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Old 03-22-2004, 09:57 AM   #1
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Flying Phobia/Panic

I hope I'm posting on the right board; I don't see a separate one for phobias. Since the mere thought of flying sends me into a panic attack, this seems like a good place to start!

I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions for this overwhelming fear of mine. I've really got to get this under control because there is so much I could see and do in this life if I could just fly on a commercial airliner... Also, I'm taking a cruise this summer which is great, but it means that I either have to drive 3 days to get to the point of departure and then 3 days back or I have to *fly*. I'M SO SCARED!!!

A couple of posts have referred to 2 books - The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook and Been There, Done That, Do This. Do you think they would help me?

Any advise would be appreciated (very much so!), but could I please ask a favor? If you're going to post about your bad experiences with flying, could you please start it with a "WARNING", so that I'll know not to read it? Thanks. The thread below set me off, big-time.

 
Old 03-22-2004, 12:59 PM   #2
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

your problem is very common, some airlines actually organise fear of flying classes where people with your fear are taught how to cope
claustrophobia is sometimes involved, the fear of being locked in the plane and unable to get out

the simple answer is to take a very large dose of any valium type med before and during the flight, I stress very large, many people dont take enough, also tell the cabin staff of your problem as they will understand and may give you a more relaxing seating position

dont drink any alcahol and dont drive for about 24 hours after taking the valium

 
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Old 03-22-2004, 08:28 PM   #3
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Exclamation Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

I have the same problem. The lady before is right. Take a lot of valium. The doctor prolly won't give you much. So go to two doctors. They'll never know. Otherwise, you might end up like me-- totally disruptive to the flight. I have been up there and my valium has run out. Try to find a sympathetic doctor who will write out a good script for valium.

Another thing, bring a small bag full of comfort things, like a small bag of lavender, a cozy wrap, bring a CD player with your most comforting music. Don't be a Spartan. Really cater to your senses. Make it a sensual experience. If you can get a portable DVD player, you can use it in-flight. Watching your favorite (or a funny) movie is an awesome distraction.

Stay away from alcohol.

I have to tell you, I was on a flight. I was so disruptive a marshall sat next to me. She revealed herself, because she started talking about airliners waaay too much. Plus, she said her hub worked as a mechanic there. And she flew in the Air Force. She told me never to get on a plane again. I think she's wrong.

I think you'll never overcome your fear. Just check out all the freaks poking their heads out of their cabins (myself included) going on Amtrak.

The only thing you really can do is accept your fears, your response, and make yourself get on that plane. Take a big gulp and do it.

Another thing you need to do is do personal work on yourself. I think a lot of us only think about the importance of our lives when we're up there on that plane. I also believe a lot of us suffer from guilt. However, we deny that guilt. When we go on the plane, wham-o, the guilt is there, 'cause we realize how fragile we are. We are not the big wigs on earth anymore with a sense of control. Our God is a fearsome God, a medieval God that wants to hurt us. That's why it's important to face up to your guilt on earth, even if when on earth you feel like the big shot taking things for granted. A lot of guilt is misplaced. Just know that you are like a child to God, and trust that he will always have you in his hands.

Prayers are good to bring on the plane, too.

Ultimately, we must confront our fears. We will all die. I think people who are scared of planes know great pain and suffering somehow. Some people don't, so they are unconsious. But just know, dear, you will never suffer twice. No one is that unlucky.

Good luck.

By the way, there is a free fear of flying course online. I'm going to look for it for you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by index.html
I hope I'm posting on the right board; I don't see a separate one for phobias. Since the mere thought of flying sends me into a panic attack, this seems like a good place to start!

I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions for this overwhelming fear of mine. I've really got to get this under control because there is so much I could see and do in this life if I could just fly on a commercial airliner... Also, I'm taking a cruise this summer which is great, but it means that I either have to drive 3 days to get to the point of departure and then 3 days back or I have to *fly*. I'M SO SCARED!!!

A couple of posts have referred to 2 books - The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook and Been There, Done That, Do This. Do you think they would help me?

