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Just want to be alone

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  • Just want to be alone

    Can anyone relate? Sometimes I wish I could just go out to the barn and be alone. I don't want to see people or talk to people. My everyday life is so full of stress (from PEOPLE), I just want to spend time with the horse and feel free. I am not a naturally sociable person, so having to talk makes me feel agitated/uncomfortable. Also I worry that people at the barn judge me because I don't have a horse yet and they might think I don't have enough money to own one (not true, just haven't found the right horse yet.) I worry that they might be criticizing my riding behind my back. No one has said anything condescending to me, but I think about these things. The times my trainer has allowed me to ride her school horse on my own, and no one has been at the barn, has been a treasure. I know I need to get over this way of thinking, because I'm serious about my riding and I need to be around other people to learn. I wish I was more like other people and able to relax in social settings and not worry so much.
    I saw the angel in the marble and I set him free. - Michaelangelo

  • #2
    Can you maybe ask your trainer if you can have blanket permission to at least take out a lesson horse and hand graze and groom at any time 9obviously only during barn hrs and when horse isn't being used in lessons), if she doesn't want you to ride? Talk to her about the fact that your life is really stressful right now and that it would mean a lot. Maybe that would help.


    • #3
      Life is short! You can't spend your time worrying about what other people think of you.

      Try to remember that this is your "fun" time , that should be spent working on what you want to accomplish. Keep your mind on what you are doing and not what you worry people are thinking.
      Your anxiety about what others think of you is interfering with your time with horses. Most often, we tend to overestimate the time that others spend thinking about us. Don't let your self conciousness get the best of you.

      If you aren't breaking the law or hurting anyone , then who cares what other people are thinking of you?
      Find a councellor or wise friend or family member and share your worries with them. Just don't waste your life worrying about what other people think.


      • #4
        I understand . In fact, I just made arrangements to go away, every month, just so I can be alone and decompress/reenergize. Do whatever it takes to feed your soul.
        "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
        The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.


        • #5
          I CHERISH the time alone with my horses (purrrr) even just doing chores

          my job is also stressful. its nice to have a brain melt at the end of the day

          I know how you feel


          • #6
            Oh I totally do... which is why I love having them in my backyard. My mares are coming home from staying at my friend's barn for a month while I refenced their pasture and put up a run in... the few times I stopped by and others were there I was the same way.


            • #7
              I'm the same way, I would rather just spend time with my horse, not worry about anybody else, and be myself at the barn. I talk to my horse like a crazy person, I like to take him to the field and lay in the grass while he grazes, take lots and lots of pictures, play with the ground rails and tiny crossrails, do weird on horseback exercises and hike up my stirrups to play racehorse and gallop around. I'm pretty certain people would think I was nuts, especially the people at my barn who are all Saddlebred show horse people.

              But the great thing is, they are never around. It's actually rare for me to see anybody at the barn except for one of the workers, and sometimes the trainers mother, who sits in the grooming area doing horse laundry, but she's a sweet old lady so she doesn't bother me.

              OP why not try to find a barn that is quieter than your current one? There are plenty of them out there, usually the multi discipline or trail barns that aren't busy with training and lessons. Or try to find out the barn schedule, what times and days does everybody usually ride? If your job allows, try to get out there in the early morning or mid afternoon.


              • #8
                Originally posted by cu.at.x View Post
                Can anyone relate? Sometimes I wish I could just go out to the barn and be alone. I don't want to see people or talk to people. <snip>I worry that they might be criticizing my riding behind my back. No one has said anything condescending to me, but I think about these things.
                LOL. That would be exactly why so many of us made life choices to purchase a farm and keep horses at home. It's so nice to have a quiet refuge to decompress from a stressful job.

                As for the other, the riding (and 'look' and horse care decisions and, and, and..) of Olympic-level riders and other top professionals is regularly judged, snarked, and criticized. Mere mortals such as ourselves don't stand a chance. Judgy people tend to judge EVERYBODY. Well, except themselves... <rolly eyeballs> Try to see the humor in that ridiculous display of inflated ego, rather than taking anything personally or seriously.


