Hi to everyone!
I grouped those 2 phobias together because, for me, they are. I can't tolerate situations where I am not able to escape or where control is out of my hands. Flying is my ultimate fear because, to me, it represents the worst case scenario - 30,000 ft above the ground, unable to get out, at someone else's mercy, having to trust the pilot and tower, fearing that a panic attack could get me arrested by the air marshals...I could go on and on. This has gone on my entire life! When I was tiny, I screamed on elevators when the doors closed. Later I got over my fear of elevators, but other fears replaced it. Today, I can ride most elevators, but not past the 19th floor. (More than that seems too high.) I am also developing a fear of crowded bridges. I can cross bridges if the traffic is moving, but I am terrified when it is moving slowly (I can't get off!) Yes, I am totally effed up! I have tried different therapies, but nothing works. I get more and more frustrated with myself!
Luckily, I have the most patient and understanding husband in the world! Last summer, he and our youngest child went to Africa. I was so happy for them and did not worry, but it makes me sick to look at the picturers because I would love to go so much! I am 61 years old. I realize that I only have about 20 to 25 more healthy years to travel. I have wasted so much time already! To make matters worse, our oldest is getting married soon, and they are talking about a destination wedding.
The extended family gets on my case from time to time, too. A couple of sister-in-laws let me know how "silly" I am. I want to strangle them, but I do know that there is no way they could possibly understand. I am at a loss as to what I can do. Does anyone know of some type of therapy that REALLY WORKS?
So glad to have found this board!