"Nurses are so Mean" - page 21

by Ruby Vee 62,130 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. 0
    People who are not nurses and may have an interest (like myself) are allowed to be here. Of course, there are some threads I feel non-nurses should not respond to even if they do have an opinion. If you don't like that, why are YOU here? You can start your own internet forum about nursing and only allow nurses. How you would prove who is or is not a nurse is beyond me.
  2. 0
    When I asked him for a reference I would think he would say 'that's not such a great idea' or 'I can't do that.' That's what I would do. I've been working with him for over six years, and would think he would feel privileged to give me a reference. I do good work, show up on time, and have helped him in the past. I just am floored by being duped by this guy.

    He would be the first to talk about how the nursing profession is catty and mean. Yet, he does this without provocation.
  3. 0
    So true! In nursing school it seems that everyone has a different label for instructors and RNs at clinical sites. I think I have loved almost every instructor/RN that people would call rude/mean or the more colorful a****** and b****. Very rarely did we see a truly miserable person, I think 1 or 2 total for my first year in school. The large majority were very receptive and helpful to students.
  4. 1
    Quote from onelonenurse
    i thought my co-worker was my friend and would give me a good reference. for whatever reason, he black balled me. i can't figure out if its contempt or jealousy. both my brother and brother-in-law have connections through working in their respective professions and have used this network to get jobs and move up in their professions. all i have after 30 years of nursing are co-workers who want to stab me in the back.
    did you ask your co-worker for a reference and then highlight for him which of your stellar qualities you wanted him to emphasize? or did you just let the hr department catch him by surprise.

    if all you have after 30 years of nursing are co-workers who want to stab you in the back, it could be a problem on your end, and not that all of your coworkers are wrong. just a thought.
    caroladybelle likes this.
  5. 1
    I feel like I am a very strong women. However recently I had to take a refresher course after a lengthy health related problems. I've been a nurse for 40 years and made my dream come true by becoming a flight nurse. Now I am given a rn with 2 years of experience as my preceptor! She was so vicious, demanding and condesending that in her opinion I should be dropped from the course and I was. I am still fighting for reinstatement. I don't understand this type of behavior, however as long as it is tolerated it will continue. If there is a difference in the balance of power they call it bullying. I had another nurse throw an object at my head, and was dressed down by the clinical nurse supervisor because I didn't answer one of only two phone lines that ring into the unit. It was a total nightmare. I think there is a fair amount of "jelousy". The only thing that has worked for me in the past is to ignore this behavior. If there lives at work is the only area in thier lives they feel in control that should tell you that thier home life probably sucks. I am filling a complaint with the BON along with a couple of articles online and in the local newspaper. No one should feel intimadated, lied on, etc. any where, but it seem more agreous among nurses, those who make thier living out of "caring"! After I get reinstated, then I have a liable and slander law suits I can file. It seems to me looking back on the situation there are plenty of nurses but not enough supervision. I mean if you can charge a Tele unit, have a patient load and be a preceptor someone is going to come out on the short end of the stick, and this nurse had no problem telling anyone who would listen that she was precepting me so she could make her mortage payment! There are two quotes that come to mind, one it ain't over till the fat lady sings, and that revenge is a meal best served cold. I have a long standing aquaintance who is a nurse attorney on my BON, I email her sometimes just to vent my frustrations and feelings. With all do respect, the bully will be wondering how to make her mortage payments when or if her license is effected. So you see she may "think she bad" but I think it's more important to be smart. Nurses like I have sescribed in my opinion have no place in Nursing. I would also like to see a NO TOLERANCE policy for rude, or disrepectful behavior to our collouges and God forbid this behavior spills over into the patient care area's. So I really do understand a good deal of what your feeling, but with time these feelings will pass. Take the high road, be the consumate professional, your patients need everything you can give them, so don't waste your time on co-workers who sound like they would suck the life right out of you if you let them.
    I don't hav my spell check up and running so forgive my typo's....Hold your hear up, be an example that other nurses look up to, respect you, but I hope you will get to a place that you will not tolerate this unprofessional conduct. In my opinion it only takes one time for this type of human being to get thier clock cleaned, then they leave you alone, they move on looking for vunerabilitys in another nurse. Just take it to the nurses lounge or have a meeting with the supervisor present. Don'tlet em get you down! HAPPY NEW YEAR! FLTNRSE2
    nightengalegoddess likes this.
  6. 1
    Quote from CranberryMuffin
    Is there some reason you feel so personally defensive about this topic? After reading this post (and several others you've written) it starts to make one wonder about the source of all the defensiveness. I'm not trying to personalize this to you specifically, but it has been my experience that when one takes up the cause of something so fervently and so publicly, that the source of the frustration really has to do with something deeply personal within themselves.

