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I don't know what to do!

Old 5th Jan 2019, 16:38
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I don't know what to do!

Hi everyone,

I want to share with you what I've been struggling with the past years, in hope that I can get some new ideas and opinions, that help me to make finally a decision.

Let me tell a bit about myself: I am 28 years old and from Europe. Since I am 13 years old, I am infected with the aviation virus. All I want since than is flying. I spent a lot of my leisure time with reading about aviation and flying in the flight simulator learning procedures and how to operate an aircraft in theory using addons like PMDG. However, I never did the step to fly myself in real life, what I don't understand, I could have done my gliders license. When I was young I was not really good at school, really lazy and instead of doing my homework I went to the airport for plane spotting or just learned about computers. But I wanted to fly, so I had to get a high school degree. I did it on the secondary way. I finished in 2015. But when I got my degree something changed.

I always planned to apply at DLH. However, they stopped recruiting pilots and changed their whole system at that time. Even though they wouldn't had changed, I am not sure if I had applied. I have huge respect of that tests (BU and FQ) which only a small percentage of candidates pass.

However, another point came into my mind. Even I was very concerned about the environment in my young ages and aware of the fact that aviation causes a large ecological footprint, I kind of continued dreaming of becoming a pilot. In the following years, I gained more and more knowledge and my ideas on the world changed, so I decided not to become a pilot and contributing to environmental damage, instead doing something "meaningful".

However, I wasn't sure about, what. I never intended to go to university, never! But I ended up studying economics for one semester even though I was sure, that I do not want to to it.to Than I quiet came back, worked and than decided going abroad and study something in social sciences. Here am I now. I have been enrolled at the uni here now for the last 4-5 months and almost in the second semester but totally unhappy. I don't enjoy it and have no motivation to read that stuff. The result of that was that I failed almost all exams. I don't have an apprenticeship, just temporary job experience. So I have nothing except my high school degree and useless job experience at the moment; AND I AM 28.

I have been feeling kind of depressed in the past three years, because I want to do something that I love and am passionate about. On the other hand if I do it, I contribute to environmental damage. Knowing full well that this though is naive and not realistic. I don't want to start a discussion about that, but me not flying will not change anything. Aircraft are still flying and future predictions don't show a decrease in movements and aircraft orders they predict the opposite. So, if the demand doesn't stop the offer won't. People will not stop flying. Not if they have the opportunity to fly for 30 Euros across Europe. We all know that this won't happen. Only when politics decide to implement laws to restrict the industry, but we all know that won't happen too, because it would cause economical damage. We live in times, where economy is higher rated than ecology: Money talks. So I don't see a reason for me not being a pilot.

But: I am 28, I don't know how the past years went by. I had no physics at school. I was all right at math but not a genius. I know, there are some European companies that still pay for the training, but you have to pass the assessments. I don't know how that should work out. I am really even afraid of writing my covering letter, afraid of being rejected. I am aware of that this make no sense, but I just don't know what to do else. I applied for aviation services personnel appreciateships at airports but got rejected, and I am happy about that. Honestly, I think it's pretty boring to check in passengers all the time.

I could write far more, but don't want to make this too long. I think I covered everything relevant. I am really looking forward for your ideas, inspirations and opinions because I really don't know what to do and I think you guys can understand me best. If you even have read until here, thanks for that.
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Old 5th Jan 2019, 18:59
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Well first of all: Try it. Write applications, (maybe) get rejected - that‘s life and that‘s rhe way it always will be. But at least you tried.

Maybe you fail the assessement...I and most others failed some of them. No big deal to be honest. Annoying, yes. But you‘ll get another chance somewhere else. Maybe also think outside of the box: Get an instructor rating do some instructing...cheaper way to get paid for flying than trying to get in an airline cockpit right away. Or if you‘re worried about the ecological impact: Why don‘t you try to work at an airport? Not checking in paxes, but maybe as a (for example) dispatcher? Ramp agent? Gets you working and you‘re kind of in the industry...
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Old 5th Jan 2019, 19:26
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Originally Posted by A320LGW View Post
What are you actually asking? You want to be a pilot but your views on the environment haven't changed? … Please summarise how exactly we can help you
Yes, my views on the environment haven't changed they are the same but I am now (more) aware of that my behavior of not being a pilot does not change anything. Airplanes keep flying, with or without me. Honestly, I don't know how you guys can help me. It's just so frustrating, that I am almost 30 haven't achieved anything except wasting my time with useless stuff that brings me nowhere, instead of doing what I always wanted to do. Life is hard without a goal and everything I do seems meaningless, and since 2015 I don't have a goal in life anymore. Before 2015 my goal was always to become a Pilot, that's the reason why I did my high school degree on the secondary way (evening school) and life was good - because I had something to strive for. I never intended to go to uni, but now I am, but I am not good at it, because I don't like it. The most precise question I could ask is: what would you do in my situation?