Any advise would be appreciated (very much so!), but could I please ask a favor? If you're going to post about your bad experiences with flying, could you please start it with a "WARNING", so that I'll know not to read it? Thanks. The thread below set me off, big-time.

 
Old 03-22-2004, 08:33 PM   #4
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Exclamation Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

Here you go:


This helped me a little bit. You will be okay.

But we should also learn to love and trust God. Honey, it isn't all for nothing.

Good luck.

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Last edited by ModSix; 04-12-2004 at 01:45 PM.

 
Old 03-22-2004, 08:52 PM   #5
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

undefined Forget all the prescriptions-all you need is Dramamine. Had a bad flight, took Dramamine on the flight back and slept the whole way. Good luck-you can make it-I did!!
Quote:
Originally Posted by index.html
I hope I'm posting on the right board; I don't see a separate one for phobias. Since the mere thought of flying sends me into a panic attack, this seems like a good place to start!

I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions for this overwhelming fear of mine. I've really got to get this under control because there is so much I could see and do in this life if I could just fly on a commercial airliner... Also, I'm taking a cruise this summer which is great, but it means that I either have to drive 3 days to get to the point of departure and then 3 days back or I have to *fly*. I'M SO SCARED!!!

A couple of posts have referred to 2 books - The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook and Been There, Done That, Do This. Do you think they would help me?

Any advise would be appreciated (very much so!), but could I please ask a favor? If you're going to post about your bad experiences with flying, could you please start it with a "WARNING", so that I'll know not to read it? Thanks. The thread below set me off, big-time.

 
Old 03-23-2004, 08:11 AM   #6
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

I, too, am a complete freak about flying. Only recently (my last two flights) have I started getting a grasp on myself and thinking rationally while in flight. I agree that a heavy dose of valium will help and at the very least take the edge off, but a lot of it has to do w/ the way you think about it. I know it is easier said than done, trust me. I've gotten to where I tell myself things like "the pilots want to live - they have families to go home to" when I get completely terrified in-flight. Also, literally visualize yourself in the largest airport you have ever been in -- sit there for an hour and watch all the people coming and going -- then sit there for a day -- then a week -- then a month -- then a year. Imagine ALL of the people you would see that just took-off AND landed safely in their destination. It's pretty amazing. The pilots really know there stuff -- also, the flight attendants. I've thought before too that if it were really that unsafe, they would get paid hazard pay or something. Also, I've thought about all the people I've known that either died or were injured in a car accident versus the fact I've never even known one person to be injured on a plane. Even if I did it would be nowhere near the number of people I've known to be hurt in a car.

anyhow, I've really rambled, but the valium will help and also arming yourself with A LOT of rational thoughts for the scarry moments.

Good luck -- get out there an enjoy life -- don't let the fear sideline you from experiencing everything you can

 
Old 03-23-2004, 08:41 AM   #7
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Salinas1 HB User
Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

Quote:
Originally Posted by whoanelly
I think you'll never overcome your fear...The only thing you really can do is accept your fears...
Oh Lord, do not listen to this! There are thousands of people that have successfully resolved their intense fear of flying and turned it into a normal apprehension of doing something that is not of the ordinary. Intense fear of flying can and is resolved by many. Maybe not this person, but this does not mean it is not possible for you.

It is 261 times safer to fly than to drive the 2821 miles from LA to NY, and you want to drive a similar distance because you think it is safer? 261 times more dangerous to drive that distance! Consider, for example, that Southwest Airlines has had millions of take offs and landings and has never had a single fatal crash. Consider that there are individual certain aircraft, like the Boeing 777 that has never ever had a fatal crash after millions of miles of use. Flying is safe. Period. Your brain can fight this reality, but it is lying to you when it does. Death awaits you far more in walking up your stairs, getting in your car, or riding on a theme park ride far more than it does riding in the relative safety of a US airliner. One person once said that they feel a sense of relief when they get on an airplane beciuse for that brief period they are on a flight, they are far safer than they would be doing almost anything else. This is a fact that your brain has tricked you into thinking otherwise.

