Why so nasty?

  1. 0
    I met my new preceptor today and she didn't make the slightest effort to hide her contempt for me. As soon as she strolled in to take report (late) she rolled her eyes at me and refused to acknowledge my presence. No lie. One or two of the other nurses gave me looks of pity and the rest just snickered/giggled and made rude comments. After three jobs in nursing I've developed very thick skin. I know that I'm at work to work and not to make friends but is having manners and showing your fellow human even a tiny bit of compassion a crime? No matter how long you've been a nurse the first day on a new unit/job is always tough. I wasn't expecting her to embrace me and offer to take me out to lunch but a returned good morning or even a why don't you listen in on report and then we will talk later or something along those lines been too much? All day she was tight lipped and very short with me but was friendly with most of the other staff. I say most because there were a few that she didn't like and she didn't try to hide it but I can't imagine what I did other than show up today. I can't wait till orientation is over...the next couple of weeks are going to stink.
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  3. 33 Comments so far...

  4. 11
    I am in a mood to say just call her butt out on it.

    But I also have been following the thread that seems to think my age group is the hellfire and bane of everyone's existence.

    Makes me cranky.
  5. 5
    Quote from Lovely_RN
    I met my new preceptor today and she didn't make the slightest effort to hide her contempt for me. As soon as she strolled in to take report (late) she rolled her eyes at me and refused to acknowledge my presence. No lie. One or two of the other nurses gave me looks of pity and the rest just snickered/giggled and made rude comments. After three jobs in nursing I've developed very thick skin. I know that I'm at work to work and not to make friends but is having manners and showing your fellow human even a tiny bit of compassion a crime? No matter how long you've been a nurse the first day on a new unit/job is always tough. I wasn't expecting her to embrace me and offer to take me out to lunch but a returned good morning or even a why don't you listen in on report and then we will talk later or something along those lines been too much? All day she was tight lipped and very short with me but was friendly with most of the other staff. I say most because there were a few that she didn't like and she didn't try to hide it but I can't imagine what I did other than show up today. I can't wait till orientation is over...the next couple of weeks are going to stink.
    I think I would just smile sweetly and say "What have I done to offend you". Acknowledge the attitude and make her own it without making her defensive.
    missdeevah, Jessy_RN, Lovely_RN, and 2 others like this.
  6. 7
    May I ask about the setting? Was this a hospital, LTC facility, or some other type of healthcare setting? Also, were there physical differences between you and the preceptor such as age, appearance, racial/ethnic background, weight, etc? Did the other nurses on the unit seem to condone the behavior, join in on it, or ignore it?

    The workplace culture already sounds crappy.
  7. 4
    I say give her time, maybe she'll warm up to you.
    People like that are so annoying, she sounds like she has a hard time hiding how she really feels about things. I personally dislike precepting and have been ambushed into it before when my boss would walk up with a new orientee and be like, "would you mind orienting so-and-so today?" all smiles. At least I had the courtesy to smile and make the best of it.
    So maybe she doesn't want to precept. That's certainly not your fault. It probably has nothing to do with you.
    IdrilRN, Lovely_RN, Forever Sunshine, and 1 other like this.
  8. 5
    I guess this may be a bit forward for some, but I'd probably ask her, "Are you going to train me, or would you rather work short handed?" Not knowing policies and procedures, also, may be more of a hindrance to her later than training you now. Either one seems a very black and white choice for someone of whom may not have a firm grasp on the proper priorities.
  9. 4
    That kind of behavior is complete bull, and so unprofessional. She should be ashamed of herself! What a miserable, miserable individual. I wish I had advice for you, but I don't. Just smile and get through it, and get the heck out of there if possible. In my experience, those work environments only become more toxic. I work on a busy and fast paced floor, but at least I enjoy my co-workers. They help me laugh, lend an ear when I'm frustrated, and make the days more tolerable. We also go out of our way to welcome new people and help them feel like part of the team. Best wishes to you!
  10. 13
    It's a hospital setting. We are around the same age and are actually of the same race and ethnic background. So that's not it. She also knew way in advance that she would be precepting me because a schedule was made and given to her prior to my coming. I ignored her today. I didn't even want to ask what her problem is because I really don't care. So sorry she is having a bad day...month..year...life whatever but I have a job to do. I just got really assertive and first thing asked her what the plan was and it worked out from there. When she did things without telling me I asked what she was doing and I didn't let her ditch me. After a while I thin she got the idea that I wasn't going to disappear and the workflow went better. I think she thought I was a new grad and once she found out that I had some knowledge she wasn't quite as nasty but that's no excuse for her bad behavior. It's not a fun situation to be in but if I can get what I need from her and things don't escalate then I won't push any buttons. I'm just going to make sure to be on my tip-toes and say please and thank you a lot. Thank goodness it's not forever.
    Gold_SJ, canesdukegirl, leslie :-D, and 10 others like this.
  11. 3
    Quote from Lovely_RN
    It's a hospital setting. We are around the same age and are actually of the same race and ethnic background. So that's not it. She also knew way in advance that she would be precepting me because a schedule was made and given to her prior to my coming. I ignored her today. I didn't even want to ask what her problem is because I really don't care. So sorry she is having a bad day...month..year...life whatever but I have a job to do. I just got really assertive and first thing asked her what the plan was and it worked out from there. When she did things without telling me I asked what she was doing and I didn't let her ditch me. After a while I thin she got the idea that I wasn't going to disappear and the workflow went better. I think she thought I was a new grad and once she found out that I had some knowledge she wasn't quite as nasty but that's no excuse for her bad behavior. It's not a fun situation to be in but if I can get what I need from her and things don't escalate then I won't push any buttons. I'm just going to make sure to be on my tip-toes and say please and thank you a lot. Thank goodness it's not forever.
    I really don't understand why so many nurses act like that!! Is there some jaded-nurses club that I don't know about? But anyway, I love how you dealt with the situation.
  12. 3
    I have been on both sides of this question. I was treated rudely or worse ignored as a new employee, in two different jobs and it still hurts when I remember it. I have also had the honor of being a preceptor several, times in my career. I would talk to the preceptor privately and see how she responds. Maybe, there is an issue going on that you are not aware of, sometimes it is just a personality issue and you may need to change preceptors, if the situation does not improve. As nurses, we are not always supportive of each other. We forget, all too soon, how it feels to be the new person in the unit and how difficult it can be. Once you are there for a while and get to know some of the staff, I hope things will improve for you. This should be a reminder, to all of those reading this, how we should make an extra effort to welcome new staff members and be eager to offer help when needed. Hang in there!
    Last edit by ICUnurse1985 on Jun 21, '11 : Reason: misspelling


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