Sign in to follow this  
Horseshoe_Loop_Farm

How To Deal With A 'friend' Like This...? (Rant)

Recommended Posts

I have this friend who lately I've been feeling a more than a little frustrated with... and vice versa...

It's really hard to explain, but our friendship started in the 6th grade. We were absolute best friends and were always at each others houses, etc... However, even back then I kinda had a feeling that she was just using me for access to my great uncle's horses, as the second she got her own mare several years later she absolutely quit wanting to come over and ride, etc...

Over the years, I'll admit and accept that we've grown apart some. She decided that she wanted to pursue a career in horse-training (though I personally don't like her training methods and wouldn't send a horse to her... I've witnessed her hit a horse repeatedly in the side of the face with her fist to teach it to disengage its forequarters) while I've decided to pursue a career in foodservice administration, have horses as a side-hobby and rescue and rehab them whenever I can.

Fast forwards some...

A few years ago I was having some major issues with keeping weight on my senior mare during winter. I later found out that she was suffering from vitamin deficiencies, got them sorted out and got her on a balanced feed and haven't had problems since... however, when I was having all those problems with my mare, I ran across a post on another website (that we are both members of) where she had stated some things about the care my horses get, etc... and in general made herself out to be great and made me sound like I didn't care one whit about my horses... ever since then, too, I've noticed that whenever something comes up on that forum concerning me and her, people there are much more likely to take her side or agree with her and completely bash and flame me before even hearing my side... it's rather upsetting to think that my 'friend' would need to make me out to be a horrible person just so she can feel better about herself. I never confronted her over the post, either, but here are a few of the things she wrote about me...

She has never been able to provide the basic care they need (ie. Feed, regular veterinary care, regular hoof maintenance, etc.) She lives at home still and has just gotten her first job EVER (and she's 22) about a month ago. Her horses are healthy for the most part, but she has always had to rely on someone else to provide for them if they really needed something. Her horses get skinny through winter, they're hooves look bad 90% of the time.... it's just bad...

Now, as far as this goes, I did only get my first job at 22, but not for lack of looking. Before I was hired where I am now, I was a full-time college student and had been looking for a job since getting out of high school. As far as living at home, I still do. I live with my great grandmother and am her primary caretaker. When she goes (hopefully not for another twenty years or more) I stand to inherit the house, yard and barn while my mom and aunt stand to inherit 12 acres of our 50 acre pasture. My great uncle (my father-figure who never did like my friend) used to pay the vet bills for my horses because he saw that as part of his job as my 'fatherly role model'. He refused to let me help out on anything (feed, vet, farrier, etc...). After he died, I was still job-hunting, but I managed to always have money for horse feed, farrier, and vet calls... on the two times the vet cost more than I expected, my mom helped by paying half. I also know that about half the time my friends fiance is the one footing her horsey bills, whereas nowadays I'm footing my own equine bills (and a truck payment, an internet payment, a phone bill and half the directTV bill as well as paying half on groceries every week) alone.

As far as routine care for my horses goes, I'm sorry, but I'm not the type of person who calls the vet out for every little scrape or cut my horses get. The vet gets called out for emergencies, deep gashes, teeth problems, etc... things such as abscesses, minor wounds, etc... I handle myself after an over-the-phone consultation with the vet.

My mare was the one getting thin through winter and we got that fixed as soon as we figured out what was wrong, and as far as their hooves go, no, I don't have the farrier out every 6 weeks... but I do most of my own trimming and my horses hooves look good enough that my farrier has even complimented me on how well I trim them.

Another example is when she had problems teaching one of her horses to flex laterally. I told her to bit him up, and ask for a tiny give at a time. I worked with this horse and showed her and he did great FOR ME. But, she instead jerks the horse around each time, nearly ripping the bit through his teeth.

I will admit, sometimes I want to just flat out say I'm better than her.

