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Bullied as a kinda new nurse

Nurses   (2,586 Views 53 Comments)
by allyyy allyyy (New Member) New Member Nurse

233 Profile Views; 5 Posts

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I feel like I’m being bullied by the nurses on the floor that I’m orienting on. I’m a quiet person who does work quietly and thinks in my head. I only have barely a year of rehab/LTC experience so this acute setting feels pretty new. So I’m not the kind of person to go running around yelling out all of my patients problems. I read, I think, ask many questions and keep moving. I'm now being followed by the educator over an accusation of "not knowing why the patient is getting the med". I had a meeting today with my manager, supervisor, and educator and I felt like that came out of nowhere and I was completely shocked. And my preceptor was there and I felt like I couldn't say anything because I know that she said something. But I've never given the wrong patient the wrong med and I always look up meds I don't know and I always look up the doctors notes. I made an appointment to  to see where that came from with only my manager, so we’ll see how that’s goes. Overall, My preceptor and I are butting heads. I feel like I'm not learning anything important from her. She proceeds on telling me things that I already know and I try to switch the topic up but then she gets annoyed. One time she was talking about something and I looked away to look at my computer (I like to multitask) and she bursted “LOOK AT ME” in front of everyone like I’m a child. I started tearing up after that. I was so embarrassed. And after that I feel like everyone is bullying me. And I wish I spoke up sooner about these issues. Idk. There's two sides of the story. But overall, I am hurt and offended that they think I would put my patient at risk. I've spent the last two days crying and I've already accepted that I'm probably going to be fired if I don't quit first. Idk. Idk what to do. 

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Jedrnurse has 25 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in school nurse.

1,225 Posts; 11,649 Profile Views

"She proceeds on telling me things that I already know and I try to switch the topic up but then she gets annoyed. One time she was talking about something and I looked away to look at my computer (I like to multitask) and she bursted “LOOK AT ME” in front of everyone like I’m a child. I started tearing up after that."

The behavior (yours) that you've just described can be interpreted negatively by others. It will be difficult to salvage your standing in this particular workplace, but whether you stay or whether you go, you might benefit from adjusting your interpersonal "style".

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RNperdiem has 14 years experience as a RN.

4,156 Posts; 29,262 Profile Views

Orienting a person who has some experience is tricky. People vary in how much skill and knowledge they bring to a new job. A preceptor has now way of knowing exactly what you know and don't know. I remember one nurse from ED who came to our ICU with excellent IV and assessment skills, but had never changed a wound vac or done any wound care.

You have to meet your preceptor halfway. Communicate in a polite way that you are well experienced in X skill, but skill Y is totally new to you, could she go over that again?

I am a quiet introverted person myself, and have had to learn that being precepted is not a time to be passive. If you feel you aren't learning anything, you need to seek out what you need to learn and use your resources.

Best of luck to you OP. I hope you feel better soon.

 

 

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2,839 Posts; 18,374 Profile Views

Please describe the behaviors that you are calling "bullying" so we can better help you. 

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2,839 Posts; 18,374 Profile Views

5 hours ago, Jedrnurse said:

One time she was talking about something and I looked away to look at my computer (I like to multitask)

Also, you may call this multi-tasking and it may not have been your intent but this is extremely rude in any situation.

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1,004 Posts; 7,219 Profile Views

If your preceptor is trying to teach you things whether you think you know it or not, you don’t change the subject or look away.  You listen.  You acknowledge that you heard them and understand.  

It’s not bullying for your preceptor to share concerns with your educator and for them to have a discussion with you over their concerns.  

You are not being bullied.

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K+MgSO4 has 12 years experience as a BSN and specializes in Surgical, quality,management.

1,575 Posts; 21,752 Profile Views

Many people find it rude when people look at electric devices when they are talking with them. 

 

When you are in orientation or working with an educator you have to verbalize your thought processes so they know what you know. E.g. I am checking what time my pt CT is as I know they need a 20G in the CF for contrast, I am planning on doing that canulation after morning meds as it is not until midday and the pt wants to have a shower before I put it in.  While this will slow you down on orientation this what you have to do when you have students as well - explain your process.  If your preceptor is talking about something you already know can you acknowledge that you know it - check if there are policy variations from your other job and then ask about the other questions. 

