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My Childish Jealousy Over Sharing a Horse

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  • #21
    I know it's hard to keep your temper in this situation but the best thing you can do is stay off her FB page, smile and say 'thanks' when she offers you advice, and try to ignore her.

    Years ago I started to part lease a horse that no one wanted to ride because he was so sour. After I'd worked with him for awhile, people started to request him for lessons.

    Even as an adult I was miffed, so I decided to full lease him and eventually buy him.

    If it's possible for you to arrange an exclusive arrangement with your trainer, I'd talk to her about it. Otherwise you either have to put up with it or convince your parents to buy the horse (when I was a teen that was a non starter in my house).

    Good for you that you were able to improve this horse's training to the point where he can be ridden safely by others. Take pride in your accomplishment.
    Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
    EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

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    • #22
      One other thought...for those that have posted they feel "used" in such situations?

      How do you figure that?

      You get a horse to ride without having to buy it. You probably get the tack to ride it in. You get board, vet and farrier, supplies like fly spray. You get lessons.

      Even taking the purchase price of the horse out of it, board/vet/farrier are going to average 6-700 a month. Easy. I'd bet if you totaled that all up and added lessons, you would be looking at benefitting to the tune of close to 1k a month.

      Taking a ballpark of $10 an hour for barn work, would you be making 1k a month? After taxes of course if you worked for cash?

      Nobody gets "used". Both sides benefit.
      When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

      The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

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      • #23
        I sympathize. I was taking lessons and part leasing a lesson horse. But no one else ever rode the horse, the people that had didn't like her, and so at least emotionally, she was my pony. Then one day, I had all tacked up and this little girl comes up and says, "I have a lesson and I need to ride her." While she is brushing "my" pony, she tells some other girls. I like this horse, I want to lease her. I was so childishly jealous (and I am way over 15). I opened a pony fund in the bank not long after and 9 months later, the pony was mine. And I don't really share. That was 4 years ago.

        I realize that you're not in that position right now.This one girl may be the first of several to ride your lease pony and brag about the pony. It would be nice if your trainer would make a few comments about what great work you put in to the horse. Or, if she told the girl not to give you advice about riding. Yes, she's only 12, but it would still be good for her to appreciate the levels of training that a horse goes through, as well as the rider. To me, it is barn etiquette to avoid giving advice unless someone asks for it or unless someone is in danger of hurting themselves or a horse.

        Most reasonably,I think ignoring most of her "advice" is the best thing. Just be proud of all the work you accomplished. You know it, the trainer knows it, and I bet lots of other people at the barn know it.
        My blog: Journeys in Riding

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        • #24
          I get it.

          It isn't that the OP is ungrateful for the rides, it is that she paid her dues by retraining a horse that others didn't want to. and likely wants to reap some rewards for her efforts whether that be getting the now nicer horse to ride, or getting her efforts acknowledged.

          She admits it lacks maturity, but it is easy to understand.

          I imagine she has also formed the same sort of attachment and feeling of ownership she would have if she owned the horse. hard not to when you put that much sweat equity and effort in to it.

          Good life lesson though; study hard and earn enough to be able to buy your own horse so you don't have to share! And if you can't get over the feelings of jealousy towards the other child, do NOT go pro; it is not uncommon for a client to take credit for their trainer's accomplishments.
          Freeing worms from cans everywhere!

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          • #25
            I don't think the OP sounds ungrateful either, sounds more that she's unhappy about losing credit. I'd be pretty miffed if someone else claims they trained a horse I put that much effort into, its like a slap in the face

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            • #26
              Originally posted by findeight View Post
              One other thought...for those that have posted they feel "used" in such situations?

              How do you figure that?

              You get a horse to ride without having to buy it. You probably get the tack to ride it in. You get board, vet and farrier, supplies like fly spray. You get lessons.

              Even taking the purchase price of the horse out of it, board/vet/farrier are going to average 6-700 a month. Easy. I'd bet if you totaled that all up and added lessons, you would be looking at benefitting to the tune of close to 1k a month.

              Taking a ballpark of $10 an hour for barn work, would you be making 1k a month? After taxes of course if you worked for cash?

              Nobody gets "used". Both sides benefit.

              I think those who say they feel 'used' have yet to fully own and foot the monetary burden of their own horse.

              I'd feel VERY privileged to work to lease a horse. It's not cheap and it's not a right!

              The OP is still young and will be prone to jealous feelings. The horse is available full time to her for her work but still needs to 'earn its keep' by doing some lessons as well. She is lucky to have this opportunity despite having some normal feelings of jealousy. I think we've all been there!

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              • #27
                There's a fine line you have to learn to walk when dealing with horses that aren't your own. Care for them like they're yours, love on them all you want, but fully understand that they aren't ever going to be yours. It's hard, but it's life. Having a horse to ride that isn't yours is better than having no horse at all. The 12 year old obviously hasn't grasped this yet, but I've known tweens and young teens that get into the same mindset. They'll grow out of it eventually.

