Mean girls....OR Bullying

Specialties Operating Room


Hi all. :) Just wanted to vent and get a few takes on my current situation. I am a fairly new nurse (second career) and have been in the OR for about 1 year. I work in a large teaching hospital and I really love my job. I have recently completed orientation in the OR and now I am on my own in the rooms. I both circulate and scrub. I feel I have finally gotten a grasp on things and am doing well but I am still learning. I have been experiencing some rude behavior from co workers. I have been busting my butt to learn and grow and I have been told by my managers and nurse educator that they think I am doing well. Some days are better than others but an incident the other day made me question my abilities as a nurse. :(

An older nurse went to my nurse leader and told her that I 'looked lost''when I had gotten to the room that morning. :no:Normally there is a circulator and a scrub. This day there was 3 of us scheduled so we were trying to figure out who should do what and I was told by my nurse leader that I was to help circulate. Ok fine. The other circulating nurse was complaining the whole time that she was scheduled to leave and do lunches later that afternoon and obviously she didn't want to do it. After complaining about me "looking lost" to my nurse leader and then to the charge nurse, I was told to do the lunches so she could remain in the room. Later I was called into the nurse leader's office and asked how I was doing and she told me about the comment. I had been working in rooms on my own for at least 3 weeks and never had an issue and this nurse used the fact that I was new to her advantage, making me look incompetent in the process. And the whole time we were talking and working together like everything was fine. :nono:

Now I feel like other nurses are starting to look at me as if I don't know what I'm doing but after working with me clearly see that I am perfectly capable. How could someone do that?:unsure: I was so upset and broke down crying in her office, not just from this incident but from many others this past year. I am really fed up and know in my heart that I am doing an awesome job. I used to go to work with a smile on my face and excited to start the day. Now I feel bitter and disgust at some of the nurses I have to work with. I want my old happy self back. How do I deal with these nurse on a daily basis and keep my sanity? I'm thinking of leaving and starting over somewhere else. I know it's not that bad but I hate how I feel these days. I love being an OR nurse and I will die a nurse, but I now have headaches and heart palpitations every now and then because of the tremendous stress I feel.:nailbiting:

P.S. I have gotten confirmation from an experienced nurse that I am doing an awesome job and that there are "mean girls" in our OR.:snurse:

True, there are "mean OR nurses", however, suck it up. Do what you know is right and not worry about what others think. Not everyone will love you or hate you. Some people are hard to work with. Too many newer nurses want a "kum bay yah" experience every day and that is not going to happen. This is your second profession? Maybe you should look inside yourself. It is not the other nurses jobs to make you "feel good" every day. You have to be tough to last in any nursing job. We take care of people when they are at their worst. If you want to be happy, then be happy and don't depend on coworkers to constantly give you praises. It won't happen. This may sound harsh but this is reality on all levels. OR nursing is stressful. Some can make it look easy, some can't . Every profession has mean girls. Don't be one of those nurses who falls prey to them. Have confidence in yourself, admit your mistakes and be nice...Just saying

Thank you for your comment. And yes you are right. I don't expect to come to work and have a lovefest with everyone I encounter and have praises showered on me. Work is work and not everyone is in a good mood all the time (especially not at 7am before coffee) and we don't have to be friends to work together. All we need to do is get the job done and go home. I get it. But my issue is the nurse who goes behind your back and tries to make you look bad for her own personal gain. She didn't want to do the assignment she was given so she found a way to get out of it and used me to do it. I am at that sink or swim point in my practice and having to constantly prove myself. What she did was damaging, maybe not such a big deal, but it was an ugly thing to do to a new comer. She took advantage of the situation and being an experienced nurse wit xx amount of years under her belt, I never expected that.

Specializes in Medical and general practice now LTC.

OK everyone, a couple of posts have been removed from view as per the Terms of Service and personal attacks. I am sure you are capable of agreeing not to agree on a member without resorting to personal attacks. If you feel there is a persoanl attack or something that is a violation of the Terms of Service of the site please report the post/s and let staff deal with it.

Hate to say it but some nurses, especially the experienced ones are just plain stupid jerks. They pretend to be friends to your face then go talking behind your back. Its happened to me and I just blow them off. I never hope to be like that...why can't the experience nurses simply say hey these are the things you should prioritize and do these steps a b c and everything should be fine. Nope...they always have to rip someone's life apart to make their's look important.

I think this moment happens to us all. I started to learn how to avoid answering personal questions at work without sounding "snobbish" give a VAGUE answers with a REDIRECT. Bingo! People will talk whether they know more or less about you but people LOVE to talk about themselves. Be an observer and a listener. Silence speaks volume. I use this method very often and had better days than before. You do not have to only use this at work, use it in your personal life too.

Hang in there. First I was told that after orientation it would take me a year to be competent. Someone else said 2 years. Another said after 4 years I would be able to to a good job. HA! Then there are the nurses doing this 25 years and we have a trauma that they have never seen before and don't really know everything going on. Keep your eyes and ears pealed. Stay confident, continue to learn, and be careful whom you trust. Learn to accept constructive criticism and separate it from comments that are only said to make you feel small said by incompetent or insecure staff (doesn't have to be nurses doing the bullying). Be yourself. Walk into work with a smile and love your job. You have earned it.

Wow, I nearly the identical story as you! Do we work at the same place? LOL

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