serious injury, what to do now

pepsimaxrock

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Hi everyone

As a few of you will know I have been riding for about 5 years and have had my ups and downs (sic) mainly concerned with jumping.

But Sunday was just the end! I ride at a school- no horse of my own- (sob!) twice weekly and am probably one of their longest and most regular clients. My daughter rides there too and she hires their horses to do xc at the yard in summer.

Hey stuff all the background, lets get to it. On Sunday I was thrown off practising a dressage test in the indoor arena and broke my back...

Everybody there says that B just took off when someone (very familiar) came into the viewing area and startled him. I had been cantering a circle (following another horse), had noticed B was a bit frisky (had been warmed up and on the bit just a few minutes prior tho') and I was trying to calm him, when oops, speed up, buck, (I can sit to this, hang on...) then head down and off I go upwwards over the front end, crash onto my back. Ambulance etc, get to hosp find out it is broken (stable fracture thank god).

Now I am discharged from hospital and creeping around really slowly and painfully in a back brace and can't ride for 6 months.

RS owner phoned hubby to find out what happened and said "thanks for telling me". Never asked about my welfare, not once.

What I want to know is what others think I should do now. This is how I feel:

I really want to go back to riding.
I can't go anywhere else. Daughter really needs to go to this RS cos nowhere else around will hire horse for her to compete.
I feel really let down by the RS. It is certainly not just their attitude to my welfare, but the fact that this horse has been really spooky recently (he did something stupid earlier in the lesson which I sat to) and I think he was trouble.
I really resent the huge backward step I will need to take, my riding career has been about going backwards I think.... and that I will have to pay for the privilege of getting back to the standard I have been at...

Oh god sorry if this sounds too too self pitying.... any advice?

Anne
 

julia gulia

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Hi Anne...I am so, so sorry to hear about your accident:eek: What a horrid thing to have happen.
In answer to your questions? I have to say that I understand where your riding school owner is coming from. In this day and age? with everyone suing everyone else, I'm sure she was being careful about what she said or didn't say. This is the last thing any R.S.owner wants to happen. As for the horse you were riding? who knows what was going on...could be anything. Horses are huge animals and however well trained they are? accidents happen because they, like us, have emotions and fears.
I'm sure you are trying to make sense of all that happened..but sometimes? there are no definite answers.
This just happened so it is still fresh in your mind, you are in pain and you feel hurt that the R.S. owner didn't ask how you were feeling (I would be hurt too) but I just wanted you to consider what might be going through her mind.:eek:
Try not to feel resentful (easier said than done I know) . In my opinion that will just fester away inside you and will do you more harm than good.
Buy lots of horsey books and videos , get back to the barn to visit the horses as soon as you are able and pamper yourself. Don't let fear take over.......I so hope that you continue with your riding and I hope you will be back in the saddle much earlier than you have been told.
 
M

mu0ljk

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Well first of all have a big virtual hug! I;m so sorry to hear about your accident and I wish you as speedy a recovery as possible!

I would have to agree with what Julia said - there are so many lawsuits flying around that the RS owner was probably being careful with her words. I'm sure that inside she/he felt awful. I would say that once you are moving around more confidently go down to the stables because I bet they will welcome you back with well wishes and sympathy etc!

It is a shame though. But try not to dwell on it (easier said then done I know) and concentrate on getting better! :)
 

pepsimaxrock

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Thanks for your replies guys, I understand about lawsuits. But surely it wouldn't have hurt to say that she hopes I get better soon.

It makes it much harder to pay her for extra lessons to get back where I was.....

... and tbh, were I the litigous kind, this is the sort of attitude that would provoke a lawsuit, where a kind word or gesture may prevent..... isn't it customer care?
 

HairyCob

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Jeesh, that IS a serious injury. VERY glad to hear that it's a stable fracture, do be careful though, won't you?!

I can sort of see this from both sides- my previous YO broke his back in a similar fashion coming off my old horse.... I was mortified, terrified for him, and very very upset... I probably didn't do or say the right things at the time either.

