Feeling broken and there's no way out... - page 3

Hello All, I need you all to lend your help. I am a new grad RN in a very busy ER, I just came off of a 9 week orientation in which I spent one of my 3 shifts each week in an Emergency Nursing... Read More

  1. by   ec2703
    Great support here, so nice to read this kind of a post (not nice for RNRichi, but I'll bet even she is feeling a lot better.)

    The worst part (I think) of being a nurse, well, a new nurse, is that we are hard on ourselves, lose confidence, and then the bottom feeders (those who eat their young) smell blood and swoop in.

    I'm not sure why the profession attacts that kind of person, but it does.

    I think the most important advice you could take is to stick it out, don't take ANY of it as a sign that you are sub par. You are learning, and in spite of Ms. Nasty Pants (har!) that is what we like to call the LEARNING CURVE, Jack*ss...

    You are earning your stripes and I totally agree: You hack out a year there and you will get a much better position. And knowing what you know now, you'll never treat another nurse in such a demeaning way.
  2. by   sonicleese
    Being in a new area of nursing can be really really hard and take so much out of you. Try to stay calm and not take what other's may say to you personally. It is true, some nurses can be down right nasty to their own, but there are as many awesome, kind, caring understanding ones that should mean more to you. That preceptor just seems nasty and messed up so avoid her if you can--detach yourself emotionally from her--be professional and really look towards learning from the nurses you respect. Focus on the ones who have awesome clinical skills AND treat others well.....

    If, after all of your settling in, you decide it isn't right for you, then that's OK!! You will have learned from the experience and only be better for it.

    Best of luck and remember how awesome you are : )
  3. by   LynnLRN
    Everyone needs help sometimes and if that happened to a new grad right off orientation at my hospital people would probably be apologizing to that person for letting them be put in that awful situation right away. We usually try to slowly break people in. Let them build some confidence first.
  4. by   CountyRat
    "how are you supposed to ever work alone if you need help from everybody all day?" Gee, I did not know that nursing was a solo activity, I thought that we are supposed to help each other, but then, I have only been in the profession for 31 years, so what do I know?

    Listen to me RNRichi, and I will tell you what is happening to you. The nurses you work with see themselves as a group, and you as an outsider. They do not know whether you will "pull your weight," or bail on them like those nurses who leave through the "revolving door." They are protecting themselves, and the integrity of their group, by requiring you to prove yourself "worthy" of membership. They see those who leave as opportunists who selfishly learned from them, and then abbandoned them, and they are unwiling to risk being hurt by investing themselves in anyone who has not yet proven their loyalty and willingness to conform to the group's values and identity.

    Do you like to read? If you do, there is a book called Heroic Efforts by a sociologist named Jennifer Lois. It is her analysis of the socialology of a mountain search and rescue team. Yeah, I know, SAR is not nursing, but Lois goes into detail describing the mechanism of group acceptance that everyone has to endure in order to get "inside" any group. It is very enlightening, and a big help to anyone who is experiencing the "initiation process." The most important thing you may learn is that what you are experiencing is normal human group behavior. Mean and painful, yes, but we are flawed creatures, not angels, and this is how we roll.

    Oh, and, please forgive me. I suffer from some compulsive personality flaws, and I will feel nervous all morning if I do not mention that the law you referenced is abbreviated HIPAA, not HIPPA. O.K. I feal better now. Just ignore this last paragraph, but take the stuff above it seriously.
    Last edit by CountyRat on Jul 25, '12 : Reason: Clarification of ambiguous statement.
  5. by   FranEMTnurse
    We are here to support and encourage you dear. You had a horrific start with a very poor preceptor. But you survived your experience which tells a lot about your endurance. So hang in there until something better comes along. Just remember, what doesn't do you in does make you stronger.
  6. by   RNRichi
    LynnLRN- Boy do I wish I worked where you are! No one even offered an apologetic look my way. Well, I can't say that, the EMT that put the patient in my room, apologized beforehand saying, "I'm sorry I have to do this to you, but you're the only one with an available bed", unbeknownst to both of us what was about to take place. It seems that no one thinks twice about what kind of patient they give the new grad, it's pretty much sink or swim. Some days on orientation I was just treading water, but I was proud of myself that I wasn't sinking, this day was totally sunk to the bottom of the ocean!

