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Hello, I am new to this forum. I have been a fairly frequent flyer my whole life, even flew to Antarctica from New Zealand, but I had a couple very uncomfortable flights (I know, probably not dangerous, just very, very uncomfortable), and then especially since becoming a mother 9 years ago, I have developed a fear of flying. It hasn't yet stopped me from traveling (I have to travel for my research, and I live 3,000 miles away from most of my extended family), but I spend the days before my flight worrying, and any amount of turbulence on the flight makes me sweat terribly, and I get very stressed, grumpy, and the day of travel is filled with anxiety. I flew to Japan this summer and spent the whole 13 hours sweating, imagining the plane falling into the Pacific. My last few trips with my kids I have had to have my husband sit with the kids (3 and 9 years old) while I sit elsewhere because the stress of keeping the children entertained and well behaved (mainly the 3 year-old) + my anxiety is just too much.
I have read Captain Keith's book (EXCELLENT!) and was starting to feel better in the last months when all the news is now filled with plane crashes (Malaysian and today's in Taiwan). I had to get on a plane the day the news broke about M17. I was able to talk myself into calm by realizing I was taking a domestic flight in the US, where this would not happen. But the recent crash in Taiwan is more difficult for me, because my fear mostly centers on flying through bad weather. I am good at avoiding the sensationalism of the media, but more information does make me feel better, usually. I am a scientist who likes the facts. How can I continue to tell myself that turbulence is not dangerous knowing that this plane went down due bad weather (and likely encountered a lot of turbulence before the crash!)?
I am wondering how others are dealing with the news, and if you have any tips or good information for me so I can successfully convince myself that it is very unlikely this will happen to me. I have a cross country flight, with my kids, with layovers, coming up in about one week, and I really don't want to spend the day sweating and panicking. I am specifically interested in tips for flying with my kids. I have flown with them a lot, and I know all the tips for how to keep THEM happy (so they don't disturb everyone else on the flight), but doing all that leaves me terribly stressed and anxious, and then I am miserable. I always think the distraction of my kids will help, but it doesn't. When turbulence begins, I have to focus in my head and remind myself of all of Captain Keith's tips. When my three year-old is yelling, Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, I can't focus, and I get so stressed. Ideas for me, or should I just continue to try to leave the kids to my husband and sit separately (which makes me feel better over all, but also a bit of a bad mother)?
Thoughts? Thanks again for your help.
Thanks so much, Jim and Kathryn. There is enormous relief in knowing I am not alone, and having reminders to remember to be rational and focus on the facts, not my fears..Yes, I too heard news of today's disaster, and my heart just sank.
Hi Kathryn, its a good point that...this always reassures me too....Oman is lovely by the way i go there about once every six or 8 weeks...muscat is a great and friendly place so make sure you go
Jane check out flight radar . com and see how many planes are in the sky......this month 100 people will die in accidents....but we live in a state of denial...we have to...or we'd never do anything.......just remember its probably one of the safest places you can ever be...cause people are there looking after you.