    Quite honestly, this topic has been beaten to a pulp. I would hope that we can all agree that it's ALL of our personal responsibilities to be respectful, thoughtful and considerate in our interactions with those that we work with. IMO having a 'bad day' is really no excuse to be disrespectful to coworkers or make other people suffer around you (especially those that are learning and may need a little extra attention). We should ALL check our attitudes AND personal problems at the door as much as possible when we come to work. Work is work. Not a place to abuse coworkers or vent out our personal frustrations.
    If I could have hit the like button twice, I would have.
  7. 0
    I have worked in AZ, GA, and FL. Never really encountered nurses who wanted to "eat" me, so to speak. I have had excellent colleagues who answered my questions, had my back, and were available when needed. I have seen a sour one or two, but then again, we all have our bad days. I have encountered quite a few of the newer nurses who could learn a thing or two or three from our older colleagues (nurses AND CNAs), but who tend to be a bit standoffish, look at you sideways when addressed, and would rather spend 10 minutes searching for the CNA to change a patient when it would take them 5 minutes to do it themselves or 2 minutes to walk their patient to the bathroom and instruct him/her on the use of the call light. I think it takes two to tango and I have seen enough in six years to realize it is not just the older nurses who may have issues.
    Part of it is the attituded with which you approach a situation, part of it is how you carry yourself and address others, part of it depends on the person you are interacting with...but if everything seems against you maybe it is time to review the situation and be honest with yourself as to what is going on.
  8. 1
    I could not DISagree with this post more. You're making excuses for people being crappy to one another. When I found out my husband cheated on me and the day my dog died, I didn't take it out on my coworkers/nursing student. Just the opposi...te...I looked to them for compassion. No, no one is perfect but I know right from wrong and I'd never intentionally be mean to someone. There are a couple really bitter, angry nurses with acid tongues in my unit and we all avoid them like the plague...because we know how they are but someone else that's new to the unit doesn't know that and therefore they post about them on here. Don't be rude to each other. It's not right. Ever.
  9. 1
    ALSO, we just had a meeting with our director about "bullying". Yes a bunch of nurses men and women ages 22-62 had to be scolded for bullying the new staff members. A new doctor even complained after he heard the "creative" nickname that one of them came up with. We have the highest turnover rate in the hospital becuase of this dispicable pathetic behavior. If someone is being lazy, I'm going to tell them. Problem solved. I'm not going to be passive aggressive about it like so many women are. UGH
    Makani likes this.
  10. 0
    From my experience having trained more than 15yrs ago-Tutors and senior nurses are not cruel,but many times are anxious that they maintain high standards to make sure that nurses are well equipped to do what is required.When on the receiving end it always appears cruel and I, too ,shared that belief that my more experienced nurses were cruel-I, however ,changed that view quickly after grqduation and being given responsibilty for a ward of 30 adult clients and 3 junior nursing staff and ancilliary support.I was thankful for the days of "pressure" which made me who I am and allowed me to rise to the challenge of delivering high levels of nursing care in high stressed environments.Sometimes what may appear as cruel and insensitivity maybe the very act that will help us to solidify our commitment to a highly demanding profession.I am glad that my senior Nurses stuck to their guns and saved me.Nurses never eat their young but they do qualify or eliminate all in the interest of the profession and base on established standards.Take heart those who feel offended and continue you who are being accused-Continue to separate the wheat from the chaff.Superiornursing.
    Quote from Ruby Vee
    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 nurses who are "fired for NO reason" or is hated by their co-workers because they're so much younger and more beautiful than everyone around them or just can't get along with their colleagues no matter what they do -- well, I'd be a rich woman. I could retire to Tahiti and lounge on the beach sipping margaritas and eating bon bons. Or whatever. You catch my drift.

