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Considering going back to telly

Hi everyone, I know I'm going to sound whiny and weak but I could use some opinions on my current situation.

I'm currently working in a surgical/trauma icu, it has always been my dream to work in icu. I worked as a pca on a med/surg floor while I was in nursing school, and my first nursing job was on a complex care/ icu step-down unit. I specially took that job instead of staying on med/surg because I knew it would be better experience to eventually get to icu. After working telly for a year, I got an icu position at a larger, teaching hospital within the same system as the hospital I worked at for the past 4 years.

The first month in icu was great, I loved learning all these new skills and I felt like I was finally where I belonged. Then I quickly realized that the honeymoon phase was over. I was so overwhelmed for the last 2 out of 3 months I oriented. I had a great preceptor who was so patient with me, even still helps me out to this day. Once I was off orientation the unit did a good job of giving me more stable patients as I adjusted to being off my own. While I thought I was doing a good job taking care of them, I constantly hear nurses talking behind my back and making fun of me. Recently I was giving report, and one of the nurses started laughing at my face, then goes to the assistant nurse manager to say how stupid I am to which the anm responded "I know she's useless." Most of the time when I'm giving report the nurses don't even make eye contact with me, they are texting on their cell phones. That simply never happened at my previous hospital. Although I've always dreamed of working in icu, I can't help but miss everything about my former hospital.

My current hospital has a reputation for the nurses being mean and catty, I didn't think it was true until I experienced it for myself. I have an interview for a telly position at my former hospital. I don't know what I'm going to do, since I always wanted to work in icu but I don't know at this cost. I've only been there six months, which I'm actually proud of myself for sticking it out that long.

Nightmaren, BSN, RN

Specializes in Surgical Critical Care.

Hello friend,

Unfortunately, some units have more toxic cultures than others and it's not really a reflection of the specialty of the unit. From what you describe, the fact that even the assistant manager is contributing to this toxicity means that the unit is a cesspool for such mindsets and will be very difficult to change. No coworker has the right to act so unprofessionally towards you, especially not someone who should be supervising them! It looks like that hospital's reputation is well-deserved.

I know your dream is to work in ICU -- I know a lot of nurses with similar aspirations. But my sincere advice is to run as far as you can from this unit. This isn't weakness -- this is you maintaining your sanity and love for your career. No one deserves to be miserable at work. Your inability to "adjust" to this unit tells me you are a compassionate individual and any hospital will be lucky to have you. You will have another chance one day for the ICU and when you join a floor with a healthy unit culture, you will truly soar.

Irish_Mist, BSN, RN

Has 100 years experience. Specializes in Cardicac Neuro Telemetry.

I am so sorry. That is such a mean spirited and ugly way to behave toward a colleague not to mention another human being. If your assistant nurse manager behaves like that, I definitely don't fault you for wanting to return to your old hospital. That's not an environment for any nurse to flourish and practice to the best of their ability. Could you possibly apply for an icu position at your previous hospital?


Has 2 years experience. Specializes in Critical Care Nursing.

I would start applying to ICU positions somewhere else. This unit is very toxic and you won't be able to change it, so get out with your sanity intact. Good luck!


Has 8 years experience. Specializes in Neurosciences, stepdown, acute rehab, LTC.

They're insecure and you're better than that! Back to the old hospital !


Has 3 years experience. Specializes in MICU.

My advice..... Apply to a different ICU.

Here.I.Stand, BSN, RN

Has 16 years experience. Specializes in SICU, trauma, neuro.

My jaw literally dropped reading this post. I agree that this unit culture is toxic -- NOT all ICU nurses behave like That! I mean really... don't they have patients to care for?? How is it they have time to make fun of you? :mad:

And that the anm is contributing? Shame on her.

brap740, BSN, MSN

Has 10 years experience. Specializes in ICU/ER/trauma.

So, this is big hospital nursing normalcy. Happens all the time. And it's BS. Once you get experience in 2-3 years try to put a stop to it. Just shut it down before the new nurse gets smeared. Caddy nurses don't like confrontation, they just want to show their alpha female/male dominance. You challenge them a few times and they get off your ****. But you better be right when you're challenging them. Then they'll leave you alone.

When these situations arise arise and I'm involved instead of running and putting my head in the sand I just give them a little bit of their own assertive medicine. And they back off. And do it respectfully. Don't proclaim they're useless....kill them with knowledge and facts. If you don't have the knowledge and facts study up on your patient population and common problems so that when the death eaters are out to get you and laugh in your face you can laugh right back and ask what's so funny ?

Just don't let it get to you. In a year or two the death eaters (caddy Cathy's) will go after the new hires and proclaim how useless they are. Just don't turn into one of them.


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