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barn drama/favoritism with other boarders and wtd

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  • barn drama/favoritism with other boarders and wtd

    i know there has been lots of threads on barn drama in past,but i am in need of some advice.not wanting a train wreck with this topic.
    i just moved to a barn almost 3 weeks ago.good place,not overly fancy and big,but good facilities none the less.felt like i was finally going to get somewhere with my horses training and being part of the horse community again.
    BO is not living on property and i do not know barn owner,but the BM is and who is most involved in everything about the barn.she was really adement(sp?) about she does not allow barn drama at all when i talked to her and signed contract.,but what do you do with a BM that is the one starting the drama, after she assured me that was not expectable in the barn.i am at the point where i just want to take my horse and leave with no notice..and we all know that isn't the best thing to do in this day and age.but she has driven me to that point.
    i have been keeping up with her rules(literally 3 pgs of them)with contract.kept my end of the deal of things organized at time of boarding.(semi boarding)
    there is a more detailed story,but would like to see what others say.
    talking with BM,i feel will just create a worse situation and problem.as it is her that has created the problem..

    sincerely frustrated boarder

  • #2
    Ah, the many pages of rules, and an enforcer, can be a good thing at barns. Are they that hard to follow? As to the drama: I think it's pretty common for BMs to have a little fiefdom and social hierarchy going on. It's the sign of stress and unhappiness, try to have some empathy. Learning to let it roll off your back is good training for life, b/c it ain't only at barns.

    Now, if you can't do that, or if the drama affects your horse's care, then I guess an exit strategy is the way to go.

    Good luck. Too many rules is bad, no rules can be a whole lotta bad.
    Dressage, riding, sport horse blog
    Unique browbands for dressage and hunter riders


    • #3
      Agree with Staceyk, there is drama and pettiness everywhere! Most workplaces are like that too. So are many families . Three weeks isn't very long to get the feel of a new place and figure out here you fit into the social fabric. If the other boarders have been there for a while and it seems like BM is more lax with them on the rules, it might be because she knows them well enough to trust them. Once she knows you better, she may very well relax them with you too. I'd give it some more time, make a concerted effort to NOT take things personally and, if it's still intolerable, look for a new place.


      • #4
        Head down, mouth shut, enjoy your horse and keep out of it unless it's negatively impacting on the care your horse receives.


        • #5
          I don't understand what the problem is. What kind of drama? About the rules? Enforcing the rules? And every barn has favoritism. When you moved in, you ok'd the board price, abiding by the rules, the level of care. So if someone is getting a "better deal" then you, then I don't see why you would care. Unless you know the backstory (perhaps that boarder saved the BO's life, or gave them $$ years ago as a favor), then I would MYOB.

          If the drama is affecting your happiness there, then leave. If you want to leave with no notice and therefore in a hailstorm of burned bridges, that's your prerogative.

          But I disagree that three weeks isn't enough time to know if you'll fit in. I usually can tell the first day if I'm going to want to leave or not. If you're this unhappy now, then get out and find another barn that makes you happy.
          That being said, I moved to a barn with LOTS of rules, some I didn't agree with, and a BO Enforcer who literally said to me "it's my way or the highway". Turns out it was the best barn where I've ever boarded. I board at a new barn with lots of rules, and I LOVE it too. Not everyone abides by rules, and some get free passes, but they're there to quote if I need to as a gentle reminder.


          • #6
            Life is short. If you are not happy, leave. Don't leave without notice unless you are in a situation like the girl in off course whose one horse died. If the BM isn't endangering your horse, then give notice.

            If you think giving it more time wont solve anything, leave.

            I don't know how big the horse world is where you are from though, and if you leave like this often, you might not be welcomed to new places with open arms.


