I created this community for a few reasons. Insomnia is one. ;)
More to the point though, I have a fear of riding roller coasters and other amusement park rides which I'd like to overcome. This past weekend I went to an amusement park with some friends of mine who were patient and helped me out immensely. I did a lot better than I expected to, but I still managed to have a panic attack on what many might consider to be a fairly tame ride.
I've been searching for suggestions for a few months, but my Google-fu and Wiki-fu are weak. There's surprisingly little out there. I imagine this is largely because people who, like us, have this fear, tend to avoid amusement parks altogether. I appear to be the only "special" one who wants to confront this head-on. There's got to be more people like me out there.
I'd remembered hearing a story on NPR about a year and a half ago on an immersion program, but I was unable to find any information on it. Ergo, what I envision for this community is:
- Find other people with coasterphobia who would like to overcome it.
- Develop a "therapy" program of sorts. Perhaps get people with knowledge of different amusement parks to determine a progression of rides to take. I'm also thinking of somehow developing a rating system. So, for example, a member of this community might say "I live near Amusement Park X, and I'm at fear level 3 -- what rides should I try in what order?"
- Eventually, host local park meetups for community members living in certain geographical areas having similar fear levels, and pair them with some coaster enthusiasts for help sessions.
The season's about over, so I think this is a good time to do this so that we can have this all organized for next season.