There are some very helpful hypnotherapy mp3 downloads to help you specifically with the fear of flying. I am not discounting anyone that want so use drugs to get them through a flight. However, I will discount anyone that states categorically that you can not overcome this terror. You can. People do. Look into [url]www.******** as a start to your journey for resources and info to help you out of your prison of fear. It starts with basic cognitive exercises that get you thinking right. Getting your brain to become rational and not to foster to the irrational. Fearing flying over fearing driving is irrational, we have just allowed ourselves to be conditioned otherwise. You need to uncondition this thought pattern.

You can resolve this if you want it bad enough. Drugs are definitely not the only answer.

----
The Link Has Been Removed Per The Board Posting Guidelines.

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Last edited by ModSix; 04-12-2004 at 01:50 PM.

 
Old 03-23-2004, 08:47 AM   #8
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Salinas1 HB User
Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

Quote:
Originally Posted by brandekristene
... -- also, the flight attendants. I've thought before too that if it were really that unsafe, they would get paid hazard pay or something...
Excellent! You are doing all the right things. You know exactly why attendants do not get hazard pay. They don't because it is one of the safest occupations out there. The fear fights this factual truth, but the process you are on is to train your brain to respect what is true and disregard that which is patently false. You are safer on the plane heading to your destination than you are getting in the car once you arrive at your destination. But you don't sit and fret over the car ride to the hotel. Good for you and yoru reprogramming efforts. You can be successful.

 
Old 03-23-2004, 10:16 AM   #9
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

Thanks hry, brandekristene, whoanelly, papergirl, & salinas for your encouragement and kind words of support! I *REALLY* appreciate it!

I agree with what you've said. I *know* that flying is the safest mode of transportation. I know that. I do. I have 2 errors in my thinking. One is that I keep telling myself that I don't want to die in an airplane; that it's a horrible way to die. Now, I know I shouldn't even allow myself those thoughts - like the other equally horrible ways of dying that I don't let myself think about. But flying can be avoided, some of the others can't.

My other problem is that it isn't so much the flying that I'm afraid of, it's my intense fear that I'm afraid of. I tell myself that I can't stand that feeling.

Thanks for the links. I've found the fearofflying one and will probably use them because I think the free information that they have on their site makes alot of sense.

Alcohol has always been my drug-of-choice for flying because I can guzzle more when I need to. My fear of flying has intensified since 9/11 mainly because I'm afraid that I'll be less able to sneak my flask on board...

Thanks again for your help!!!

 
Old 03-23-2004, 10:33 AM   #10
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

Quote:
Originally Posted by index.html
I have 2 errors in my thinking. One is that I keep telling myself that I don't want to die in an airplane; that it's a horrible way to die. Now, I know I shouldn't even allow myself those thoughts - like the other equally horrible ways of dying that I don't let myself think about. But flying can be avoided, some of the others can't.
But the irony is, in avoiding flying in deference to other things, you are avoiding the most safe of all possibiliites in favor of alternatives that are not as safe. Even in your acknowledging your errors in thinking, you allow yourself t have an error about your error. Dyeing in an airplane is not a horrible way to die. It is instantaneous and pain free. Now, dying in a car wreck can be excruciatingly painful, long, drawn out, and just plain horrible for you and family. You are continuing error thoughts in support of error thoughts.

Flying is safe. Period. Death in the almost unheard of accident is painless. Sounds like you are on the road to resolving, or at least lessening your fears. Good for you!

 
Old 03-23-2004, 11:00 AM   #11
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

ok, this is terrible, but I really do know how you feel. alcohol has always been my drug of choice too for flying. As far as the flask thing goes, here is what I've done

1) Get a 20 oz (or liter) bottle of sprite or coke and mix it w/ liquor and put it in your carry on bag OR if you need it a little stronger:
2) get a bottle of red Gatorade and dump the contents, replace it w/ vodka or rum and a couple of drops of red food coloring.

