Hey everyone this is a long tale but I feel like I need some help deciphering what is going on.
I’ve been an RN for five years with the majority of my experience being on an ICU stepdown floor which I loved but I was PRN and after 3.5 years I was getting put on call so often I wasn’t making any money. So I happened to find a job posting for a private duty position to a fourteen year old male nonverbal and bedbound patient with CP and severe epilepsy. His mother stays home with him around the clock and the father does not live in the home and is not involved with his care. The mom took a class through Medicaid to qualify as her own EOR and be able to hire, train and fire all her own nurses versus going through an agency after numerous “nursing horror stories” according to her. She said the longest they’d kept a nurse was four months. (First warning sign?) Anyway while she controls the hiring etc I am still paid via Medicaid not out of her pocket.
The job has sucked my soul out. I am expected to do all work related to my patient. ALL. While I don’t mind washing his g tube supplies and med cups etc and even washing and putting away his sheets and towels THAT I USE WHILE IM THERE she expects me to do all laundry while I’m there (except her stuff although when I leave towels etc not related to my patient she points out where they go so I can put them away next time...like that was the reason I didn’t). She chewed me out one time for his shirt drawer being disorganized except I had no idea I was supposed to maintain that and if it was messy it was from her not me as I never use it. She has made it crystal clear that I am expected to take out his dirty briefs to the dumpster (they live in an equal housing opportunity apartment building) and used to leave their household trash sitting by the door for me to take too without actually asking me to take it. When I just ignored it and wouldn’t take it she started putting my patients briefs in the household trash so suddenly I had to take it. She says because my patients supplies get put in there and because I throw my apple core etc in there I shouldn’t be mad about taking it out. Her grown son who uses prescription drugs lives there and so her excuse of her arthritis hurting her wrists too much doesn’t fly with me. At one point she even took the trash cans away “since everyone is arguing about who will take out the trash we just won’t have any.” I had to put all my own trash in my bag and collect my patients in a plastic grocery bag to take out at the end of the day.
when I first started there was a designated bathroom for me to use that she kept clean and no one else really used. But she made it clear she expected me to wipe down the vanity and sink and once even passively left the toilet bowl open with a brush and cleaner in it like a hint for me to clean it since I’m the only one who uses it. Now the whole family uses it and it is often disgusting. I never throw anything in the trash can in there and barely touch anything and yet I’m still expected to periodically clean it??
and then the baby monitors. My patient has severe and frequent seizures so I understand having them but she didn’t my first six months. Now the whole house pretty much is monitored with the bathrooms and one or two little corners being the only area she can’t see. And she watches it constantly even when she’s home. She will be sitting on the porch while im sitting there with the son and be watching him on the Monitor. She checks him constantly when she goes out too. She goes back through the footage to see what happened and to prove me wrong about things frequently. When I gently finally asked her if she was monitoring me because she didn’t trust me blew up at me about her right as a parent to know what’s going on with her son at all times. She may be right but isn’t this excessive?
within a week of me starting there she texted me the WiFi password. One of the main draws to me taking this job was she assured me in my down time I could be working on my BSN and other classes. But then suddenly she’s telling me I’m on my phone too much even though I only do it when my patient is sleeping or having such a bad seizure day that we are just sitting around and I’m at his bedside. We have to keep it dark on those days so I can’t read so am I expected to just sit in the dark all day? Then suddenly she changed the WiFi password and when I asked her about it she said “oh I never give out my password” and I said well you did and she acted like she had no memory of our conversation about school work etc. so she hasn’t given me the new one and now I sacrifice my own data to chart and put in my time sheet.
she hardly ever leaves and hovers around me all the time doing half his care often. She asks my opinion on medical things and then quickly rebuts me as she always knows better than I do because she is “a researcher and has studied up on these things”.
there is so much more but that’s the gist. Is this situation bonkers? Some days I’m like oh it’s fine I can deal and other days I’m like this is so demoralizing and ridiculous. I love my patient but this can’t be normal right?