Old Feb 12, 13, 1:25 pm
  #17  
TravelGal2779
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 81
Originally Posted by wrp96 View Post
As someone who has had panic attacks (not on planes thank goodness), no you can't control how or when you react - my problem spot is heights and I work in a tall building. I'll go months being okay and then all of a sudden I can't handle being on the 4th floor of a building - unable to breathe, feel like I'm going to pass out, I usually get very quiet as I'm trying to focus and calm myself (doesn't always work). A friend though starts hyperventilating, then screaming, grabbing other people, and gets very demanding - she is a very quiet person normally; her reactions during panic attacks are completely different than her normal personality. Very probable this woman either had no idea she would react this way or thought she had worked through the problem (there are lots of fear of flying courses/therapy programs out there).

As to the luggage, I don't know about you but if somebody is to the point of screaming "we're all going to die" and forces her way off the plane, then I definitely DON'T want her luggage remaining onboard with me. For an international flight, it would be required to remove her luggage, for a domestic flight it would be the smart thing to do as well.
I couldn't agree with you more on both points. From someone who suffers from claustrophobia, my reaction to a situation in which I'm enclosed can vary greatly depending on where I am, where I'm going, who I'm with and the circumstances of the situation. Sometimes I am just fine, other times if I feel I am beginning to panic, I quietly do my breathing exercises and find a focal point to calm myself down. For some people though, they can't deal with it this way and the panic attack builds up. Next thing you know, you're doing something drastic and unsafe just to remove yourself from the anxiety-ridden situation.
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