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Why Do Nurses Eat Their Own?

Nurses Article   (95,169 Views 293 Replies 634 Words)
by nrsgofold nrsgofold, RN (New) New

nrsgofold has 20 years experience as a RN and specializes in ER,ICU.

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As current times have shown, we're short staffed. Administration wants to make money. So cuts are made to equipment and man power. Who has your back? Who can you rely on? Your fellow nurses? I'm not so sure anymore. Why do we as nurses eat our own when we should be teaching them and guarding them as our own. The fact is as we age our young nurses are going to be taking care of us, but there are those all too eager beavers who will in fact burn you. This is my experience. You are reading page 13 of Why Do Nurses Eat Their Own?. If you want to start from the beginning Go to First Page.

JimmyDurham9 has 6 years experience and specializes in Ambulatory Care, LTC, OB, CCU, Occ Hth.

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Here's that research I promised. I encourage everyone of you demanding your evidence and studies do your own research and think for yourselves. Don't sit and criticize something because it doesn't have what you think it should have. Remember: this is a forum. If you're looking for material to influence your practice, then you need to reevaluate much in the way of your research approach.

2011 ANA Health and Safety survey regarding hazards in the RN workplace listed this as area of high concern:

RNs threatened or verbally abused in 12-month period — 52% (57%)

http://nursingworld.org/FunctionalMenuCategories/MediaResources/MediaBackgrounders/The-Nurse-Work-Environment-2011-Health-Safety-Survey.pdf

From the American Psychiatric Nurses Association 2008 Position Paper: "health and safety consequences of horizontal violence (i.e., verbal, physical, and sexual abuse from coworkers) have received wide attention. A work environment with hostile interactions negatively impacts staff health and well being; furthermore, it has been associated with reduced quality of care and recruitment and retention problems."

http://www.apna.org/files/public/APNA_Workplace_Violence_Position_Paper.pdf

Hey the Joint Commission also has an opinion:

"The Joint Commission states that intimidating and disruptive behaviors can foster medical errors, contribute to poor patient satisfaction and to preventable adverse outcomes, increase the cost of care, and cause qualified clinicians, administrators, and managers to seek new positions in more professional environments. Safety and quality of patient care is dependent on more professional environments. Safety and quality of patient care is requires teamwork, communication, and a collaborative work environment. To ensure quality and to promote a culture of safety, health care organizations must address the problem of behavior that threaten the performance of the health care team." (Joint Commission, 2008)

Nurses are three times more likely to be the victims of violence than any other professional group (Keely, 2002)

In Nursing Management's 2008 Workplace Violence Survey, 1,377 of 1,400 respondents claimed that employee safety in health care is woefully inadequate (Hader, 2008)

Of the types of violence encountered, 51% to 75% were bullying, intimidation, and harassment

Perpetrators of violence against respondents included patients (53.2%), colleagues (51.9%), physicians (49%), visitors (47%), and other health care workers (37.7%).

Manderino and Berkey (1997) estimated that 90% of nurses experience verbal abuse on an annual basis. The Joint Commission surveyed nurses and found that more than 50% reported being subjected to verbal abuse (as cited in American Association of Critical Care Nurses, 2005, p. 16). Of the 303 nurses surveyed, 53% reported having been bullied at work (Vessey, Demarco, Gaffney, & Budin, in press).

I suggest every nurse - especially the ones who have so graciously participated in this discussion either to contribute or demean it, read the ANA's position statement on Incivility and Bullying. Then read the ANA's Nursing Code of Ethics. As nurses we are all responsible for being familiar with nurse practice acts, professional guidelines and the scope and standards of professional practice as set forth by ANA. Those are the documents that courts will pay attention to should you find yourself on the ugly end of a lawsuit or criminal charge. Not your fancy higher degrees. Art and Shakespeare won't help you then

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Farawyn has 25 years experience and specializes in A little bit of everything..

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Jimmy, wait. Are you against higher degrees? I may be reading you wrong.

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There are so many new, disgusting comments on generalizing new nurses, that I can't even quote them all.

I don't believe in NETY at all. However, all of these comments on this thread are actually supporting the theory of NETY.

I repeat myself, NOBODY can bring you down to get into higher positions, unless they specifically threatened you, slept with a superior, illegally misrepresented you to your superiors, or killed you. This is childish behavior and I CANNOT believe that seasoned, responsible, older nurses, whom I respect very much, are saying these disgusting comments. There is so much hatred on this thread, and I sincerely hope you're not bringing this type of behavior into the workplace to your patients.

Stop saying young nurses are "bringing you down," because nobody can do that but yourself.

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JimmyDurham9 has 6 years experience and specializes in Ambulatory Care, LTC, OB, CCU, Occ Hth.

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Jimmy, wait. Are you against higher degrees? I may be reading you wrong.

Not at all. I am against individuals using their higher degrees as proof that they are better than others, and use them to make others feel inadequate. I think higher degrees and those with experience all have contributions to make. I wholeheartedly believe everyone of us should continue to seek higher education.

