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Barn bullying, need advice on how to deal with it

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For over 6 months now, I've been going to the barn my friend goes too.

It all started when my friend, let's call her Liz, was begging me to come to her barn that she's been riding at for 3 years. So I planned a evaluation lesson with her trainer, let's call her Lara, and it went very well. I rode a horse that I ended up leasing.
Liz offered me to keep some of my tack in her locker, so I accepted. Liz and Lara were really nice and so was Liz's friend Kylie. I also met a girl there named Astarte, who was nice to me too. A couple weeks later, Liz started ordering me to get her stuff. I did, but I didn't like he way she kept asking me. I also heard a lot of gossip that Liz and Kylie were talking about. They talked smack about riders at our barn, and I just kept quiet. Lara kept giving me lessons, and she was being really nice. So one day, Lara asked me to cool out her horse Tommy for her. So I did, and Tommy is 17.1hh, so he's pretty tall. So I walked him around, and then hopped off him and gave him back to Lara. Liz came to our barn shortly after that and she said she saw me riding Tommy. I told her I walked him and she nodded. A day later, Kylie gave me looks and Lara wasn't talking to me. Liz came up to me and told me that I shouldn't have lied about trotting Tommy. I never said I trotted him and Liz told Lara and Kylie that I lied about it. Lara and Kylie really liked Liz, so they didn't believe me. I tried to tell Lara but she just seemed angry at me.

Then came the day me, Liz and Kylie were going to a flat show. Lara was coaching us at the show, and my horse was fine until she started having freak outs. I ended up crying cause I scraped my leg and I was embarrassed. Lara tried to make me feel better but Liz laughed at me and Kylie laughed with her. Astarte saw me at the show, then heard Liz and Kylie gossiping about me. I called Liz out on it and Liz said she didn't gossip about me.

Liz and Kylie gossiped a lot about me, and I got really angry. Astarte even gossiped about me too. Then came the worst day. Field day.
Field day is when you go out into the field and do cross-country and gallop around. So I went with Liz and Astarte. My horse started freaking out, so I went back in the ring. Astarte and Liz came with me to warm up. After I did a lot of walk and trot, I started to canter. Liz stopped me and told me I would give my horse arthritis if I didn't warm up more. I told her I did warm up and Liz smacked me with her whip and I screamed. And she then told me that's how my horse feels. She trotted away and Astarte laughed at me. So I shook it off and went into the field with Liz and Astarte. Mystic, my horse started freaking out and I only walked her and trotted her in the field. Liz and Astarte jumped and galloped and tried to convince me to jump. I told them Mystic was being antsy so I didn't want to go jump but Liz got mad. So Liz told me I had to and smacked me with her whip. So I went to the jump and Mystic refused. Mystic kept refusing then Liz demanded to get on her. So Liz got on her and Mystic refused so Liz forced Mystic over the jump. I got back on Mystic and she was even more antsy. So I didn't jump and Liz got so mad that she galloped towards me on her horse and forced her horse to bite Mystic. Mystic started bucking but Liz didn't care. She kept annoying me. So I cantered over the jump, but Liz didn't see me. So she forced me to go over it again, but Mystic was freaking out. So I told her I can't. Liz called me a wimp and told me she didn't believe that I jumped it. So she got off her horse, grabbed the reins from my hands and pulled me over the jump. I almost fell off and Liz told me I was a bad rider and I was being a brat.
Liz orders me around, and gossips about me. She also always uses my stuff and returns it in horrible condition.
Then, today, she called me and told me Kylie told Liz that Lara is mad at me cause I cancelled my last lesson with Lara and Liz kept insulting me.
I no longer feel welcome from this barn and I'm moving at the end of this month but Liz doesn't know. She keeps telling me that I'm a horrible rider, and now Kylie hates me and gossips about me. Liz also said I have horrible position and posted it on Instagram for everyone to see.
She threatens me and says if I tell anyone what she does I will get in so much trouble.
Please help me on how to deal with her. :-|and Kylie :cry:
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There is no reasonable advice to offer on how to deal with them. This girl has PHYSICALLY hit you with a whip?? Multiple times?? I'm sorry, but that is not normal behavior.

I don't know how old you are, but I don't care if you are gossiped about for "tattling"-you need some adults involved in this scenario. I can't decipher if your trainer is trustworthy or not, or what your parents can do to help you. But being physically abusive to a "friend" is not acceptable. It may very well mean that if you want to
Continue to be involved in horses, it may need to be at a new barn. But this situation is just horrible. I'm so sorry these girls are acting this way towards you.
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I grew up at a barn where if that kind of crap happened, you got kicked out. I have my own barn to train out of now and I run things the same way. I do not tolerate drama, and these girls are being dangerous.

If you think your trainer is trustworthy, I would mention it to her. I would also talk to your parents or another adult you trust. Perhaps another barn employee?

Don't be afraid to stand up for yourself and call them out. You don't have to return the abusive behavior, but next time they bother you, look them right in the eye and ask them to back off. You will be amazed what confidence can do. They might still try, but if you don't yield then they can't hurt you. Don't let them close to you. Don't talk to them. Don't ride with them, and don't acknowledge them. If they want to start something with you, be assertive. Tell them to get away. Tell them your horse is your horse and it's your decision what you do, not theirs.
 

