Why are dayshift nurses so grouchy?

  1. I recently read a post in this forum that mentioned something about dayshift nurses were rude and grouchy. In my experience I've noticed the same thing. I've worked all shifts and it seems on days the nursing staff is grouchier and can be rude, even where i work now. Is it because there's more administrative staff around during the day? Or is the work load more overwhelming?
    I work nights now and love it, even though the staffing is decreased, we get along great and it's rather laid back in attitude. We are quit busy, some nights with hardly time for a lunch break, but over all it is a nice shift. I admit I love the fact we don't have administration breathing down our necks!
    Where I work we are short staffed over all and are always hiring new people, they come and orientate on days and usually quit before they are oriented to evenings or nights. Most of the complaints have been that they staff is rude and don't get along well. Does anyone else have this problem??
    If so perhaps we should start our new employees orientating on nights, then evenings and finally nights, maybe they wouldn't quit and wouldn't judge the entire nursing staff by the treatment they recieved from dayshift.
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    About DeathRowRn

    Joined: Mar '00; Posts: 7; Likes: 3
    Correctional Nurse


  3. by   askater
    I notice the same thing...

    I don't know why?

    Most nursing units take a while to get a day position. By the time I get a days position...I'm ready to leave. There's so many different positions... I get an itch to leave.

    The off shift work well for me. Some day nurses I worked with had an itch to leave. But couldn't because all the positions available were off shift. They were stuck.
  4. by   justanurse
    Not all of us are grouchy.
    I think day shift is stressful where ever you work at. I work in a hospital and you've got to do your patient care (baths, treatments, meals, meds, etc.), explain things to them, & deal with extended family. Then there are the tests that have been ordered. And, at least two phone calls to go with each test. I work in critical care and there has to be a nurse accompanying the patient where ever he/she goes, not good when you've got no better staffing than on night shift. And, then there are those lovely professional doctors to contend with. And, then here comes more family to ask the same questions all over again, instead of finding the family member who has been here all day to get the answer.

    Now, mind you I realize that night shift is busy too, but generally there is a lull in there about 1-4 am. Families have gone home, or are catching a nap. Not many tests are ordered for the middle of the night, and thank God, most patients sleep a LITTLE during the night (docs too).

    And, then there are those emergencies that catch both shifts equally and throw the best-laid plans right out the window.

    Ok, I'm only occasionally grouchy, but I try to smile a lot.
  5. by   Genista
    Hello. I'm a day shift RN & couldn't help but reply.I'm happy to report that the nurses on my shift are a friendly, polite group overall.We're a little worn out at end of shift sometimes, but still in good spirits and not usually grumpy (most days, ha ha). I recently moved to day shift from pms. The change has been interesting. I can say that day shift for me is much busier. Time flies by- with all the am labs, tests, meals, tx, new orders, working w/ patients & family & ancillary staff. It's hectic, but everyone pitches in & we get the job done.On a personal level, I prefer the more "normal" working hours.It's a mystery to me why you are observing negative attitudes w/ day shift staff. I have worked at other facilities where night shift was the designated "grumpy" and humorless group (I always thought it may be due to lack of sleep?). So, go figure! Thanks for an interesting topic.
  6. by   Brian
    Maybe it's a morning thing? I've worked all shifts, and I'd have to agree day shifters tend to be more crabby, then evenings 2nd? For some strange reason, the night shift nurses have always been a fun and in good moods for the most part.

    In my opinion, I do think days shifts are busier than most other shifts (at least in our hospital). But then again, it is usually staffed better also.

    just my $0.02
  7. by   Heather27
    I have worked all three shifts. I KNOW I am grumpier during the day!! That's a Depends-full that days are busier!! My nights are WAY busy...I make them that way!! LOL Seriously, in LTC, a LOT of units are JUST as busy during EACH shift. My theory is that there is a LOT of garbage that days puts up with from admin, supervisors, families, and doctors ..ugh! SOME day-shifters get a high opinion of themselves, too...let 'em walk a mile in my NurseMates! We need to learn to respect each other more, and appreciate what one shift does for the next!!


    [This message has been edited by Heather27 (edited March 11, 2000).]
  8. by   Erbn Girl
    Hey Gang! I feel that no one shift is grumpier than the other but I feel that both day shift and evening shifts are the most stressful when it comes to all that was previously posted (the family, docs, tests, admissions etc!). I work the night shift currently but have also worked some days and nights and I do believe it is all of the constant whirl of activity that could make ANYONE cranky! Our night shift is mostly busy too, but there is not that large amount of personnel present (unless you have a code, etc). Although I will be doing 12hrs shifts of both days and nights on my new job, I probably will always favor the nights, but I wholeheartedly give credit to those on days and pms because they take the bruxt of the inconsiderate medical staff as well as families and ancillary staff. I think an occasional grumpy attitude can be overlooked as being overtaxed. Another thought to a previous post-maybe day shift nursing personnel get annoyed easily in that so many new personnel come in that they may have to train, and when they finally think they have someone that will be there commrade, they leave for another position??? Just a thought!!
  9. by   jimbob
    Whoa - lots of interesting comment here gals and guys (presuming there is another guy out there using this (great) communication system???

