View Full Version : Fear of Flying

mrs. dobbs
12-06-12, 04:59 AM
Loud, smelly, cramped, violent, up and down/epigastric sensation, turbulence, out of your control. That's my experience. Help! I have to fly.

12-06-12, 06:08 AM
Loud, smelly, cramped, violent, up and down/epigastric sensation, turbulence, out of your control. That's my experience. Help! I have to fly.


12-06-12, 06:15 AM
or, if you really have motion sickness: Dramamine. (not sure if ok if nursing, though).
bring a REALLY REALLY good book or selection of magazines. and some candy. just keep reading. try and make it a nice experience for yourself: you are sitting and can finallyh unwind for a while, someone is going to serve you a nice beverage...

oh, and get one of those neck pillows, even if it's a short flight.

mrs. dobbs
12-06-12, 07:27 AM
sarah, the first time i realized i hated flying i was panicking and gripping the arms of the seat and an older woman from long island (bless her) sitting next to me was like "here, take two of these. i get back pain on planes" i took one. next thing i know i was dreaming that we were a feather circling down onto a neon spiral runway. the plane landed and i was in... new york? la? can't remember... anyway it was percocet. whooo!

ativan made flying a dream. literally. oversized sunglasses, hoodie, ipod, ativan and a shot of 99 bananas and i was good all the way until the next day. when i first got to sweden i couldn't remember how i got home lol. i barely remembered that a married belgian business man showed me a bikini pic of his young chinese mistress. i think he was telling me "the us is out, china is in" it was all a blur, plane changes and all. hm. i probably should have been more careful.

but yeah, breastfeeding now, why i'm freaking out. the people on virgin atlantic were really good to me when i was 7 months pregnant though. can't complain. still terrified, said i'd never do it again. i don't know why! air at that speed is like jello, planes don't just drop out of the sky. millions and millions of people fly every year with no incident. it must be the sensory issues that i hate.

stef it would have to be one good @$$ book, or movie on my tab. my baby wouldn't let me read/watch though. she's very interactive!

thanks for the pointers.

12-06-12, 09:04 AM
I had to fly from the UK with my dad who was had never flown in his life but hadnīt seen his family in NY for 40 years so it was an important trip. He went to the doc and got some valium otherwise he never would have made it. He kept talking to a very attractive lady next to him who worked for an American TV station, I kept telling him to shut up but she was so gracious and said that she wanted to talk.

anyway it was a 9 hour flight and he made it there and back and I never thought he would. SO go to your doc and tell him you need to fly.

12-06-12, 09:21 AM
I can sympathize. I hate hate hate HATE flying, but I still do it. I'm supposed to be responsible for the kids, so I can't take anything to knock me out. Try prayer/meditation when you feel a panic attack starting--not fighting against the panic, but acknowledging it and recognizing it for what it is. It won't miraculously calm you down, but it's the best coping mechanism I have that I can control.

The only other things that have successfuly gotten me through a flight without the whole white knuckes thing are (1) fussy babies that require so much of my time and attention that I don't get a chance to be scared, and (2) a migraine headache so bad that I honestly didn't care if the plane crashed because at least then the pain would stop.

12-06-12, 10:25 AM
I've been here so long now and in my job I've booked so much travel, I'm (practically) not afraid to fly anymore.
Now, I'm just afraid of airport personnel...always worrying they won't believe me when I say "yes, I packed this bag myself", etc. etc.

12-06-12, 12:32 PM
I used to like flying, back when I did most of my flying from California to London, all on 747s, which were roomy planes to say the least.......and all but one flight were not completely sold out flight was so empty, that I could stretch out across the middle 5 seats ! ...

but I was a smoker at the time, so that was torture, going without cigarettes for that many hours......

now, I fly on Southwest, and while the people who work for the company are 97 times out of 100, are really nice, and sometimes funny stuff happens crews singing goodbye to you.....the planes are small, the seats are small, and the aisles are narrow, trying to get down them with carryons is a nightmare...

......I sit with a book and don't move until it's over .....

