believe it is not a nurse issue. It is an issue that happens that is negative amongst people. I hate to say this but many women (who are insecure, unhappy, and or negative) are threatened by each other. This happens in nursing, the business world, and other professions where there is competition.
It happens but not the majority of the time (thank God). It happens when management lets it happens. Sometimes it suits a managers ego or needs when there is a devide and conquer attitude.
Been there (in those negative environments) and moved on. How do I deal with it? I refuse to be a part of it. One day at a time I embrace my colleagues, nurture where I may be of assitance, and look for ways to keep myself nurtured and positive.
- Apr 2, '02 by catladyPul-eeeeeeeze put this stupid saying to rest!
Nurses eat on the run, they eat while standing in the med room, they eat while taking their first bathroom break seven hours into the shift, they eat cookies as they fly down the hall and hope no one sees the food on the med cart, they eat fast food because it's cheap and fast even if it's not healthy, they eat Slim-Fast even when they're not overweight because it's fast, they eat out on their rare days off because they don't have the energy needed for domestic chores like cooking, but they don't, don't, don't, don't eat their young.
Most nurses don't have any experience outside of nursing, particularly in any kind of business environment. They expect a nurturing, kinder, gentler work environment because that is what they are trained to provide their patients. They are surprised to encounter all different kinds of personalities, some of which don't mesh well with their own. Just like they would find in the real world. For every nurse who supposedly eats her young, these same nurses can cite another nurse who was a patient, superb mentor. Just like in the rest of the real world. They can't believe that nursing administration as well as staff nurses don't have every mechanism in place to make their transition into nursing a dream instead of a bumpy ride, not understanding their own role in creating and maintaining a professional work environment. These nurses expect an ideal workplace, thinking it is somehow a realistic goal in a bitterly imperfect world, and look for someone to blame when they find Shangri-La does not exist.
The very suggestion that nurses even *have* young to whom they haven't given birth is a sexist carryover, despite its seemingly innocuous meaning. We are not the mothers of less experienced nurses, and our obligation to these nurses is professional, not maternal. Can you imagine accountants or construction workers or lawyers talking about their "young?"
There are as many arrogant young nurses who disrespect their elders' experience and accumulated wisdom as there are old birds who are intimidated by new blood and new ideas. It's not a factor of age, but rather of the individual coming to the position. To perpetuate the mantra, "nurses eat their young," is to give continuing life to a stereotype and to reward a thoughtless naivete about the world of work, while providing a disservice to those veteran nurses who must repeatedly defend themselves against unfounded unreason, while bringing us all down as a profession worthy of serious respect.
- Apr 2, '02 by nightingalethank you catlady... I could not have said it better (and did not) myself!
- Apr 2, '02 by fergus51I don't know how anyone can think we don't eat our young. We are terrible to new nurses a lot of the time. Then we wonder why they leave our hospital within a year.
- Apr 2, '02 by uncRNnot only there young, but their old too =):chuckle
- Apr 2, '02 by debalinayes! I have seen new nurses reduced to tears time and time again.There is unfortunately an air of superiority that runs through some nurses and it can lash out at any given moment. We've all seen it or even had it done to us. I had a nursing instructor that attempted to fry a number of us students if we made a mistake.And then a nurse
"stalked" me at my first med surg position. I did leave that job and thank God at my next job, an older nurse helped me to get my confidence back and was a "mentor" for the next two years. Looking back I realize that I never did thank her. So Carol H from CECC thank you!!!!
- Apr 2, '02 by BestXNurseI have always looked at new nurses as my allies for the future. If you take your time with them, teach them, help them and mentor them they will be the first ones at your side when things go to hell. New grads can be frustrating because there is still so much for them to learn ( as there is so much for us old nurses to learn too.) I try to remember that I was a novice once too. We can teach each other and the patients will be the utimate winners.
- Apr 2, '02 by leighann757to catlady,
I don't know what planet you are on, but new nurses are treated awful by more experienced nurses. There are a few good nurses out there that will be a mentor to new nurses but they are few and far between. At the hospital I work in, I was reduced to tears many times but I am too hard headed to give up. Unfortunately 2 nurses that started work about 4 months after I did were reduced to tears by more experienced nurses and were not quite as hard headed as myself. Guess what? In this situation everyone has lost! The unit I work on is so short handed we can't afford to lose nurses. Patient satisfaction is going down the tubes and the nurses left are completely overloaded! So next time you treat a nurse awful, remember you may need that extra set of hands sooner than you think!!