Hello, everyone, I'm new to the forum, and I want to start off by saying hello to everybody here. I would tell you more about myself besides that I'm 23 years old and an entrepreneur, but as far as the internet goes, I like to keep the specific personal details private. You never know who might find you if you're not careful...
So, anyway, I came to this forum because I have a specific goal in mind, which is to go back to a place I've been kicked out of. Besides that I feel pretty rotten about it, which is obvious, I feel that I haven't been treated fairly, and so I'd like to ask what can be done. The other reason for my coming to the forum is that my philosophy is to take charge and not be a victim, yet today, about two years after the fact, I'm sitting at my computer, and I realize that I was unwittingly allowing myself to be a victim, because I haven't fought back! (I'm a total hypocrite when it comes to more subtle situations.)
Before we get into all that, however, I'd like to explain the specifics of what happened. I went to this equestrian center in November, 2010, because I had taken this sudden interest in horses as companions as opposed to the competitive, sporty animals we culturally see them as. They didn't have a problem with my talking to the horses, and I really enjoyed it. Besides that, we were pretty much a big, happy family, the staff and I. We had no real problems of any kind, and the lot of them were almost like grandmothers. (It sounds trite, but that was my impression.)
Well, on New Years' eve of 2010-11, I was nipped by one. This was not an aggressive bite, (it was the opposite,) nor did it do any damage beyond what a simple bandaid could fix. (I also want to insert here that whenever I tell anyone about this, I refer back to when I was eleven years old, and a toy poodle bit me on the leg. That horse, which, as you can imagine, was easily hundreds of times bigger than a toy poodle, caused a less serious wound than the toy poodle did. The poodle gave me a massive bruise - the horse only scratched me.)
So, anyway, knowing how negligible the horse's nip was, I didn't think much of it, and I treated the information in a casual way. I didn't care if the people there knew what happened, and if it came up in conversation, of course I'd mention it, because it was not a big deal! It was anything but a big deal!
So this volunteer and I were talking in February of 2011. (Two months later.) and I mention the "incident", (if it can even be called that .) And then I made some joke about it, (which I don't remember, but mention anyway because I want to drive the point home that to me it was nothing to be worried about,) and she flies off the handle, and smacks the horse lightly, and says "bad horse!" and says I should know better than to "pet a horse I don't know." (It should be noted that I was just beginning to bond with one in particular and I knew him in some ways better than my best friend.) So then word gets round that the horse did something awful to me, and I could sue, and they could lose the ranch, blah, blah, blah. (In other words, she blew it completely out of proportion when she spread the news about it.)
The next day, they told me about what the volunteer said, and they kicked me out. They basically explained that they could get sued if they continued to allow me to visit. They wouldn't listen to me when I tried to get the story straight.
I went back there last July, and I was surprised that they didn't at least threaten to call the police. (Boy, was I lucky.) But I tried to tell them that I had taken lessons for the better part of two-and-a-half months, and I also had at least a year of experience with horses outside the lessons. (It felt like a parole application, so humiliating.) They just looked for reasons not to bury the hatchet and have over with it. (And I think somewhere in that discussion they made a borderline sexist remark about me, which I didn't know enough to be offended by, but would have been.)
In the meantime, I went to different other places, so I could rebuild, but it was never the same. As a result, I have felt frustrated, angry, and heartbroken.
I don't know what kind of advice you can give, or if you can give any at all, but I figured at least it was worth a try.