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                • #28
                  Originally posted by SSacky View Post
                  I don't think the OP sounds ungrateful either, sounds more that she's unhappy about losing credit. I'd be pretty miffed if someone else claims they trained a horse I put that much effort into, its like a slap in the face
                  But consider the source. It's a young inexperienced once a week lesson kid claiming to have "trained" the school horse. I know it's annoying, but OP needs to just ignore & not take it so personally. Young rider probably doesn't even realize what she is saying when she is around the horse she loves so much (insert stars in eyes here) for her 1 ride once a week.
                  "I'm not crazy...my mother had me tested"

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                  • #29
                    Originally posted by Giddy-up View Post
                    But consider the source. It's a young inexperienced once a week lesson kid claiming to have "trained" the school horse. I know it's annoying, but OP needs to just ignore & not take it so personally. Young rider probably doesn't even realize what she is saying when she is around the horse she loves so much (insert stars in eyes here) for her 1 ride once a week.
                    This. I know its hard to ignore the railbirds (whether they're 12 or 70) but just ignore it. You and hopefully your trainer know the hard work you put into your horse. Also, anyone who knows anything about horses will know that once a week lessons does not a trainer make So don't worry. I'm sure there will come a time when this girl realizes how much she really DIDN'T know at that age, regardless of how she's acting now.

                    Also, you figure she's probably jealous of you. You get to ride the horse more, and its pretty clear she loves the horse too.

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                    • #30
                      I was having a similar frustration the other day and a wonderful friend told me "He who laughs last, laughs best"

                      She's just a horse crazy kid. You have to remember that you were once in her shoes and maybe there was a big kid then who actually did all the work that was smiling in the background remembering when she was that young and horse crazy!

                      This industry is not gracious or forgiving. The majority of people will put you down 50 times for every 1 time they lift you up.

                      Smile graciously knowing you changed a horse's life and made a little girl very happy
                      "Using draw reins without spurs is like going to the bar with no underwear on. You're just waiting to get f***ed."

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                      • #31
                        Advice from a fellow working student/groom/barn slave:

                        Client horses are not yours. It's best not to get too attached. You do the best job you can with them, but you are ultimately doing everything FOR THE CLIENT, which in this case sounds like your trainer. If your trainer wants a kid-safe beginner lesson horse, that's what you work towards. Your trainer's business is built around clients, so even when you think a client is clingy and annoying or stupid or rude or whatever, you smile and you are nice and you help said client. Sometimes they come around. If they don't, you've done your job and no one can find fault with you, thuss, you have successfuly covered your ass and can honestly say you "did your best, sorry if it wasn't enough." By doing this, and working hard, you begin to shine. Believe me, people will notice if you're good and have a good attitude.

                        It might be a little difficult to actually think that way at your age, but things will become clearer when you do.

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                        • #32
                          Originally posted by holaamigoalter View Post
                          This industry is not gracious or forgiving. The majority of people will put you down 50 times for every 1 time they lift you up.

                          Smile graciously knowing you changed a horse's life and made a little girl very happy
                          This is really great advice. DD got many opportunities to ride horses as a working student, but always kept in mind that every horse wore a price tag and could be sold and shipped out at a moment's notice. Hard lessons for teens to learn, but so important if they plan to stay on the "working side" of the horse world.

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                          • #33
                            Based on your post, it is clear that you realize you shouldn't be feeling jealous or resenting a 12yr old. Still, having been young once (longer ago than I care to admit), I do empathize with you and the struggle we all face at one time or another of being more practical and rational than emotional.

                            My advice is to remember that you are lucky for your situation. Yes, you work in exchange for your riding opportunities, but you are still doing this without having to pay for them as many others need to do. Be grateful that you have managed to score an arrangement where it is possible for you to ride more and progress further than your budget would allow if not for the working student position. Keep in mind that this 12 yr old child is really doing what many other 12 yr olds would do! Let her be 12. One day she will likely look back and realize (as I know I have done many times) that she didn't know as much as she thought she did at the time! Age makes you more humble, that's for sure! Be thankful that you had a great relationship with this horse and look forward to other opportunities in the future. If you can continue to be gracious, mature, and hard working, more opportunities will come. Don't give in to being petty... it won't get you far in the horse world or anyplace else and certainly won't make you any happier. Focus on yourself and your goals and try not to worry about anyone else.

                            Comment


                            • #34
                              Or....playing devil's advocate here....
                              Go have a "vacation week" of you not riding and maintaining this horse...bet the kid would have a bit of a reality check of this whole situation with just her riding the horse for a week. She may actually learn something when the horse is not prepared for her and make her think twice about the whole scenario.

                              Some horses have an amazing way of humbling certain people in ways no other person could.
                              * Magic Hill Farm, LLC
                              www.MagicHillFarmLLC.com
                              "Bridging the Gap Between the Hunter Breeding and Performance Rings in the US"

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                              • #35
                                If you don't like it, buy him. Then you can do whatever you want with your horse. As it stands they are doing you a favor by letting you ride this horse and can take that away as they please. If you start a war with this paying customer be ready to say goodbye to the horse all together. The money is going to win in this situation.

