I'm getting out of the world of horses.

Thyme & Me

New Member
Nov 23, 2011
About 20 years after buying my first horse. :cry:

The good bits about horse ownership are brilliant. The best. Connecting with a beautiful animal. Developing a relationship. Learning together. The satisfaction of achieving something new. The thrill of competing or riding cross country and show jumping. The sheer joy of a gallop along a beach or a meander along a river bank. The comfort of a solid but soft shoulder to cry into. The innocent silliness of scritchy spots, and funny faces, and excited farty bucking sprees round the field.


I can't ignore the downsides, and they are - finally - outweighing the good: In no particular order:

* The time
My OH has no interest in horses at all. In fact he is allergic to them. My sister in law in so severely allergic that she can't visit us. My son has zero interest. I have done EVERYTHING to maintain the girls' interest but they can take them or leave them. So although the girls come up with me to ride and fuss Tara about twice a week, the vast majority of my horsey time is for me alone, none of it is shared with them. As the yard is 10-15 minutes away, and the field a long walk from the car park and stable block a visit to the yard is 90 minutes minimum. Every day. Often twice. That's without riding! If I want to hack out, take Thyme to a show etc then it's the whole day gone. And i have 2 to do every day.

* The stress
I worry about the horses endlessly. When the weather is bad it's all I talk about at home- are they warm enough should I bring them in etc etc. I know it's silly, and I try not to, but in all the years of having horses I have never got over it. It is worse than ever with Thyme because she drops weight quite easily. When I am stressed about the horses, I am fine at the yard and miserable everywhere else! And that's when they are healthy! .... I've been known to get up at 4am to check on them. The last few winters have been a nightmare but at least I have spring and summer to recover...... but anyone looked out of a window recently???

*The cost
We are basically a bit skint! ALL my money goes on the horses. I am self employed and I should work harder, but that means even more time away from the family. Most of the family's disposable income goes on MY hobby. Last year we couldn't afford a holiday with the children. That's just not fair.

* The danger.
This doesn't worry me - I have never been afraid of horses. But it really REALLY bothers OH. He has seen me break ribs coming off X-C when the horse hit the fence and somersaulted. He got a phone call from a strange man in January saying 'your wife has had an accident... come as quick as you can|" when I got kicked in the head. The kids saw that and it scared them. Then recently Thyme went out of the jockey door on the trailer in a panic- right where the kids were standing. He saw that too. I can't ignore that riding is a percentages game - particularly the things I do: bringing on a youngster, jumping. And I'm a mother. It'snot just me who depends on my neck!

The impact on my relationship with OH: We never see each other. We go days at a time meeting at bedtime! And it's affecting the kids too: It's always him that watches the kids swimming lessons or takes them to footie or athletics events. On Sunday we went TOGETHER to watch the children do the Derby Triathlon. And that was only because it was Fathers Day! But it was lovely and it brought home to me how rare a family day out is.

* Domestic Front
With no time for anything else but work & horses, the household is in chaos. And I don't just mean I don't hoover very often. I mean the kids sometimes don;t have clean uniform, I run out of bread for their lunch-box, I forget to sign and return permission slips for school trips.....

So all in all, my and OH had a crisis summit yesterday. To give him credit he has NEVER said anything about me selling the horses. He knows how much they mean to me. I've been horse mad since we first met! But we talked very openly and honestly and I have come to the conclusion that its the end of the road for me and the horses. I will use the money I save to have lessons, hopefully I can ride other people's horses for them sometimes. I'll gallop along Studland Beach and go on horsey holidays. But the day-in-day-out year after year stuff has to stop.....

So what next?

I am LOVING bringing Thyme on, so I am in no hurry to sell, but she will be going up for sale locally. My ideal outcome would be for someone to buy her who lives nearby so I can stay in touch, or for her to go to someone on NR so I can stay in virtual touch. I am in no hurry, and will wait for the perfect home for my lovely girl....

Tara is on loan for a year but her owner has said she can go back anytime. The girls like grooming and hacking about twice a week so we will keep doing that for now. As I said, I am in no hurry ......

Wine and luxury chocs for anyone who read this VERY LONG post.
Last edited:


Active Member
Nov 7, 2010
Oh T&M, I'm nearly in tears here myself! I've been so enjoying your updates and your focus on a natural way of keeping horses; you are one of the people on here that I really wish I could meet, and hear more about your journey with Thyme.