                • #9
                  How old are you?
                  When you can't change the world around you, try working on yourself.
                  Have you considered some help for social anxiety, some counseling to learn coping mechanisms?

                  All of us have the same problems you have, but most of us learn to work around those, by either avoiding the bad situations or working within them best we can.

                  All you say others may be thinking about you, consider, does it matter!?
                  No, it doesn't matter what strangers may think.

                  Do you smile?
                  Try, on passing, as you go on, not to interact with them, smiling to everyone and nodding your head, you will see how people will smile back and go their own way.
                  That helps let others know the world is fine, you are fine and no worries, we can go on with our lives and put our thoughts on other.

                  Being hard of hearing helps, it becomes very convenient to avoid interacting with others without being resented.


                  • #10
                    I'll trade ya! I have always been in boarding situations, but because of the number of horses I've had and the hours I keep, about half the time I would be at the barn while friends/barnmates were around and the other half of the time I'd be alone. I liked the mix. I then went and built a farm and made the decision to keep it private which in a lot of ways I love. My barn, my rules and all. But the barn was a BIG part of my social time. I've been a stay-at-homer since I bought my property and that was probably mistake number one. I can theoretically go an entire week without seeing anyone else because of where I live if SO is away and I don't have any errands to run (feed and hay are delivered). So that's why I ended up leaving my eq. horse with Trainer because it forces me to go out and see people at least a few days a week. Trainer (who happens to also be one of my very best friends) now mandates that we do something two nights a week with our other bestie because it makes me leave my little farm cocoon :P

                    I'm the same when it comes to being social versus wanting to be left alone. With the exception of a few select people, I'd rather be left to my own devices than anything else. But apparently social interaction is beneficial; who knew?!

                    And, like others have said, don't worry about what anyone else is thinking. Because chances are, they're worrying the exact same thing about you!
                    Nine out of ten times, you'll get it wrong...but it's that tenth time that you get it right that makes all the difference.


                    • #11
                      I'm an introvert, and while I loved my barn friends I used to work my schedule so I would not always see them. Now that the horses are home I'm very happy! It's totally reasonable to want to have that alone time, and I'm sure you feel it even more strongly given you're trying to find the right horse for yourself.
                      If Kim Kardashian wants to set up a gofundme to purchase the Wu Tang album from Martin Shkreli, guess what people you DON'T HAVE TO DONATE.


                      • #12
                        I go through phases like that all the time, not even just that I went to be left alone around horses, but from people in general. So I won't answer my cell as much, start ignoring things online, etc. I think it's just a phase if you aren't an extremely sociable person, which I'm not either. Some people just need their alone time.
                        *Wendy* 4.17.73 - 12.20.05


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Bluey View Post
                          When you can't change the world around you, try working on yourself.
                          Have you considered some help for social anxiety, some counseling to learn coping mechanisms?
                          I would agree with Bluey. Feelings of people judging you, criticizing you behind your back, and general feelings of anxiety and uncomfortableness are not healthy feelings to have. I would also consider talking to a doctor or counselor.
                          Member OMGiH I loff my mares clique!!!


                          • #14
                            The grass is always greener on the other side. I would love to have a few HJ folks to ride with.


                            • #15
                              I totally know where you're coming from. I would look for a half lease or something where you can have some extra riding days and work around your own schedule.

                              Personally when I go to the barn, I don't mind chatting with people but I am there mainly to be with my horse. I deal with people all day at work and the barn is my "me time". I don't have any energy or desire to criticize other riders at my barn, and I don't really care if they have energy or desire to criticize me! I have goals for myself and my horse, and enlist the help of people whose opinions I value. If Joe Shmoe has something to say, I will politely listen to him because my mother raised me that way, but I will wait to see what my trainers and experienced friends think before worrying about an opinion of some random person. If you are truly there to enjoy yourself, don't worry about what everyone is thinking. They either are too busy doing their own thing to worry about what you're doing, or their opinion doesn't really matter Life is too short and complicated to let these little things get to you.

                              Custom Painted Saddle Pads and Ornaments


                              • #16
                                Yesterday, at our office Christmas party, my "big" boss asked me if my SO was also "into horses." I smiled and said no, but what I was thinking was hellll no and thank God.