    Thanks CountyRat for the correction, I totally missed that I typed that. As for the normal human group behavior, I agree. Nonetheless, it's a shame that I have to go to work and spend 12 hours with these patients that have a warped sense of entitlement and even worse attitudes to go along with it, then have to deal with co-workers that add their bad attitude & snotty remarks. If this is how they treat others, I don't want to be part of their "group". I know, I know, I have to play the game. But my grandmother used to always tell me, "You can catch more flies with honey than you can with vinegar". I guess she didn't know that doesn't really apply to the ER
  7. by   CountyRat
    I hear you, sister. It's called "payin' yer dues." It is mean and grossly unfair, and I hate it, but it is not unique to nursing. Remember, your future will be better than your present, because you will either endure this "initiation ritual" and get inside, or you will leave for greener pastures, whichever you choose, so do not loose hope!

    Oh, and as for those patients who have an unreasonable sence of entitlement, welcome to the profession. You will never escape that. Sigh!
  8. by   ecerrn
    You know the song - if you can make it there, you'll make it anywhere. Hang in and get your experience down, then bail on them. They have huge issues, you said it yourself, they can't keep people and basically shoved you into what you didn't want. Next time you'll handle things differently. Keep your head up high and keep on going. I never cried about anything until my grandma died, I find the shower is the best place to wash those tears down the drain - it's hard to drive well if you're bawling....I'd hate to get pulled over with snot running down my nose. You will find yourself getting stronger and more capable and confident as time goes on, keep your compassion intact and show all those battleax you can handle it!
  9. by   armyicurn
    Quote from aspiration
    Do not let a nasty preceptor ruin your spirit. She should not be allowed to precept.Hang in there.

    What she said and stand your ground next time that so called preceptor tries to sound like they are superior to you. They are not! I wished I was there to put this nut in their deserving place.
    It will get better. Keep going forward and do not stop.
  10. by   DebanamRN
    Keep up the good work. Eventually you will become more comfortable. I've seen experienced ER nurses go nuts with hard patients. I would have had the pt sedated and in 4 points ASAP and had the doc by his tail. But when I was a new ER nurse, no way. I didn't know the routine. I just transferred from an 18-bed community ER to a huge teaching ER and boy was it culture shock time! After 5 weeks I just started to feel comfortable and the others are accepting me. Of course, I'm to crazy to care what they think but it helps when your coworkers accept you. Also, when others throw stink bombs at me I throw them back, but again, when I was new I just clammed up. With this new job, I went to my educator and let her know which nurses I liked precepting me and luckily she let me go with them. In the past I had rotten preceptors and had to suck it up. Their attitude can bring you so down but really its about them, not you. After 6 years in the ER I finally learned this. You will be fine and just keep on going. One day you will not cry anymore. That is the day you will get mad instead and then you will know you have made it.
  11. by   sauconyrunner
    The last ED I worked in started out as a totally hostile environment. I had 12 years experience, much of it at a Level one, and also at the busiest ER in the state. So now I had this little community hospital job. I loved my new job. It was a lot easier for me to handle the patients. Immediately I got along with the doctors, and the registration staff. The Nurses hated me. They were awful to me, did not usually help, implied that I wasn't doing things their way, and so on and so forth. They really found they could not attack my nursing because I could handle it, but I remember describing my experience to my friends. I said, "I like the hospital, I like the pt level of care, I like the docs and my paycheck is great, but man the nurses hate me." Since I was living in my dream community and the pay was good, I decided to just go to work and go home. After about 4 months, they all decided I was one of them. I didn't do anything different. Turns out the whole department has this reputation. Everyone is given a cold shoulder, which is better than everyone being talked to rudely.
    Hang in. You are going to be great!!!! keep the head down, chin up (hard to do both?) and eventually you will be accepted, and you will be a position to be sure no one else gets dumped on like you did.
    This is an interesting post. I am a new grad and soon will embark in looking for a job.
    First the comment of "you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar", is one I was to taught since a child. It is so true in so many levels.
    So I ask, how can one stand one's ground against a comment made by a preceptor such as that one? This is the part that I am dreading, I pray that whoever will precept me will be patient and understanding that I will be new to everything in the unit. I am no pushover, I think the preceptor will soon discover that by my demeanor and my maturity (in my late forties), but I am sure to encounter one that will try to push boundaries, and I want to be tactful and diplomatic in the way I will reply and let my ground be known, but mostly I want to be professional.
    I know as nurses we are not perfect, but in the end who is the one that suffers? The patient. The fact that the nurses this new nurse works with behave in such a way is not a behavior one should expect from a nurse. What happened to team work, to helping each other? At the end we help the patient and keep our sanity.