Whether you currently ride, used to ride, or just love horses- don't let any of those snooty girls who make riding their entire life tell you that you aren't an equestrian. Because in my opinion i think any one who is a lover of horses and understands the sincere bonding that happens between a person and a horse should count as an equestrian.
As most equestrians know riding horses is the furthest thing from cheap, it is one of the most expensive sports you can partake in. I know first hand you deal with a lot of stuck up people in the horse industry, but the bond with the horses is what keeps us going. When you start to ride a horse, and spend quality time with the horse you become extremely attached kind of like a man and their dog. Horses are very large yet majestic animals that catch on to vibes so much better than humans do. I think personally, thats my favorite thing about horses they kind of catch on to what kind of mood your in and react that way.
You know how much you love your special horse, don't let anyone put you down about it! Especially to those who ride horses often- don't let people tell you that riding isn't a sport. Me and you both know that it is way more than that, you have to focus on posture, steering and keeping your balance with your core and leg muscles. Also, you can tell those people to watch the amazing Equestrians in the olympics who jump extremely large jumps with their horse and keep their balance and carry themselves eloquently. I know those aren't the only people you receive criticism from, so you can tell that girl who spends every waking moment at the barn that just because Horses aren't every aspect of your life that it means you love horses any less than them.
No matter the discipline, the amount of times we can actually get to the barn and ride, we all have one thing in common- we love horses! what that means is, that we all understand what its like to really bond with a horse. Horses are such loving creatures that a bond with a horse truly lasts a lifetime, and having this type of bond teaches us to appreciate small things in life. This kind of bond helps you come to peace even with the hardest of obstacles. So don't divide yourselves by these petty little details such as how often you ride and what discipline you take on. We all feel the same way about horses, no one is any better than the other because of these differences and i think thats something all equestrians need to here, because I know personally people are put down based on these criteria. Remember once someone is an equestrian, they are always an equestrian.