.....but even so, the last trip last month, I got a lady behind me who chattered on for the entire trip .....yada yada yada yada ...about stocking stores, and I nearly lept over the seats to strangle her ......THE most banal and boring conversation I ever had to overhear in my life .....4 hours ......yechhhhhhhh

,......My sympathies, but I have nothing but a book is the only thing I know of ......

...if you're flying with a baby, then bring every distraction for her (him?) that you can think of ..... the baby old enough to handle earphones??? then songs from some kind of device might distract them for quite a long time .....and you can try that at home .....

12-06-12, 01:06 PM
I hate traveling almost more than I hate flying. . .and I went to grad school in the UK so I flew back and forth at least twice a year. Being required to get full-fare government tickets had one benefit: upgrades via miles actually stuck!

I hate feeling like a piece of livestock. I hate being only a number. I hate the BS rules about carry-ons and how they nickel and dime you for everything now. I hate how *much* more expensive business class is than coach. . . really makes me feel like I'm not worth anything, even though they don't really get that much more.

I don't know why, but I *still* get really nervous about missing flights, so I get to the airport really early and then *wait*.

I hate crowds. I hate arbitrary rules and arbitrary changes to rules (I swear one of these days I'm going to get us detained. . . I don't mean to throw tantrums, but when this happens, and I'm already on my last nerve, it takes just about everything I've got not to explode:

On the day before Thanksgiving: no, sorry, you'll have to check that bag because this is a different plane and the wheels won't fit. Seriously? I've put that bag in the overhead bin on *this* model of plane before. . . if you don't want to have us spend time futzing around with bags, *just tell us*, but I will say that the reason why I packed *that* bag was so I wouldn't have to deal with the ******* carousel on the other end.

mrs. dobbs
12-09-12, 03:07 AM
SquarePeg (when you come back) your dad must have been having a good ol' time! Sounds like my dad chatting ladies up. Attractive and exciting people sitting next to you definitely helps. I'm hoping he got a good impression of flying from it. If it wasn't her, it'd have been the flight attendants, I bet. I remember flying once I was panicking (yes I panic visibly and am often assisted by the kind person next to me unless it's on Lufthansa, where everyone is horrid) and cute bartender was sitting next to me. He gave me his Ipod, bought me drinks and talked to me. He said he'd let me listen to music till I fell asleep and then he'd take the Ipod back. He held my hand, too!

Nifferka, that's one helluva migraine you get! I can imagine feeling that way from a hangover or some other illness. I'm not as scared of flying when I am wedged in the tiny bathroom... sorry... 'lavatory'... with stomach problems with people banging on the door. Last time I flew I opened a little door in the lavatory that I couldn't close. Anyway, I am hoping that I'll rise to the occasion trying to take care of my baby. But I think that having my baby on the plane raises my anxiety considerably just because now I could deal with something happening to me, but I cannot deal with something happening to her. I meditated on my last flight with airplane facts. I did deep breathing. I was pregnant and was (they said) in premature labor before I left, afraid I was going to give birth on the flight. My doctor refused to recommend that I fly, but I HAD to get back to have the baby. Good thing the stress didn't trigger labor. Just had irritable uterus & short cervix due to being on my feet too much, baby came a week late. As for prayers and a higher power, I get pretty irrational, like... "<higher power=""> wants to call me home today, show me that there's nothing to be afraid of in death." Ridiculous.

Stef- I totally understand the feeling. What do you fear would happen next? Have you ever been chosen for a 'random' search? I have, a couple of times. I didn't have to take all my clothes off though. Oh, I almost forgot... I was detained once. All of my things were searched... they photocopied all of my documents including love letters and journals. But that was after I'd landed.