    I'm beginning to believe that the nurses, nursing students, new grads and CNAs who claim that everyone is being mean to them are revealing far more about their own charactor than they are about the people around them.

    It's usually pretty much a pattern -- someone who is new to nursing, new to a specialty or new to a job posts a plaintive lament about how everyone they work with is just so MEAN. Often times, when the poster goes on to describe the situation, it's just that they had a negative interaction with one nurse -- and often just that one time. It's as if no one is allowed to have a bad day. There are no allowances made for the colleague who may be a bit brusque because they've been up all night with a cranky baby or a wandering parent with dementia or their dog just died or even -- heaven forbid -- they're weary of answering that same question over and over without any learning occurring.

    People have bad days. It's just one of those things. We cannot all call in sick every time we've had to stay up all night with a child or parent, put the dog to sleep or take antihistamines. We can't all not come to work every time the sewer backs up, the roof leaks or the car won't start. Some of us on any given day have worries and responsibilities outside the job. If you happen to encounter a colleague on the day she discovered her husband was cheating on her, her child crashed another car or the space heater fried a whole circuit they might just be rude to you. They probably don't mean it, possibly don't even realize they WERE rude to you. Cut them some slack. Even preceptors have really bad days when nothing goes right. If you're looking for nurses eating their young or being mean and nasty to their co-workers, you'll find them. Whether or not they actually ARE young-eaters or mean nurses.

    Another common theme is a poster complaining about how mean her new co-workers are to her. She's never done anything to deserve it, she's always been pleasant and helpful and she thinks (or someone has told her) that they're picking on her because they are just so jealous of her relative youth and beauty. I'm suggesting that if that's what you believe -- that you're perfect, but your co-workers are jealous of your youth and beauty -- you ought to perhaps look a little deeper. Much of the time, there will be another reason that you're not getting along with the people at work. Perhaps you're not being as friendly and helpful as you think. Perhaps you're not carrying your full share of the work load, or aren't learning despite asking the same questions over and over or are rude to people you percieve as "old dogs who ought to retire" or "ugly old hags."

    If you're writing in to complain that "mean people follow me everywhere" and "I've had five jobs since I graduated six months ago, and my preceptors have all been nasty" or "nurses eat their young and I know that because I'm always being eaten," stop and think for a minute. If the same problem follows you everywhere you go, it may not be them. There's a good chance that it's YOU. You can change jobs as many times as you like, but everywhere you go, there you are. Since the only person you can change is YOU, stop and think about what you might be doing to contribute to your problems. A little self-assessment and introspection can only be a good thing.

    I wish the phrase "nurses eat their young" had never been coined. Thirty some years ago when I was a new grad, the phrase hadn't yet been coined. When I had problems with my co-workers, I could only look at my own behavior. I was young, fresh off the farm and totally unprepared for my new job as a nurse. When I grew up and learned more, my co-workers became muchy nicer people. While I know that lateral violence does exist, I don't think it exists to the point that some people seem to think it does. Or to the degree that a regular reader of allnurses.com could believe it does. Every time you have a negative interaction with a co-worker, it's not necessarily lateral violence. It could very well be that someone is having a very, very bad day. Or week. Or it could be that rather than your co-workers being jealous of your extreme good looks, you're regularly doing something really stupid or thoughtless that irritates or annoys them. Quite possibly, the problem is you. Maybe you're not studying enough, learning enough, understanding enough or doing enough. Certainly if you're always having the same problems over and over again, everywhere you go, the problem IS you.

    The only person you can "fix" is you. I really, really wish that people would at least consider the possibility that they are part of the problem before they scream that "nurses eat their young."


Top