Do you have a “nursing one-up” card?

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Ever been one-upped? Or have you ever administered a one-up? Do you have any clue what a one-up is?

One-upper: A one-upper never loses in the world of story-telling.”

This is that phenomena where, during a “war stories” sharing session with your fellow nurses, ONE nurse out there always has had it worse. That ONE nurse who has had THE toughest job, or the WORST supervisor. Or on the other end of the scale, there is always that ONE nurse who had THE cushiest job, got paid the most to do the least, or was revered by [insert supervisory role here] at their last job.

Why do we nurses do that? It seems that someone is always trying to steal another’s “thunder,” if you know what I mean.

And it’s not just during the stories. How about after a long shift, you let out a big sigh and state that you’ve never felt so tired? Well, there is always ONE nurse who has to explain to you that you don’t know the meaning of tired, let them explain to you what tired is reallllllly all about.

Shall I even mention the “one-upping” (is that even a word?) that goes on between the seasoned nurses and the newer nurses? Or how a preceptor can one-up their orientee at the drop of a hat?

I remember getting one-upped simply because I hadn’t been a nurse all my life!

(I can still hear them telling me, “Oh, you don’t know what stress IS until you’ve been a nurse.”)

OK. Maybe I’m exaggerating just a bit. But am I really that far from the truth?

I’ve only been a nurse for just shy of a decade, and to this day I still haven’t entered a nursing environment where the “one-up-manship” (“one-up-womanship”? Is THAT even a word?) hasn’t run rampant.

Oh, and I’m willing to admit, I’m just as guilty as the next nurse. I posses a one-up card. Do you?

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