Worst mistake of my life -advice needed! - VeggieBoards

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#1 Old 07-01-2016, 05:23 PM
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Unhappy Worst mistake of my life -advice needed!

I don't even know where to begin... My story is embarrassing and I am so ashamed of myself. I would really appreciate any advice from my fellow vegans out there regarding my terrible situation.

So basically my boyfriend told me he would be interested in seeing me wear a faux fox tail toy (I'm saying toy to keep it PG, but I think you know what I mean) and I am very willing to try new things so I agreed to it and looked for one online. After looking through many different options, I found one on Etsy that was super cheap -only $20 and it had about 2,000 positive reviews. I bought it and it arrived very quickly, but when I opened the package I felt very uneasy because the fur seemed so real. I sent a message to the vendor on Etsy and to my horror he said that it was an actual real fox tail.

The worst part is that I had assumed it was synthetic fur because so many of the other tabs I had open said in the descriptions that it was synthetic fur and the description of this one did not list the material of the tail -only of the part attached to it. I know I should have double-checked the description before buying it, and knowing that it was my own negligence that caused this tragedy makes it so much worse. The vendor won't accept returns due to the nature of the product, which is understandable, so now I am left with a piece of a dead fox attached to an adult toy and I have absolutely no idea what to do with it. If I had a backyard I would probably dig a grave for the poor fox but unfortunately I live in an apartment.

I know I sound calm in this post but I have been sobbing all day and having nonstop stress diarrhea. I am literally sitting on the toilet right now as I am typing this. I had to walk to a nearby store to use their restroom and buy more toilet paper and I felt extreme guilt even when I saw birds on my way to the store. I scheduled appointments with two counselors to help me cope with my intense feelings of guilt, shame, and regret, but until that time I am completely on my own. I can't tell anyone but my boyfriend and counselors because I am too ashamed and embarrassed.

I just made an anonymous account on this website to seek advice from people who are like me because I know my boyfriend and counselors will never be able to see this situation from my point of view as a life-long (okay, since I was four years old) animal rights activist, vegetarian->vegan, and person who is completely against hunting and the fur-trade. I feel so disgusting right now. I am horrified that this is so common (2,000 reviews?!) and that foxes are murdered to make adult toys. I am so ashamed that I gave these monsters $20 to basically murder a species that is becoming endangered all over the world. This is by far the worst mistake I have ever made in my life (so far).

I would really appreciate any replies that have to do with:
1) How to cope with guilt from a terrible mistake like this (I feel like such a bad vegan and hypocrite and I know I can't undo this)
2) What should I do with the fox tail (it is currently on the floor of my room in its original packaging)
3) I know I can't undo my crime, but how can I attempt to make up for it? I was thinking of donating at least $50 to an animal rights organization that fights against the murder of foxes to try to save other lives even though this fox died. I already left a one-star review on the website to warn people that this is a real fox tail because it wasn't clearly expressed anywhere in the title or description. So hopefully they won't get anymore purchases from people who have consciences. The vendor has been sending me angry messages about that but I don't feel pity for people who profit from murder so I'm leaving my review up there.

If anyone has any advice at all regarding this I would greatly appreciate it! Thank you so much.
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#2 Old 07-01-2016, 06:05 PM
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You have learned a very valuable lesson that most of us have to learn at one time or another: don't assume ANYTHING! Always read labels - especially on anything you've never bought before.

As for what to do with the wretched thing, contact a local wildlife rehabilitator and see if they'd like it. I understand they can use furs to comfort orphaned animals.

Get off the toilet, relax, and remind yourself that everyone makes mistakes. Everyone! Your mistake was, I admit, quite unusual, but whether it's a tail or a sausage, it's all really the same thing, isn't it? So take a deep breath and move on.

It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our abilities. ~A. Dumbledore
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#3 Old 07-01-2016, 06:19 PM
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Animal rescues often take donations of fur for the orphaned animals. Cut it off the 'toy' and donate it.
Even items sold as fake fur or faux leather can be actual fur, possibly cat or dog. Unless it's a ethical company and can be verified stay away.
Yes, a donation or volunteer work would make it better
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#4 Old 07-01-2016, 06:43 PM
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I agree with what the above posters said! Nothing to feel horrible about, it happens. A few years ago something similar happened to me. I was in school and signed up for an anatomy and physiology class with a lab. It was an online course but we had to order a lab kit by mail. It never in a million years occured to me I would receive dead animal parts, but sure enough I opened the kit to find a cow brain and eyes. I was HORRIFIED to say the least. Very upset. I contacted the instructor and told her that I am an ethical vegan and did not feel comfortable working with those body parts. I asked if I could do something different to make up for that part of the class. She would not budge, though she said she was a vegetarian herself. Sighs. She said she wanted all of her students to have the benefit of working with real tissues. Fine, if it was a human who volunteered their body parts after death. But this was from an animal that came from a slaughter house. The instructor even admitted this, and I could easily gather that information from the company that supplied the parts. The instructor said my other option would be to find another class that used online similations. She knew of one instructor at the college I was enrolled in who did this. That class was full, but I was able to talk that instructor into letting me into the class. And I promptly dropped the other class and mailed the lab kit back and get a refund. Thankfully I could do this. The other instructor did have to tell me he uses cats for his on site classes, so I was lucky I was doing it online from a distance. What a jerk! Just to prove I was not just trying to get out of work, I freaking aced that class and had the top score on every single exam (and every exam was proctored, which meant I had to go to a local college and have an instructor there proctor the exam for me so I could not use any materials to cheat). The instructor let us know who had the top scores on all the exams. I also participated in every forum discussion, and came out the top student in the class. Let me tell you, I spent sometimes twelve hours on Saturdays doing these dang physiology labs trying to understand and figure them out lol. but I was determined. Back to the main point lol. like you I was traumatized but the whole experience too. And livid. And the fact that I was taking a HUMAN anatomy and physiology class yet had to deal with the possibility of working with slaughtered farm animals. ugh. A local private college in my city uses human cadavers for their upper level A & P courses, but I was only taking an intro course. Nevertheless I guess I should have known that this would be a possibility in a science class, but i wish the instructor would have told us this up front in the class description when you first sign up. I was required to take the course for my chosen field of study, but if I had had more info I would have made a different choice in instructors right off the bat. Live and learn!

