Two-Headed Snake Bully Nurse

Updated | Posted
by Milkofamnesia02, BSN (New) New

Specializes in ICU. Has 20 years experience.

nurse-bully-work.jpg.449361641d62a49e88511adfb61aec07.jpg

I recently returned to ICU after a seven year hiatus. I was stressed at first but was gaining more confidence. However a few weeks ago I made a medication error. I don’t know how it happened. Hanging continuous drip bags were hung at different times and somehow swapped on the lines. IDK if they were already wrong and I followed suit or if I did it by not following my channel up the line to the bag. I recall scanning the bags and comparing the labels but I didn’t follow the line down to the channel. The channels were also labeled and programmed. It was my third day in a row with the patient so I was tired and comfortable with what was going on. Patient was sedated and paralyzed and intubated. Anyway on my first day off my boss called me at home to let me know after I left the error was discovered and asked what could have happened. I was totally confused and upset as I have never made an error so big in over 20 years of nursing. She was nice and told me to take it as a learning experience but let it go and move on. I did just that although later on I did apologize to the night nurse behind me who was very cool about it.

The other day I get a phone call from a friend who knows an ex coworker of mine. I’m told to be careful and don’t get close to my coworkers because they were gossiping and my name came up. She didn’t know who said what or exactly what was said. I said OK and resolved to keep everyone at arms length, keep my head up, and just try not to be noticed and do my job.

The next morning I get a very nasty anonymous text on my personal cell basically saying I lied about my background and I’m a ****** nurse. I can’t think of anything that could have provoked this other than the med error and I suspect it was the nurse that was charge that day. I can’t even address the person who is doing all this because I don’t know who it is. I just don’t want things to get worse. Any words of wisdom? Thank you.

Daisy4RN

Specializes in Travel, Home Health, Med-Surg. Has 20 years experience. 1 Article; 2,081 Posts

I wouldn’t worry about it just yet. The person who texted you is a coward, IMO they should either keep their trap shut or say it to your face. (Maybe with the phone number you can trace it though).  I would try to keep a low profile and hope it just blows over. If not you may need to proceed further by notifying manager or HR etc but you would need to know who it is. Block the number for now and hope these children move on! I don’t know why some people choose to be so nasty. 
Good luck!

nursej22, MSN, RN

Specializes in Public Health, TB. Has 37 years experience. 2,085 Posts

I agree with keep a low profile. Stay polite and professional with co-workers. And avoid gossip.  

I would also keep a journal of what happened, and when, and keep a screen shot of that message. 

Milkofamnesia02, BSN

Specializes in ICU. Has 20 years experience. 8 Posts

The IV pumps are outside the room of covid pts. It’s even crossed my mind that someone could have sabotaged me on purpose but I know I was more likely to have been careless that day. 

Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 29 years experience. 2 Articles; 3,893 Posts

Too many nasty,  insecure women in nursing. Ugh, I'm sorry for you 🙏

John2018

Specializes in Occupational Health Nursing. Has 4 years experience. 102 Posts

Saw the title in this post and told myself "I need to see this.". I'm so sorry this happened to you. Always remember that they will feed on your reaction and make you look crazy (but it really was them). Just act like you never received that text. Don't waste your energy on them.

JBMmom, MSN, NP

Specializes in New NP Hospitalist, Critical care, Med-surg, LTC. Has 10 years experience. 4 Articles; 2,020 Posts

That's ridiculous. Was it an error to not follow all of the lines at some point to confirm your infusions? Yes. But it's certainly not an error that you alone have made. Depending on the day, sometimes you don't have time to double check everything about everything and whether you hung the bags wrong or just continued an already wrong set-up, there's really no way to know. 

Whoever sent an anonymous text doesn't even deserve another minute of your time or energy. And if you react and start trying to figure out who it is, you're just feeding into what they want. If you are able, you might quickly check the staffing list to see whether you can match up the phone number to specific coworker. But in the end I would just ignore it and do the job to the best of your ability. Good luck. 

Been there,done that, ASN, RN

Has 33 years experience. 6,780 Posts

On 3/8/2022 at 2:31 PM, Milkofamnesia02 said:

So I recently returned to ICU after a seven year hiatus. I was stressed at first but was gaining more confidence. However a few weeks ago I made a medication error. I don’t know how it happened. Hanging continuous drip bags were hung at different times and somehow swapped on the lines. IDK if they were already wrong and I followed suit or if I did it by not following my channel up the line to the bag. I recall scanning the bags and comparing the labels but I didn’t follow the line down to the channel. The channels were also labeled and programmed. It was my third day in a row with the patient so I was tired and comfortable with what was going on. Patient was sedated and paralyzed and intubated. Anyway on my first day off my boss called me at home to let me know after I left the error was discovered and asked what could have happened. I was totally confused and upset as I have never made an error so big in over 20 years of nursing. She was nice and told me to take it as a learning experience but let it go and move on. I did just that although later on I did apologize to the night nurse behind me who was very cool about it.

The other day I get a phone call from a friend who knows an ex coworker of mine. I’m told to be careful and don’t get close to my coworkers because they were gossiping and my name came up. She didn’t know who said what or exactly what was said. I said OK and resolved to keep everyone at arms length, keep my head up, and just try not to be noticed and do my job.

The next morning I get a very nasty anonymous text on my personal cell basically saying I lied about my background and I’m a ****** nurse. I can’t think of anything that could have provoked this other than the med error and I suspect it was the nurse that was charge that day. I can’t even address the person who is doing all this because I don’t know who it is. I just don’t want things to get worse. Any words of wisdom? Thank you.

"She( manager) was  was nice and told me to take it as a learning experience but let it go and move on." That is all you need to know. Ignore any anonymous texts. There are backstabbers everywhere. For your protection.. do not engage in any conversation regarding the incident.

Jedrnurse, BSN, RN

Specializes in school nurse. Has 30 years experience. 2,693 Posts

On top of everything else Two-Headed Snake Bully Nurses are on the endangered species list and thus are federally protected. (On the other hand Venomous Two-Faced NETY Nurse Jackals are a dime a dozen...)

nursel56

Specializes in Peds/outpatient FP,derm,allergy/private duty. Has 46 years experience. 6,991 Posts

From my experience with people like that, the best course of action is to not react to it at all, and just be observant.  These people actually thrive on drama escalation and find negative attention one of the few thrills in their otherwise empty and often miserable lives.

JKL33

6,129 Posts

On 3/8/2022 at 2:31 PM, Milkofamnesia02 said:

The next morning I get a very nasty anonymous text on my personal cell basically saying I lied about my background and I’m a ****** nurse. I can’t think of anything that could have provoked this other than the med error and I suspect it was the nurse that was charge that day.

 Any good reason to think the ex-coworker isn't the chief pot-stirrer?

In any case I agree completely with those advising you ignore/go on as if you know nothing. The types of people who perpetuate this type of nonsense are some of the most pitiful on earth.

And don't try too hard to keep a low profile, in other words don't shrink away.  Be pleasantly assertive.

Edited by JKL33

SmilingBluEyes

Specializes in Specializes in L/D, newborn, GYN, LTC, Dialysis. Has 25 years experience. 20,933 Posts

I agree with the others. Do not give anyone the satisfaction of a reaction. Keep a screen shot of the text and document everything that happened/happens in the future.

I am sorry you are being harassed this way. Stand tall and be strong.