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Old Aug 13, 09, 11:35 pm
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Programs: AA PLT 2 MM, Hyatt DIA
Posts: 506
Originally Posted by GeorgeS View Post
when the aircraft is NOT moving..................for example, sitting at the gate, or on the runway waiting is a killer for me. My worst nightmare is to actually "survive" the 6.5 to 7 hour flight to London and then upon landing find out that we can disembark because there is another plane at our gate.
My other trigger is when the plane is hot..........

I'm interested in hearing from any claustrophobic flyers who have some experience on longer flights (I'm candidly struggling with how I get through hour 4, 5,6, etc until we land). I'm also interested in hearing from any flight attendants who might be able to offer some advice.
Wow. We have some of the same triggers, although my difficulty is more of an anxiety issue than claustrophobia.

Like you, being on the plane when it is not moving is the most difficult thing for me. Several years ago I had to be taken off an MD-80 in a wheelchair with an oxygen mask strapped to my face when being held off the gate at DFW was more than I can handle. Needless to say, it was a low point in my life, but I take comfort in the fact (and you should too) that should anything happen, AA will make sure you are okay.

I now prepare for the possibility of a ground delay by making sure that I have food and water with me. Like someone else suggested, I dress in layers so I can strip to a tank top if needed. I carry Valerian tablets with me at all times.

About a year ago we had to wait out a storm on the tarmac. It was difficult to get through, but as soon as the situation was clear, I immediately took one of the 2500 mg Valerian tablets. Then I took out my DVD player and started watching movie. It was probably 25 minutes until the tears stopped streaming down my face, 30 minutes until the feeling of "I can't stay on this plane anymore" subsided. Eventually, the anxiety passed and I was able to focus more and more on the movie.

I buy Valerian in Germany, but I know it is available here.

GeorgeS, know that you aren't alone with this struggle.

Oh! Forgot to add, the 777 is huge compared to the single aisle planes. Ceilings are high and they are far less cramped, even in Y. Being in J or F, you will have lots of space and lots of airflow, and will be very comfortable.

Last edited by MoonPet; Aug 13, 09 at 11:37 pm Reason: Forgot to add the last part
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