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HELP...I''m terrified to fly and have to on Thursday!

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Girlrocks

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jul 19, 2006
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575
I have to attend a funeral out of town and am flying to the funeral and back home the same day. I haven''t flown in 8 years since my honeymoon. I am TERRIFIED! I HATE FLYING!!! I hope I don''t freak out on the plane! Any advice for how to stay calm???
 

poptart

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 23, 2006
Messages
1,899
I hate flying, too. I get nervous and think the worst things possible. My family lives 2500 miles away and I had to fly alone this year since hubby is away. Needless to say, I was extremely nervous. My advice is to bring a LOT of distractions, such as something to munch on in between those stale crackers they serve. A great book, headphones, and maybe some sudoku or crossword puzzles. I also suggest trying to get a window seat. It may sound dumb but if I can SEE what is going on outside the plane I feel more in control. I don''t like sitting where I can''t see my surroundings because I imagine bad things happening. Also, some flight services offer alcohol for 5 bucks (a lot for one drink, to be sure), but if you think a little mixed drink would calm your nerves, go for it. I hope I could help a little. That quote that TGal had up a while back is SO true! It went something like: There are only two emotions when flying; boredom and terror. Good luck!

*M*
 

Samantha Red

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 9, 2007
Messages
441
gallons of alcohol, or class a drugs.

Seriously, try some relaxation techniques such as controlled breathing and visualisation exercises. Remember air travel is just about the safest way to travel. You are in far more danger on the way to the airport in the car, although that might not be that comforting!
 

TravelingGal

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 29, 2004
Messages
17,193
I completely agree on the window thing. I have flown for the last 10 years, chalking up 100''s of 1000s of miles, and I still must sit by a window. If I can''t see the outside and the plane starts to shake a bit, it makes me uneasy and queasy. Also, if there is bad turbulence and the overheads pop open, guess who will get struck first by any falling items? Yup, those aisle seaters.

When you get on the plane, count how many rows to the nearest exit...both front and back. That always makes me feel better that I could get out if something happened to the plane and visibility was impacted.

Also kind of weird, but I like to have a blanket...something about the comfort factor. If you don''t want to use the plane ones, bring your own. In fact, most likely they will not have enough as you don''t have status on any airline and they will run out. American Airlines doesn''t even offer pillows anymore (although they may make exception on certain transcontinental flights). The best thing you can do is sleep. I have trained myself like Pavlovs dogs...as soon as I hear that plane engine start, I am out. I can''t even stay awake even when I''m not tired!!
 

mrssalvo

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 3, 2005
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19,132
I don''t like to fly either. I just always buy a bunch of magazines like US Weekly, In style, people, mindless reading and the time goes by faster. My mom has her doctor prescribe something that helps her nerves and motion sickness when she flys so you might check into that too.
 

asscherisme

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 6, 2006
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2,641
You are in more danger in the car getting to the airport than you are while in the plane.

I''m sorry for your loss.
 

KimberlyH

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 15, 2006
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7,485
Bring a ton of reading material, games, etc. anything to keep you distracted. Take deep breathes when you start to get panicky and find another focus.
 

yellowsparkles

Shiny_Rock
Joined
May 21, 2006
Messages
312
I am right up there with you. Since we moved to the UK last year, I have had to fly home to CA four times. I Hate flying. We are flying this saturday to DC so at least it is a 7 hr flight instead of 11 hours. This past year, I have been with my 3 yr old, so that keeps me really distracted. She loves to fly and insists that I look out the window during take-off (I hate that - but love looking out during landings). Other than that, I always watch the flight attendants. If they look calm, then I tend to be calm. I figure if they look like somehting is wrong, then I can be worried. Also, it is true. You are more likely to get into an accident going to the airport....my reaction to that is you''re not 35,000 feet in the air.
Seriously, I order a glass of wine and just try to relax. You will be fine.

 

eks6426

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 19, 2004
Messages
2,011
I always bring an IPOD and my own pillow and blanket. That with the window seat usually allows me to go to sleep.

Good luck and I''m sorry for your loss.
 

diamondfan

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 17, 2005
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11,016
XANAX. Seriously, it is the only way I have gotten through a couple flights and a couple closed MRI''s that I had to have...
 

Miranda

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 18, 2006
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4,101
Date: 1/9/2007 5:13:10 PM
Author: diamondfan
XANAX. Seriously, it is the only way I have gotten through a couple flights and a couple closed MRI''s that I had to have...
OK - how does it make you feel????? I really hate to fly and the last flight we went on (to Vegas) was...let''s just call it rough. I have a total phobia now. I know I need to be medicated to go on a plane again. My BIL is in DC and he constantly asks us to go see him. I don''t think I could do it unmedicated. I don''t even want to go to Hawaii because it invloves a flight.

