Your story resonated with me because it sounds just like mine. I started as a new grad at a highly specialized and very acute unit at a prestigious Boston hospital because I wanted to be on the cutting edge. I did my final practicum on the same floor, so I thought it would be a breeze transitioning into the RN role. However it turned out to be a disaster, sounding a lot like the position you are in now. I beat myself up, thinking I couldn't cut it as a nurse, which killed me. I had been successful in my previous career, so why couldn't I get this? My preceptor made me feel stupid when I asked questions more than once. I was repeatedly told that my performance was
"concerning" to the management. I kept asking for additional help off the floor, where there was less pressure, but I was ignored. I finally opted to get out. I was so stressed it was starting to affect my personal life. I moved to a smaller community hospital that was in the process of re-vamping their new grad program, and started all over again. I was up front at my interview about what happened at my previous job, but was careful to emphasize my successes as well, both in and out of nursing. My interviewer shared with me her own similar experiences. She completely understood and made clear that her goal was to provide a different experience for me and the other new grads in my group. Clearly they place a lot more value on the new grad role at my new hospital, and although I get paid less, I am actually ENJOYING a job that 5 months ago gave me panic attacks to even think about. My life is completely different now. I love my job, and I am thriving at my new hospital. Don't get me wrong, there are still those crazy days that make me question all of that student debt, but for the most part, I know I've found a good fit for me.
You can't look at it as "quitting", you have to look at it as "finding the right fit." Do some research, ask around, open your eyes to settings you may have not considered before. Look for a program that requires preceptors to go through training, and has a 360 degree evaluation program (your colleagues actually have input in your regular evalutions, meaning that if you're a jerk it affects your paycheck and potential for advancement!) Ask if there is a system for evaluating feedback from the nursing staff on how to improve the unit. Ask for examples of how this feedback has been implemented to make positive changes. Most importantly, think of yourself as a valuable addition to your potential new employer, and interview THEM about how they will support YOU! You're in a good position because you have some experience now, and you have a better idea of what you need, so you'll know what questions to ask.
I've actually found that my new role on a less acute floor is much more interesting than I thought it would be, because the pressure is off and I have more time to investigate details I never would have had time for in my old position. And my colleagues are not as stressed out so they have more time to be FRIENDLY and HELPFUL, and SUPPORTIVE of the new grads!
It's easy to say "oh just stay there, grin and bear it because these jobs all suck like that". But it's not true. It takes more strength to stay true to yourself, and put yourself int he scary situation of leaving that job for a new one, the unknown. Just think of the potential rewards...