Salleh, I used to love flying the ol' Peanut Bus. They have an impeccable flight record and the flight attendants keep you sufficiently distracted. But now, do they even give you pretzels? I think that the cramped spaces and not moving till it's over drives me batty, I think it contributes to my fear. If I can't sit still in a class, how do I sit still in a plane?? And, I don't even want to move my arms in case my armpits are sweaty. I want to avoid being a primate packed like a sardine soaring through the air in a metal can at 600mph-- yesterday I was Googling "how to find empty flights" Apparently 40% of private jet flights are empty! No more boring conversations, lol. My baby has a favorite song: The Letter Sounds Song, but at 5 months old she'll just take off headphones, however low/pleasant the sound and put them in her mouth.

TygerSan, I couldn't have put it better... I think feeling like a number or livestock contributes to my fear of flying. I think like you say maybe it's more that I can't stand flying than I fear it. It's an immense amount of stress, then rushing, then getting stressed out in a super long line, dismantling your person (shoes, belt, change, computer), then being rushed to put it all back on/in at the end... uncomfortable waiting in tiny chairs with tons of noise and people and overpriced dry frankenfood. I'm totally fuming at the airport, I try to be relaxed but the whole environment is like some psychological test for tolerance. It's the only time I get really super rude.

Like you say, then there's the rules... getting to the gate or something and your bag is unacceptable. I've had people come with me to the airport with extra bags to unpack my suitcase in case it went overweight, only to find that my carry-on was the wrong dimension for *this* airline. Then you pay to get your baggage roundhouse kicked and rolled over with a tank and tagged with a ton of tags that leave adhesive everywhere or cut your fingers trying to rip them off (only I would rip them off, I can never find the scissors.)

Oh, and SAS wouldn't even give me ******* water last time!!! The woman passed me up, didn't even ask me. Saw that I was pregnant. SO I tapped her on the shoulder and she yelled at me "you're going to have to wait a minute!!" For the bottled water, I had to pay for it, and my money was in the overhead and she didn't even offer to get it for me even though I said I was dehydrated and could go into labor. So, I got one measly, begrudged cup of water. That's why SAS is going bankrupt! That one hag chased away all the customers.

Hm. Yes, all these things and more. A pure assault on the nerves and senses.</higher>

12-09-12, 04:27 AM
yes ive been random searched but never detained.
the worst was when my son was in high school, he had long hair and was all bleary eyed, rumpled clothes,we had been up since 6 am,landed in newark and when we went thru security for connecting flight he beeped the thing bc he had left a battery for something in a pocket, they were yelling at him and he didnt understand right away to move over and be searched i really thought they were going to arrest him or something.,UGH.

its hard to fly with a baby! at the same time you might be less worried about actually flying and more worried about keeping the baby happy and occupied.

have you booked a flight? US air is ok and the airport in philadelphia is very doable.
wait im assuming you are going to the states. where are you going???

mrs. dobbs
12-09-12, 06:06 AM
Stef, I'm glad your son didn't end up on one of those customs reality shows. They search young bleary eyed people who've done no wrong pretty often it seems. The older ladies bringing in thousands of cigarettes are the ones. TSA in Newark are tense and they make everyone else tense. Who the hell wants to get hassled at Newark! No fun. And, you have to take those weird shuttles to the gates that look like small classrooms on wheels.

I hope the baby thing is true. I just want my baby to be safe!! Her dad can't come so it's just me.

Thanks for the heads up about Philly-- O'Hare is good too because they have good bathrooms with those mechanical toilet seat covers. Frankfurt is the worst airport with toilets built for non-humans. I will never fly Lufthansa via Frankfurt again.

I haven't booked a flight yet. Am trying to suss out when and with what airline the emptiest flights are. Going from Stockholm to Los Angeles. Apparently Air India and Air Tahiti Nui are pretty empty from Europe to the States. One airline I won't be flying is Ryanair. Not when the owner wants to do away with seatbelts and is all "seatbelts are useless, everyone's going to die anyway." I mean airplanes have accidents and not all of them are fatal. A little turbulence and no seatbelt can mean the difference between a subdural hematoma and walking off the plane however shaky. Am still looking at private jets that are on their way back empty, too. One can dream...

12-09-12, 10:30 AM
stockholm to los angeles???
that is a long flight, with or without baby...