This really upsets me... the fact that this girl lies to other people by writing something like this. I have never and will never 'rip a bit through a horses mouth'. What she did on this horse was to put a bridle on him and tie the rein to the saddle with his nose touching it until he gave. I've done that with a halter once, but I have never been as rough as what she said about me...

And as for her 'I'm better' comment... that really makes me just want to say "If you're 'better' than me, then why did you get passed up for the barn manager job and why did it get offered to me instead?"

Fast forwards to lately...

We've gone to a few shows together and competed, and each time I've scored much higher than her... when I do, though, she gets all upset and acts like everyone is against her... (for example, we went to one show and she was scored low due to excessive jerking on the reins and being extremely heavy handed... later, on the way home, she started talking about how things aren't fair and everyone is against her and how she should just give up her dream of being a trainer, etc...)...

I was chosen to be the barn manager for a local summer camp place out here where I live. I'm getting paid to care for, ride and work out problems with the horses. Because I prefer to ride with someone, I convinced the director to hire my friend as well in a 'trainer' capacity (basically, pay her to ride horses with me...)... Well, it was great at first, but lately she's gotten very demanding (she's demanding that we pay her more, etc... neither of us is on salary and she's upset because I'm paid more than she is, but I've been there longer and have seniority... we get paid hourly...). Like, I've set up the tack room the way I like it, and she comes in and moves things around, rearranges the horses halters (we have racks for each horse and I'll come in sometimes and she'll have like, a pony sized halter hanging on the TB's rack, etc...). She tries to tell me how to do my job. She tries to tell me how to feed the horses, tries to tell me how to work with them, etc...

Today we had the vet out and she got super upset because we were having the vet check all the horses teeth... she got very upset because we had him check one geldings teeth that had just been floated within the past two months... claimed it was a waste of time and money, but the vet charged us nothing to check the gelding and really it was none of her business... We were also talking about how she wants to color code the horses tack and equipment, and I said 'no', because it really don't matter and we don't have the extra funds for that right now. She tried to tell me to go and tell our director that we need a couple thousand in cash to go buy horse stuff. When I said no, she said that we can just start 'taking stuff home' and tell the director that the horses are destroying it, so he'd have to buy more... I said no, but it really frustrated me that she'd even think of doing something like that...

Also, she gave me a TWH gelding a few weeks ago. He's registered in my name and he and I aren't that compatible, riding-wise, but I do like him. My cousin loves him, though. I've leased him out for a year to the camp program and mentioned in passing that after the lease is up, I'm either going to give him to my cousin or sell him. Well, today she says to me "Just give him back to me or give him to _____ (a friend of ours). I've told her about him and she likes him." Well, a few months ago my friend was all angry because the lady who gave this horse to her was trying to do the same thing my friend is now trying to do to me... give 'my' horse away without my consent. I think the reason she wants him back is so she can trade him for a mare she really likes... Newsflash... I'm not giving him back and I'm not giving him away to anyone except maybe my cousin...

Sorry for the novel... I just had to rant...

any advice?

Edited by Horseshoe_Loop_Farm

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i don't know how old you are, but this post reads like third grade schoolyard silliness. if what you write is true, and you're the senior manager/better rider/more responsible horse caretaker then you're in a position of leadership and need to behave accordingly. leaders "lead", they don't follow which it sounds like you've been doing, so if you're looking for somebody to blame for this situation you might have to look in the mirror.

as for taking horse stuff home and telling the director the horss destroyed it to get him/her to cough up more cash, that's called "theft" and, by the way, "extortion" both of which are punishable offences possibly with jail time. all you need to do is show her the penal code to put that kind of nonsense to bed. and if the TWH is registered in your name why are you so upset? he belongs to you, so she has no say LEGALLY with what happens to him.

what i really don't understand, though, is that you write you've had reservations about her all along. why on earth do continue you hang out with her/help her get a job where you work? cut her loose and don't make friends/associations of her type in the future and you might have learned something useful.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is a rant for a reason, lol. This stuff has just been building up (even moreso lately) and I needed to get it off my chest.