I despise the higher degree mills that are pervasive among nursing now though. Someone who gets an online MSN comes in and suddenly disregards the value of experience. Many of those nurses end up looking foolish. Life is too slippery to cling to just books.

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JimmyDurham9 has 6 years experience and specializes in Ambulatory Care, LTC, OB, CCU, Occ Hth.

67 Posts; 1,786 Profile Views

There are so many new, disgusting comments on generalizing new nurses, that I can't even quote them all.

I don't believe in NETY at all. However, all of these comments on this thread are actually supporting the theory of NETY.

I repeat myself, NOBODY can bring you down to get into higher positions, unless they specifically threatened you, slept with a superior, illegally misrepresented you to your superiors, or killed you. This is childish behavior and I CANNOT believe that seasoned, responsible, older nurses, whom I respect very much, are saying these disgusting comments. There is so much hatred on this thread, and I sincerely hope you're not bringing this type of behavior into the workplace to your patients.

Stop saying young nurses are "bringing you down," because nobody can do that but yourself.

The reason we exist is to serve our patients. That is all. Stop making it about age.

Nurses who entered the field looking for a big paycheck alone don't get what nursing is about. Nurses who want to feel smart and superior. Also missing the mark.

To serve requires humility.

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JimmyDurham9 has 6 years experience and specializes in Ambulatory Care, LTC, OB, CCU, Occ Hth.

67 Posts; 1,786 Profile Views

I'm sorry but I cannot read a discussion like this and keep silent.

It's okay nrsgofold. There are a lot of snarky people out there. In my darkest moment while in nursing school, I made the mistake of asking for advice on allnurses. I was poked at, chewed up, spit out, and charged with THE HIGHEST TREASON to the profession. I had made a mistake in clinicals. I already felt horrible. The comments on here had me bawling like a baby for 3 days. HEAVEN FORBID WE BE ANYTHING OTHER THAN PERFECT.... Sorry. I'll save that rant for another thread.

One would think that nurses would show a little more comraderie toward one another. When I was a newbie floor nurse I would have been foaming at the mouth for a more seasoned RN to take me under her wing. Then once I made my own way I would have gone out of my way to help her if she ever needed it.

Why are nurses so judgemental and critical of one another? I don't care how stressed I was. I NEVER belittled anyone. I was always the one taking that co-worker, who is having a bad day, aside to make sure he/she's ok.

Why can't nurses accept that fact that we are all human beings and all inherently flawed? No one is perfect. You try your absolute "Type-A Personality" best but you can't be perfect in everything.

Perfect examples of of how wonderful nurses have treated me over time starting with nursing school:

1). They stole our charts/MAR's and hid them so that we couldn't properly take care of our patients, while in nursing school. They just didn't want to deal with us.

2). They watched in silence as my nursing instructor ripped me up one side and down the other for not "paying attention" during report. In reality, I felt rude sitting in a room full of women while they bashed a coworker behind her back. They hadn't even started report yet. They were gossiping (as usual).

3). They say to your face, "how could you be so stupid?" Oh I can never ever forget the wonderful time when someone said, "You are such a disappointment." --- where is the constructiveness in that criticism?

4). I once had a patient fall because he vasovagaled in the bathroom. I was standing beside him, grabbed him under the axilla, (I'm 5'6" and he's 6'2"). Needless to say, his butt hit ground (very gently but because it did I had to write an incident report. No one spoke to me or even looked at me for 2 hours and I was made to feel like the incident was entirely my fault. Turns out, they were Withholding assistance on purpose.

5). I once went to someone I thought was a mentor to ask advice. I got a little watery eyed because it was very serious in nature. She told me that I was being unprofessional and so on and so on.

6). I learned to 'shut up and color' real quick. I was forced to turn very introverted and I used to be quite the opposite. There a lot of strong personalities in nursing. So after being criticized and ridiculed or just plain ignored when trying to make small talk at the nurses station/break room, I just withered away in the background.

7.) I made the mistake of going into the OR. I did love surgeries.... I didn't love the drama. I was constantly ridiculed and compared to another nurse who started a month just before me. I wasn't catching on nearly as quickly as she did. I couldn't understand it either. I was usually pretty good at learning things that I had a drive for... And I wanted to be an OR Nurse BAD.

Long story short I was diagnosed with MS (hence, the difficulty learning with memory loss). There was a staff meeting and my name came up because the housekeepers were asking how my orientation was going. The housekeepers shouldn't know anything unless people are openly gossiping about me!! That other new OR nurse didn't help and would often throw me under the bus as well because it made her look so much more golden!

I loved helping people but Nursing broke my spirit. I see my diagnosis as an open window to a brighter world than I've known in nursing. I'm applying for Grad School to start a Master in Social Work program in the fall. No job is perfect but Maybe there I'll be allowed to be a little bit more myself.

I'm so sorry you experienced this. It's behavior like this that runs good nurses from the field.

My first day in Labor and Delivery - I call the MD to report on his new admit. He hung up on me. I called back. He did it again. I called back because I needed orders, and he was impeding my patient's care. He hung up on me again, and called back to talk to the charge nurse who snatched my notes from me with a sneer, reported on the patient, got the orders and said to me "Here. Not that that was my job or anything." I asked what the doctor's problem was and was told he didn't like to talk to new people, and me in particular, he didn't like my face.

