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And it's come to a head! Not a good day today.

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  • And it's come to a head! Not a good day today.

    I sent the BO's daughter a message, see my last post...

    So for those of you that have read the debacle that is going on at my barn, it came to a head today and I went home so upset I was in tears.

    So the BO's dumb daughter (who's 25) took the old TB schoolhorse I mentioned in my last post, to a horse show yesterday. This horse hasn't been off the farm in probably 5+ years at least. We'll get back to that in a minute.
    We've been planning to take all of my kids to their very first horse show in two weeks, and they're all super excited. Anyways...
    So the girl that normally rides the TB was in the barn getting him tacked up and I was out in the field helping one of the other girls catch a horse.
    I come back into the barn and the girl is looking uneasy and her mom said that the BO's daughter had just come into the barn and told them about the show yesterday. Nobody had told me how it went so I said "Oh how'd it go?" and the mom goes "oh not so good I guess, she said the horse was just terrible and downright dangerous and she kind of scared the girl by what she said". Awesome. That kind of ticked me off because nobody bothered to tell me about ANY of this and instead decided to talk to my clients behind my back.
    So I wait till after my lesson and I sent the BO's daughter a message saying "Can you please be a little more careful about what you say when talking to the kids, whatever you said scared the girl".
    Not two minutes after that while the kids are finishing untacking, the BO comes into the barn and proceeds to tear a strip off of me IN FRONT OF MY CLIENTS and is going ON and ON about how I can't take this horse to the show because he's so dangerous and it's her insurance on the line. I tried to interrupt and say "Oh I didn't know that, we can find something else for her to ride, can we please discuss this later?" Nope she says "NO we need to discuss this now, they NEED to hear this" and continues to repeat what she just said. Okaaay I get it!!! STOP already. So I pretty much just kept saying "Ok I'll figure something else out, we won't take him, not to worry" and she just wouldn't stop. It was horrible and SO unprofessional and made me feel like a pile of dirt. I don't know WHY this women seems to have it out for me lately. I do my darndest to do what she wants, rearrange my lesson schedule to suit her sudden whims and make sure I'm doing a good job. Most people would have walked long ago.
    I walked with everyone outside to help put horses away and apologized to the parents and reassured them that I would not do anything that was endangering their children and they said they didn't think so and pretty much said the BO was acting like a complete crazy.
    Then the BO's daughter has the nerve to send me a message and basically says that she felt the need to tell them because she didn't think that *I* would tell them and that I "would take things into my own hands and not listen and do whatever I was going to do anyways because we never have problems with the horse like she's had" and she didn't say anything that should have scared the girl. ie basically she thinks I would have just gone with this horse to the show anyways and chanced it hurting something. Umm WHAT?!?!?! I don't think so. And yeah, what you said obviously DID scare her...

    So I replied with "While I appreciate your concern, I still think it would have been more appropriate to talk to ME first. Aside from that, whatever you did or did not say to the girl, scared her. And to send your mom out to chew a strip off of me in front of my clients really isn't very professional."

    She responds by telling me that basically I don't know what I'm talking about, says "And you are the epitome of professionalism aren't you?" and goes on and on about how my judgement isn't any good and that I'm no pro and her students should know that. I was so mad after that, she's so clueless. I think somebody's had a major issue with me for a long time and it must have all just come out.

    I'm so frustrated and upset and not entirely sure what to do. My bf says I should just go out there, pack up all of my stuff and my horse and move it all to a friend's place. I am very very tempted but I feel bad for the kids, they're the ones that won't understand and will lose in this situation. They're all so excited for the upcoming show and some have bought show clothes already. For their sake I almost want to REALLY bite my tongue until after the show and then pull the pin so the kids don't lose out. It sucks because there really aren't any other barns that have lesson horses for instructors to use (I've been looking!), so if I leave it pretty much means only teaching people that have their own horses. Ugh, I don't know what to do, I have such a massive stress headache right now...

    Last edited by CrocusPony; May. 31, 2010, 01:01 PM. Reason: Added my email to the BO's daughter.

