Why do we eat our young? - page 7

by jreynrn

I'm a float pool nurse at my hospital so I bounce around, a lot. Wherever they need me, I go. So I'm pretty well known around the hospital, favorably, thank goodness. The past few months, I was pretty regular on one unit and had... Read More


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    It's very sad that there is such a stigma around nursing eating their young. I really cant even say why it happens, but I do know we can stop it. That's all there is to it- Keep holding each other up and building strong teams and allies, and it will eventually stop. I for one am committed to fostering new nurses using social media and this website. Think about it - A website (allnurses.com) where nurses come together online and have discussions. It's beautiful, and it needs to spread! Thanks for this post!
    Nightingallow likes this.
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    A nurse who is way older'n me told me once, "No one will want to chew on you if you're tough."
    NurseGuyBri, wooh, BrandonLPN, and 1 other like this.
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    I'm a new nurse, I'll be starting my first job next month. I somehow lucked out and was offered a position for a 6 month gn internship on the unit of my choice (micu/sicu) at a magnet hospital.

    As the start date get closer, I realize a few things every day: I'm thankful to have a job, I'm excited to start working, I'm terrified I'm going to cause harm, I'm acutely aware of how much I really don't know, I'm very aware of how unprepared I am to be a "real nurse", I'm going to be working harder than I ever have before since in addtion to working full time, I'll have to be studying full time to really grasp all that I see/do during a shift. I understand that I'm only going to get what I give, which applies to respect, work ethic and learning.

    I, like everyone else, worked really hard and made a lot of sacrifices to go back to school as an adult (I'm a second degree nurse), I certainly do not think the learning stopped when I passed my boards, in fact the learning is really just beginning and is never ending.

    I think the whole discussion, for the most part, comes down to the type of person you are. If you work hard, are willing to learn, and respectful, for the most part, your coworkers will be the same. If you don't work hard, act like you have nothing to learn and don't put in the time and effort, that's what you'll get back.

    I don't know, just my $0.01, I'm not working yet so I don't deserve $ 0.02
    hiddencatRN likes this.
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    So here's the recap...

    The original posting by jreynrn was about how she helped out a new nurse who had no support from other staff members. She was discussing her concerns of how other nurses were bullying the new nurse, or made the envirionment very unfavorable for her to ask questions. Many responses went on to congradulating jreynrn for reaching out to the new nurse. The next postings were of others trying to understand the nature as to why nurses this may happen.

    The irony of this thread is that it is starting to demonstrate what should not be done. There are some really good comments in the beginning of this thread that I feel is worth reading.
    NurseGuyBri likes this.
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    Quote from GrnTea
    This is so good it bears repeating. It should go in the stickie threads for the first year in practice forum. It should be cast in silver and mounted in the lobby of every nursing school. It should be part of every student's senior practicum.

    I, for one, am getting verrrrrry tired of being arbitrarily placed in the "mean" pile because, as an older more experienced person, I try to explain these concepts to young'uns. We cannot be so supportive of new nurses as to sidestep the developmental needs they still have, as above. We cannot be their helicoptering parents (the one that hover), the snowplows (the ones that remove all obstacles), we cannot keep them from the realities of being working nurses, we cannot shelter them from the consequences of their own work performance. It is not a matter of "eating young," it is a matter of NOT swaddling, NOT coddling, NOT expecting less of them than was expected of us when we were new nurses. It's a matter of trying to bring them along; we don't have time to do it any other way.

    OK, but I am wondering what this has to do with what the OP posted and the reality that is abusive behavior (nurse-to-nurse)--against young, old, new, whatever kinds of nurses. There is a socialized mentality of this that often prevails, and it's totally insufferable, and frankly, there really is NO excuse for it.