            • #7
              Originally posted by Small Change View Post
              Head down, mouth shut, enjoy your horse and keep out of it unless it's negatively impacting on the care your horse receives.
              Quality Hunter Ponies


              • #8
                I too am having difficulty understanding your problem. My advice is to reiterate the aforementioned head down, mouth shut. Additionally, I try very hard to ride when I think the barn will be the least crowded, if possible. The fewer people I have to see at the barn, the less drama I encounter! It works like a charm, as does my tunnel vision...I am out there to ride my horse and to check on him - that's it! I love the camaraderie of being a part of the barn team, but try to keep my barn relationships light and to stay out of everything I deem dramatic!


                • #9
                  Thread title says barn favoritism/wwyd and the post is a mish mash of barn drama, rules and unhappiness. Going to a new barn is like doing anything new - a new home, a new school, a new job - so its going to take some time to get used to. Are the 3 pages of rules reasonable or craziness. One would assume reasonable otherwise why sign contract? With a larger barn a BM is going to have to lay down more rules -particularly if you have different ages, riding levels, and perhaps disciplines.

                  My suggestion, take a deep breath.. suck it up and give it some time.. it's not like going to a new school and having to be part of the most popular group (let's hope anyway

                  Best of luck to you


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Small Change View Post
                    Head down, mouth shut, enjoy your horse and keep out of it unless it's negatively impacting on the care your horse receives.
                    Yup. Give it time. Know that you may be part of the problem in that part of what you said (in the OP) is that you liked being part of a horse community again. Maybe your expectations are too high for the being the new kid on the block just 3 weeks in! Count your blessings-- remind yourself what is right rather than wrong about this barn. If the BM is the instigator, let it roll off you until it actually affects the care you horse is getting. Think it's strange that the person who was most clear about No Drama causes it. It's not the first time you'll run into the psychological phenomenon of projection, you know?

                    Best of luck to you.
                    The armchair saddler
                    Politically Pro-Cat


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Small Change View Post
                      Head down, mouth shut, enjoy your horse and keep out of it unless it's negatively impacting on the care your horse receives.
                      Spot on advice!
                      Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion.... ~ Emerson


                      • #12
                        Not really sure what the problem truly is? If its the rules, or the number of them, I'm sure I could make my rules wordy enough and detailed enough to reach 3 pages. If it the craziness of them, and you read them before you signed the contract, then they couldn't have seemed that crazy. As far as favoritism, what were you expecting? Like anyplace else, interpersonal relations are going to be at play. For example, everyone knows that the kid that leases my pony is one of my favorites, I've taught her since she was little and have watched her grow up and luckily, she's really a great kid with a great family, who gets on well with everyone. I've got a couple other boarders who we're tight with, and might make exceptions to the rules for, because of this or that circumstance, and we know they won't take advantage of it. Since you're still developing those relationships, and the BM is still getting to know you, I wouldn't worry about favoritism too much. If it doesn't affect the care of your horse, then it's a non-issue.
                        Different Times Equestrian Ventures at Hidden Spring Ranch


                        • #13
                          You said that "i have been keeping up with her rules(literally 3 pgs of them)with contract.kept my end of the deal of things organized at time of boarding." I don't understand why you're complaining if you were aware of the rules (all 3 pages of them) when you signed the contract. Did you think the rules wouldn't apply, or are you suggesting that the rules aren't being fairly enforced? If you weren't happy with the rules, why did you sign the contract?


                          • #14
                            Without additional details it is going to be difficult to give you more than just generic advice. Based on past experiences in all sorts of situations, give it a month or so before deciding whether to leave or not.

                            It takes time for horses to adjust to a new barn, new pasture-mates, etc. So to with people, sometimes you need some time to figure things out. I'd give it a month or two before making any big decisions. Settle in and see what happens. As long as your horse is receiving good care, just deal with it and hold all the other issues in a jar on a shelf somewhere. After some time take that jar down again and think about all your experiences to see if it's still worth moving...


                            • #15
                              I am confused?

                              One thing I have noticed, and this applies in and out of the barn: The people who talk the most about wanting "no drama" and "drama free environment" are usually the ones causing the problems. I would be a bit leary of a barn owner who went on and on about drama and not wanting any at her barn. I would also be leary of a potential new border who went on and on about wanting a drama free environment. It makes me feel that they have been involved in so much of it that they need to make a point in talking about it in excess. If you are someone who is mild-mannered and stays out of things, barn drama wouldn't matter as much because you know you wouldn't really be involved in it anyway.