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I tend to agree with Sorrell.
People will always talk behind your back regardless of your age or situation. They are just insecure and need another buddy to give them strength. I would confront her one on one in a private setting and tell her that you won't be her victim any longer and it she so much as touches that whip................ ! You have to stand up to her, but stand up to her alone without her support member. No matter what transpires, you will gain her respect and she will just look for an easier target.

You can do this. I promise you.
 

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I agree with everyone here. You need to stand up to this loser. I'm happy you are leaving this barn next month, these girls are crazy. It sounds like the trainer is super immature too. Next time they try you just get mad and pop off on them. You are leaving the barn anyway so you might as well go out with style.
 

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I'd seriously be talking to your parents about this. This is just not ok!

I'd also be not going anywhere near these girls for the remainder of your time there and ensuring that Lara knows exactly why you are leaving.
 

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I'm prefacing this by saying I don't know how old you are, but I'm guessing 14-16. I'm surprised you haven't talked to your parents about this yet. While I agree that you should say something to these girls, I doubt it will do any good and is likely to add fuel to the fire. I knew many girls like them and ignoring them was usually best.

Talk to the trainer on private and tell get what's going on. The trainer should never have let transpire what happened on that field day. It was dangerous for both rider AND horse.

If the trainer isn't willing to do something about them, your parents need to talk to her themselves. Their behavior is absolutely acceptable and puts a lot of people and horses at risk for serious injury.

I'm glad you're moving at the end of the month, but their behavior needs to be made known to whomever is in charge there.

As far as gossiping, unfortunately people will always gossip. No matter what your age. It's good to stay learning now to let things like that roll off your back as much as possible. Girls who gossip are insecure themselves. Chances are the things they're saying about you are only reflections of their own faults, so they call those things out on you in the hopes that no one will see those things in them. It's petty and lame, to be honest, but that's many young girls for you.

Now, where they were hitting you with the whip, I would have walloped them right back and much harder. That's something I've never accepted and I let people know that immediately. It's better to not ever stand for someone - anyone - abusing you in any way.
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Honestly, if you can, get out of there. People like that don't tend to get better, regardless of age. I was in a crazy drama situation that dragged on for a few years. I ended up moving barns and have not been happier.
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You're handling it better than me. I would have knocked Liz off her horse and made her eat the whip had she hit me with it. Just handle it as gracefully as you can and just leave. I wouldn't bother telling your "friends". I would pack up my stuff when they weren't around and just stop showing up. I definitely would not tell them what barn I was at.
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Good on you for being the mature one - reading this reminds me how tough it can be being a teenage girl (am just guessing you are a teen), girls can be horrible sometimes and really makes a hard time in your life that much harder. Friends come and go at that age, I hope you find a nicer barn to move to and I'm glad to hear that you have spoken to your parents about it.
Hopefully those girls get a good talking to and this may prevent them doing this to some other new girl. I hope they feel ashamed for the way they treated you but unfortunately they sound like very immature nasty little girls.
 

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First of all, you are handling this with maturity and grace, and that speaks highly of you! I am glad you told your parents and hope they can talk to "Liz's" parents about the immature nonsense she is dishing out to you (I cannot believe she HIT you with her crop! Definitely not something a true friend would do!).

"Lara" is the instructor, right? I think you should have your parents have a chat with her as well about what is happening.

To be honest, at the same time I admit that I would probably high tail it out of there asap and find a new barn and instructor away from "Liz" and her little attitude problems, especially if you are no longer enjoying horses and riding as much because it is too stressful to even go out to that barn due to those girls.

I wish you the best of luck in resolving this!
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I'm not sure how old you are but from reading this I would guess pretty young, probably still in school? I know it doesn't seem like it at but you don't need these people as your friends; you don't need anyone as your friend period. Friends are people who care about you and treat you with respect. If you want a friend remember it's okay to have standards! Don't let anyone treat you badly or talk about you behind your back. It's not worth it. You are better off alone then trying to fit in with a bad group of people in the long run.

It sounds like it's time to move on and away from these people and this barn. If it was me I would stop talking to them immediately. If they talk about you or laugh at you just remember that these people are acting like immature children and you're better than that. It sucks to realize that they don't care about you and are back-stabbers but the sooner it happens the sooner you'll realize you don't fit in with them for a reason and that's a good thing. good luck to you!
 

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My daughter is like you in that she'll let other girls push her around more than she should. It's taken her a lot of years to be strong enough to say enough is enough. You need to get there too. You're a good girl, very sweet, I can tell. Don't let other people spoil your day like this. Stand up for better treatment and if someone doesn't give it to you, cross them off the friend list. With friends like you've described, you won't even need enemies.
 
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The only feeling you should have towards these girls is pity. It's a shame that they have to go through life making other people feel small in order to make themselves feel bigger. It is a very sad way for them to live their lives and they will realize it one day when they are completely alone. Then they will either grow up or escalate the behavior.
Telling your parents and moving barns is the best way to deal with this so good on you for doing that! This so called 'trainer' really needs a wake up call if she is letting this happen in her barn. Don't feel bad about what has happened, be the better person and walk away with your head held high knowing that you didn't stoop to their level.
I am proud of you for reaching out for help, as someone who struggled with bullies in school I know how hard that can be! Good for you, you are one strong, amazing girl and you deserve to be at a barn where you can learn and enjoy being with horses!
 

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Ohhh how grateful I am that I was the only teenager at my barn and all my friends were adults.

I'm really sorry you're dealing with this and I'm glad you're getting out of there. I hope this doesn't sour your attitude toward horse people. There are great ones out there and I hope you find them.
 
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