  • #2
    I would agree that you if you have suitable horses for your clients to go to the show then go to the show. An leave after that. This way if in the future you find a place that has lesson horses or these student eventually get a horse they will not feel like you screwed them. After the end of the show I would tell the clients. They saw BO in action so it shouldn't come as a surprise.
    Can you take your horse to the show and drop her off at the friend's on the way back?
    It is obvious that the BO and her daughter don't respect you. It will only get worse. Once you leave you will have a HUGH weight off your shoulders. Sometimes when you are in a situation where things have been escalating slowly you do not realize how stressful and bad things have really gotten.
    When you tell the BO that you are leaving/have left. Just be professional. Tell her "Things are not working out for me here. I felt that it was time for me to move on to another situation" Repeat as necessary. Do not raise your voice. If you can have BF or another friend there when you do this it may be better.
    Oh, well, clearly you're not thoroughly indoctrinated to COTH yet, because finger pointing and drawing conclusions are the cornerstones of this great online community. (Tidy Rabbit)


    • #3
      ew that's messy. I'd just stick it out until the show and then explain to the kids and their parents why you just cannot continue on at that barn. Then get your stuff and leave.

      Oh and give some warning to the BO so that she can't hold it over your head that you didn't give any notice that you were moving.


      • #4
        Only you can decide whether it's worth staying there.
        BO and daughter sound very unprofessional and I doubt they're going to change.
        I would take the kids to the show and make your decision after that.


        • #5
          Jingles ~ What a MESS !!!

          Just massive Jingles for you and the kids ~ what a painful & nasty mess ~ the unprofessional BO & daughter have created ~ BUT that being said don't tell a single person you are leaving until your horse/horses and possessions are loaded up --- I think that idea about the horse never coming back from the show is the way to go afterall this BO ?? no telling what she may do Please be careful and start secretely removing your tack... now... IMHO ~ Good Luck ~ I know it hurts like "Hell-o" now but you will get out and be better off in the end.
          Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "


          • Original Poster

            I'm doing my darndest to stay professional, it's sure hard to bite my tongue and not tell them exactly what I think of them.
            I think for the sake of my kids and for the sake of finding a good barn to board at, I'm going to wait until the 15th to move my horse. Most of the kids were going to stop riding for the summer anyways. That'll give me some time to perhaps wrangle some new lessons horses. You are right though, the parents were pretty appalled by the BO. And no, they don't have any respect for me, even though I'm the one with my certification and they are not. I guess that means nothing though.

            I'm sure I can find another suitable horse for the one girl to ride, heck she can ride my horse if it comes down to it. There are ways to make it work. That's why it's so frustrating, did this really need to be made into such a huge deal? No. Had they just said "we don't want you taking the horse to the show, he might not be safe" I would have said "Ok, I'll figure something else out and we'll make this work". Not a big deal AT ALL.

            BTW, as an aside, it doesn't suprise me the horse was bad for the BO's daughter, she constantly spurs and yanks on his mouth, crashes him over jumps and the horse acts totally different for her than she does for my kids.

            I think after the show I may talk to the BO and say to her "If I'm doing something wrong, please let me know but not in front of my clients. I would also like for your daughter to stay out of my business. If I'm not doing an acceptable job or we can't come to an agreement, let me know and I will leave if that's what you'd like." Then the ball is in her court.

            I was talking to one of my friends just now and she said that she couldn't believe how long I've endured this garbage and said I've had the patience of a saint. I dunno about that but I have put up with a lot and bent over backwards to make this work. The BO has been saying that she thinks I need to get more clients, yet treats me like this? I don't get it.


            • Original Poster

              Originally posted by GiGi Larkin View Post
              Only you can decide whether it's worth staying there.
              BO and daughter sound very unprofessional and I doubt they're going to change.
              Nope I don't think they'll ever change. The daugher is still firmly attached to the apron strings and the hind tit, so to speak.
              It isn't worth staying, and I hope I can find another barn that'll have a few horses I can use for lessons. I really really enjoy teaching my lessons but the stress the barn is putting on me isn't even worth it.