I often wonder how people manage, just with one horse, let alone two. I'm self employed and only work about ten hours per week, I've got one son, and yet I constantly think my house is a mess, and many a time I've had a mad panic on Sunday night, trying to get uniform quickly washed dried and ironed. And I don't even have a horse!!

So I do understand where you are coming from, and I know you wouldn't have posted unless you were sure about this.

Just want you to know that I really feel for you, it must have been such a tough decision. And I hope you feel that you can continue to post about Thyme while you still have her. :cry:


New Member
Mar 23, 2012
Gateway to europe
Oh that really is a shame, I was just writing on the other thread about Suchadra wanting a horse.

I can see why you would like a break. Sometimes when money gets tight I try and convince myself mine have got to go, I usually end up feeling really depressed. Then I just can't do it, I couldn't face rehoming them or not doing my daily horsey stuff it would be just to much of a huge void for me. Yes I could have holidays, buy clothes, buy furniture etc and the house would be clean but then what?

I take my hat off to you if you have really made the decision but do stop and think, are you just doing it for them or for you? If its for you thats fine but don't do it just for them, you deserve something as well as running round after the family.

Thyme & Me

New Member
Nov 23, 2011
I feel like i have to post straight away to make it real or I will change my mind! OH was so relieved with the decision we made - it was not any pressure from him - but I know he would love for me to 'come home...!'

And yes I will still be posting until she goes. She's mine while she's mine and I am still going ahead with all our plans for the summer: RWYM clinic, dressage test, another little holiday, take her X-C jumping in a month or 2. I'll enjoy her all the more knowing it's not forever.

I was a bit scared to post in case people judge me, but it is not a decision I've taken lightly.


New Member
Sep 16, 2009
West Yorkshire
First of all big (((hugs))) I can't imagine how hard it has been for you to reach this decision.

However I totally know where you are coming from. I have a very busy life working full time shifts, I have hubby and a young son who now does after school activities etc, housework never gets done and I never have spare time or money for anything and sometimes when it all gets on top of me I wonder if it is all really worth it and how long I can carry on like this :-(

With a wonderful horse like Thyme, hopefully you will find her a fantastic owner not too far away and you'll be able to keep in touch with her.

Thyme & Me

New Member
Nov 23, 2011
Tina - you say your OH loves the horses. In the end! I've worked on mine for 12 years of marriage and it's never gonna happen! Actually he was there when Thyme jumped out of the jockey door on our trailer and nearly flattened the children and he has been even more anti-horse since then. He is genuinely scared of them and sacred for me when I ride. I had a nasty accident earlier this year (witnessed by the kids) too which hasn't helped.
I'm not doing it for them or for me. I'm doing it for us.

Dark Storm

Well I'll be a Krampus's Auntie! :D!
Jan 4, 2009
I sometimes dwell on the subject of time and money. I have good days and bad.. I recently had a bad few days where i hardly slept for worrying. Then something happened that changed the direction I was going in, and I felt better about things.
Life is full of cross roads T&Me... maybe one day when the kids are older or have left home, you can go back into them? Never say never :wink: Hugs XX


Aug 23, 2010
That was a refreshingly honest and open post and I felt very emotional reading it.

I can understand all that you have said and my heart goes out to you but I also felt relieved that you had been able to make the decision without any pressure, especially from your OH. He sounds like a diamond and THAT is well worth prioritising :wink:

Looking forward to more of your posts about Thyme and how you are doing but I'm glad for you that you can be a lot more peaceful in the meantime!


Gracie's mum
Jul 31, 2005
Gosh, what a sad post but I DO understand.... sometimes you have to make tough choices in life.

(to be honest, I'm going through a bit of similar choice myself due to being totally terrified of mine since my accident but I'm giving it some time whilst I heal)


New Member
Mar 23, 2012
Gateway to europe
Tina - you say your OH loves the horses. In the end! I've worked on mine for 12 years of marriage and it's never gonna happen! Actually he was there when Thyme jumped out of the jockey door on our trailer and nearly flattened the children and he has been even more anti-horse since then. He is genuinely scared of them and sacred for me when I ride. I had a nasty accident earlier this year (witnessed by the kids) too which hasn't helped.
I'm not doing it for them or for me. I'm doing it for us.

Sounds like the break would be a good idea for you atm, its a shame but it can be very difficult juggling especially with young kids. Bad enough trying to work and bring up children never mind a horse as well, I am sure you will make the right decision.


Active Member
Dec 30, 2006
I completely understand.

I often think we don't give our families enough credit for what they have to put up with.

