Feeling useless... (slightly long vent)

Nurses General Nursing


I need some advice everyone...

I moved to a small town a few months back to take a position in LTC. Although it has gone well and I am told that they like me around there...I am starting to feel unappreciated and useless at times. Maybe this is because I am a new grad and don't know as much as I should know and that I am working with nurses who have been there FOREVER and a day!

Also, I am really getting tired of one of our Nurses Attendants. I know that if I was the nurse manager I'd be having a chat with her. It seems like she is always stirring up trouble with her opinions and take on the "way things should be".

I am quite upset with this and HER because one of our younger residents came to me stating that he did not like how she would come over to his table in the dining room and stand around and make jokes etc while there were people at that table needing to be fed. Also, he did not feel that the staff's personal lives were any of the residents business and that that information was not appropriate meal conversation.

I wrote a short letter to staff in regards to this (not singleing anyone out) and got no flack from it. Then suddenly, just yesterday, this NA was yacking her gums off about it among other things and I was in the room. Made me feel like a piece of crap!

She is just not a very nice woman at all, in fact she didn't talk to me for 2 weeks after I had said to 'fleet' a resident that she didn't agree needed to be 'fleeted'. This woman is NOT on the Unit 2, she continually works on Unit 1 and does not see the workload from that side firsthand either. Yet, she has the nerve to sit there and tell staff to "quit their witching" and to "suck it up".

I know this sounds crazy, but it really frustrates me! Where does SHE get off? It seems like she's trying to make me look bad. Am I worrying over nothing?

renerian, BSN, RN

5,693 Posts

Specializes in MS Home Health.

Did you talk to your DON or unit super?


CoffeeRTC, BSN, RN

3,734 Posts

In my LTC the staff nurse is permitted to speak to/ discipline the aids. I would take the aid aside and speak to her about her non professional attitude, insubordination, and etc. I always give a verbal warning first then proceed from there. Speak with the supervisor/ DON and let them know what is giong on.... please don't let the aids tell you how to do your job..... I remember being a new grad and feeling helpless too......but if you dont nip this now...whatch out...Good luck

I know just what you are going through! When I first started my LTC job there was a CNA who had been there for 20 some years. She was used to just doing her own thing and I guess the charge nurse before me didn't mind. Needless to say, we had more than a few words in the first months of working together. Then finally one day she asked me why I felt the need to go behind her and check her work. I had no idea what she was talking about because I hadn't been checking up on her. Seems the previous nurse hardly ever left the desk so she was uncomfortable having me on "her wing".

We talked and I assured her that I had no need to check her work because she always did her job.

My point is, yes there is a point here;) , maybe try talking to your co worker. Maybe there is just an unspoken misunderstanding of some sort.

And as for feeling that you should know more.....don't be so hard on yourself. You are new to this. When you have been there a bit longer, you'll start to feel more confident.



126 Posts

Thanks so much...I've been beating my head against the wall today about this and I was starting to get a headache. I go back to work this weekend and will see about rectifying things.

passing thru

655 Posts

Well Gizzy, you are new and have set high expectations for yourself.

I would just watch the others, and do my job, and learn, and just look and listen.

I wouldn't be counseling other employees just yet, or knocking

off notes to the bosses, or critisising other employees yet.

Your younger resident knows where he can take his complaints to get results... he is just grousing 'cause he had a sympathetic ear... If I were you, I would have advised him to take it up with one of the supervisors.....

You may feel differently after you look and listen a while.

Most places are like a big dysunctional family. They sound bad to an outsider, but they are functioning,........... "getting the job done."

I'd suggest that now that you are out of school and have a job, that you start a real life now....get a life....lighten up, have some fun.

don't expect all of the positive strokes and appreciation you need in life to come from your place of employment.

That's unrealistic.

Do you have a significant other? ........ that helps...

and drop all statements and thoughts that contain the words,

.......... "I should" from your vocabulary....

Life will be brighter.


414 Posts

I agree with some of these suggestions and disagree with some. I do feel like you should look and listen, but if you come across a subordinate that needs counseling, do so at that time. I have worked in LTC for 25 years and know that when new nurses start the nurse assistants feel the need to test the new nurses. Do not let them get the upper hand and think that they can tell you how to do your job. Do not come down hard on them, but let them know that they are expected to do their jobs. They will respect you for it. If they ever think that they can run over you, they will. Not all of them, but some will. Do not be to hard on yourself. Even after 25 years, I was still learning things. Keep your eyes and mind open, the nursing assistants can be your best help and teacher as they see more of the residents than you do. Praise them when they deserve it and counsel them when they need that and you will make it just fine.

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