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The Honeymoon That Never Came

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Specializes in Medical Surgical.

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Merrie82, RN

Specializes in Medical Surgical.

27 minutes ago, Been there,done that said:

You are  still in orientation. Some of your observations may be correct, some may not be.  I didn't know which end was up for 2 years.

Please clarify your time off. If you get 5 weeks off in the first year... that is unusual. Are you saying that you can use 2 weeks for vacation requests.. and the other 3 weeks is only for sick time?  Most facilities combine it into paid time off.

 

Hi! Yah, I get 5 weeks of earned time (all one bank), but can only use 2 as vacation time. The rest either gets used as sick time, or you have to cash out at the end of the year. I am not sure if I am getting more than a typical new nurse, as I have worked for the same organization for about 6 years prior to taking on this nursing role. 

Merrie82, RN

Specializes in Medical Surgical.

23 hours ago, Davey Do said:

You're really a funny person, Merrie.

Since you didn't get to experience your job honeymoon, do you feel like your head is spinning?

Like mine?

I'm only funny in writing TBH...in person I'm a total snooze fest😴🤤😆

You on the other hand are probably funny all the time. I love the spinning head....accurate too LOL.

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 10 years medical. Has 42 years experience.

30 minutes ago, Merrie82 said:

I'm only funny in writing TBH...in person I'm a total snooze fest

You on the other hand are probably funny all the time. I love the spinning head....accurate too LOL.

Personalities come through in the written- typed- word, and I interpret your writing as one who is an intelligent, insightful, expressive, energetic individual who has a slightly different slant on things than your average frog.

Your choice of title was the first indication, choosing the word honeymoon over something like immediate job fulfillment.

I am funny all the time, even when in despair. Some of my most humourous creations are the product of some major life crises. Humor is my way of dealing with my pain as well as it is my way of celebrating my life.

I will be interested in seeing where this, as you first described yourself, new nurse, goes. You may not have had your honeymoon, but I for one would like to see how your marriage with nursing evolves.

 

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Merrie82, RN

Specializes in Medical Surgical.

21 hours ago, Davey Do said:

Personalities come through in the written- typed- word, and I interpret your writing as one who is an intelligent, insightful, expressive, energetic individual who has a slightly different slant on things than your average frog.

Your choice of title was the first indication, choosing the word honeymoon over something like immediate job fulfillment.

I am funny all the time, even when in despair. Some of my most humourous creations are the product of some major life crises. Humor is my way of dealing with my pain as well as it is my way of celebrating my life.

I will be interested in seeing where this, as you first described yourself, new nurse, goes. You may not have had your honeymoon, but I for one would like to see how your marriage with nursing evolves.

The sparkle is fantastic 🤣...and thank you ❤. I definitely get using humor to plow through the *** parts. I tend to use sarcasm with a heaping pile of caffeine (I know, healthy, right!). 

In all seriousness though, I really appreciate the thoughtfulness of your response. I bet you're one hell of a friend and nurse.

Here's to many more fun and frank conversations.

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 10 years medical. Has 42 years experience.

I got the sparkle idea from a Fabio GIF posted in the allnurses Breakroom some years back.

Sarcasm is okay- just don't become a @cynical-RN!

I am antisocial and like @Emergent, have no friends.

11 hours ago, Merrie82 said:

Here's to many more fun and frank conversations.

Fun & Frank sounds like a cartoon.

 

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Here's to you, Merrie!

Tweety, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac. Has 28 years experience.

That sounds like a crazy policy.  On the bright side if you don't call off you get a nice chunk of change.  My facility, probably like most these days, has a max you can accure for PTO before asking you to cash out, I think it's about 350 hours.  

I never really heard of a honeymoon phase for nursing as it's stressful from the moment you start school and from there on.  LOL

Good luck.  

DowntheRiver

Specializes in Urgent Care, Oncology. Has 7 years experience.

Was it this way when you worked in your other department? Something seems fishy about this, since you said it might be department specific. Can you call HR anonymously and ask? I'm wondering if your manager is pulling some tomfoolery. At my last job, you could cash out PTO, but if you did that you were charged 20% so you only got 80% of what you cashed out. Do they do the same thing? Because I'd definitely be upset then. 

Merrie82, RN

Specializes in Medical Surgical.

15 hours ago, DowntheRiver said:

Was it this way when you worked in your other department? Something seems fishy about this, since you said it might be department specific. Can you call HR anonymously and ask? I'm wondering if your manager is pulling some tomfoolery. At my last job, you could cash out PTO, but if you did that you were charged 20% so you only got 80% of what you cashed out. Do they do the same thing? Because I'd definitely be upset then. 

I don't think they charge us for cashing out pto. And no, my other department was not like this, but I think it IS the "official" policy. Some departments apparently just work around it or disregard it. I have talked to several nurses from other departments now, and it varies whether they follow it. I guess my old department manager was just more willing to work with the nurses. 

On 2/15/2021 at 8:39 AM, Davey Do said:

Fun & Frank sounds like a cartoon.

 

2069486812_funfrank.gif.fef988697e29634b64c778d3a72f7843.gif

 

Here's to you, Merrie!

