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post #11 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 12:10 AM
Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Arizona
Posts: 321
• Horses: 4
I'm an introvert, too. I think a lot of horse people have social anxiety, so they can appear to be stuck up when they are really just a little socially awkward.

I made a lot of friends of all ages at my old lesson barn, and have lots of aquaintances at my neighborhood barn where my horses are kept. I also made quite a few horse friends at our local "saddle club" that sponsors schooling shows and gymkhanas.

I think joining 4H or Pony Club would be a great way to make friends. Non-horse people just don't understand or share our enthusiasm for our horses. Asking people about their horses, or complimenting their horses is a great way to start a conversation. Don't be afraid to apprach others first, as they may feel the same way you do.
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Last edited by Cedar & Salty; 03-19-2019 at 12:24 AM.
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post #12 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 12:20 AM
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Arizona
Posts: 6,301
• Horses: 0
I feel the same way and I am 40+ years old.

It used to be that I didn't care a whole lot if I rode alone. And from a comfort-level with my horse perspective, I don't. But I've ridden alone so much the past couple of years that I really MISS riding with someone. Someone to share my love of horses with, someone to discuss tack and feeding with, just someone to share nature with.

My best riding buddy is almost 80 years old. She is great. But she's had a few health issues and the weather has been yucky so she hasn't been riding lately (basically all winter) and I just feel so alone.

I used to have friends. It used to come easy.....they would seem to be friendly towards me and I didn't have to do anything special. But a couple of them have seemed to go their own way and we don't talk much anymore. One doesn't even ride anymore.

So anyway, I guess I am no help. I'm just venting. But this subject has been on my mind a lot lately. And then this thread came up. So yeah, I don't have any suggestions but I understand your feelings.

One thing that happened is that I had a young gelding that I raised up from a colt. I had help and he had training, but we never were really quite right for each other. Rides often ended up with me frustrated and crying. I finally re-homed him but sometimes wonder if that's where I killed off all my friendships. Nobody wants to ride with someone that's not fun to ride with. The horse I have now is great though. I thought once I got her people would ride with me again because "wow, no more horse issues!" But that sadly hasn't been the case. I have an awesome horse and I'm still riding alone.

Last edited by trailhorserider; 03-19-2019 at 12:29 AM.
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post #13 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 12:26 AM
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Arizona
Posts: 6,301
• Horses: 0
Originally Posted by Cedar & Salty View Post
I'm an introvert, too. I think a lot of horse people have social anxiety, so they can appear to be stuck up when they ate really just a little socially awkward.

Wow, I'm an introvert and have social anxiety too! I had no idea that was common among horse people. I'm still not sure if it is, a lot of horse people (other than myself) seem really confident. I went through my entire school age years as a loner with only one consistent friend, and she was a next-door neighbor, so she probably couldn't get away from me, lol! I hope I don't appear stuck up. I think of myself as shy and anxiety ridden. But you don't know how other people see you, so who knows what they think.
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post #14 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 12:43 AM
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Australia
Posts: 7,170
• Horses: 3
Hello and welcome, @AQHBAY ! We may only be "virtual" most of the time, but we'll encourage you here, in your horse pursuits and in general!

Some of the people on the forum are now meeting up in trail rides etc! @AnitaAnne is one person who has been organising Meet&Greet rides. I can't go to hers unfortunately, because I don't have a , but she sent me the T-shirt, so I felt a part of it even though in another hemisphere!

I'm sure more people organising rides will put their hands up too. For local people, others posting before me have given some good tips!

Best wishes and happy riding!

SueC is time travelling.
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post #15 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 01:31 AM
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: London, UK
Posts: 1,241
• Horses: 1
I am in a similar boat and not for lack of trying for YEARS. I find not only do we/I have to contend with different personalities and abilities in people but add in a horse with questionable training and it makes it 10x more difficult to socialise. At my yard people are actually really lovely. Some don't ride. Some teenagers that ride are wild gals that uh.. lack some tact when it comes to riding. I am very honest about my riding ability and I feel that I sometimes downplay myself too much. I don't ride like a dressage goddess but I ride with a lot more empathy and focus than some that claim to be so IDK. I often get asked if I jump and when I say no you can see the switch go off in their head lol. There are only like 3 people I will hack out with and our times don't often line up. I actualy consider my horse group to be this forum - you're gonna love it here! For real tho - horse time is horse time. She's my buddy when I'm there.
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post #16 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 04:24 AM
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Eastern TN
Posts: 697
• Horses: 1
Fellow Introvert! Also, I noticed you're in TN. You don't happen to trail ride do you? There's a group that likes to meet up to do trails because we've got so many options around here. Do you board your horse or is it at home? I met more people when I boarded than now that my horse is home. :/
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post #17 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 06:00 AM
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Nueva Vizcaya, Philippines
Posts: 2,118
• Horses: 1
Hello and welcome!

Home schooling wasn't a thing when I was a kid. Still, my only horse friends were the ones in the 4-H club. I would recommend something of that nature.

I'm in a non-horse part of the world. But there are cattle, and plenty of oaks who admire the American cowboy image. I'm making like minded friends here by volunteering with the local college rodeo team.

Not sure how creative your parents are, or how flexible your curriculum is, but integrating the horse, and horse activities into the home schooling could offer some opportunities. There's science in the nutrition, care, and motion of a horse. Phys-Ed in the riding and activities. Some curriculums require some type of social activity. Trail rides, gymkhana type fun days, formal competition, all could fit that bill.

As folks have mentioned, we are here. And as Aubie mentioned, don't forget to look into the teen forum here.

Re: introvert. Same here. I'm not gregarious, but, I always feel that I present a friendly face to the outside world. Though one fellow, years ago, told me that he was hesitant to approach me because I seemed aloof.
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post #18 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 06:25 AM
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 41
• Horses: 0
Another introvert with social anxiety here. Personally I take lessons so I dont have to ride alone.

At this point I am comfortable enough that I could start leasing a horse if I wanted to, but I figured out that taking lessons is the better option for me.
My trainer is actually younger than me, but she has been riding for much longer and she is also competing professionally and educating herself further. I dont want to compete, I just want to be able to ride okay-ish. So our deal is that we ride about 3/4 of the lessons together on trails (when weather allows) and the rest is spent on arena work.
Mostly its just the two of us, but during summer there can be more because other people often join us on their own horses.
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post #19 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 10:37 AM
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Vermont
Posts: 6,068
• Horses: 3
Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
I just wish we lived near each other, because I'd sign up to be your horsey friend, in a heartbeat! We'd be a strange pair, though, as I'm so old, and you so young. But, hang in there. Horses have been the glue for almost ALL of my friendships!
@tinyliny , I'm nearing 40, and the best riding buddy I've had is in her mid-80s (and a far better rider than me!). I think horses are great uniters.

Welcome to the forum @AQHBAY ! I agree with what others have suggested- try to find a trails club, consider volunteering at a therapeutic riding barn (search on for a program near you), and consider 4-H/Pony Club. This forum is great for meeting new people all over the world.
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post #20 of 37 Old 03-19-2019, 10:46 AM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 13,243
• Horses: 5
Have you looked into local clubs near you? I find for those who are big socialites, clubs are a great way to meet a lot of horse people with a similar interest.
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