Thursday, December 4, 2008

Riddle me this

Why on earth would someone (me) who is already afraid to fly (me again) and who is getting on a plane next Thursday (me still), choose to almost make herself late to work this morning because she could not stop watching The Today's Show series of "How to survive a plane crash". It was filled with images like this:
Issues, people. I have issues.


Amanda said...

I know and your issues make me feel more normal Little Sister :)We're both complusive worriers. But remember this, it's safer to fly than drive/ride in a car!

Monica @ Writer Chic said...

Oh crack me up. But seriously, I'll be praying for safe travels for you next week.

Kelly said...

I hate to fly too. I have found one thin that helps keep me calm on an airplane and that is coloring. I know, I know you don't have to remind me that I am 26 and way to old to be coloring but it really does help. Until midway through a night flight to Minnesota, Hubs moves his arm and knocks all my crayons in the floor and then I couldn't find them.

Capt Tom Bunn LCSW said...

Dear Kendra,

I've worked for twenty-eight years with people who are afraid of flying, and that questions comes up all the time. I think people are drawn to shows like that because of several reasons, such as:

a. to know you are right about not flying; b. to try to get more information so you can find a way to escape if you are ever in such a situation; c. to sort of emotionally connect with people by imagining what they went through; d. the feeling of identification with a person trapped in a situation that helps you imagine the feeling you might have, so as to know if you can deal with the feeling or not.

There are some other possibilities but they get even more complex.

The bottom line is, it is natural - when you have fears (and who doesn't) - to be obsessed with the feared thing or feared situation.

If this leads to a better way to deal with a situation, avoid a situation, of adapt, that's good. But often it doesn't; often it just reinforces a fear which really is overblown in the first place.

Yet, you could say, "what do you mean 'overblown' - planes do crash."

Yes, but very, very, very rarely. The problem is very simple. You don't know whether YOUR flight is going to be one of the 4,999,999 out of 5,000,000 that makes it there fine, or the 1 that doesn't.

Why, then, do some people have trouble with that and other people can brush it off? Again, the answer is simple. Some people get more "built-in" ability to deal with uncertainty than others, and there are a lot of reasons (genetics AND how important people related to you when you were very young and vulnerable to everything) why there is a variation in ability to deal with uncertainty.

If this interests you, I would like to invite you to join us on Wednesday nights (9 PM - 11 PM eastern) to the fear of flying chat at and also to see the video that explains the cause and cure of fear of flying at

By the way. The copilot who was in that plane shown being hit by the other one is a friend of mine. He survived and has told his story at

Vanessa's Dad said...

It's all Spiritual Warfare... Re-read "Sisterchicks Learn the Hula." Aloha!!


Lianna Knight said...

Scary!! Just say a prayer before you get on the know the Lord will watch over you :)