              • #8
                I agree that for your sanity and the future of your career you need to leave that barn, and I second what Sonnysmom said about dropping your horse off on the way back from the show. The BO will retaliate and stuff will disappear or be held for bail if they know you're leaving. I would also tell the students and parents after your have your stuff and your horse safely away, that way no possible word will slip out (unless they read COTH forums). Start taking your stuff home now, or carrying in the car-you might not have a chance to get it all out later, especially anything expensive like spare saddles or tack you aren't using now.
                You can't fix stupid-Ron White


                • #9
                  " I think after the show I may talk to the BO and say to her "If I'm doing something wrong, please let me know but not in front of my clients. I would also like for your daughter to stay out of my business. If I'm not doing an acceptable job or we can't come to an agreement, let me know and I will leave if that's what you'd like." Then the ball is in her court."

                  Remember the old sayaing...

                  "Don't argue with Morons, they bring you down to their level, and beat you with experience. "
                  Comprehensive Equestrian Site Planning and Facility Design


                  • #10
                    Sorry to hear about your situation, and I agree with ZuZu and JanM if you decide to leave - that's the best, least stressful way to do it. If you decide to talk to the BO after the show, as you suggested above, don't say it this way ... "If I'm doing something wrong, please let me know but not in front of my clients. I would also like for your daughter to stay out of my business. If I'm not doing an acceptable job or we can't come to an agreement, let me know and I will leave if that's what you'd like."
                    Try this approach, "In order for me to continue working here, we need to come to some agreements. Number one, If you're unhappy with something I'm doing, or have any concerns at all, I want to know about it and address the issues with you in private, not in front of my clients. Number two, your daughter has to stay out of my business and refrain from speaking to my clients outside of my presence. If you are not agreeable to this, I will no longer work here." That will leave the ball in her court - she can meet your demands or not, but you've set up a dynamic where in you're demanding (in a nice clear way) professionalism - no more no less.
                    Good Luck - I hate that stuff, but you can't let people walk all over you either.


                    • Original Poster

                      Originally posted by Plumcreek View Post
                      Remember the old sayaing...

                      "Don't argue with Morons, they bring you down to their level, and beat you with experience. "
                      It's so true and that's part of the reason I even wonder if it's worth it to try and talk to her. She tends to be SO stuck in her ways that it's her way or the highway, there's no room for negotiation or "room to agree to disagree" when she's stuck on something. Hence why I think it might just end up in a massive confrontation.

                      Originally posted by Roser123 View Post
                      "In order for me to continue working here, we need to come to some agreements. Number one, If you're unhappy with something I'm doing, or have any concerns at all, I want to know about it and address the issues with you in private, not in front of my clients. Number two, your daughter has to stay out of my business and refrain from speaking to my clients outside of my presence. If you are not agreeable to this, I will no longer work here."
                      I like that better. I wasn't really sure how to word it when I typed it.
                      I've put up with A LOT and bent over backwards to accomodate the BO since I started teaching at the barn but have never received the same in return, definitely a one way street. In doing so I have definitely let myself get walked on and now it's going to end.

                      I got to thinking, I wonder if perhaps the BO didn't know, that I didn't know about what had happened at the show the previous day? Perhaps the BO's daughter didn't mention that fact and told her something more than she's admitting to, to get BO riled up. I dunno. BO's daughter obviously has a beef with me.


                      • Original Poster

                        So I decided to send the BO's daughter an email...

                        This was probably a bad idea and I'm sure the ensuing poop storm that results will be epic but I felt I had to say something. I made sure I was clear, concise and as professional as possible. I'm sure she'll still run to mommy and all heck is going to break loose.

                        "Dear BO's Daughter:
                        As you seem much more comfortable not communicating face to face, I thought I’d follow suit. You had no right to talk to my clients yesterday in the manner you did without speaking with me first. They are my clients and I am your mother’s client, you have no part in this equation. Period. What you said (or perhaps, how you said it) did indeed scare that little girl, she was very nervous because of what you said to her. If there was a problem with the horse, I would have appreciated if you had talked to me first and I could have relayed that information onto my clients in a more appropriate way. I don’t understand why what should have been a simple conversation was blown so far out of proportion. If the horse is unsuitable to take to a show, that’s all I needed to know, other arrangements can and will be made. I am actually quite glad that we found out how the horse reacts to a show before I took my kids to one with him. The safety of the kids I teach is my responsibility and my primary concern. I am legally, ethically and morally responsible to keep them as safe as I can and “do no harm”. For you to imply that I would knowingly put children in danger is a huge insult.