    But to the prize for the most grumpiest shift? Well, currently working a longish stint of nights in an acute care psychiatric setting, and I don't think that any one shift takes the prize. So far while bridging to the Bachelor of Health Science Nursing Degree here in NZ I have worked in surgical, coronary care, pediatrics, looked briefly at theatre (sorry folks but if I'd wanted to specialise in counting I'd have become an accountant and earned much better dosh). Don't think there is any one shift that takes the cake there either. I've always found that it depends greatly on the person. I've worked with some great nurses on all shifts - and likewise have worked with some real Crabbit-Ratchet ******* and bas....... (don't know if I'm allowed to use that word, so will not type it in full -sorry for any offence inadvertently caused)
    Anyway, great topic folks, keep the comments coming in and everybody be nice to at least 1 nurse you don't know today- you may be missing out on a great lover, good friend or mighty pal. Which ever it is, you won't know unless you say Hi and smile... huh?
  10. by   nurseyperson
    OK, I have an idea. First of all, I work days, but have worked many nights. I can't see where days are grumpier, but if they do so seem so at your place, may be it has to do with this. The nurses with the most seniority (or longevity) are on days...have worked their way up to the most "normal" shift as far as life is concerned. So if they have been a nurse for 10 years or so (or whatever) maybe they are more BURNED OUT. I know that is how it feels for some of us.
    It does make a difference when you have to serve 3 meals, have tons of family, phone calls, tests, 5 Doctors coming in all at once and you have to find lost XRays, lab results, get the daily chewing because something wasn't done right (in their opinion!) all of it done right away because THEY are busy.
    Day work is DIFFERENT than on nights, not harder. Nights are often shorter staffed. I don't mind working hard, but I would just it rather be working with the patients and not looking up lab tests, etc. Talking with the family and patient teaching is part of patient care, but when you have to tell 10 different family members the same thing over and over, you get a little frustrated. And when you are interupted for the 4th time while trying to do the same procedure, and when you barely have time to pee...and then you do get a chance to run to the cafeteria for leftovers and see the skirts and suits (Admin) sitting there on their 3rd break of the day and getting paid a lot more than you... you begin to wonder why you chose this profession. Actually, I have noticed a big difference working weekends, also. It is less tense, more like working on nights. Just what I think!!!!


    [This message has been edited by nurseyperson (edited March 12, 2000).]
  11. by   RNkat
    I'm a night shift nurse and although my body is telling me to work days I really don't want to . But alas, more training and such has caused me to consider the "change". Just want you "nights" out there to know that I will try not to fall into the grouchy catgory...haha. And will try not to keep you "over" asking tons of questions in report (my biggest pet peeve).
  12. by   NightOwl
    Well I feel the need to cast my vote on the grouchy shift. It is days hands down.
    When I started at my current position 2 years ago. I began my orientation on days of course and could not wait to go to nights. There was no way I was going to get paid LESS to put up with MORE crap!
    One of the biggest problems I see is the power trip some of the day girls get on. "Im days so Im superior" Believe it or not day people not everyone wants to be on days. There are several of us out here who prefer the off shifts.
  13. by   LaurieCRNP2002
    Hello there!
    Just thought I'd chip in my two cents worth...I think, in different ways, that all shifts can be stressful. Days b/c of having to deal with getting patients to tests, dealing with docs, med students, families, other departments, etc. Evenings tends to get the post-op/post-cardiac cath/post-procedure patients that left the middle or end of day shift. Plus families are still around, some docs,etc. What makes nights stressful is the heavier workload (at my old job, on a telemetry floor, 6-7 patients was not uncommon). I recently changed jobs, moving to intensive care and my new position will be a day/night rotation. Certainly nights is harder b/c of not being on the normal "circadian schedule" as everyone else.
    I think nurses on any shift are prone to grumpiness. Given all the stresses that nurses on all shifts in all specialties face these days, is it any wonder that we snap at each other and take out our frustrations on each other? Nursing must come together as a profession now more than ever, since we are facing another shortage. Let's show consideration to ALL nurses, regardless of shift, specialty,etc.

  14. by   MollyJ
    Why are night shift people so weird? Why are evening folks so flighty?

    These are stereotypes, though I think that all shifts certainly have their own personalities (hmm, maybe I should go in to politics...).

    Anyhow, I've enjoyed reading the comments on this thread, just wanted to challenge the underlying assumption.