HOWEVER, I don't think there's any excuse for your RS not to have phoned again and asked how you were and sent their best wishes.... yes, you might try to sue, but I'd guess you signed the standard 'horse riding is a risk sport' sort of disclaimer that everyone is asked to sign when they start at a new school, and therefore probably wouldn't get far if you DID try to sue.

I suspect that the person concerned is feeling very guilty for NOT asking how you were, and probably doesn't know what to do or how to approach you now...

I guess the pertinent question here is what do YOU want to do? Do you want to try to sue them? Or do you want to get better and continue to ride at the school with no atmosphere and no hard feelings? If (as I suspect) it's the latter, perhaps in this instance YOU will have to make that first move.... hard as it may be, perhaps by sending a card thanking them for the care they showed (assuming they did?!) when you came off, and assuring them you will be back just as soon as you can.... I'd almost guarantee that would initiate the sort of response you want AND DESERVE... probably a card and a boquet telling you to get well soon!
 

pepsimaxrock

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Thanks Hairycob and mu... (sorry, dozy mare, missed the exact spelling of your username...)) and for your understanding of just how serious this injury is and exactly the situation I am in, you've read it so correctly and really supportive.


My every intention is to go back in two weeks for daughter's regular lesson; OH will go today and pick up my car; the riding instructors (who were so delightful during the trauma) will be firendly and concerned.... of all this I'm absolutely certain. They are a great bunch and thats why we've been going there for so many years.

No first moves need to be made, there is no broken relationship just my broken back....

But its the proprietor who is the cause of my concern. She called the ambulance, on the advice of the RI, waited and watched while the ambulance came, without a word to me, and then phoned later OH to find out what had happened. She originally left a message and expected OH to report my case to her.... exact terminology... There's no doubt she's expectin a lawsuit. At thye moment I have no intention of taking one out...

I just need to get riding again. It will be 6 months I can hack that: I need to have strong bones..

Meanwhile I'll watch my clever daughter get a great result in the next dressage test I hope....
 

Mehitabel

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the proprietor is probably terrified for her livelihood - if her insurance is anything like ours, she'll have a whacking great excess to pay on any suit brought, regardless of the outcome, and having to report the accident, even given you're not suing, is likely to put her premiums up a huge amount next year. so i can see why she isn't forthcoming with sympathy while she doesn't know what is going on - all sorts of things could be twisted into an admission of guilt if you were that way inclined, and she won't know you're not until you speak to her.
i would agree go to see them, thank the instructors, and have a chat to her and put her mind at rest about suing - i expect she will be immensely grateful for the reassurance.

i hope your recovery is straightforward and you're back riding again as soon as possible.
 

pepsimaxrock

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I am going to see the instructors. I have said that.

Poor proprietor. Her back isn't broken. She could really have asked how I am, for all the money I give her year on year. Not doing that ought to cause her to fear for her livelihood. Daughter has offered to go elsewhere...
 

Morganna

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Sorry to hear about your accident. I wish you a speedy recovery, and yes I agree with you, it would have been nice for the YO to wish you the same, if only to let you know she is concerned for your welfare and health as someone she has obviously known as a regular client for some time.
 

pepsimaxrock

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yes, i know you said it - i was just agreeing that it was a good idea.

and i'm not trying to defend the proprietor - just trying to give you some insight into possible reasons for her behaviour.

I know, and I appreciate it. Sorry for being edgy, must be time to take another shot, this is the best bit.:confused: Thanks for your reply
 

Whatanejit

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Oh blooming heck Anne!

That is awful!

Sorry I have only just seen this thread!

4954964.gif


I'll pm you!
 

Mehitabel

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no problem. not at all surprised you're edgy - and i do think she could have fdounfd a way to express her concern, but perhaps she has been advised by her insurers not to? i hope you manage to get it sorted out when you go to see them.
 