I know this is terrible, but I completely understand your intense fear and have done both of these things before. As I stated earlier, I have gotten MUCH, MUCH better and no longer require large quantities of alcohol, but there have been times that I just don't think I could have gotten on the plane any other way. I kept my little "bottle" for take-off if I needed it or whatever. Kind of ridiculous, but if it works and it gets you there

Again, good luck!

 
Old 03-23-2004, 02:55 PM   #12
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

Quote:
Originally Posted by Salinas1
Dyeing in an airplane is not a horrible way to die. It is instantaneous and pain free...
Okay, well, that's a good way to look at it. Certainly, if I was given the choice of how to die, it would be instanteous.

I liked your other points, too. I plan to contact Captain Tom - I guess I'd better do it sooner rather than later, huh?

Thanks again!

 
Old 03-23-2004, 03:01 PM   #13
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

Quote:
Originally Posted by brandekristene
ok, this is terrible, but I really do know how you feel. alcohol has always been my drug of choice too for flying. As far as the flask thing goes, here is what I've done...
Hee-Hee! Thanks for sharing your secrets! So, they still allow carry-on drinks since 9/11?

Your point about the pilot having a vested interest in my safety was a good one, too. And, I loved your comment "Good luck -- get out there and enjoy life -- don't let the fear sideline you from experiencing everything you can".
It reminded me of a quote from a 16 year old that was cool:

"You should never let your fears be the boundaries of your dreams".

Nice, huh?

Thanks again!

 
Old 03-23-2004, 03:44 PM   #14
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

Quote:
Originally Posted by index.html

"You should never let your fears be the boundaries of your dreams".

Nice, huh?
Very nice indeed. I would take it one step further. You should slay your fears so that they are powerless to become boundaries to your dreams.

There is no way of eliminating all fears to all degrees. However, it is not unrealistic to believe you have the power to utterly destroy any power your irrational fears have over you. When they are powerless, then they are vaporized into non-existence. You can become the master and place the unrealistic fears in the heap where they belong.

 
Old 03-23-2004, 04:03 PM   #15
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Re: Flying Phobia/Panic

I had a terrible fear of flying. My first time on a plane was a nightmare. I had my feet firmly planted on the legs of the seat in front of me. I had my seatbelt so tight I could hardly breathe, I latched onto the girl sitting next to me and hung onto her arm for dear life until we landed. I made the people in front of me keep their blind closed, and I was telling people around me to shut up so that I could take notes of what the stewardess was saying about the emergency exits and oxygen masks, LOL. I had quit smoking 2 years before that, and caved to a cigarette before boarding the plane too.

I didn't fly again for about 11 years. I flew to Detroit in the summer of 2002, not long after the 9/11 tragedy. I wasn't terrified. I kept telling myself that more people die daily in car accidents than people do yearly in plane crashes. I even made myself ask for window seats. I was glad too. The first time I was so terrified that I didn't get to see anything. When you look out that window you get a sense of weightlessness, and you don't even feel like you are moving. Things seem to move so slowly below you. It's amazing.

There is nothing to be afraid of




Quote:
Originally Posted by index.html
I hope I'm posting on the right board; I don't see a separate one for phobias. Since the mere thought of flying sends me into a panic attack, this seems like a good place to start!

I'm wondering if anyone has suggestions for this overwhelming fear of mine. I've really got to get this under control because there is so much I could see and do in this life if I could just fly on a commercial airliner... Also, I'm taking a cruise this summer which is great, but it means that I either have to drive 3 days to get to the point of departure and then 3 days back or I have to *fly*. I'M SO SCARED!!!

A couple of posts have referred to 2 books - The Anxiety & Phobia Workbook and Been There, Done That, Do This. Do you think they would help me?

Any advise would be appreciated (very much so!), but could I please ask a favor? If you're going to post about your bad experiences with flying, could you please start it with a "WARNING", so that I'll know not to read it? Thanks. The thread below set me off, big-time.

 
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