I try to take the leadership role with her, but it always backfires and she somehow manages to make me look/feel like a complete idiot. She has a very forwards personality and is almost aggressive in her mannerisms, whereas I'm quieter and much more reserved. She tends to talk over me and since i'm not great at getting my point across clearly (I get super nervous when talking to people that I know don't know what to do, etc...) and she is, she makes it sound like I'm just an idiot.

As for me being upset about the TWH, it's not because she 'has a say/ as to what happens to him, it's more because she has the nerve to try and give my horse away.

Yes, I have had reservations about her for years, but I still hang out with her because if I broke ties with her I'd be left with not a single horsey friend in my community. I'm friends with horsey people through her... she has a few other riding buddies, but if it wasn't for her, I'd never have met them and as it is, they always seem to invite me as an afterthought... "hey, so and so is going riding with me today... we planned this weeks ago... you coming...?"

It just gets frustrating...

(yes, still ranting._

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't think this reads as silly. We were all young once. I think if you go back and remember all the things that she has said and done to upset you, you will see that it is all in line with the person she is. Its not your job to change it., cause you're not going to change it anyway. Despite the years of friendship and familiarity, she has crossed the line where she has caused hurt not only to you, your reputation as a horse person, but has also stepped on the barn's reputation as well....not a good thing at all. To post like this on a forum is truly immature and you'd do well to walk away from it with no rebuttal. A forum that allows this kind of post to remain up there, is not a place to be anyway. Stuff like that doesn't happen around here and if it does, I never see it, cause its been taken care of and not allowed. ...so stay here. ... and welcome!

It was a mistake to get her hired on with you, I think you see that now. Don't let it happen again. You need to pull away and go your own way and rid yourself of the drag on your life. Regardless of how much money she has or hasn't, she is acting like a spoiled brat and hasn't grown out of it. She is jealous of you and always has been. The fact that she fails at a show and then whines on the way home like that says she is looking for attention and solace and is not realizing her mistake of the day and working on a plan to fix it instead. She is not rising to the challenge and moving forward. She is regressing and throwing it all up in the air, her future with horses, her employment at the barn, your friendship. Her post on the forum was another whine, only detrimentally so. So are thoughts of breaking her trust with the barn owner (the most important aspect of her continuing employment) To suggest that you both be partners in crime and take those blankets home tells me she will sink to even lower depths. Because she can't think positively, learn from her mistakes and move forward she will go back and sit in that whiney mud puddle every time and whatever conniving she produces while sitting there spells trouble, not only for her, but for everyone around her. If anyone gets you fired from that job, it will be her. So stay true to your job and to your relationship to your employer. This comes first, regardless of what's going on in the background. Keep this away from the barn and the owners ears as long as its manageable. If not, go talk to them about the problem. Continue to work well and gain their respect and you'll get the same respect from them, should things come to a head. Take it well away from the barn and have a talk with her about every thing. It will either be the conversation that changes your relationship for the better or it will be your last conversation with her, so steel yourself. Remain calm with low voice no matter what, stay kind and firm, just like training a horse, actually. Watch her muddle around in her puddle with connivings to come back at you and see them for what they are. In the end, if you can't get her out of the mud puddle, then you are not the person for the job and never will be....that's ok too, so don't put it upon yourself to try any further....kindly separate yourself for the good of yourself. Its going to take a life trauma or an expert to do that for her as she's been sitting in this puddle for years. Know it. You've had years yourself to see the detrimental parts and know them. Under no circumstances should you find yourself ever sitting in that puddle with her, not even for a minute, then she's won, because she's dragged you down into it instead of pulling herself up out of it. In a kind and gentle manner, let her know how she has crossed the line and how you feel about it. How she reacts and what she says will be your answer....act accordingly and be true to yourself always. Nicks right about the leading part. You are the leader, put the boots on and step down on detrimental things with the authority that you do possess, realize it, do it and don't hesitate to do it. She is your first exercise in many situations that you'll have to put your foot down on. If the conversation does not go well, down comes the foot. It has to to keep the path clear and kill the soap opera. It's either that or go sit in that mud puddle with her. Hope this helps...