I got asked about what kind of a "man would come work OB", when I worked in OR, I was scolded constantly, other nurses went into my ORs after I set up, and removed equipment, rearranged supplies, removed cables, and then the surgeon would proceed to cuss me for being incompetent. I tried to explain my position, and that made me look like I was whining and making excuses.

Nurses intercepted lab results for my patients, and filed them away or hid them and never told me they arrived, so then I caught hell for not being telepathic or if I called the lab, they got ugly for having to send reports to me again.

I was told by one facility that I couldn't work in their L&D department because I was a man. I was told to go work ER. Another facility hired me for pediatrics, and assigned me to ICU for which I had no experience or training.

My first night I was given 4 ICU patients and I was the only nurse in the unit. The house supervisor told me to "quit complaining, act like a man or I'll have your license" when I raised the point of patient safety. She said I didn't need to be a nurse because I was telling her I wasn't competent to care for patients.

I had a patient grab my crotch in a room where I was with her alone. I reported it to my boss and HR. My boss laughed at me and told me to grow up; it happens. If I didn't like it, then I needed to hire more "man nurses" so that patient would be distracted.

Another job, my boss told me I got my job because she liked to have "man candy" around the office.

That's the nursing world I've experienced.

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Wrong. This line of thinking comes from simply years of work and life experience. I am not even in a union position, so you don't know my situation at all. But go on and believe what you want. It gets you nowhere to write it off as "union" mentality. For me, it's ridiculous to make generalizations and statements about a career in which a person has zero experience.

SmilingBluEyes,

This was not directed at you (unless you determine the culture of the entire nursing profession). Just as there is a certain culture with postal employees (such as not able to be fired), apathy, expectation of regular raises and good benefits, so too nursing has a culture that has been shaped to some extent by it haven a high unionization rate. It has created a culture that the public has recognized as such. Just look at this article: Security camera catches USPS worker's amazingly lazy delivery. Despite hemorrhaging money, employees still expect Cadillac benefits.

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Farawyn has 25 years experience and specializes in A little bit of everything..

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The reason we exist is to serve our patients. That is all. Stop making it about age.

Nurses who entered the field looking for a big paycheck alone don't get what nursing is about. Nurses who want to feel smart and superior. Also missing the mark.

To serve requires humility.

This is all your opinion and you are stating it as fact. Who are you to say what people "get"?

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The reason we exist is to serve our patients. That is all. Stop making it about age.

Nurses who entered the field looking for a big paycheck alone don't get what nursing is about. Nurses who want to feel smart and superior. Also missing the mark.

To serve requires humility.

I completely agree with you, and I hope you understood my point. I think it should absolutely not be about age!

However, many people in this thread are making it about age, and it's childish how you can blame an entire age group of nurses for shortcomings that you may have.

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Well, I must admit I'm a bit disheartened to read about all of the negative experiences nurses are having with nurses who are my age. There are a lot of generalizations being thrown around here, but those generalizations, while they may be true at specific hospitals, are not true across the entire board. I mean look at AN. There are so many members I respect on here, ranging from students and nurses who are my age to nurses who are decades older. I've seen wisdom, humor, snark, meanness, and love in every single age group here. I wouldn't trade any one of my favorite members (and there are a lot of you) for someone of a different age group.

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Farawyn has 25 years experience and specializes in A little bit of everything..

2 Followers; 12,645 Posts; 97,931 Profile Views

Well, I must admit I'm a bit disheartened to read about all of the negative experiences nurses are having with nurses who are my age. There are a lot of generalizations being thrown around here, but those generalizations, while they may be true at specific hospitals, are not true across the entire board. I mean look at AN. There are so many members I respect on here, ranging from students and nurses who are my age to nurses who are decades older. I've seen wisdom, humor, snark, meanness, and love in every single age group here. I wouldn't trade any one of my favorite members (and there are a lot of you) for someone of a different age group.

Nor would I.

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JimmyDurham9 has 6 years experience and specializes in Ambulatory Care, LTC, OB, CCU, Occ Hth.

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This is all your opinion and you are stating it as fact. Who are you to say what people "get"?

You're right. To me nursing is about serving our patients. The reason I exist is to serve my patients. In my opinion, from what I observe, nurses who aren't interested in service or looking for a big paycheck are more likely to be the nurses who miss things or bully their colleagues or get wrapped up in looking good. They are more likely to lose compassion, if they had any to begin with. They are more likely to be unhappy in their work. To me, nursing is not about money. I feel such sadness for my colleagues who dismiss the ideas of humility and service in nursing.

If you want some evidence and empirical data, I can provide some that shows that nurses who are more selfishly driven or plain not nice are more likely to be sued by patients when they make small mistakes as humans are apt to do, particularly ones who just show up for a paycheck.

I think nurse practice acts and professional scopes and standards as well as healthcare organizations policies and procedures might also agree with me on what nursing is. Nursing is service. Everyone of those documents state it and nurses who don't follow them find their licenses revoked

Edited by JimmyDurham9

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