Thanks so much for sharing this Jan! As you know, we also chose a horse that is a bit too much for my daughter to handle at times. I can't say it was a mistake... I absolutely adore Harley (I bet you hadn't noticed) and have formed a great bond with him. I feel I can do what I want to do with him (mostly trail riding), so he may well end up being my horse rather than my daughter's. For these reasons, I don't think I could ever sell him and I don't think it was a mistake to buy him, however, he is not the right fit for my daughter at this time. Luckily, as you also know, we are looking for another horse for my daughter (we will keep both) and this time, we will look for the slowest, quietest, lesson-type, beginner-friendly horse you can find. He will be a calming influence on Harley's Arab temperament and a horse my daughter feels confident riding. In a few years, if she's ambitious enough to start doing more with Harley, I'll be content riding the quiet horse and it will be great to have a horse like that around for when guests come over.
In the meantime, we are also having Harley cantered by our trainer (my daughter and I both take lessons but she's afraid to canter him and I'm still working on my trot). He is perfectly capable of having a slow, collected canter (I've seen his dressage videos), but because we don't canter him that much, he kind of explodes when he gets a chance to do it. I've been working on cantering him on the lunge line too. And my daughter canters on other horses so she can continue to work on her skills.
Bottom line: it happens all too often that new horse owners (or rusty ones like ourselves who went a long time without horses) choose a horse that's a bit too much to handle. As you point out, this situation could quickly spiral out of control and create a mess of the horse, not to mention turn the rider off horses for good. And above all, we need to keep our kids safe.
Kudos to you for recognizing that you needed help and getting it! You're also teaching your son some great problem-solving skills in the process! EVERY young person EVERYWHERE who thinks they want a horse, especially that pretty stallion running wild on the beach in the movies, NEEDS to read this. Thank you for posting.