As for the no "friends" dilemma, who cares? Why am I even here in the first place? Because I love horses! I am here for the horses. They are my friends. You won't find a horse dissing you on the internet. His reactions are honest and instant....a truly trusting friend that you yourself can trust in return. Isn't any better friend than that! Who says your best friends have to have only two legs??

Now me, I'm for the horse, always. It is for the horse that I always end up putting my foot down for. The fist in the cheek to soften the shoulder method did it for me right there. ( repeat: sits in that puddle and is detrimental to everyone around her, including the horses)

Edited by missyclare

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Easy. This is not a friend. Not sure why you would refer to her as such. Acquaintance at best. You can make new horsie friends. They are out there, you just have to try.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry, but I have to agree with Nick that the rant sounds very immature

You are in a professional position, thus have to consider your 'friend' a fellow employee and work in the interest of that riding establishment. If she becomes to difficult to work with, then you can suggest she be terminated, just as easily as you recommended her in the first place- that is the reality in the working force and performance reviews

Reputations are forged by actions, not words. , and your friend trying to run down your horsemanship, complain about show placings etc, only hurts herself in the long run

I'm not even going to get into giving a horse, then wanting it back-as no contract or even the legal loop of having you pay a nominal fee like a dollar, and a signed sales agreement, the horse still legally belongs to your friend

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When a person shows you who they are ... BELIEVE them. She has shown you over and over that she is not your friend.

I like everything MissyClare said, but I don't agree with the suggestion of you trying to help pull her from the metaphorical mud puddle. Personally, I think she needs to be cut from your life and you never give her the time of day again, beyond common courtesy in public. (which means you don't run her over with your car if there are witnesses) *wink-wink* But seriously, the things she has said about you are inflammatory and run along the lines of defamation and libel - which are serious accusations against your character! The things she's suggested about the horse camp are completely illegal and totally inappropriate. If she has made these suggestions online, especially anything about suggesting theft and/or anything negative about the horse camp, I'd think long and hard about printing them out and showing them to your employer and leave it to them to handle. This isn't entirely about her damaging your reputation but the horse camp as well and I feel *that* takes precedence over your feelings for her as a "friend" you suggested they hire.

If she is let go, I am certain you will be able to express yourself perfectly well.

IMO, I think she treats you as if she was an abuser in this toxic relationship, one who separates and isolates you from the people who care about you and who has worked hard to make you think you are unworthy and she is the best you can ever do. You need to stop letting her define who you are and what you can do.

Losing your "horse-y friends" if she is cut loose .... isn't a loss because if they were true friends, you wouldn't be an afterthought. Surround yourself with people who support you, not try to tear you down. Remain true to yourself as a person and as a horsewoman. Actions and deeds (your management position, show scores and vet/farrier commendations) speak louder than her words. She may be able to fool all of the people around her most of the time but she'll never be able to fool all of the people all of the time. Those worth knowing will recognize the difference.

Please keep in mind also, that what you first described on the other forum? The one where she is loved and you are ganged-up on? If she were to come here, a similar scenario could occur .... so neither of you are really doing anything different than your own versions of he-said-she-said and at online forums, anyone can say anything they want to make themselves or others look however they wish.

Right now is GO-Time.

This means someone *you, I hope* has to take the high road and show more class and manners. These issues will not go away and you need to face them head on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really think I needed the support and advice shown here... Dealing with her attitude the other day and the way she spoke to me AND the farrier really put me on a low, but after reading the encouraging and helpful posts here, I feel a lot bettter with myself as a horse-person and with myself as a barn manager.