                        I would appreciate if you would use discretion in conversing with my clients. In the future, please refrain from discussing matters with them that should be brought to my attention first. I can appreciate your concern and I'm sure my clients do too, it is my job to inform them of issues that arise.

                        If you would like to discuss this further, I would appreciate if we do so in person. I will be away this week for work but I will be back on Friday and around all weekend."


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by CrocusPony View Post
                          I'm doing my darndest to stay professional

                          Telling your clients that the BO "was acting like a complete crazy" is not professional. Don't stoop to their level. The horse world is very small and it may come back to bite you in the a** one day. Just give your notice and leave as gracefully as possible. It doesn't sound like a situation with an easy resolution.
                          Ridge Farm Inc.-full care retirement


                          • Original Poster

                            Oh no, I think you misunderstood, I didn't say that. It was actually my clients that said that when we got outside.


                            • #15
                              Just read for clarity. I did misunderstand. At least you have perceptive clients !
                              Ridge Farm Inc.-full care retirement


                              • Original Poster

                                Not to worry! LOL Yes they were shocked when she sat there going on and on about all of this.
                                Really, why couldn't someone have just said to me "Y'know we'd rather you didn't take that horse to the show, he might not be safe". Ok fine, lets find an alternative horse while we have time.


                                • #17
                                  CrosusPony, I think there is room and opportunity to learn from this and work things out. I feel the BO and daughter were freshly responding to FEAR of the event and needed to vent, perhaps, not appropriate, but never the less, vent.

                                  I think the daughter was in error by not being prepared to take the guy., appears perhaps no lunging, not much riding, lessons etc., and the horse not being out for 5 yrs, would create excitment. Lesson for her to learn

                                  There is an opportunity here to face this situation and show that adults can have a disagreement, yet forgive and move on. You do need to have a 1on1 with BO and express your deep concern. See if this helps, at least try. Your patience maybe what is needed here.

                                  If the opportunity presents itself, see if you can do training rides on this horse, then perhaps offer to school or set jumps for the Daughter and see if this pair can be brought together. It might give you the opportunity to tell her that spurs are not needed or her xxx could be causing a problem and try this..... she may see you differently than she see you today.

                                  You have nothing to prove to them, but perhaps you have somthing to prove to yourself, that this is something you can handle and overcome. Face your own fear and speak up for what you feel is correct.

                                  They are lucky to have a patience, certified instructor with them. Patience is key to young students.


                                  • #18
                                    Reading between the lines, and not knowing the full background story here...IMHO it sounds to me as if the BO already has someone else to fill your spot...maybe BO's daughter?
                                    Her behavior and the things she says, serves to BOTH force you out, AND discredit you enough in the eyes of the clients that she keeps the clients. Pretty neat, eh?

                                    May not be what is actually happening...but plausible?


                                    • #19
                                      Wow.. IF that's the case (BO's daughter trying to take over) that's one sneeky way to do it.
                                      Fresh, Frozen & ISO Warmblood Breedings FB Group


                                      • #20

                                        Well.... what can I say. You sound young. This sort of thing is, unfortunately, par for the course in the horse world. They hold all the cards, they own the farm, the horses, and they have no obligations to anyone other than themselves. In time, you'll learn to spot these sorts of folks earlier in the game and make adjustments accordingly.

                                        As HealingHeart mentioned, now's the time to start figuring out how to deal with these sorts of folks. They are not an uncommon variety in the industry.

                                        I recommend to everyone involved in a 'less than optimal' relationship with anyone (business or professional) to stay away from texting, messaging, etc. It is just WAY too easy for someone to get royally irritated by a 'message' and then have a melt down. Any communications not of a completely benign nature should NOT be conducted by text message.

                                        The variable nature of horses is a challenge that everyone in the industry has to deal with. Horses can, have, and will display potentially more concerning behavior in certain situations. If I am reading the OP correctly, this was to be the "first horse show" for your kids, and perhaps you yourself did not know how the horse in question was going to behave at the show ???
                                        "Friend" me !