Horses: The Great Age Equalizer

A couple of years ago, I sat back on my couch, looked at the girls/women gathered in my living room watching Mean Girls, and realized that my non-horse friends would find my group very odd. Gathered in my house was a 14 year old, two 17 year olds, a college sophomore, and two 30-somethings (three including me). This is not your typical friend-group age demographic but yet it seems pretty natural in the horse world.

This is not a phenomenon that non-horse people understand and sometimes even I have a hard time with it. I have thought a lot about why it happens though, and I have a couple ideas. The first is that horse people are weird. I mean this in the nicest way possible, but we are, and we love to talk about what is such a HUGE part of our life! The downside of wanting to talk about it is that my non-horse friends really do not understand when I complain about how Winifred used to do the 1.2m jumpers and has won at Maclay but yet he will refuse a 2’3” fence if you do not ride him perfectly up to it! They have no idea what that means and then I get both guilty for making them listen to me and a little frustrated that they don’t understand. On the other hand, I can talk to the now 16 year old and, not only does she get it, but she can share her experiences. I think that these friendships are more common because we all compete at the same shows. I cannot think of any other sport that you will have people over 30 competing at the exact same event at the same time as a child.

Even though it is pretty common in the horse world, I have to admit that I still sit back and have to think about my place in all of this. I have 3 nephews who I absolutely adore and so many of their friends also call me aunt but it still has a different feel taking them to the movies as it does going out to a post-lesson dinner with high school and college kids. At some points, it feels like a true friendship but then other moments I have a total maternal, or better yet auntal (yep I just made up a new word) feel to our relationship. I am especially reminded of this awkward middle ground when I hang out with the moms, which I love to do!
Maybe I am weird even among the horse world. Does anyone else have friends that their non-horse people would think is weird to hang out with? As weird as it is, I will not be giving up my young friends anytime soon. Perhaps being friends with them keeps me young in some way.
P.S. I just had to share a little funny from this weekend. We had a baby shower for a barn-mate and TD looked over at me and said, “I have known you since you were 8 but why does it freak me out way more to see you drink coffee than seeing you drink alcohol?” LOL

Luther would prefer not to have friends who do shit like this to him!

6 thoughts on “Horses: The Great Age Equalizer

  1. lol, true story i just informed a couple of my regular lesson mates that i’m actually about 10 years older than them, and it kiiiiiiiinda blew their mind a little bit haha….

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So true! I’m good friends with a 14yo who can out-ride me like you wouldn’t believe, and also with her mom who is my fav happy hour buddy. At the end of the day, horse people just get it no matter how old they are 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. A young woman and I were talking about this at the barn, I’ve known so many girls from when they were 5 and I was in middle school/high school, and at that time I was friends with the 30+ yo at the barn too and now we’ve all aged another 20 years and are still just as good of friends and making friends with the younger generation again. Really cool.

    Liked by 1 person

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