"Nurses are so Mean" - page 13

by Ruby Vee

61,242 Views | 219 Comments

I wish I had a dollar for every post I've read claiming that "nurses are so mean," "nurses are nasty to each other," "nurses eat their young" or "my preceptor is picking on me for no good reason." And then if you add in all the... Read More


  1. 1
    WOW!! Great article!! This is soooo true! Nurses are people, too!! We DO have bad days, nights, weeks, or even months!
    I was recently in a situation where I was the "mean" nurse. I had what was an unusul night at my LTC facility.......We got in two admissions at the exact same time (not kidding) and the nurse I usually work with was off, so I was *ahem* stuck with a nurse that was not -how do I say this nicely?- competent in doing her job. This other nurse did nothing to help me with either admission or any of the other tasks we do on midnight shift, but her email was fascinating reading!

    In the morning, during report, an STNA asked if all the dayshift staff was there and, I'll admit, I spoke sharply to her when I told her to look for herself and see. After all that I had done in the previous 12 hours (not just the admissions, but the required hand holding and questions-answering from the above mentioned nurse), I really just wanted to finish report and go home to bed (night 1 of 3 in a row). She felt that I had been "mean" to her and, as she left, she told another STNA as much and in not very nice words.

    I was mean. I was horrible. How dare I speak to her like that?!? Oh, the horror!!! and blah, blah, blah! And let me just say this- the other nurse was NOT new-to the job or the facility. She had been there longer than I had at that time.

    So maybe I am a mean nurse. But sometimes, you just have to be.

    "Be nice. Be nice, until it is time to not be nice."-Dalton, Road House
    greenfiremajick likes this.
  2. 1
    I wish I had a dollar for every nurse like you. I am sick of working 12+ hour days with one 5 minute break. No reason for you to not try to help new nurses and say their complaints are unsubstantiated.
    Last edit by dianah on Jan 12, '11 : Reason: TOS
  3. 1
    And blah, blah, blah about 2 admissions; try 4 on a day shift in critical care. Have to put in an IV or PICC, one patient decanulates themselves, another has the audacity to initiate a code blue. This is part of the job. We appreciate our nursing assistants and at times all staff gets short with each other, but we also have respect for each other. I work 12 hour shifts with barely a break, but I still treat my co-workers and patients with respect. And if thet suffer because my husband cheated on me or my dog barfed on my shoes last night..I would rue the day I became a nurse.
  4. 1
    WOW!! Great article!! This is soooo true! Nurses are people, too!! We DO have bad days, nights, weeks, or even months!
    I was recently in a situation where I was the "mean" nurse. I had what was an unusul night at my LTC facility.......We got in two admissions at the exact same time (not kidding) and the nurse I usually work with was off, so I was *ahem* stuck with a nurse that was not -how do I say this nicely?- competent in doing her job. This other nurse did nothing to help me with either admission or any of the other tasks we do on midnight shift, but her email was fascinating reading!

    In the morning, during report, an STNA asked if all the dayshift staff was there and, I'll admit, I spoke sharply to her when I told her to look for herself and see. After all that I had done in the previous 12 hours (not just the admissions, but the required hand holding and questions-answering from the above mentioned nurse), I really just wanted to finish report and go home to bed (night 1 of 3 in a row). She felt that I had been "mean" to her and, as she left, she told another STNA as much and in not very nice words.

    I was mean. I was horrible. How dare I speak to her like that?!? Oh, the horror!!! and blah, blah, blah! And let me just say this- the other nurse was NOT new-to the job or the facility. She had been there longer than I had at that time.

    So maybe I am a mean nurse. But sometimes, you just have to be.

