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Charge nurse unnecessary comments

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thevez has 1 years experience and specializes in Rehabilitation,Critical Care.

3,324 Profile Views; 113 Posts

Hello everyone!

I'm new to this website but has been a lurker for awhile.

My questions is:

How do I deal with a charge nurse who gives unneccessary comments if I make mistakes or if I ask her "too many" questions because I am a new nurse in the hospital?

Comments like:

If I made mistakes she would say "what do I do with you?" and when I ask her more than 5 questionsin one shift she would say " that's it. You have reached your limit with questions for the day."

I am offended by these comments and I have found that this has been hindering my ability to learn more.

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JBudd has 39 years experience as a MSN and specializes in Trauma, Teaching.

2 Followers; 1 Article; 3,764 Posts; 35,982 Profile Views

Stay professional, look her calmly in the eye, and say "you are going to keep orienting me to this floor", and "there is no quota on questions when you are still adapting to a place."

If it continues, ask for an evaluation of your progress from the manager, and mention it is difficult to learn if there is resistance to questions being asked.

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3 Articles; 2,815 Posts; 30,740 Profile Views

I can see myself saying "What am I going to do with you", not in order to offend, but as a way of lightening the mood, bringing a little humor into the situation, and trying to establish some camaraderie. I'd be horrified to find out the person found it offensive. Are you sure the charge isn't doing something similar?

As far as questions go, maybe your charge is attempting, unsuccessfully, to point out to you that you're maybe asking too many unnecessary questions. I don't know, I'm not there- it's just a thought.

Maybe try this: before you ask a question, try to find out the answer yourself first. If you're still not sure, preface the question like this: "I didn't know _______, so I tried to find out the answer, and I'm still unsure. I think the answer is ___________, but I wanted to run it by you first and see if I'm on the right track". This shows that you are taking initiative and not just depending on others to tell you all the answers to your questions.

Again, I could be way off base because I'm not there, but it doesn't sound to me like your charge is doing anything really horrible here, and maybe just uses a different style of communication than you're used to.

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thevez has 1 years experience and specializes in Rehabilitation,Critical Care.

113 Posts; 3,324 Profile Views

Stay professional, look her calmly in the eye, and say "you are going to keep orienting me to this floor", and "there is no quota on questions when you are still adapting to a place."

If it continues, ask for an evaluation of your progress from the manager, and mention it is difficult to learn if there is resistance to questions being asked.

Thank you for this. I will do this the next time she does it again. Thank you.

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psu_213 has 6 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Emergency, Telemetry, Transplant.

3,869 Posts; 28,250 Profile Views

I can see myself saying "What am I going to do with you", not in order to offend, but as a way of lightening the mood, bringing a little humor into the situation, and trying to establish some camaraderie. I'd be horrified to find out the person found it offensive. Are you sure the charge isn't doing something similar?

As far as questions go, maybe your charge is attempting, unsuccessfully, to point out to you that you're maybe asking too many unnecessary questions. I don't know, I'm not there- it's just a thought.

I liked this entire post, but I wanted to comments on these parts. My first thought is that when the charge made these comments is that she was joking. If that is the case, I'm not going to defend the jokes, but try, OP, to take them a bit less seriously. Does she actually refuse to talk to you or refuse to answer your questions after making the "reached your limit" statement? I had one day in the ER when I had multiple silly issues--a floor refused a patient, for another patient the phone just rang and rang multiple times when I tried to call report, another patient refused to go to a floor because it was not a private room and there were no privates left in the hospital, I was having difficulty transferring a patient back to his LTC facility. Eventually, the charge nurse jokingly said to me "you've reached your quota today." I knew she was joking, she still helped when necessary. Maybe this is what is happening here.

Perhaps she thinks you are asking too many "simple" questions. Obviously it is more important to ask a "dumb" question that make a even-more-"dumb" mistake. Go to others, people you trust and who will give you a honest answer, and see about the progress they think you are making and see where they think you could improve.

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thevez has 1 years experience and specializes in Rehabilitation,Critical Care.

113 Posts; 3,324 Profile Views

I can see myself saying "What am I going to do with you", not in order to offend, but as a way of lightening the mood, bringing a little humor into the situation, and trying to establish some camaraderie. I'd be horrified to find out the person found it offensive. Are you sure the charge isn't doing something similar?

As far as questions go, maybe your charge is attempting, unsuccessfully, to point out to you that you're maybe asking too many unnecessary questions. I don't know, I'm not there- it's just a thought.

Maybe try this: before you ask a question, try to find out the answer yourself first. If you're still not sure, preface the question like this: "I didn't know _______, so I tried to find out the answer, and I'm still unsure. I think the answer is ___________, but I wanted to run it by you first and see if I'm on the right track". This shows that you are taking initiative and not just depending on others to tell you all the answers to your questions.

Again, I could be way off base because I'm not there, but it doesn't sound to me like your charge is doing anything really horrible here, and maybe just uses a different style of communication than you're used to.

I guess I see it differently, I'm not used to someone telling me that as I'm also a professional myself and those type of words just offends me saying, "what am I going to do with you" = "why are you not getting it?" especially in a monotonous tone and a poker face. It's all about the difference. Thank you for responding.

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thevez has 1 years experience and specializes in Rehabilitation,Critical Care.

113 Posts; 3,324 Profile Views

I guess I'm a bit sensitive to these types of comments? I also asked some of my trustful colleages and they told me that I'm overreacting about this situation and that I should let it go and if something happens again, address it immediately.

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938 Posts; 14,097 Profile Views

The next time something like that happens, maybe you could gently remind her that, the more she helps you become independent & competent, the better off she, patients, & co-workers will be in the long run.

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thevez has 1 years experience and specializes in Rehabilitation,Critical Care.

113 Posts; 3,324 Profile Views

Thank you for your comment. I will do it next time.

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Pepper The Cat has 34 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Gerontology.

2 Followers; 1,730 Posts; 24,994 Profile Views

I see both comments as small jokes. I've made similar comments and we have shared a laugh.

Imthink you are reading too much into the comments.

Edited by Pepper The Cat
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SionainnRN has 5 years experience and specializes in Emergency Room, Trauma ICU.

914 Posts; 8,428 Profile Views

Are you still on orientation? How long have you been there? Maybe these comments are because the charge nurse is getting frustrated at you not getting it. If you're asking so many questions every shift that the charge has to point out that you've reached your limit, maybe you need more orientation. Or a different person to ask questions of. I know for me I can get annoyed if I'm asked the same questions over and over by the same person.

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psu_213 has 6 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Emergency, Telemetry, Transplant.

3,869 Posts; 28,250 Profile Views

Imthink you are evading too much into the comments.

Yet anything amusing autocorrect (it has happened to it all). My emphasis.

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