It takes up a lot of time and money and I cringe when I see people hiding from their partners just how much money they are spending. That's not a relationship built on trust.

I've always said that my family come first. I treasure my time with them and won't ride if hubby isnt working, unless I go very early. He then gets a lie in and we both appreciate that. If I had to work during the day I wouldn't have my ponies. I don't consider it fair to drag my daughter to the yard when she has no interest and she wouldn't be able to do her clubs and hobbies if they clashed with mine. Also I need to ensure she reads and does her homework. There wouldn't be enough time in the day.

My yard visits are also 1.5 hours a day, 3 hours if I'm riding. That's not doable if it had to be after school/work. My ponies mean the world to me but not at the expense of my family time. My family is my life.


Thats a real shame is there not some compromise you could come to. I was looking at some of your negatives especially the worry ones you obviously really care for you horses maybe a bit to much. Horses are a lot tougher than they look. I really hope you give it some more thought and maybe just have a wee break from them for a while and see how you feel. It is a big commitment both in time and financially and we are all suffering from a lack of cash at the moment.


Apr 29, 2002
I don't really know how so many of you people cope with jobs, families, houses and horses. I am very luck to have them all together now but 28 years ago was in the same position, demanding job in London, commuted from house in Sussex which I only saw in the dark during the week for much of the year. Job also bought weekday nanny/housekeeper and full livery for horse but it wasn't how I wanted to live.

I used to be surprised how many of my really good RS clients really did not want to own a horse but they too had discovered there wasn't enough time in life for everything. Some part loan from us so that they have a horse fit and ready to ride when they have time but know that it is not their responsibility and others are happier just to have regular lessons.

Have a break when you are ready, keep up your riding when you can and when the kids are more grown up and you have time on your hands come back to it.


New Member
Jan 23, 2012
It sounds like you have made the decision you really need. :smile: big hug to you for being brave and doing what you think is best, even though you have to sell your horse. I don't own my own horse but this is what I worry about when coming to buy my own, if I have the time, money etc. They are such a big commitment but I'm sure you will enjoy riding others horses and riding holidays just as much because you will also be having lots of family time too which will make you really happy I'm sure.

Sparky Lily

Well-Known Member
Nov 27, 2008
Yell, Shetland
I came late to horse-ownership, and will be the first to admit that I couldn't have managed earlier in my life. Balancing work and family is hard enough. Don't beat yourself up. As eml says, keep it ticking over, then take up again when you can.


Active Member
Aug 22, 2007
I feel really quite emotional reading your post! It is so clear that you have thought long and hard about this, Thyme could not have wished for a more caring and thoughtful person to start her off a I'm sure she will continue to be a credit to you during her ridden life.


Gimpy Gimp Gimp
Jan 19, 2005
I totally hear where you are coming from, I recently had to make a huge move and life changing decison for the sake of my family, and sadly the horse didnt come first... my family did. Aslong as you ensure your animals are catered for ( horses have good new homes) dont beat yourself up over it. For me it was a HUGE weight and stress of my mind, and I can always get back into them one day when life suits it more. From what your saying its taking a huge chunk of your life away from your children which are and always be number 1. I think the way things are going right now for you, you would of regreted when the children were older and you realised how many things you missed out on seeing as they grow up.

Ultimatley children come first, and I totally respect you for your decision.

In an ideal world I would of had all my animals with me till the day they ( or I ) died.. but we dont live in an ideal world and we just try to do what we thinks best.


New Member
Mar 23, 2010
I totally understand how hard this must be for you. I recently sold one of my horses - a horse I really loved and never thought I would sell - for the sake of my family. I still have one horse but she is now shared with a mother/daughter who mucks out in the winter and poo picks in the summer in exchange for riding and pony club days and camps.

My OH is a great mucker outer, rug changer, poo-picker, etc but horses are far from being his hobby - he just helps me when he can. But oh how much easier it is with only one horse to worry about and pay for. That's the other consideration - money! Horses cost alot!

I have been very lucky - selling my lovely mare to a friend who I know will cherish her and will certainly offer me first refusal should she ever need to sell her, and finding a kind, reliable sharer for my other mare.

I have lots more time and alot more money and my family benefits from that enormously. If ever we need help or we fall on hard times, it is our families that are there for us not our horses. Our horse might love us but they will turn their affections to anyone who treats them well and feeds them!

You have my sympathy with what must be really tough but our hearts are often poor judges when it comes to making decisions. The head usually gets it right!
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