Girlrocks, what about taking a lot of Benadryl and downing a few drinks??? I guess you can''t do that because you are having a bit of a turnaround trip. I don''t have much advice for you. Sorry. Good luck, though.
 

IrishAngel7982

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 5, 2006
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I really wouldn't recommend mixing Benadryl with alcohol (or any drugs for that matter.) That would make you sick more than anything...and I can't imagine you'd want to be sick on an airplane. If you think a drink will help you, stop at one of the bars in the terminal before you board or pop for the $5 drink on the plane. Bring something to keep you distracted if you hit a tiny bit of turbulence. I'm sorry I can't be more help...I love to fly...but stay calm. I'm sure you'll be just fine. Just don't go mixing medicine with alcohol!!!!

And I'm so sorry for your loss. =(
 

diamondfan

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 17, 2005
Messages
11,016
If I take two I get a bit sleepy, one or one and a half takes the edge off so I am not freaking and edgy...it really helps me, since I get anxiety ridden just thinking about the whole thing...
 

cara

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 21, 2006
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MP3 player with sound-muffling earbuds, if you have one. Will help put you in another place. Technically you are supposed to wait until after takeoff to turn on the MP3 player, but you can just plug the headphones into the armrest and listen to radio right away. That, and bring all worldly comforts you might want: water bottle (purchased after security), snack or meal, cheapie magazines or whatever reading distraction you might want. Dress in comfly light layers that you can add to or take off to keep cool. If alcohol helps with anxiety, go for it, but be aware you will be extra dehydrated in the hangover portion because of the dry cabin air and low pressure - drinking while flying always leaves me feeling really sluggish. But maybe that''s what you want.
 

psaddict

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 9, 2006
Messages
105
My sister is also terrified of flying, and she was prescribed valium by her doctor, for flights! She said that it works like a charm, maybe you could talk to your doctor about taking this or some other drug to help you. There''s no reason to work yourself into a nervous wreck and get sick/freaked out if you don''t have to!
 

Ellen

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 13, 2006
Messages
24,426
I agree with some drugs. In moderation of course.
 

Beacon

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 14, 2006
Messages
2,037
I bring ear plugs and wear them the whole time. Planes are very noisy and that noise adds to your stress. I put the headphones on over the ear plugs.

Keep your feet off the floor. Ya right! Here''s how/why. Try and put your feet on the metal brackets that hold the seats ahead of yours. If you''re in biz or first use the footrest. This helps you feel much less of any vibrations through the body of the aircraft. Those vibrations can increase your stress.

Bring your own reading material. Do not rely on what is left on the plane. It could be something that will increase your stress, particularly if it is aircraft accident related, like a stray news story. Some random things will stress you on a plane that will not stress you on the ground. Any negative kind of article can raise your anxiety level.

So bring your own that you have "precscreened" for content. I often do stupid books of crosswords. I never, ever do them unless I am flying. If my husband is with me, we do them together for extra distraction.

Yes, there is alcohol and yes, it will help. On one bad flight I had one glass of water and one of wine and I told the stewardess to just keep refilling if either went low. The deeply paranoid part of me does not want to drink cause if we crash I''ll need my wits about me, alcohol makes you bleed more, etc - only when I am very paranoid do I feel like that, but there you go, you can choose.

Wear sensible shoes. The kind you could run in if you had to. No nail polish. Wear comfortable natural fiber clothes. Keep your seat belt on the whole time.

Can you tell I hate to fly? Oh yeah.

Good luck - statistically you are in good hands.
 

KittenKat

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 22, 2004
Messages
461
I am also terrified to fly!

If I don''t have an anti-anxiety pill, I have a couple drinks before boarding the plane.

Though, what really helped, is reading about flying. You can find some great websites that are there to help us frightened people out.

I know there is a forum, that is run by pilots - and they discuss the physics of flying, and tons of other great information. I wish I could remember the name! But if you do a Google search - you''ll probably find it. It does help!

I''ll try and find the site... and will post it if I run into it :)
 

Skippy123

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2006
Messages
24,299
I was exactly like you and then my job had me flying all over the country. I was set with my Ipod for music and take dramamine. It worked for me. I like the aisle seat. I hate seeing outside the window. A pillow and blanket are good.

Good luck. Just remember the pilot doesn''t want to crash so he is going to do his darnest to get you their safely. That thought helped me. Also, if you sit by a friendly person who likes to talk that helps too.
 

Girlrocks

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jul 19, 2006
Messages
575
Thanks for all of the advice! Unfortunately, I think alcohol will be out of the question. The plane leaves at 5:30am, I land, go to the funeral, then fly back home at 8:30pm. I don't want to be looped at the funeral! Luckily, the flight is only 2 hours so if I bring my Ipod, some magazines, some Sudoko puzzles and a blanket, I should (hopefully) be OK. I'm just going to keep my eyes on the crew and if they seem calm, I'll be calm (yeah, right!).

