What a Young One has to Say about Mistakes.

  1. My shortened version of mistakes -- I've been on orientation on a telemetry unit. I'm loving it.. and what makes it wonderful is how supportive the nursing staff has been towards me. I know that I've made a lot of mistakes, one in particular that I imagined would rile up my preceptor and send me home crying -- but, instead, she accepted that I'm new and that her and every other nurse on the floor had been in that position at one point or another.

    I've been a nurse for less than a month. I have a lifetime of learning to do. I still don't know why some nurses "eat their young"... which, I've found out through many, is really true. I'm sorry to the nurses that have been eaten, maybe even digested, and spit back out again into some other unidentifiable form.. maybe even at this very moment. I feel for you. For the experienced nurses, I hope you never forget how it feels to be the new girl/guy in town. And that what you say really does matter and that there's somebody behind that air of nonchalance who doesn't look affected by your words. Because chances are, they are affected.. greatly.. either in a good way or a bad way.

    I don't think teaching needs to be done by instilling fear.. by pushing and pushing. I know my opinion can't change this - but I know it can change the way how I treat another person - who will, in turn, perhaps remember our encounter, and pay it forward. No judgments. No pointing fingers. We're all in this together. Might as well make it the best we can for everybody else. By doing so, we make it that much better for ourselves.

    Thanks for listening.
    Last edit by Dempather on Sep 2, '06
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    About Dempather

    Joined: Jul '06; Posts: 180; Likes: 65
    Specialty: Emergency Room, Cardiology, Medicine

    4 Comments

  3. by   healer27
    hi dempather i just wanted to say thank you for sharing your story, i'm new as well and have been having a rough time. i'm also a couple weeks into a "internship" program which at the moment i'm not very thrilled with. my preceptor often just leaves me "hanging" and lots of nights i find myself "praying" that i've documented correctly and done everything correctly b/c honestly i don't feel like she has my back. i will be with a new preceptor in a couple of weeks and i'm praying things will be different. in any case, i'm sorry you had to go through that i totally felt for you in reading that and can understand the fear you've felt, it's a horrible place to be. but in reading these stories from other new grads it helps to see we are all just human, all going through the same struggles and all doing the best we can. i wish you all the best.
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Sep 4, '06
  4. by   cardiacRN2006
    Every time a new grad says the phrase 'nurses eat their young' an experienced nurse will come along as say that it isn't true.

    It's true.

    We just hired a bunch of new, experienced nurses to the unit. For a few days, they didn't know I was a new grad. They just thought I was on orientation, just like them. The spoke to me like a normal person and treated me as such. As soon as they found out I was new, it was back to being spoken to like I'm a little fool. I was even referred to as a student today. Whatever.
    My mistakes are only amplified because they think it's ok to point out my lack of experience (ignorance) and to glorify their arrogance.
  5. by   Tweety
    I'm one of those advocates for us experienced nurses and maintain that there isn't a culture of nurses eating their young.

    Unfortunatley the few that do give us a bad rep. A new grad can come across a dozen nurses in her/his day and one will bite and then run here and claim "nurses eat their young". Yes there are toxic units where perhaps all the nurses are cold hearted snakes. There are even instructors who instill fear in students "watch out when you graduate because nurses eat their young".

    Whenever I hear things like "nurses eat their young", "nurses are catty and gossip because it's a female dominated" I cringe because I know they are stereotypes. True stereotypes in some people but labeling the entire profession just doesn't sit right by me, because I see many mentoring and good nurses in my day.

    Back to the original poster. I appreciate you sharing what it feels like to be you. As a mentor and preceptor I will try not to forget those feelings.
  6. by   PANurseRN1
    ITA. I am sick to death of it. Where's the appreciation for all of the experienced nurses who do take the time with new nurses? Hmmm?

    The silence is deafening...

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