Skib

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I am really sorry to hear of your accident.
Whether to go back to that school or move to another seems to me something that it is impossible to decide at this point.
Leave it till you are fit to ride again, till the shock has subsided and you look carefully at the alternatives. You don't have to go the same place as your daughter and you don't know how you will be either mentally or physically 6 months from now.

However about the safety angles, I do have thoughts.
I too had a YO respond v. badly to safety issues. I was lucky that I wasnt badly hurt in my fall. But there were things I thought needed discussing and when she refused, I lost all my trust in her and those of her staff who were involved.

It confirmed what I felt when i wrote to the BHS about older people learning to ride. That we have to take responsibility for our own safety and I actually mentioned the position you were in, that as one progressed on was promoted to more difficult horses. because easier horses were needed for other students less advanced than you.

This sort of assessment, by us the riders, seems to me vital. And it is psychologically so hard to stand firm against suggestion? even my experienced RI says that she too has fallen in with an instructor's suggestion, even though it was against her better judgement.

So we all do it. In retrospect if the horse was already being difficult, one should be cautious of riding it? I am not saying you were to blame, as risk in riding is so hard to assess and one never gets it right.

But after an accident i always try to work out how to prevent it happening again - a bit late in the day, yes, but it makes me feel safer.
And these are the sort of questions I think you should be asking 6 months from now. And which would help me decide whether to go back to that school and trust them again?
I do still hack at a place where I have always ridden - but I am more wary now. And some of the joy has gone from it.
 
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eml

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Big but very gentle hug!

I had a friend who had a similar injury when her horse came over on top of her but she was back to riding again to a similar standard quite quickly when allowed. She did however sell her horse as she had lost trust in it so you may find you feel the same about the school. Don't decide yet when you are ready thinks will seem more clear.

I cannot understand this attitude of other RS owners which I have come across before. I tend to phone at least to check how someone is even after a minor injury and for a major one would be offering practical help such as transporting daughter etc.

There is nothing in being human and kind that constitutes any admission of liability and as you said feeling uncared for is more likely to make you reflect on what caused the accident.
 

pepsimaxrock

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Thanks everyone, Mehitabel, I hadn't thought that she may have been advised this way, will try to consider that too in my feelings towards her.

And I am trying to put the anger behind me but its hard. The last thing I want to do is fill up with anger - its so negative and unproductive. What I do need to do is get well and get fit - my aim for the next 6 months I think.... And I really want to go back there to ride, good facilities and as I said RI's are lovely.

Your hugs and support are great, its such a bonus for us all to be able to talk about all these horsy things with like minded friends. EML, I think your place is just fantastic and have no doubt that you'd go out of your way to support your clients; (this YO just doesn't get involved, doesn't teach, just keeps out of the way apart from barking instructions to the RI's down the walkie talkies). You are right, a kind word doesn't impede any litigation that may or may not proceed (not, in this case)...

And Skib, I always look forward to your wise words, an inspiration to all us oldies.... I had so hoped you would reply.

Morganna you'll need to let me know of good places to ride in Glasgow, OH has always wanted to return there, its our home town... maybe when second young un (the daughter) goes off to university...

And Dee, thanks for your lovely pm

Anne x
 

teabiscuit

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i'm so sorry to hear of your injury-how awful.
i can think of nothing useful to say, just want to offer my sympathy, and wish you a speedy recovery.
xx
 

catwoman

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hi mum, just nosing about your end again!:p

i just wanted to say that you're being fab and i think its so brave that you can't wait to get back to riding. sometimes you may think that you are more nervous than me; i doubt it, you've just been through a LOT more!

you have been through sooo much these past 6 months. youve had all the bad stuff and i think you're really great and you've coped really well. although sometimes you feel a bit down and feel that you aren't a good rider, i assure you, you're brilliant!

and btw, im NOT just saying it to be kind!!!

i'm really proud of you and hope i can make you proud this summer on streaky B (hopefully!:rolleyes: )

Get well soon, mum, love you tonnes! xxx
 
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