My (36f) child (7f) asked if she could ride her pony to school last week. For context, we have a small paddock attached to our home where we keep 2 horses, one for me and one for my child.
Every morning before school my child gets all of her pony chores done before we leave and we normally walk to school which takes around 20 minutes. We live on the outskirts of a fairly populated city where it’s not uncommon to see horses occasionally, but we are by no means in a rural village.
I agreed to let my daughter ride her pony to school because I thought it was a harmless fun thing to do and also it gives the pony some exercise as we had evening plans and wouldn’t be riding that evening. We arrived at the school gates and of course gathered a little bit of a crowd which wasn’t a problem. The pony is very good and lapped up all the pats and strokes from kids.
One girl came bounding over from the year above my daughter and started shouting at me saying she wanted to ride. I politely told her that she couldn’t because she doesn’t have a riding hat and she would have to learn on a safer horse.
She immediately started hysterically crying and pleading with her mum, saying she wanted to ride. Her mum looked at me with disgust and said, “see, this is what happens when you have no self awareness and bring a horse to a school” and stormed off, dragging her kid with her. I was a bit taken aback but ignored her, sent my child into school and walked the pony home.
I was talking to my friend this weekend and she said I was, in fact, the problem and I was blatantly showing off and should have known that this would cause upset and problems. My response is I turn up to the school gates in jodhpurs and boots regularly so everyone probably knows I have horses, is that showing off too?
All I wanted to do is let my daughter do something a bit silly and fun. Now I am really overthinking it though and almost feel nervous to do school drop off tomorrow…. So am I the a$$h0l3 for letting my daughter ride her horse to school?
NTA. That woman blames other people for her clear lack of parenting skills. She has to manage her child’s expectations. My husband takes our daughter to school on a motorcycle and it draws the same attention without the entitled demanding a ride and rude response. Would you bringing a puppy with you elicit the same responses? I think not- YWNBTA
So I guess if anyone who shows up in a fancy car is the AH as well.
NTA, the other parents need to teach their kids that you can't always have what other people have. It is a fact of life...(and this is coming from someone that grew up below the poverty line).
Are they gonna be mad at another parent for driving an expensive vehicle? If I was the parent, I would just tell my kid, "Look at the pretty horsey! But don't touch it unless they let you, okay."
INFO; did you really think other kids would not bat an eye?! Of course they wanted to ride the pony!
I obviously knew people would show an interest, but I honestly thought the kids would just be happy to see a pony and it would brighten peoples Friday. The pony is mega safe so I knew everyone could stroke him and give him a fuss and assumed that would be that.
NTA. Done that as well. In neophobe Switzerland. People lost it as well but we were having fun. Ok I was on a huge 2000-pound cold-blood with hooves like big plates, so as long as I was there nobody dared to say anything :) - only when I was gone, some mothers freaked out about how "dangerous" this all was ...
But I didn't take it seriously - people also lost it when I gave my kids Sushi in a Bento box to Kindergarden and claimed it's dangerous to eat raw fish, forbade them to eat the sushi, and called me at home what I was thinking. You're can't make everybody happy: You are not Pizza :)
NTA. Eye catching, but nothing wrong with that. The horse is part of your life. My dad used to turn up on his motorbike, when I was old enough, to give me a ride home from school.
Nobody else got picked up on a moped, let alone a 750cc motorcycle. I know he was showing off, and he worked in a factory, so he liked to be in the open air after his shift ended. But it was still dead cool.