For me it's more the feeling of being closed in and not being in control. I'm also a terrible passenger in a car...way too much back seat driving!
 

diamondfan

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jun 17, 2005
Messages
11,016
Def. have a comfy outfit on, good reading materials and also drink water...Ipod is good, and lip balm and a neck rest pillow thing...

I swear by the xanax. Benadryl takes a long time to wear off on me, and I feel groggy and out of it. The xanax now has a slow release formula, I have not taken it but it might be good. I have popped two when I board and slept through take off, which is one of the scariest times to me. It cannot hurt to take something mild and I would try it at home to see how it affects you...
 

Mara

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 30, 2002
Messages
31,003
i'm not a nervous flier really but people who i know who are swear by a having a drink in the airport bar before getting on the plane. i'm not really a drug person though. a drink shouldn't really make you looped...maybe just have one mild one or similar, it's just to relax slightly.

in reality, they say that flights are pretty safe....the stat is something like more people die in car accidents every year than any sort of plane incidents. definitely take fun reading material, an iPod, and/or a mini dvd player. anything to pass the time. i get super bored on flights.

good luck and don't worry!
 

strmrdr

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 1, 2003
Messages
23,295
I love flying but its got to be a window seat.

You will be finer than frog hair split 8 ways!
 

Fran Fine

Rough_Rock
Joined
Jan 10, 2005
Messages
76
Drugs...this is the only time I think they''re cool (I''m talking prescribe drugs like the Xanax Diamondfan suggested). I took a Valium on my last flight and I was totally fine (I also HATE flying but have to all the time because my family is all over the world). I wish there were high speed luxury ocean liners that could cross the Atlantic in a day...I would totally take those.
 

Girlrocks

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jul 19, 2006
Messages
575
Ok, so I survived! I did take a Xanax 1 hour before the morning flight. I flew into Orlando so there were a lot of families on the plane going to Disney, so I figured if these 3 year olds could do this, so could I!
Anyway, I think I had bigger carryon that the kids because I had my Ipod, magazines, sudoku puzzle book, blanket, pillow...I didn''t use 1/2 of it, but I felt better being prepared. I HATED the take off, but after that first 5 minutes or so, I was fine through the flight and landing. It was beautiful weather up and down the coast yesterday, so we actually got in about 20 minutes early both time. I''m so glad that I didn''t chicken out because this was for a close family member (my uncle) and it really meant a lot to my aunt and cousins that my bro and I took the time away from our lives and kids to come down for the day...she kept saying it over and over. Thanks to everyone for their words of encouragement and the recommendation for the Xanax, that''s the only way I''ll fly from now on!
 

Skippy123

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2006
Messages
24,299
Girlrocks,
I am so happy for you since I can completely empathize with you. Yippee for doing so well!!!! Thanks for letting us know too.
 

divergrrl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 9, 2002
Messages
2,224
Date: 1/9/2007 6:04:24 PM
Author: IrishAngel
I really wouldn''t recommend mixing Benadryl with alcohol (or any drugs for that matter.) That would make you sick more than anything...and I can''t imagine you''d want to be sick on an airplane. If you think a drink will help you, stop at one of the bars in the terminal before you board or pop for the $5 drink on the plane. Bring something to keep you distracted if you hit a tiny bit of turbulence. I''m sorry I can''t be more help...I love to fly...but stay calm. I''m sure you''ll be just fine. Just don''t go mixing medicine with alcohol!!!!

And I''m so sorry for your loss. =(
Are you kidding??? Percoset + washed down with red wine.... Valium + vodka...... good stuff.... Shooot, what fun are prescription drugs if you can''t mix booze with them? Where''s your sense of adventure?

Ok, kidding, well sortof (not really, when my son was born, the hospital gave me 2 percosets for the pain & then my friends brought wine & the nurse said one glass wouldn''t affect it, not a problem..did that a few times in the beginning, doc said it was fine)

but I am also terrified when I fly...I usually just drink...a few drinks....usually about 1 per hour.

I have yet to ask for a prescription for flying, but the WORST was when I was pregnant, and could not drink a lick, so I had to order herbal tea (hot drinks calm me) and just bring a lot to read & my iPod.

otherwise it''s screwdriver city.

Jeannine
 

angel_nieves

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Oct 23, 2005
Messages
877
I wish you the best..
However I have no tips on how to keep you calm I always liked to fly.
 

divergrrl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 9, 2002
Messages
2,224
I''m glad your flight went well. I may have to look into Xanax or Valium for my next flight. Of course, if I fly while pregnant ( a very near possibility) then, again,no dice. Back to decaf tea. Sigh.

Hmmm, I wonder if a lavender-scented eye and/or neck pillow would be relaxing?

Jeannine
 
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