flyfan: You're right, without trying, it will keep always a question mark in my head, which in itself causes a lot of stress.
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Old 5th Jan 2019, 20:41
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I do love flying a heavy machine that burns tons Jet A1 fuel
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 08:40
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Go modular and do your PPL. It's a good way to see if you really enjoy doing it.
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 10:17
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Try some difficult situations on your flight sim and if you cannot make your mind up how to get out of the situation emigrate to Canada and be a lumberjack.
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Old 6th Jan 2019, 13:33
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Banana Joe makes a good point, do the PPL, then see how you feel about the flying (and the theory, the step up from PPL theory to the ATPL theory is a bit steep). When you have your PPL you know more about what it takes, and you open other options, eg. instructor ratings. I would also recommend looking at air traffic controller training, however some countries have age limits for applying, some don't.

The best of luck
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 10:57
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Go modular and do your PPL. It's a good way to see if you really enjoy doing it.
The best advice, nothing more.

My first fly on an ultralight airplane was at my 28. Now I'm 35 and flying bizjets. I know a lot of pilots who started flying career after 30. Just do it.
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 13:17
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The modular route is your best option.
But before you spend any money obtain your Class One Medical. Or at least a Class Two prior to PPL training. Then a Class One before starting your Ground school studies. Critically important.
There have been issues transferring German issued medical records to other States. No doubt someone can provide the latest state of play please.....
You mention feeling "depressed" over the last few years......are we talking about just feeling frustrated at not being able to start flying or something you have sort medical advice about?
As for the environment, you cannot make an omelette without breaking the eggs. New bio fuels are within sight.

Aged 28 make your decision soon, and get your old physics books out. Boyle Law, Charles Law. Remember ?

Last edited by parkfell; 7th Jan 2019 at 13:58.
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 17:27
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Originally Posted by parkfell View Post
There have been issues transferring German issued medical records to other States. No doubt someone can provide the latest state of play please.....
You mention feeling "depressed" over the last few years......are we talking about just feeling frustrated at not being able to start flying or something you have sort medical advice about?

This should not be the case if you get involved with them after July 2016.
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 17:34
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Ok thanks for all your input.

I know it hard work to get the license, but what I heard is, that it's not too difficult but just a lot. I think it's hard but when you enjoy learning what you read, it's shouldn't be that much of a problem. For what will I have an instructor, you can always ask, if something is not clear.

I think I'll go the following way. First apply for companies in Europe that pay for the training and as ATC. If I get rejected for both I do an apprenticeship as an aircraft mechanic or similar and save money for PPL and do the rest modular. It make no sense, to waste time with studying stuff you don't enjoy.

I think I don't have depression in that classical sense. I am suicidal or something like that. Just frustrated to not life as I want to. I think it's normal that you get frustrated if you restrict yourself to do things what you actually love for reasons like environment that you cannot really influence or change.

Medical is of course an important point, shoudn't be a problem I guess. I don't use glasses and go regularly to the gym.
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Old 7th Jan 2019, 17:55
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Originally Posted by Kejim View Post
Banana Joe makes a good point, do the PPL, then see how you feel about the flying (and the theory, the step up from PPL theory to the ATPL theory is a bit steep). When you have your PPL you know more about what it takes, and you open other options, eg. instructor ratings. I would also recommend looking at air traffic controller training, however some countries have age limits for applying, some don't.

The best of luck
German Age limits here are 24 if I remember correctly.

I've started my training just before turning 28 and decided to do it integrated and as quick as possible so I could focus completely on it. Although I've went to university before and got a few degrees that I could potentially fall back on if things went haywire. So while not everyone is fortunate enough to be able to just not make any money for 2 years and go to flying school full time it is important to put the numbers together and see what you could make / save while working your present job. In my case it would've even been alright to take the whole amount (Training + Living Expenses for roughly 24 months) from the bank with the interest rate they offered me in late 2017. Obviously this is quite the gamble and if you don't have a job or income to fall back on in case things don't work out as planned... well you'll have to figure that out yourself!