I would donate the fox tail to a wildlife rehab center also. Or bury it in the woods somewhere as a symbolic gesture if that would help you feel better. What happened to you wasn't your fault. No need to beat yourself up!
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Last edited by Naturebound; 07-01-2016 at 06:45 PM.
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#5 Old 07-01-2016, 07:00 PM
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Poppy and Silva,

Thank you for your responses. Yes, I have definitely learned my lesson. I really like your suggestions about donating the tail to a wildlife rehabilitator or animal rescue. It seems that there are not any close to me, so I am now looking to send it to a place that will accept donations. If you have any recommendations or could assist me with finding a suitable website for this donation, I would be very happy to receive any help. Also, if anyone knows of any animal rights activist organizations that help foxes, I would love to donate to one. Thanks again.
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#6 Old 07-01-2016, 07:14 PM
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Naturebound,

I was similarly disgusted with biology classes, and I guess that's why I chose physics instead since we never have to deal with seeing dead animals in jars or anything like that. I just can't handle that kind of thing at all. I even get all upset when I see roadkill. I wish I could have sent it back and undid this like you did. The guilt is unbearable. At least maybe my bad review will dissuade others from buying this product. I'm really looking forward to donating this to a wildlife rehab center. If you have any recommendations for websites of animal rescue organizations that accept this kind of donation, please let me know! I would love to send it to them. Thank you for your response and for sharing your story with me.
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#7 Old 07-01-2016, 11:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by veganphysicist View Post
I don't even know where to begin... My story is embarrassing and I am so ashamed of myself. I would really appreciate any advice from my fellow vegans out there regarding my terrible situation.

So basically my boyfriend told me he would be interested in seeing me wear a faux fox tail toy (I'm saying toy to keep it PG, but I think you know what I mean) and I am very willing to try new things so I agreed to it and looked for one online. After looking through many different options, I found one on Etsy that was super cheap -only $20 and it had about 2,000 positive reviews. I bought it and it arrived very quickly, but when I opened the package I felt very uneasy because the fur seemed so real. I sent a message to the vendor on Etsy and to my horror he said that it was an actual real fox tail.

The worst part is that I had assumed it was synthetic fur because so many of the other tabs I had open said in the descriptions that it was synthetic fur and the description of this one did not list the material of the tail -only of the part attached to it. I know I should have double-checked the description before buying it, and knowing that it was my own negligence that caused this tragedy makes it so much worse. The vendor won't accept returns due to the nature of the product, which is understandable, so now I am left with a piece of a dead fox attached to an adult toy and I have absolutely no idea what to do with it. If I had a backyard I would probably dig a grave for the poor fox but unfortunately I live in an apartment.

I know I sound calm in this post but I have been sobbing all day and having nonstop stress diarrhea. I am literally sitting on the toilet right now as I am typing this. I had to walk to a nearby store to use their restroom and buy more toilet paper and I felt extreme guilt even when I saw birds on my way to the store. I scheduled appointments with two counselors to help me cope with my intense feelings of guilt, shame, and regret, but until that time I am completely on my own. I can't tell anyone but my boyfriend and counselors because I am too ashamed and embarrassed.

I just made an anonymous account on this website to seek advice from people who are like me because I know my boyfriend and counselors will never be able to see this situation from my point of view as a life-long (okay, since I was four years old) animal rights activist, vegetarian->vegan, and person who is completely against hunting and the fur-trade. I feel so disgusting right now. I am horrified that this is so common (2,000 reviews?!) and that foxes are murdered to make adult toys. I am so ashamed that I gave these monsters $20 to basically murder a species that is becoming endangered all over the world. This is by far the worst mistake I have ever made in my life (so far).

