So I doubt there's anything new going to crop up here.   I've been doing long haul flights since I was 13 years old and never had an issue.  However over the last four years I've started developing acute anxiety ahead of and during flights.   I have the mindset though that I won't let something like that stop me from going anywhere.

It's a nice thought, shame it doesn't work out well in practise.

Just in March I flew to Australia from Ireland, which was 11 hours from heathrow to hong kong, 10 from hong kong to brisbane.  On either side were two one hour flights.  On the way out I got 0 hours of sleep and would go to the bathroom every hour to cry or just close my eyes for ten minutes.   The flights themselves were perfect though :(  Coming back, I decided to drink myself into a stupor, wound up miserable for the first leg, then hungover for the second.

April saw a 1 hour flight to manchester which had one of the roughest bad weather descents I've had.   So going back home involved 3 vodkas at 7am with another 2 on the flight.

I'm actually flying ireland to Japan on the 8th of July, so I'm looking forwards to utilizing this site.  I've actually already started by seeing my doctor today who has prescribed me some Xanax, which I've never had anything like, for the trip to Japan.   He says when I come back, we'll talk again about possibly theraputical rather than pharmacutical ways around this.

I'm definitely looking forwards to the trip.  Fingers crossed I don't cry my way to Japan.   Again.

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Comment by Jeanette Khan on July 4, 2012 at 12:55am

Hi Kate,

  I, too, have the same issue - acute flying anxiety after years of never having an issue. It's gotten so bad, I won't fly alone. I used to love airports, airplanes, flying, all of it! I don't know how to get back to that place. There are so many places I want to travel to, but my fear of flying is preventing me from living the full life I want to lead.

I don't drink anything to help me on the flights, but I do take some anti-anxiety pills. I'm flying this weekend from San Jose, CA to Dallas and I'm nervous as hell. I'm not sure how to calm down. I also think the anticipatory anxiety is causing me a lot of issues too. On the flight from Dallas to California I had to listen to a calming soundtrack the whole time to make me breathe and be at peace.

Best of luck to you and make sure you keep busy with lots of tv and maybe some soothing music.

Comment by Kate N Evans on June 30, 2012 at 4:29pm

Thanks Sarah!

And I must admit, even though I'm not letting it stop me, the anxiety does get worse each time like some crazy snowball effect.  When I went to Australia, because I couldn't settle at all, I went 34 hours without sleeping haha.   I'm already nervous for this flight, but I have someone with me this time so fingers crossed they can distract me or something.

I fly out to Osaka on the 8th, and back from Tokyo (Narita) on the 21st.   It's a vacation for me and my roommate, and the moment I'm on the ground it's going to be amazing.   I think the funniest part is that airports don't bother me at all, and I always enjoy checking out the different styles they come in.   It's just that flying part, grr.  And yeah, after the immense hangover in Singapore aiport I'm definitely not doing the drinking thing again, it's way too painful.  I can't actually drink any alcohol on these tablets, so I'll have to stick with some nice KLM tea haha.

I will make sure to keep this updated closer to the time, and maybe even take a picture of me getting on the plane for good measure.

Comment by Sarah on June 30, 2012 at 4:25pm

Hi, Kate.

I can sympathise with the fear coming up after years of uneventful flying. I like the idea of not letting it stop you too! I've tried that myself (I fly quite a bit) but it just seems to end up with having to endure massive anxiety for hours and hours. Hopefully you can find something here to help you.

Is the Japan trip a holiday? Where in Japan are you going? I used to work in Japan and I'd love to go back some day. That was before flying started to become an issue.

Let us know how the Xanax works out. I've certainly tried the alcohol option before, but I think it's something about the recycled air on planes, it doesn't take much alcohol on a plane to give me a brutal hangover. So now I don't let myself get drunk, although I do always have a drink - if you're on a plane, you're on holiday (regardless of the purpose of your trip or the time of day.)

Anyway, let us know how you get on and ganbatte for your trip to Japan!


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