                                The barn where my horse lives is quiet and free of people most of the time and I LOVE it that way. The older I get, the less tolerance I have for people and their...everything.

                                Honestly, if I had to choose between never seeing my animals again or never seeing another human again, I'm pretty sure I'd chose the latter without a second thought. I know that makes me a weirdo but I dont care.

                                As for wondering what others are thinking/saying about you: that will do nothing but eat you alive if you let it. I once heard someone say, you can't control what others do or say, but you can control how you will let it affect you. Easier said than done, I know. But it is something to think about.

                                Also, if people really are so bored and lame that they have the time and energy to worry about what you're doing or not doing, then you should be feeling sorry for them.
                                Barn rat for life


                                • #17
                                  I love being in the barn alone, and I love riding alone. I totally agree that after being at work all day, the last thing I want to do is go to the barn and have to see/talk to people. It would be fine with me if I never, ever saw anyone at the barn except for the horses. I get pretty stir crazy and agitated in the winter from being around people in close quarters too often. But alas, it is what it is in a boarding barn. I just put my head down and try to plow through until Spring, when we all have more space to spread out and get away from each other!

                                  That said, I don't care at all what other people are or might be saying about me. I just don't want them around because I enjoy my personal space (I even like quite a few of them, but would still be fine not seeing them at the barn). I think you need to try to let go of that piece of things. They probably are not talking about you, and who cares if they are? And REALLY who cares what they think about how much money you do or don't have? I think I have thought about that with respect to another person exactly never in my life.

                                  Just try to enjoy your barn time, and cherish the moments when you are alone. If you are around other people and don't want to talk, just tell them so. I do this all the time. My job is very high stress. I'm like a different person on the weekends vs. during the week. During the week, I will just tell people, "Nothing personal, but I am just spent and it is all I can do to get my horse ridden tonight. Do you mind if we just don't really talk?"


                                  • #18
                                    I totally understand wanting to be alone. Completely, been in your shoes. But you know OP, you might want to seek some counseling about your fears about how others see you. It might make you feel better overall, and it certainly couldn't hurt.


                                    • #19
                                      I'm a social introvert. I love, love, love my social barn time!!!

                                      You sound a little depressed and anxious, honestly. I mean there's nothing wrong with wanting to be alone, but if you're fearful of what others could be saying, I think there's a negative impact on your life. That's what psychologists and meds are for!! It might help just to talk to someone you can trust about this. Even just talking about it might allow you to cope a little more easily.

                                      And I agree about taking the horses out for grass and/or grooming. That could be very therapeutic.
                                      Born under a rock and owned by beasts!


                                      • #20
                                        I'm torn on this one. I stay at home, and have a little person needing me CONSTANTLY. She's always needing something... by the time DH gets home or DD goes to bed, I'm totally 'needed' out. I'm starved for real human conversation about something that's not poop or what stage little Jimmy is at that's sooooo much further than DD and he must be a genius.

                                        I get to the barn, feed my crazy a few carrots, and just sit on her tack trunk and think about nothing. I turn off my phone (BO lives on sight) and just sit there for 10-15 minutes before I even think of getting tacked up. It's so nice to just chill and space out. I chit chat with my mare while I ride, it helps her remember that she has a Mommy up there, but I don't like to engage in small talk. I text hubby when I get on, and then text him when I get off if there isn't anybody in the barn at that moment. Usually if the BO sees that I'm riding, she'll wander out and putter around while pretending not to keep an eye on things.

                                        OTOH, I enjoy my conversations with the BO or other boarders. We gossip, talk about our equine frustrations, etc. Anything but babies and families and husbands. It's therapeutic for me to have the social aspect as well.

                                        I worry, sometimes, about how people perceive my riding ability. Willow is a green bean, and often we bobble around the arena like a scooter ridden by a drunken monkey. But then, she takes SO much of my focus and energy to ride correctly, that I seem to forget about who might happen to be watching. I have to channel all my focus into my ride, and everything else just seems to mute out.

                                        I don't think that there is anything wrong with you. Perhaps when you get your own horse, you would like to move to a smaller, more private barn where you WILL get the alone time that you deserve!