Drawing the Line: Shutting Down Verbal Abuse - page 2

It's 3 p.m. The witching hour for any operating room. As our medical director makes rounds, he tallies up how many late rooms are running, and compares that to how many surgical and anesthesia... Read More

  1. by   PureLifeRN
    Great article! I also work in the OR and know how hard it can be to be nice to snarky surgeons. People who don't work in the OR just don't know how psychologically distressing it can be! OR personnel are very aware that we depend on surgeons for work, so there has to be a certain amount of politeness when addressing docs. Our charge nurse is so great at smoothing things over with the docs, and that is a true gift. I once had a surgeon so mad that he left the room gowned, gloved and bloody and stormed to the front desk to yell at the charge nurse, only to come back in 5 minutes later with a smile! That's the sign of a good charge nurse. If you get ***** with every doctor who has an attitude then your no better than they are. You absolutely did the right thing by explaining yourself to the fellow.
  2. by   PMFB-RN
    OP you are a saint and tolerated the fellow's behavior MUCH longer then I would have. I very much disagree with you that hanging up on her was unprofessional. You were left with no other options in the face of aggresive bullying.
    I am almost alwasy unable to stop myself from responding in kind, usually followed by an invitation to meet them alone in the parking lot for a "talk". Now THAT is unprofessional and I know it. It is however also highly effective and stoping and preventing rude, agressive, condecending behavior from physicians.
  3. by   tokmom
    That's why I never wanted to work in an OR! No way do I want to be surrounded by Prima Donna surgeons lashing out for things beyond anyone's control.
  4. by   multi10
    You are absolutely right. Abusers and bullies will scream at people they deem "underlings", then turn around and smile in the faces of their bosses. (Sometimes the bosses have done the same annoying and/or objectionable actions the underling did.)
    It's the old "kick the dog" syndrome. It's very cruel. These people need to be reported and weeded out.
  5. by   RegisteredNuisance
    Loved the article. When in the middle of a conversation where you're being bullied, it's easy to get anxious, lose your composure and join in on the arguing. I thought you responded in a mature, levelheaded fashion. If only we ALL were able to defuse a situation like that.

    I'm not correcting your behavior, but I might have said, "Dr whatever, I am hanging up the phone now, goodbye." and then hung up the phone, just to cover my butt in case someone decided to write me up for it.
    Last edit by RegisteredNuisance on Jun 17, '13 : Reason: changed write "you" up to "me"
  6. by   canoehead
    Absolutely professional response by the OP, I wouldn't have lasted that long. I think my go-to response, after explaining the reasoning would be to discuss it with the director if you don't like the decisions, conversation over.
  7. by   Calabria
    I hope that you wrote up the fellow.
  8. by   Lmrc StudentNrse
    Hey DukeGirl!

    Absolutely fantastic post. Bullying (especially among nurses) is so common and such a hot topic these days. Even as a student nurse I have both observed and unfortunately experienced this bad behavior. Considering that nursing is such a "team sport" it's very upsetting knowing that bullying has become the norm in most hospitals, especially involving new nurses. I really enjoyed reading your guidelines and tips on how to deal with these tough situations, I will definitely use this helpful information going forward. Thanks!
    Canes, thank you so much for stating the guidelines, as a novice, I heard so many times of "nurses eat their young". I will keep them in mind in case I come across someone trying to disrespect me.
  10. by   monkeybug
    Quote from prmenrs
    @Jose--"fellow" in this case refers to the doctor's place in the teaching hospital heirarchy. She is one step below the attending (professor) on the service. She has completed her residency and is receiveing advanced education in the specialty. She has been around long enough to know better how to interact w/other members of the team in a productive manner. Apparently, in this case, she missed the class on how to play nicely and the one on listening.
    Ah, fellows. Even the kindest, most logical resident will often turn into a megalomaniacal nightmare when they become the fellow. Sometimes they are awesome people that you end up missing at the end of the year, more often you count down the days until they are gone.
  11. by   monkeybug
    Quote from canesdukegirl
    Here's the bottom line: I knew that Dr. D personally spoke to this fellow about holding her case. She didn't speak to him the same way she spoke to me. If she had, then it would have been dealt with in his office. Since Dr. D and I agreed on this plan, why is it that she had no compunction to be disrespectful to me? Because she thinks that she can bully a nurse. I thought it prudent to stand up for myself, and send a very clear message that rudeness and bullying will not be tolerated.
    Why does she believe that? Because she's not been taught any differently. And I suspect she's probably seen doctors act like bullies and benefit from the behavior. We had older attendings, years ago, who insisted that the nurses be treated with respect. Now, not so much.