I would really appreciate any replies that have to do with:
1) How to cope with guilt from a terrible mistake like this (I feel like such a bad vegan and hypocrite and I know I can't undo this)
2) What should I do with the fox tail (it is currently on the floor of my room in its original packaging)
3) I know I can't undo my crime, but how can I attempt to make up for it? I was thinking of donating at least $50 to an animal rights organization that fights against the murder of foxes to try to save other lives even though this fox died. I already left a one-star review on the website to warn people that this is a real fox tail because it wasn't clearly expressed anywhere in the title or description. So hopefully they won't get anymore purchases from people who have consciences. The vendor has been sending me angry messages about that but I don't feel pity for people who profit from murder so I'm leaving my review up there.

If anyone has any advice at all regarding this I would greatly appreciate it! Thank you so much.
Can you return it in it's original packaging? If not, I concur to donate it to a wild animal sanctuary. Good luck, and don't beat yourself up over this.
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#8 Old 07-01-2016, 11:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by veganphysicist View Post
Naturebound,

I was similarly disgusted with biology classes, and I guess that's why I chose physics instead since we never have to deal with seeing dead animals in jars or anything like that. I just can't handle that kind of thing at all. I even get all upset when I see roadkill. I wish I could have sent it back and undid this like you did. The guilt is unbearable. At least maybe my bad review will dissuade others from buying this product. I'm really looking forward to donating this to a wildlife rehab center. If you have any recommendations for websites of animal rescue organizations that accept this kind of donation, please let me know! I would love to send it to them. Thank you for your response and for sharing your story with me.
This is from the UK, but I bet they'd take donations from across the pond. http://foxproject.org.uk/how-you-can-help/

And I certainly agree to not beat yourself up. Learning experiences make up our lives, and change us. Embrace your new self. Maybe the fox is your spirit animal and this is the way you were shown...

Last edited by LedBoots; 07-01-2016 at 11:19 PM.
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#9 Old 07-02-2016, 12:13 AM
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Purp,

I can't return it in its original packaging because they do not accept returns unfortunately. Trust me, I tried. I will definitely donate it to some kind of animal rescue, rehab, and/or sanctuary. I am just having trouble finding one online at the moment. I live in the United States and I would be willing to ship it anywhere, especially to one that cares for foxes. Thank you, I appreciate it. I am trying my best to cope with my guilt and try to make up for this terrible mistake, at least in a small way.

If anyone has any website recommendations for organizations that would happily accept my donation for the use of comforting animals, please let me know. I am trying my best to find one. Thanks!
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#10 Old 07-02-2016, 12:30 AM
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LedBoots,

Wow, I'm really glad you sent me that website. I actually saw a wild fox in a suburb of London last summer near Crystal Palace after I marched in a protest of animal culling in the streets of London, although I believe their main focus was badgers in the protest. I wonder if that organization would also accept the tail in addition to my donation. I definitely don't mind the shipping cost to England. It's the least I can do after what has happened. I will look into it and get into contact with them. Thank you so much!

At least I am feeling more passionate against the fur trade now. Before I mostly focused on farm and aquatic life, although I did a bunch of fundraising for an organization fighting bear captivity/torture/murder in Asia when I was in high school. And hopefully my negative review will hurt business for that heartless monster... It's really sad because my friends used to say that I reminded them of a fox but now I think I will just be really sad whenever I am reminded of foxes for the rest of my life. I will live with this guilt for the rest of my life but it will also motivate me to be an animal rights activist in a more involved way even though my career is in physics.
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#11 Old 07-02-2016, 03:12 AM
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Here is another organization:

http://cuddlecoats.com/how-it-works.html

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#12 Old 07-02-2016, 03:11 PM
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Naturebound,

Thank you so much for finding that website for me! I think I will donate the tail to Cuddle Coats and make my cash donation to the Fox Project. It could never bring back the life of this murdered animal but at least it might help save other animals in the future. It just seems like the right thing to do.

Thanks to all of you who offered me kindness and advice. I am now on the path to forgiving myself and I have learned a valuable lesson from my mistake. It's really great to know I have a supportive community of vegans through the internet even though I don't know any in person. I will definitely be coming back more to this website!
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#13 Old 07-02-2016, 11:11 PM
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Quote:
Here is another organization:

http://cuddlecoats.com/how-it-works.html
Funny, I was going to suggest them, but you beat me to it. I was on the board of directors of the Animal Rights Coalition in the 90s. (Cuddle Coats is an ARC project)

Quote:
I was in school and signed up for an anatomy and physiology class with a lab. It was an online course but we had to order a lab kit by mail. It never in a million years occured to me I would receive dead animal parts, but sure enough I opened the kit to find a cow brain and eyes. I was HORRIFIED to say the least. Very upset. I contacted the instructor and told her that I am an ethical vegan and did not feel comfortable working with those body parts. I asked if I could do something different to make up for that part of the class. She would not budge
Now that concerns me a bit. I'll start a separate thread on that topic later, though, rather than threadjack.
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#14 Old 07-02-2016, 11:22 PM
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Choice #3 sounds good and return the tail to the vendor. You already pointed out that you recognize that you should have read more carefully. I hope you feel better soon.
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