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Home > Fear of Flying > Will I make it home alive to see my children?
Will I make it home alive to see my children?
Flying - Fear of Flying
Wednesday, 31 October 2007 05:33

Hello Captain Lim,

Thanks for taking the time to read my question.

I am a very fearful flyer but frequently force myself to fly because I don*t want this fear to change the way I live my life - and the reality is, my family live 2 flights away. So if I want to see them, I have to fly! I am fearful of everything, from the sense of not being in control of my situation, (I*m always the driver!) to any noises, movements, etc.

I am completely hyper-vigilant to everything. I have constant uncontrollable thoughts about crashing, etc. and these occur in my everyday life because I am pretty much always aware of when my next flight will be. Then I trouble myself thinking "perhaps that thought was a sign I shouldn*t get on this flight?" Realistically, there isn*t anyway one could "predict" tragedies occurring? I have read all your answers to previous questions, so don*t feel the need to add more about fears!!

My fears have gotten worse as I have gotten older. When I was younger, I flew twice from Sydney to LA, Miami, Jamaica and back again, at times going through Detroit and Chicago. Now, almost 10 years later I have the chance to do a trip Sydney - LA - Miami - Kingston - NYC - London - Rome- Bangkok - Sydney. You can see my dilemma based on how I feel about flying! I wonder - will the planes crash? Will I make it home alive to see my children? I am seriously considering pulling out of the trip. What do you think?

You talk a lot about Boeing 777. All of my flights are on Boeing 747-400, 737-800 or 737-300/3000c and in one case, an Airbus A319. All my flights are on QANTAS, American Airlines or British Airways. Are these aircraft older than the 777? Why would they still be using them? Do they not have the same safety features? How old could these aircraft be?

I know knowledge is power, and I do feel slightly better after reading your website, but how I wish I could just get over it!

Thanks in anticipation.

Kim

Hi Kim,


Life is full of little risks here and there. For example, let us look at these three examples - climbing up the stairs, crossing the road and flying on a commercial airplane. I am sure you are going to say that it is safer to climb up the stairs. Wrong! Your chances of being involved in a fatal air crash on Qantas, American Airlines or British Airways are about 1 in 12 millions.

The Boeing 747-400, 737-300/800 and Airbus A319 are older than the Boeing 777 and some may not have the latest safety features but it doesn*t mean that they are unsafe. Remember what Wilbur Wright said? "If you are looking for perfect safety, you will do well to sit on a fence and watch the birds!"

So I wouldn*t think of all the negatives in life. Instead I would channel my energy thinking about how wonderful it would be to see my children again. Yes, at times, it may be uncomfortable flying on such a long journey to the other side of the world but you have a choice of traveling on an ocean liner if you don*t mind the time it would take you to reach your destination.

I continue to reminder my readers that everything we do in life has a certain amount of risk involved. Flying is just another risk but it happens to be an even smaller risk than climbing up the stairs.

Having said that, it is time for you to wake up and realize that there are many good things in life to cherish and enjoy. If the thoughts that run through your mind are mostly negative, your outlook in life is likely to be pessimistic. One thing is for sure. If you are positive in life, you will live a healthier and longer life!

Yes, you will definitely arrive home safely to see your children!

Have a pleasant flight! :-)

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