I've spoken with my immediate director about my concerns with my 'friend' (saying that lightly) wanting us to use 'her' vet.. as she told me that the only reason she wanted to use her vet was to get him out so she could ask him some stuff about her own horses without having to pay for him to come out, etc... my immediate director and I both are in agreement to keep the vet we've been using for the camp horses, as he has seen them several times now and knows them all personally... and while the vet she uses is a good vet, he doesn't 'know' the camp horses as well as the other vet.

As far as her giving me the horse, he is legally mine due to his papers being in my name and I do have a contract concerning her giving him for free to me. It has absolutely no buy-back clause and simply states that she has freely given the horse to me, papers included, but it is a contract. The horse has had a hip injury that keeps him from being able to be shown, which is what i'm aiming to do in the next few years, but he's perfectly sound to be a kids horse, trail horse, etc... he just wouldn't hold up (or win at) big breed shows.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I really think I needed the support and advice shown here... Dealing with her attitude the other day and the way she spoke to me AND the farrier really put me on a low, but after reading the encouraging and helpful posts here, I feel a lot bettter with myself as a horse-person and with myself as a barn manager.

I've spoken with my immediate director about my concerns with my 'friend' (saying that lightly) wanting us to use 'her' vet.. as she told me that the only reason she wanted to use her vet was to get him out so she could ask him some stuff about her own horses without having to pay for him to come out, .[/quote)

what is WRONG with you and your director?? fire her--IMMEDIATELY. what is this crap? did you tell your director about your "friend's" plan to steal? oh dear--seems like there is a HUGE leadership gap there and that you are all held hostaqge. your own fault, sorry.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do feel you need to let your director know about everything this employee is doing and saying that can cause harm to the integrity of the horse camp.

Mentioning theft in order to get spending money, disrespecting your role as barn manager, disrespecting the farrier as a professional brought in for his services and trying to manipulate veterinary services so she can get free advice .... you need to speak up right at that moment and point out that her comments/actions are inappropriate and not appreciated. Stand up and be heard! You *really* need to look at this as an I'm-the-boss-she's-the-employee situation and EVERY TIME she behaves inappropriately, tell her that is inappropriate and make a show of documenting it in a flip-notebook so you can remember and speak with the director about her behavior.

You need to stop letting her ride rough-shod over you and begin handling this like the Barn Manager you were hired to be.

You *have* to make her aware of these incidents by informing her she is behaving inappropriately and telling her what she must change and what you expect from her instead - this may include spelling things out and outlining possible consequences. Be prepared for her to attempt to go ballistic when she feels her power over you is being threatened. Stand your ground and ask if she is declining to accept your direction as Barn Manager and/or invite her to accompany you *right now* to go speak about her concerns over your instructions with the camp director. After you have made attempts to rectify the issues with her, then you need to bring it to your director's attention and suggest terminating her services with the riding camp.

I truly feel this person needs to be terminated of her employment with the camp and from friendship status with you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ditto to the above two replies

If she truly proposed thief from your employer , then it is your duty to report her and have her terminated. Your loyalty belongs with your place of employment

Sorry, I missed where the horse was transferred into your name

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's not a friend. Friends don't treat friends that way. However, Im not sure why you even continue to associate with her, given the way that you have described how she makes you feel. If you have no respect for yourself, you cant expect her to have any for you. Lose her and move on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My "best" friend growing up. Sounds like the idiot that your talking about.

I figured her out and stopped hanging around with her in 8th grade.

One of the best decisions of my life.

Try it.

A HUGE burden of fear and stress will roll off your shoulders.

And you will learn how wonderful it is to be free of an emotion sucking vampire!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ditto, not a friend. "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.". At this point any abuse or disrespect you suffer from being in contact with her is your responsibility.

I wish you no I'll will, just choose to be blunt. You are old enough, mature enough and have gotten enough wise advice to solve this problem now. It is now on YOU and not on her.

edited for typos

Edited by Greenhaven

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this