I'm going to try to make this short because it's a years worth of ongoing issues. Also, I just wanted to sort of verify I am in the right for feeling the way I do.
I work at a Children's Hospital on the Adolescent/Peds Oncology floor. It's a med/surg mix of kids 5 and over but the Heme/Onc side is birth-18+
Ever since I have started, we have been short staffed. At first, it was just a day here and there and I can deal with that. But lately it is pretty common to be full at 21 kids and only have 4 nurses, no secretary to help with orders and no tech to help us. We all feel the pressure and strain; however, I am one of the only people who speaks up about it to my boss.
Ever since I started discussing this with him and emailing him about the issue, I have been a target. I have never done anything work wise that they could get on to me about but I have been pulled into his office for "inappropriate Facebook comments" which when I demanded he show me, it was a status where I said. "Today was a ridiculous day at work" nothing more or less than that. But I was told it was inappropriate and made our hospital look bad.
I have a unit coordinator (like a charge nurse) that rides me like no one else. I can never do anything right. She will give me admissions when I have already had admits and others haven't, I have had 6 kids before when others had 3 and she continuously tells me I need to be a team player and help others. Yet, when I ask her for examples of why she says that, she says "oh it's just what I've noticed." But all my coworkers like me and do not feel that way. I have asked her for help when I was drowning and she will say ask someone else, I have asked her to watch my kids so I can go to lunch and she tells me to ask someone else but helps others. The final straw was when she made up a lie and wrote me up for "using my cell phone at the nurses station and refusing to put it away." I refuted this with my manager and explained what actually happened but my side of the story did not matter.
I now have a disciplinary action on file which means I can't transfer within the facility nor will I get a bonus. I can't even get away from her now. My manager does nothing to help our staffing nor does he stop this nurse's bullying. I am not the first person to have this issue with her either. In the year I have been there, a nurse has went to nights to get away from her, 2 nurses have left completely, and another has gone to Peds ICU. My manager was aware of all those situations too because my friend who went to ICU showed me emails she sent him which were all ignored.
I feel like because I speak up about things being unsafe and try to advocate for my kids, they are attempting to force me out. I haven't done anything work wise they can ding so they try to make things miserable. I have had a really rough year with my personal life and then with things at work, it makes my situation almost unbearable. I cry every night before work and get an upset stomach because I fear what the day will bring.
I don't know what to do. I feel like things are spiraling downward and I am so unhappy :-( It just really stinks because I love peds and I want to stay at this hospital but I can not work for this manager or with this bully much longer.
Nov 28, '12
OP here, another thing that really hit me was the other day a fellow nurse came to me and said she has noticed how I am being treated and if I ever wanted to go above my manager to let her know and she'd go with me. I was in tears at this point and yet another nurse said she has seen the way the treat me too and my whole situation is unfair. These are outside observers that are noticing this too.
Dec 1, '12
Well then, maybe use the offer! I would get it in writing from them first before you go above the NM though. I have known people to offer support, then when a move was made the supposed supporters are nowhere in sight.
I would go one step above the NM. If you have someone to directly contest the accusations made against you that led to the disciplinary action on your file, then you should be able to do the internal transfer you mentioned. As soon as this is possible, I would get out of there pronto!
If not, any other ped hospitals in your area you can start applying at?
Dec 1, '12
It's sounds like u need to go. It's not fair and it definitely shouldn't be this way but for your own well-being u need to leave. You will be so much happier. If you're crying every night before work it's not healthy!! You deserve to enjoy your work and feel valued. Go somewhere that you get both of those things. Good luck.
Dec 2, '12
Imo you spoke up and it made you a target. no one else speaks up to management, it makes you look like the nurse that cant handle it. I dont know what peds is like but I have worked adult med surg nights with 7pts a nurse no tech or aide. It is ridiculous but once the precident is set, good luck getting it changed. block every coworker from facebook and never bring up work . at this point , if you really cant stand it look to transfer whn able or get out. Ask another nurse if possible to watch your patients. are you a new nurse? I ask because if others tolerate the poor staffing , mamagement will turn it around on you. these things rarely improve unti there are a couple bad really bad pt events or large amounts of staff leave and complain. for us nothing changed until management got mandated over and over to work short staffed because it was so nad. then things changed.