Edited by K+MgSO4
Added examples

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llg has 40 years experience as a PhD, RN and specializes in Nursing Professional Development.

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I agree with the posters above.   You are not being bullied.   You are not communicating with your preceptor and she is therefore in the dark about what you know and what you don't know.   If she is trying to teach you things you already know, then you should show/tell her that you already know that material -- and not expect her to know that by magic.

When you try to "change the subject," she interprets that as you being uninterested in learning about that subject.   Instead of trying to change the subject, you should say something to the effect that "you have experience with that, understand what she is saying and recognize the value of that."   You might add a little additional information to show her that you really are competent in that area.   Then, ask a question to help the conversation move on.

Finally, I strongly agree with the other posters who point out that looking away from someone trying to teach you so that you can look at your electronic device is incredibly rude in just about any situation.

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3,105 Posts; 23,301 Profile Views

1 hour ago, llg said:

You are not communicating with your preceptor and she is therefore in the dark about what you know and what you don't know.

This.

This situation is not going to proceed in a positive manner unless you go out of your comfort zone at this point and explain yourself. That's my belief based on numerous observations.

If you don't want this to continue to deteriorate, I would go to your preceptor and ask if you can talk in a private/quiet area, and state that you have been contemplating things and then flat out ask for a chance to explain and start over. Apologize for those actions of yours that were rude and dismissive although you didn't mean for them to be. Acknowledge that you have not communicated well about what you know and don't know, your strengths and weaknesses, or what you need.

You are being really negative about something that has to happen: Basic communication. For example, you have described the opposite of not communicating as "running around yelling out all of my patients problems." Surely you know that there is a middle ground, and that "running around yelling" is not the opposite of refusing to communicate.

I get that situations like this generally cause at least some minor stress, but there is a lot you can do to make it smooth sailing.

It is seriously in your best interest to take steps to undue damage at this point, and I wish you well in doing so.

 

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51 Posts; 1,398 Profile Views

i work the same way, my name is ally too!! lol I have been a nurse since 2012, started LTC bout 2015 and have worked in that setting since. People will try to bully you or make you feel incompetent, you dont have to "fight back" but just do your job well and basically let them know they wont be getting in your way. you dont have to exchange any type of words, once they realize youre a great nurse they will back off.. i ended up becoming the charge nurse of all those ***es LMAO BECAUSE i was quiet and kept to myself, didnt get involved of the bs drama that goes around. management admires that because it's not often a nurse comes a long and just DOES THEIR JOB withtout a side show. like you said about how some nurses go around loud mouthing about everything that goes on , it is because they are insecure in their nursing. I had to work with this one nurse who would SCREAM BLOODY MURDER during every code.. then people tell me "you are sooo calm no matter what". They will realize who the better nurse is in the end, just stay focused it pays off trust me !!!!

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myoglobin has 11 years experience as a ASN, BSN, MSN and specializes in ICU, trauma, neuro.

504 Posts; 3,729 Profile Views

Keep in mind that the primary goal of orientation (from the perspective of the orientee) is to survive orientation. I've never been "fired" per se, but both times that I was "transferred" from ICU (to Med/Surg in the first case and to PCU in the second case) occurred during orientation (and on a third occasion my preceptor made me do a week on days because she didn't like my attitude and declined to sign off on me).  Why?  Because it is a difficult task to orient someone especially in a typical hospital environment where your patient load is at least as difficult as when you are not orienting someone.  Also, preceptors are not necessarily picked due to their patience, teaching ability, and empathy. Indeed, there may be a "self selection bias" to the more "type A" personalities who can sometimes make less than optimal teachers.  When personalities are vastly different (for example I am almost never comfortable with much eye contact not even with my family) it can create issues. Do your best to adapt and realize that in the end if you are persistent you will find someplace that works for you.  

Edited by myoglobin

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5 Posts; 58 Profile Views

My 2 cents are that hospitals are full of bullies from doctors to nurses to ancillary departments to CNAs to the unit secretaries who know more than you. It is not a fun place to work unless you've become part of the clique. I've walked into other departments looking for patient belongings or things borrowed from our floor and had people turn and look at me when I spoke, then turn back to whatever they were doing without a word and just ignore my presence. My advice is to get your training, work your job, and find another where you'll better fit in.

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