Nursing: Culture of inclusion, or culture of exclusion?

  1. 1
    Nurses are said to be the most trusted professionals. I've been in nursing a long time, and over that time I've heard many patients and staff express agreement with that evaluation. I've also heard a few nurses disagree strongly.

    There has been a lot of discussion about how compassionate nurses are, how much we give of ourselves, how nursing is more a calling than a career.

    I agree with those descriptions as well. I respect nursing as a calling rather than simply a job, and I treasure the souls who give their all to care for others.

    There is occasionally another view of nursing, one that sees more humanity than saintliness.

    We all know of nursing as a profession that can eat its young.
    Many of us know or have heard of units where the culture is all too often one of back-stabbing.

    This thread is offered for ask if there are any nurses who would like to share their own views or experiences to answer the question:

    "Are there some work places where our ideals fall short, and the facility or unit culture needs healing as much as the patients in it?"

    Put another way, ARE we always kind to our own, or are there instances when the "team" culture is one of exclusion rather than inclusion?
    Last edit by madwife2002 on Dec 9, '11 : Reason: Edited for easier read
    lindarn likes this.
  2. 21 Comments so far...

  3. 18
    Quote from CapricaNurse
    We all know of nursing as a profession that can eat its young.
    Many of us know or have heard of units where the culture is all too often one of back-stabbing.
    I won't deny that there is true eating of the young: there can be back-stabbing, caustic competiveness, cattiness, lying, mistreatment of younger/older nurses, mistreatment of newer nurses, and so on...but IMO those behaviors are not specific to the profession of nursing nor to the female gender. I've seen it in a lot of professions.

    I also think a lot of people are quick to use "nurses eat their young" in cases when IMO it doesn't really apply.

    • Being told the truth about their work performance? "Nurses eat their young."
    • Being told the truth about anything? "Nurses eat their young."
    • Being disagreed with? "Nurses eat their young."
    • Not hearing what they want to hear? "Nurses eat their young."


    And so on.

    Sometimes it seems like if the situation or the response isn't all hearts and flowers and bunny rabbits, it's labelled "nurses eating their young." Sometimes it may be. And sometimes it isn't. But a lot of people are quick to label it.
    libbyliberal, WeepingAngel, canoehead, and 15 others like this.
  4. 8
    There are 2 major problems that a new grad can face.

    1. Starting their first job on a unit with a bad culture

    2. Being trained by a preceptor who has never been trained as a preceptor.

    Many nurses get 'promoted' to become preceptor and lack the ability to give proper feedback.
    They are not trained in learning styles, generational differences, horizontal violence, behavior vs. judgement, reality shock, etc. That is where the true problems arise and subsequently many nurses leave their first year (up to 50%) because they are lost, scared, frustrated, and in some cases verbally abused.

    We do eat our young and quite frankly I think it is embarrassing to our profession.
    canoehead, CapricaNurse, ChloBear, and 5 others like this.
  5. 4
    Nurses are human, with behaviors and attitudes covering the entire spectrum available to said group.
    leslie :-D, GrnTea, Altra, and 1 other like this.
  6. 3
    ::looking around:: is there a rule that all of nursing must be either-or? i musta missed that memo.

    nurses are people working in sometimes-stressful milieus. they are pretty much the same as any people like that.
    canoehead, nursel56, and lindarn like this.
  7. 4
    I have had several careers in very large corporations before coming to nursing. I never felt so stressed out and felt such hostility in any other job for the 25 years before I became a nurse. It was quite a culture shock. Yet in spite of that, I :redpinkhe nursing.
    CapricaNurse, nursel56, SuesquatchRN, and 1 other like this.
  8. 0
    Thus far, this year, I have mostly experienced a very positive experience while working with newer nurses. It has been a give and take, but am mostly am in awe of the the newer nurses who I have come in contact with. I learn from them( as I have been out of school many years) . Most stories are second hand, but aside from one or two, I am very impressed with those I directly have contact with! Especially those who offer help when needed, and ask for help when needed!
  9. 1
    This thread is offered for ask if there are any nurses who would like to share their own views or experiences to answer the question:

    "Are there some work places where our ideals fall short, and the facility or unit culture needs healing as much as the patients in it?"

    To answer your question, YES. I work in such a facility.
    CapricaNurse likes this.
  10. 2
    Quote from Meriwhen
    I won't deny that there is true eating of the young: there can be back-stabbing, caustic competiveness, cattiness, lying, mistreatment of younger/older nurses, mistreatment of newer nurses, and so on...but IMO those behaviors are not specific to the profession of nursing nor to the female gender. I've seen it in a lot of professions.

    I also think a lot of people are quick to use "nurses eat their young" in cases when IMO it doesn't really apply.

    • Being told the truth about their work performance? "Nurses eat their young."
    • Being told the truth about anything? "Nurses eat their young."
    • Being disagreed with? "Nurses eat their young."
    • Not hearing what they want to hear? "Nurses eat their young."


    And so on.

    Sometimes it seems like if the situation or the response isn't all hearts and flowers and bunny rabbits, it's labelled "nurses eating their young." Sometimes it may be. And sometimes it isn't. But a lot of people are quick to label it.
    preach it, sister.
    i believe some truly need to be "eaten" in order to appreciate the times they hadn't been.
    nursel56 and Meriwhen like this.
  11. 0
    duplicate
    Last edit by leslie :-D on Dec 9, '11


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