    Anyway that's the kind of thing to which I was referring.
    NurseGuyBri likes this.
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    I agree. It is a matter of eating young. Leadership doesnt have to be coddling or swaddling, but the phallacy of "i'll do it to you the way it was done to me" is bull. There's no reason for it, and it isn't appropriate. I can lead a nurse with kindness and compassion better than with anger, frustration, and time.
    samadams8 likes this.
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    Quote from NurseGuyBri
    I agree. It is a matter of eating young. Leadership doesnt have to be coddling or swaddling, but the phallacy of "i'll do it to you the way it was done to me" is bull. There's no reason for it, and it isn't appropriate. I can lead a nurse with kindness and compassion better than with anger, frustration, and time.
    If you're referring to GrnTea's post, I don't see any anger or frustration in what she said. Considering she specializes in legal nursing and teaching, I'll wager that background as well as her considerable experience serve her well when she works with students/new nurses.
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    Quote from OCNRN63
    If you're referring to GrnTea's post, I don't see any anger or frustration in what she said. Considering she specializes in legal nursing and teaching, I'll wager that background as well as her considerable experience serve her well when she works with students/new nurses.
    Why does it have to be an either or thing? You can lead with firmness but understanding and compassion. With perhaps a few exceptions here or there, it's doable. Many newer nurses want to learn and are excited about doing so.

    Yes, there are also those that are not really all that motivated, and it is sad that some of them have even entered into nursing practice. Maybe I'm fortunate, however, since most of the newer nurses I have precepted or in some way taught wanted to learn. They wanted to do a good job.

    It's also hard for nursing instructor's to effectively weed out those that really just want a half-decent paycheck--the ones that complain about everything and really aren't motivated to go the extra mile, especially given the limited time for clinical exposure.

    Again, this is why I am all about developing more objective systems for evaluating nurse practice in each particular clinical setting--whether in school or with practice in the real world.

    Also, many people don't understand how to work with an adult learner. Any hint of condescension turns students off or frustrates/sours them. Regardless of how much experience you have, adult learners should be approached with respect from the outset--regardless of whether they have earned it according to your standards or not--that is, until they demonstrate that being respectful is a one-way street. If they take that attitude, there's a good chance they won't be respectful of patients and families either.

    But I don't subscribe to the non-productive attitude that you don't give respect until it's earned. You always offer a respectful approach with people. When the person has demonstrated that they have little respect for you, others, and in all probability, themselves, then there will be a shifts. The shifts, however, do not have to be devoid of humanity simply because they are behaving like butt lumps. Retaliative responses tends to cause things to decay into worse situations.

    Mostly people in nursing just need to learn to work with and accept each other. IMO, that is a huge issue for a number of folks in nursing. As professionals, we are expected to rise above negative situations and people.
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    Quote from GrnTea
    A nurse who is way older'n me told me once, "No one will want to chew on you if you're tough."

    Sometimes that's true, and sometimes it's not. Some folks misunderstand compassion and passionate sensitivity for weakness, when in reality it is not. It can often take a lot more strength to forgive and rise above various behaviors and attitudes than to push back against someone in some way.

    At the same time, I hear what you saying, in that you can't be a Wendy Whiner or Cry Baby Cathy or Super Sensitive Suzy either.

    But the worst to me are the passive-aggressive behaviors seen so often in this field. So counterproductive. Cry or be in someone's face; but what is with the back and forth, underhanded games? Stand up and own your sensitivity or speak about/deal with what's really bothering you, but don't covertly undermine others or circumvent people and end of stabbing them because you don't want to face the consequences of owning your own feelings or motivations. This is part of the nurse toxicity. It goes well beyond eating the young.
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    I'm a new RN, but I've been nursing fur 14 years. I recently returned to the Hospital after working in the corrections field. Unfortunately, the hospital is the same, but I've noticed an upswing in the amount of "nurses " watching the nurses on the floor who really do patient care, watch and not-pick. Basically, with the salary of one of these "watchers", the administration could put another two techs on the floor, which wound increase patient satisfaction as well as safety. This is part of the reason new nurses burn out so quickly. They're being critiqued by people who have found a way to manipulate other nurses into doing real patient care, so they can collect a salary, and basically stop nursing. These poor newbies, are belittled so that they work harder and harder.. And that's just what the "watchers" need. My advice: do your best to learn your skills, be an expert. Ignore the critiques, it's a game to keep you jumping higher through rings of fire. Most of the nurses who are managing, can't really do patient care, because they have no people skills.. haven't we all noticed this by now? Most managers, are completely inept at people skills!! That's why they stop doing patient care. Remember that, and don't quit. If you also notice, your patients all LOVE you.. It's the other Nurses who are giving you grief.. Think about that.


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