                              I am one of those people who refuses to get involved in anything, so even if there is "drama" at a barn, it doesn't effect me. I learned the hard way when I was a kid what barn drama does. So now I may have fewer close barn friends, but it keeps things light and fun when I am at there.
                              I WAS a proud member of the *I'm In My 20's and Hope to Be a Good Rider Someday* clique..but now I am 30!!!!!!!!!!!
                              My new blog about my Finger Lakes Finest:
                              She Ain't No Small Potato!


                              • #16
                                I am in the camp of give it some time. If the favoritism and rule crap get to be too disruptive, don't feel bad about leaving. I signed a contract once with multiple pages of silly rules which seemed fine at the time until you had to actually live them.
                                I don't always feel up to arguing with your ignorance


                                • #17
                                  be the best customer

                                  As the newest person, follow the advice Small Change gave you.
                                  In addition, be the best customer. Follow a bit of simple guidance:
                                  1. Pay on time.
                                  2. Any issues with the barn operation should be discussed professionally and PRIVATELY with the appropriate person (I assume the BM). Not with other boarders, etc. Likewise, don't get involved in other people's issues: encourage them to address their problems professionally and PRIVATELY.
                                  3. Lend a hand. Pick up after other people, close the gate for someone else, whatever. This is amazingly rare, and will make you a treasure.
                                  4. Be upbeat and friendly to the other boarders.
                                  5. Thank the BM and BO for the services they provide. Yes, i know, you are paying for it. That does not matter. Thank them anyway for dragging the ring, keeping the aisles cleaned up, whatever. Good operations take pride in the quality of the barn, and appreciate it being noticed!
                                  6. Follow all the rules and don't be snarky. IF the rule says park in the next county, do it! Don't do it, and gripe to everyone about it.
                                  7. If you have a suggestion about how to improve, then again, talk to the BM. Don't talk to everyone else, and then tell the BM that you talked to everyone and they all want ___ changed. Nope, this is not a good idea.


                                  • #18
                                    How in the world anybody can offer an opinion of favoritism and somebody starting drama with nothing at all but a mention of the 3 pages of rules OP willingly signed is beyond me.

                                    Realize OP does not want to get specific but there are certainly ways of expressing the gist of a situation without risk of revelation.

                                    I can't tell of there are specific things that were allowed to happen that violated the rules and created drama or if OP just does not feel accepted yet and feels others are treated differently and get advantages she does not. Or even if the BM is a meddling busybody that grates on the nerves.

                                    If it's the first, a talk with the BM is needed. If it's the second, tend to your own business and don't worry about what others are doing-especially if they have been there a long time. Their deal is their deal, yours is yours.

                                    3 weeks is too short to condemn a barn based on personalities and perceptions unless somebody really is a whackjob and the care is not up to standard.
                                    When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

                                    The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


                                    • #19
                                      Life is short and OpenOffice is Free. I'd give you some advice but between poor punctuation and run ons I'm just going to give you the link to a great office program. If you are typing form your phone, I assure you it's smart enough to Capitalize, punctuate and spell!

                                      Adoring fan of A Fine Romance
                                      Originally Posted by alicen:
                                      What serious breeder would think that a horse at that performance level is push button? Even so, that's still a lot of buttons to push.


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by leilatigress View Post
                                        Life is short and OpenOffice is Free. I'd give you some advice but between poor punctuation and run ons I'm just going to give you the link to a great office program. If you are typing form your phone, I assure you it's smart enough to Capitalize, punctuate and spell!

                                        Don't you just hate when you're trying to be all 'holier-than-thou' about someone's spelling and capitalization and you misspell a simple word like 'from'?

                                        Payback is a byotch Leila
                                        ~Kryswyn~ Always look on the bright side of life, de doo, de doo de doo de doo
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                                        "Life is merrier with a terrier!"