    And, sorry I have to respond again. Yes, nurses are people and so are STNAs. I have to wonder why you took your aggression against the STNA and not the other nurse. Power? The stress of nursing can overwhelm most nurses that I know, but we usually drive home and think about the care we would like to give/r/t the care we actually gave r/t short staffing, cut backs, etc. NOT about being a "mean nurse." But then again..."sometimes, you just have to be."
    Last edit by dianah on Jan 12, '11 : Reason: TOS, pm to member
  5. 0
    Please remember the TOS people.
    Last edit by caroladybelle on Jan 12, '11
  6. 1
    rnccf2007- In response to both of your previous posts, I only ask that you re-read my original post.
    I work in long term care. 2 admissions a day (or a week) is unususal, but to have 2 on night shift on the same night, at the same time is practically unheard of. As for the questions of the other nurse, she was NOT new. She had been there three months longer than I had been at the time and I have been there for 3 years.
    LockportRN likes this.
  7. 0
    WOW! I seem to have offended someone. I have to say this- YOU do not know me, nor do you work with me. This is ONE situation on ONE night that everything seemed to go to hades. I will do anything for anyone at any time. I was an STNA. I know what that is like and to have nasty nurses treat me like poo. I did not take anything out on her. I fully admit I spoke sharply. It was one sentence, not a tirade, as you make it sound. I am the charge nurse in a 67 bed facility where, on night shift, I am solely responsible for 34 of my own residents, the issues requiring an RN for the other 33, and 5 staff members.
    I have never worked critical care. I do not know what you do nor would I even attempt to try to judge you or your attitude regarding that area of practice. By that same token, have you worked in LTC, on nights, as the charge nurse where you are ultimately responsible for 72 other people? You do not know what my job entails, as I could not even begin to understand yours-- until I have walked in your shoes.
    Last edit by Silverdragon102 on Jan 12, '11 : Reason: pm to member
  8. 0
    please discuss the issue at hand, without personal attacks or comments, insults or flaming.
    several posts have been edited to comply with the terms of service.

    per the terms of service:

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    we promote the idea of lively debate. this means you are free to disagree with anyone on any type of subject matter as long as your criticism is constructive and polite.
    personal attacks

    our first priority is to the members that have come here because of the flame-free atmosphere we provide. there is a zero-tolerance policy here against personal attacks. we will not tolerate anyone insulting another individual's opinion nor name calling and will ban repeat offenders.


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  9. 1
    I am sure this opinion is not going to be well received but I don't care. Nursing is my second career and when I was going to nursing school I used to use words like Nobel when talking about nurses and I got some looks from other nurses I knew that no longer worked as nurses but they didn't explain. Now I know. I also know why people put themselves through the agony of nursing school and then decide within a year to never work as a nurse again. I don't know if being in the south east has anything to do with it but I have never in my life encountered such predatory women any where else in the country. It isn't just being snappy or impolite it is planning and plotting cruelty and trying to get people's licenses taken away or have people fired or other wise ruin lives. This is entertainment for these women. The mean girls in high school have nothing on these women and a few men. Also forget getting into any area besides med/surg unless you are young and attractive or a man. I worked in a high stress job before being a nurse and would gladly go back right now if the economy was better. It shows in this area of the country that codependent people are attracted to nursing and I also understand why so many nurses have substance abuse problems. These people don't go after everyone because they have to suck up to some and intimidate others so they "mind there own business" so they can have a group to cut the weak one out of the heard so the rest can bully and harrass one for the entertainment of the rest. The worst part of it all is that the worst offenders are usually made management because they are so sick that they are such two faced conartists. In this day and age when our society is so appauld and suprised at all the bullying in our schools and can't figure out where it is coming from I am not suprised at all. Companies pay lip service to the idea of zero tolerance for work place violence or harrassment but they will fire the victim that makes a complaint in a minute and promote the offender right after they make them employee of the month. I really hope these things aren't going on in other areas of the country as bad as they are here but I am afraid that that is a nieve hope on my part.
  10. 1
    I think it really depends on where you are. I am a recent grad and the nurses where I work seem like nice, decent people. Sure, they all have their own personalities, but they have been very helpful. Nursing is also my second career, and I have learned not to allow miserable people bother me. I think the larger issue is partially systemic. Nurses are overworked in many facilities, afraid of losing their jobs, and budget cuts are rampant. As a result, we sometimes take out our stress on each other. Maybe I have been fortunate. I am aware that for many people here, their environments may be toxic. Even in nursing school I was pretty lucky with decent instructors. I can say that other professions can be just as toxic at times, based on my experiences. That's why I switched to nursing. I also think part of the issue arises from too many hormonal women


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