Ooh! Can I be Frank? I'm good at that 🤣

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 10 years medical. Has 42 years experience.

1 hour ago, Merrie82 said:

Ooh! Can I be Frank? I'm good at that

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MHDNURSE, BSN, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in Pediatrics, Community, and School Health. Has 21 years experience.

On 2/13/2021 at 11:16 PM, Nunya said:

I cannot believe a hospital gives you 5 weeks of PTO but only allows you to use 2.  Is this legal?

This is my first question to you- I honestly can't believe that this is legal.  Did they just say "you get five weeks off per year" but fail to tell you that two are PTO and three are sick leave?  Sounds fishy to me.

And my second thought is I do not know any nurses who ever said the first couple of years were the honeymoon phase. For the majority of us, the first couple years are the hardest because you are green and do not know anything and are always worried about making the right decisions.  I found the honeymoon phase around year three when I started feeing settled and more confident .

Merrie82, RN

Specializes in Medical Surgical.

1 hour ago, MHDNURSE said:

This is my first question to you- I honestly can't believe that this is legal.  Did they just say "you get five weeks off per year" but fail to tell you that two are PTO and three are sick leave?  Sounds fishy to me.

Pretty much. 😕 Although technically its all 1 bank of earned time, so how they can separate it out IDK. But, they do, and while it sucks, I don't imagine there are labor laws protecting my PTO since its an optional benefit. Here's to hoping if a union really is approved we can get that rectified. But I won't hold my breath.

And about the rest...I will happily take my honeymoon as a delayed event at the 3 year mark 😉

What you are saying does not pass the smell test with me, I think you should consult an employment attorney or post this on a forum where you can ask a lawyer.

brandy1017, ASN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care.

I think without a union contract mgmt can restrict vacations, especially now due to the short staffing plus Covid.  I expected this to happen when Covid hit and many places were short nurses.  I suspect it is a new policy to deal with the current shortages.  Curious if nurses at other hospitals have had their vacations restricted in the past year as well.

On 2/16/2021 at 2:02 PM, Merrie82 said:

Pretty much. 😕 Although technically its all 1 bank of earned time, so how they can separate it out IDK. But, they do, and while it sucks, I don't imagine there are labor laws protecting my PTO since its an optional benefit. Here's to hoping if a union really is approved we can get that rectified. But I won't hold my breath.

And about the rest...I will happily take my honeymoon as a delayed event at the 3 year mark 😉

I don't know about it being an "optional" benefit.  It's part of the employment package.  If it's part of what the organization promised you when you were hired, then it's something they owe you.  It's not optional to withhold part of an employee's compensation. I mean, technically, anything over minimum wage is "optional" in that they're not legally obligated to offer more, but employers can't decide they're only going to pay you minimum wage after you sign a contract for a higher wage.  

Of course, I'm not a lawyer, so I don't know for sure, so the above is just how I'm reasoning it out.  And since neither of us is a lawyer, I agree that you might want to talk to a real life employment attorney about this. Better to find out definitively than just speculate whether or not you have grounds for legal complaint. 

And whether or not this policy is a violation of the current contract, unionization is probably a good route to both get a better contract and hold management to it.  Them letting you actually use less than half of your PTO is pure cattle manure. 

Edited by turtlesRcool

On 2/15/2021 at 6:35 PM, DowntheRiver said:

Was it this way when you worked in your other department? Something seems fishy about this, since you said it might be department specific. Can you call HR anonymously and ask? I'm wondering if your manager is pulling some tomfoolery. At my last job, you could cash out PTO, but if you did that you were charged 20% so you only got 80% of what you cashed out. Do they do the same thing? Because I'd definitely be upset then. 

Do you have an Employee Handbook?  Seems there should be something in writing about PTO and how it can or can't be used.  And about having to cash out yearly.

If you don't have one or you have an old one, you could certainly legitimately ask for one from HR.  

The devil in the policy as you describe it is that you will likely get written up/fired for excessive absenteeism if you try to use anything even close to the 3 weeks not used for vacation.

Maybe one way around it is to go on intermittent FMLA if you have an appropriate situation that makes you eligible for that.  

If you like the job, get the experience and then maybe consider moving on.  Of course, the grass is not always greener on the other side.  Every situation in life has its plusses and minuses.

Best wishes.

 

FallingInPlace, ADN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med Surg, Hospice, Wound Care. Has 8 years experience.

That stinks, PTO should be yours to use as you wish.  Check your manual and see if the hospital explicitly states that.  If so, I would suddenly develop  migraines...

Even though we're short-staffed and management is not approving any planned PTO currently, when people call out at my workplace, it's not usually questioned as long as it's not excessive.  Cars break down, kids get sick, employees get sick.  Might make your tenure on this unit a little more palatable to occasionally take advantage of it.  

Merrie82, RN

Specializes in Medical Surgical.

On 2/22/2021 at 2:28 PM, FallingInPlace said:

If so, I would suddenly develop  migraines...

LOL...I actually already have chronic migraines 🙃  so it would be totally believable 🤣🤷‍♀️🤦‍♀️