Student loan debt, high cost of housing, low-paying jobs that were supposed to be high-paying careers...you name it, we've got it, and it doesn't translate to a lot of disposable income, which, like it or not, is what our horse costs are. I'm making it work only because my husband and I both work full-time jobs in the IT industry and I can work off some of my board. I can't afford to show rated events, but I can afford to keep him and get lessons. Otherwise, with his $60k in student loan debt, there's no way. Story of our generation.
I know at least 6 twenty-somethings who own a horse, including myself. Two of us do anything off the property. It is an earnings gap. Almost all of us have help from family to afford the horse, period. Most of us work off some of our board. We are also at work breaking our backs trying to make a name for ourselves so that when we're a bit older, we can afford our hobby. So where are we? At work trying to make enough money to put hay in the hay nets. At the barn doing chores. Or driving to the barn, because we live in the city. Or sleeping.
I'm meeting with a career counselor in two weeks to talk about what I should be doing to be more like you ;) Well...in ways that don't involve being a software engineer anyway.
I wish I could ride with my friends more often. But that requires a trailer. And gas money.