Afraid of flying.... what do you do?

Old Jan 6th, 2003, 11:42 PM
  #1  
namesisfortombstones
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Afraid of flying.... what do you do?

I would like to visit my nephew in a couple of months. I would be flying from Cleveland to Tucson. The only problem is, I am terrified of flying. I have flown maybe three times in my life. Only one of those trips was smooth flying. The other two had major turbulence. Just wondering what others do to cope during turbulence.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 12:54 AM
  #2  
pharma
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Name

Go to see your doctor and explain the situation. If she is at all compassionate she'll give you a few samples of Xanax. Take one after boarding and you'll be fine.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 03:23 AM
  #3  
maw
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Try the fear of flying website www.fearofflyinghelp.com
go thru the "lessons", some helpful tips there
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 04:22 AM
  #4  
gail
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I am also terrified of flying but just deal with it because I like to travel. The entire flight I am sure I am going to fall out of the sky. The only thing that works somewhat for me is to watch the flight attendants. If the scarey noises the engines are making, the tilt of the plane and turbulence is not causing them to even look concerned, I figure they are experts, and I should just read my book and sit there.

Have never been on a flight when the flight attendants look concerned, but I would probably have a heart attack if they did.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 05:01 AM
  #5  
Ashley
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I agree - go to your doctor, explain your problem. They'll likely be willing to give you a small amount of prescription medication that will calm you down enough that it's not too bad. I have done this, and it helps tremendously. It's also better than what I used to do - try to down a couple of (alcoholic) drinks beforehand ... when your flight is at 6 AM, you have to be at the airport before 5 and the bar doesn't open until 10 ... you do the math!
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 05:46 AM
  #6  
X Bellman
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If you are going to hit the Xanax (or Scotch) make sure you get a direct flight.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 05:55 AM
  #7  
jmg
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Someone once told me to equate the turbulence on a plane to the waves crashing against a boat. Boat "turbulence" doesn't scare me, so I try to imagine that air turbulence is just the "waves" hitting the sides of the plane. That and a couple of rum drinks and I seem to be fine.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 06:23 AM
  #8  
rebecca
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Similar to above- the first time I was able to sleep on an airplane I compared the turbulance to going over bumps on the road while driving. For taking off and landing (which I didn't like either!) I had to use reverse psychology on myself- I know this sounds dumb, but I convinced myself that was the best part of the whole trip. It worked.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 06:37 AM
  #9  
ttt
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A big old fat green one before taking off from my home city works for me...when leaving my destination, i am usually so tired it doesnt matter.

 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 07:30 AM
  #10  
Rachel
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Name, my husband shares your fear of flying and has taken one of the fearful flying courses offered by some of the airlines (which culminate in a special flight for the students). This was helpful as they teach you a lot about the mechanics of flying so you have a better understanding of what you fear. He also has been treated by an MD who prescribes something (I'm not sure what the script is for) that calms him down and unfortunately also somewhat sedates him. when we get to our destination, I do any driving, checking into hotels, etc. Its not the greatest solution, but after years of avoiding air travel, he's flown successfully several times a year. We also make it a point to make sure he (or we) take at least one air trip a year to keep the anxiety from building up. Do not try to self medicate (using someone elses meds, alcohol, etc.)-talk to your Dr. This is a true fear and you will be better off if you treat it professionally, rather than casually.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 08:48 AM
  #11  
x
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Explain your situation to the flight attendent while you are boarding and ask her if the captain has a moment to speak with you. Once you personalize the flight crew, you realize they have as much to lose as you do and it makes you feel better. I used to be really scared to fly, did this 5 or 6 times, and now it doesn't bother me. The captain will take a few moments with you. If you don't want to do that, look for one in the airport (they are everywhere). Trust me, they will talk to you.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 09:16 AM
  #12  
OliveOyl
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Gail...I had to laugh at your note. I'm not at all nervous about flying until it gets really bumpy or there are strange noises and then I do exactly what you do. If the flight attendants aren't reacting, I know all is well--and I have yet to see them react, ever.

We had what appeared to be a new America West airbus on a recent flight, and on landing it sounded as if the entire cabin ceiling was peeling back from the plane. I had never heard anything like it before and must not have been alone. A few people actually did scream and even more put their hands up LOL...I was too scared to even look for the FAs, but at least we were on the ground when it happened.