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                                • #36
                                  Originally posted by bluebuckets View Post
                                  Advice from a fellow working student/groom/barn slave:

                                  Client horses are not yours. It's best not to get too attached. You do the best job you can with them, but you are ultimately doing everything FOR THE CLIENT, which in this case sounds like your trainer. If your trainer wants a kid-safe beginner lesson horse, that's what you work towards. Your trainer's business is built around clients, so even when you think a client is clingy and annoying or stupid or rude or whatever, you smile and you are nice and you help said client. Sometimes they come around. If they don't, you've done your job and no one can find fault with you, thuss, you have successfuly covered your ass and can honestly say you "did your best, sorry if it wasn't enough." By doing this, and working hard, you begin to shine. Believe me, people will notice if you're good and have a good attitude.

                                  It might be a little difficult to actually think that way at your age, but things will become clearer when you do.
                                  Couldn't say it better myself, so I won't even try.

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    Might sound silly but hide her FB posts or defriend her so you don't have to cringe every time you see a post

                                    Comment


                                    • #38
                                      Be happy in quietly knowing that thanks to your hard work, he has become a well loved lesson horse. The ability to take a horse from rank to a reliable companion is something to be proud of... and an 12 year old is just a child with a crush on a horse.

                                      And get used to people taking credit for your work. It's pretty applicable in all aspects of life.

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        OP, I feel for you. That said, try to look at the positives. I will share my story with you, plus the ending. I hope it will make you feel better.

                                        When I was in college, I was given the opportunity to lease a nice little Quarter Horse for very cheap. He was a cute little horse, but wasn't getting much work because his owner didn't want to ride him (his owner was a "horseshow mom" who got him to ride herself, but then found he scared her a little and the child that she was a horseshow mom to had two other horses to ride, so he just fell through the cracks a bit because he wasn't fancy, etc.).

                                        Anyway, I rode him for several months and just adored him. He was fantastic and fun, and just a neat horse. He also wasn't really for beginners, but an intermediate rider could certainly ride him after I had been working with him for a while. I jumped him up to 4 ft - he was honest and athletic. He came a long way from the kind of unfit guy I first started riding.

                                        Eventually, his owner wanted the trainer to start using him in lessons to offset some of his cost. That was all fine, and I was okay in theory with the concept of not riding him as often because, really, I wasn't paying nearly what it would cost to full lease him. It was disappointing and, like you, of course I was jealous. I was especially jealous when I saw other people riding him and commenting on how great he was. As it turned out, however, the trainer started wanting me to ride him every day, including the days he was used in one or more lessons. He started to struggle with some soundness issues as a result of all this work, and he also was just tired and was becoming a bit mentally worn down. I finally told the trainer that I didn't think it was right for me to ride him on the days he was used in lessons. She told me he couldn't be used in lessons unless I had also ridden him (she was using him for beginners, and he was not suited to that). I eventually ended the relationship with the horse, the trainer, and the barn because I didn't want to be a part of the destruction/overuse of this horse. I still miss the horse a LOT, and that was over 10 years ago. I remain friends with the owners of the horse to this day. When I left the barn, I told them I loved their horse but that I couldn't participate in what was happening to him. They were understanding. Eventually, after some bad experiences of their own, they left the trainer.

                                        Shortly after I left that barn, the horse broke someone's leg during a lesson. The rider was a pure beginner (I think it was her second time on a horse). She broke her leg cantering for the first time (yes, her second time riding). I understand that she basically lost her balance and then was dragged by the horse when she got her foot stuck in the stirrup.

                                        Fast forward a bit. The horse was shortly thereafter purchased by a more intermediate rider who had started riding him in lessons while I was still working with him. She still owns him to this day and ADORES him. I feel fantastic about it because it was a wonderful outcome for the horse. That outcome probably would not have been possible if someone (like me) had not taken the time to get him to a point where he was ride-able and loveable by someone who could actually afford him (which I could not at the time because I was in college and had no money).

                                        Long story short? I was right about the horse being used too much and I was right about feeling that he shouldn't be used for beginners. Any feelings of jealousy over someone else loving the horse and enjoying him were WAY off base. In a world where horses can end up in very bad places if someone isn't looking out for them, they can use all the friends they can get. If I helped get that horse to a point where he was able to make friends and obtain a fabulous owner that dotes on him, it was all worth it.

                                        I would try to think of your situation similarly. It is GOOD for the horse that someone other than you loves him! If your hard work got him to that point, then you have done something great for the horse. Ignore the rest of it, and focus on that. Anytime you help a horse become a solid, useful citizen, you have done something worthwhile.

                                        Comment


                                        • #40
                                          If you feel like it would be too awkward or uncomfortable to unfriend her then you can remove her from your timeline. It's not a perfect fix but at least you won't have to see pictures and statuses all over your homepage.

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