New grad need help

  1. I am a new graduate nurse that just started my first ever job in healthcare. When I was in nursing school no specialty or particular field jumped out at me so I decided to give Med surg a try. I've now been in my job for 3 months and it is steadily getting worse... I feel like my manager was dishonest during my interview and presented the floor and staff in a manor that is not accurate. I asked for an extension on my 6 week orientation because I did not feel ready to be on my own and was simply told "no". Each day when I ask for help everyone says they are too busy to help or answer a question, and even charge nurses tell me they do not have time to assist me. When I ask other members of the staff for help, like aids, they too tell me they are either too busy or just say no completely. Our charge nurses also just told us that we have to clock out on time and if we have to stay late to chart we no longer get paid for staying... I feel like I am on my own and constantly drowning. I have met with my manager a couple of times to try to talk about the lack of help and how unhappy I feel but he brushes me off. I stay awake all night dreading my job, even on nights I don't work the next day and cry every morning. Even when I get to work I cry. My anxiety is so severe I sometimes get physically ill. I know it sounds dramatic but I am completely miserable. I told myself to stick it out until the 6 month mark but for my own sanity I truly don't think I can. I feel hopeless because I don't know any other units to try that could let me get my feet under me. I love helping my patients but my coworkers and Med surg are beginning to make me hate nursing. Someone help!!
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    About cberry1

    Joined: Sep '18; Posts: 1

    5 Comments

  3. by   Sour Lemon
    Quote from cberry1
    I am a new graduate nurse that just started my first ever job in healthcare. When I was in nursing school no specialty or particular field jumped out at me so I decided to give Med surg a try. I've now been in my job for 3 months and it is steadily getting worse... I feel like my manager was dishonest during my interview and presented the floor and staff in a manor that is not accurate. I asked for an extension on my 6 week orientation because I did not feel ready to be on my own and was simply told "no". Each day when I ask for help everyone says they are too busy to help or answer a question, and even charge nurses tell me they do not have time to assist me. When I ask other members of the staff for help, like aids, they too tell me they are either too busy or just say no completely. Our charge nurses also just told us that we have to clock out on time and if we have to stay late to chart we no longer get paid for staying... I feel like I am on my own and constantly drowning. I have met with my manager a couple of times to try to talk about the lack of help and how unhappy I feel but he brushes me off. I stay awake all night dreading my job, even on nights I don't work the next day and cry every morning. Even when I get to work I cry. My anxiety is so severe I sometimes get physically ill. I know it sounds dramatic but I am completely miserable. I told myself to stick it out until the 6 month mark but for my own sanity I truly don't think I can. I feel hopeless because I don't know any other units to try that could let me get my feet under me. I love helping my patients but my coworkers and Med surg are beginning to make me hate nursing. Someone help!!
    "Med/surg" is not the problem, but the way your particular unit is run may be. I've had horrible med/surg jobs and I currently have a wonderful med/surg job.
    I think it wouldn't hurt to look around for other opportunities, but as a struggling new graduate, you don't have much to offer yet. If you can keep your head above water for while in your current position, you'll be more marketable. I stayed at my first job for two years.
    Your coworkers are probably drowning too, as opposed to not wanting to help you.
    ***Never work off the clock.
  4. by   dennis8
    I know the feeling of dreading going to work the first time I started working as a nurse. Even on my days off I would dread the thought of going to work in the coming days. I know it's hard to imagine, but it does get easier with time. Around the 1 year mark I felt like I had a good grasp of how the unit runs. But in my situation, my coworkers were all helpful and understanding. If you work days, have you tried applying to a night position? Nights tend to be less busy and you would have more time to learn the ropes. You would also have a new set of coworkers at night who may be different than the ones you currently work with. Best of luck.
  5. by   ButterflyRN90
    Quote from dennis8
    I know the feeling of dreading going to work the first time I started working as a nurse. Even on my days off I would dread the thought of going to work in the coming days. I know it's hard to imagine, but it does get easier with time. Around the 1 year mark I felt like I had a good grasp of how the unit runs. But in my situation, my coworkers were all helpful and understanding. If you work days, have you tried applying to a night position? Nights tend to be less busy and you would have more time to learn the ropes. You would also have a new set of coworkers at night who may be different than the ones you currently work with. Best of luck.
    When suggesting nights it's not really easier. I love nights but we have fewer nurses, less resources, the NM is not there, and you become "friends" with Rapid response. Nights is a different beast. Doctors also snap at you when you call their cell phone at 2am because a patient's potassium level is 3 and he didn't answer the last 4 pages and will not ask how the patient is but instead say: "How did you get this number!?" I love nights, as I've stated above, but it's definitely not for everyone.
  6. by   Kaylight
    I am a new grad also working on a med-surg floor, and I hate it. It seems I am overloaded with work, and the charge nurse gives me the difficult patients all the time. If I am drowning she just glares at me and says that I am expected to take 5 patients no matter what their acuity is. I don't get breaks, and sometimes don't get lunch. There seems to be some type of crazy thing going on all the time. I have been hit by a patient, and had an excessive number of psyche patients to deal with. Some of the charge nurses are bullies, and I am tired of working there already.
  7. by   caffeinatednurse
    It takes a while to adjust to the chaos of a med-surg unit. You're often too busy to help out your coworkers, and your coworkers are usually drowning just like you. It's not always like that, but it's not uncommon for it to be that way. Being a new grad on a med-surg unit can be super overwhelming, but it is possible to adjust, with some well-intended advice and assistance.

    But, there are those units that are not the best environment for a new grad to start out. I hardly feel that a 6 week orientation is sufficient for a new grad. The new grads we've been training on our unit have a 12 week orientation, and they always have the opportunity for a longer orientation, should they require it.

    I would try to stick it out. It looks pretty bad when you leave a job after a few months, unless you already have another job lined up. Is there a nurse educator that you can speak to? Many times, nurse educators can be the go-between for you and your manager.

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