Sorry, that may not be the best story to relay for name, but name, I live next-door to an airport and if you see the number of take offs and landings a day (heck, an hour, not even a day) day in day out, then think that this is just one airport out of thousands around the world, you realize it is a pretty darned safe endeavor. Since moving here, the sounds an engine makes as it gets ready to take off have actually become soothing to me (sounds of home) and if it's been hectic getting ready for a trip and I'm tired, I'll often be asleep before we leave the ground. (Shade up or down, makes no difference...referring back to the etiquette post gt;)

Actually, I have had a life threatening experience at sea, so the waves crashing against a boat analogy would have precisely the opposite effect on me! LOL I'll stick with watching the FA's who don't even blink an eye they've been there done that so many times.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 09:18 AM
  #13  
Gretchen
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I am petrified to fly!!! The minute I make the plane reservations my stomach qets queasy when I think about it. However, I love to travel and cannot be in a car for more than 6 hours or so, because I go stir crazy. I am lucky enough to be able to fly to a vacation four or five times a year. I always cover my head and face with the little blanket they provide. I then hold my husband's arm and rest my head against his upper arm. I look stupid and drive him nuts but I can pretend I am elsewhere. We just flew to CO first class and was able to get a 777. This had seats like a theater that folded out into a bed with my own movie screen and head phones. I was 100% calm flying this way. I even had food and drink which I had never done before. IF this is an option I would highly recommend it. I also look at the airline attendants to be sure they are calm and not acting like there is a problem. Good luck!
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 09:20 AM
  #14  
sammy
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If it's your turn to go what are you going to do? Get over your fear!
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 09:22 AM
  #15  
xxx
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I was so embarassed to talk to the Dr. about this but before I had even finished she had her Rx pad out and wrote me a script for Xanax. I carry two in my pocket-easy to get to-every time I fly. I fly a lot and have only had to use it three times. Two were when I was stuck on the runway in a snow storm. It is helpful just to know I can use them if I need to and most of the time that is enough. I am not incapcitated at all. Drowsy through the flight but fine on arrival. Definitely recommend getting this over alcohol. Good luck.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 09:25 AM
  #16  
Richard
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Xanax??? wow...your right that will do it, but I hope they remember to get off the plane when they get there! ha!

On a funny side, I love to be seated by someone in this predicament.

I will usually shout out "WHAT WAS THAT!!!" whenever I hear the landing gear go up, or "THAT DIDN'T SOUND NORMAL" when the flaps retract, or "SHIIT..CAPT MOYER???? HE WAS DRINKING WITH ME UNTIL 4:00AM LAST NIGHT!!" or such comments, and then gleefully watch the person squirm in thier seat!

On a serious note, just remember that 1) air travel is the safest form of transportation.
2) the flight attendants do this as a JOB every single day. No one is forcing them with a gun to get on, it is simply another boring job, safer than you in the office.

Hope this helps....if it doesn't...I'll be next to YOU! ha ha!
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 09:29 AM
  #17  
xx
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One Xanax will not affect you so much that you don't forget to get off. It will make sitting next to that guy easier too.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 10:23 AM
  #18  
suzanne
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My "Fear of Flying" Tips:
* When you hit "rough air" just think of it as bumps in the road
* Bring engrossing reading
* Get the headphones and watch the movie
* Take early morning flights so you're drowsy on the plane...you'll care more about sleeping than your fear!
* Look around for children on the plane. If it were that dangerous to fly, people wouldn't bring their kids along!
* Fly often.

I fly in planes more often than I ride in cars...which has allayed my flying fears quite a bit...but I hate driving - it's SO dangerous. Just about every time I'm out on the road some stupid driver is not looking and nearly hits me. Not likely to happen in the air!
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 11:45 AM
  #19  
RIchard
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Another little trick I had from my early days on my first flights, was to bring headphones and a tape/cd of my favorite relaxing music.

At that time, have'n grown up in a family where my father thought that the idea of flight was only for birds, my first choice of music was a tape of beautiful gregorian chant and songs. I put that babe on, closed my eyes, and sipped on my wine, and nothing bothered me, no matter how bad the weather was.

Bottom line is that turbulance is normal and rarely ever dangerous.
 
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 11:52 AM
  #20  
X Bellman
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I have found that flying with family or friends is very helpful. I don't know why, buy I am more relaxed if I'm flying with somebody who isn't afraid to fly. I also know more people that have died in a car as opposed to a plane....Many more!
 

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