After all tho I'm not regretting getting into the field that I dreamed about so long and with the current situation looking quite alright things could definitely be worse. If you really want to do it there'd be the option of getting into Lufthansa as Cabin Crew as well, get to know what real commercial flying is really about (the PPL doesn't really show you any of that IMHO) and do some flying on the side and maybe the ATPL integrated after you got your PPL.
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Old 8th Jan 2019, 23:00
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Originally Posted by just2010 View Post
I think I don't have depression in that classical sense. I am suicidal or something like that. Just frustrated to not life as I want to. I think it's normal that you get frustrated if you restrict yourself to do things what you actually love for reasons like environment that you cannot really influence or change.
Did you mean to say you are **NOT** suicidal? Either way, perhaps it is best to see someone about this and see if you do need help in that area.

It can be hard to make a decision and it can be harder to finally make the jump. While waiting, however, save up as much as you can. Whether you decide to take up pilot training or not, a good financial health will help you regardless of what you decide to do in life. Good luck!
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Old 9th Jan 2019, 09:27
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I of course meant, I am NOT suicidal. I was in hurry and had to catch my bus.

Actually even writing here and talking about it helped me a lot. The last days changed for me, i am much more motivated again. What I was leaking is something that I can work towards to, I am passionate about.

I really need to do something, I even dream in my dreams flying airplanes!!
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Old 9th Jan 2019, 23:00
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I do like to err on the side of caution so I think seeking help and not needing it is better than not seeking help and ending up needing it. Not only does this benefit you (the person) but also your colleagues and passengers *wink!* However, I don't know anything at all how this would affect anything, but again, if you were a captain, would you be comfortable with the guy in the RHS who just hand-waves away seeking mental help?

As for the OP, even if you are not suicidal, have you had a talk with a professional? While they may not be able to help you with your pilot questions, I am sure they will be able to help you in other areas such as your conflict between the environment and your desire to fly big fuel guzzlers. At the very least, they can help clear your mind or be a sound board of your ideas and concerns. I agree that a dark period will likely clear, but I also know that seeking help will either make the dark period end quicker or make the dark period not as dark.... or do both! If talking/writing here is helping you, just imagine how a trained professional can help! Good luck!
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Old 10th Jan 2019, 08:07
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You need to be absolutely 100% certain you want to be a pilot. If in any doubt, forget it as you will either fail or be passed by those who have stronger desires. There are 1000s of qualified pilots out of work looking for a job. It’s not easy finding your first job and as soon as you mention your feelings or doubts about this, it will be “thanks, but no thanks” and “thank you for taking the interest in our company” Do you think any company is going to take a risk with anyone who has doubts about what they want to do in life. Do you think they want anyone who has doubts about their own desires to become a pilot.

If your not 100% sure, just do your PPL and fly for leisure
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Old 10th Jan 2019, 11:23
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Originally Posted by Black Pudding View Post
You need to be absolutely 100% certain you want to be a pilot. If in any doubt, forget it as you will either fail or be passed by those who have stronger desires. There are 1000s of qualified pilots out of work looking for a job. It’s not easy finding your first job and as soon as you mention your feelings or doubts about this, it will be “thanks, but no thanks” and “thank you for taking the interest in our company” Do you think any company is going to take a risk with anyone who has doubts about what they want to do in life. Do you think they want anyone who has doubts about their own desires to become a pilot.

If your not 100% sure, just do your PPL and fly for leisure
Well said.
It's hard but there is no room for negative thinking in any job assessment/interview let alone one for a pilot.
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Old 10th Jan 2019, 13:49
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Pretty good advice from all posters above. By the way, 30 is not too late to start an aviation career, I didn't get my PPL (FAA) until age 40, then continued on, step by step, to a professional career.
I understand your environmental concerns, I'm currently a corporate pilot, sometimes the trips we make seem utterly wasteful. But I have to add, the number one thing you (or anyone) could do to help the environment and reduce carbon footprint is Do Not Have Children! (Please don't take offence if you already have kids, they of course should be fully cherished and nurtured). (Not really aviation-related, but I couldn't resist).
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Old 10th Jan 2019, 21:17
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340drvr: I hope you're just kidding with children, right?

Thanks for your responses, I will think about going to a professional, just to make sure or hear what he has for solutions for my conflict that prevents me to start a career in aviation.

PS: Recently, I have researched if a Cessna would have a less negative impact on the environment and surprisingly it came out, there is no difference. If someone wants to fly because of passion I think gliders would be a pretty good compromise; as long as you don't use a Cessna to get into the air.
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Old 10th Jan 2019, 22:04
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If you are really concerned about the impact aircraft have on the environment and that bothers you so much, then you might need to find another career. If your concern for the environment is really serious, which is honourable, you risk not enjoying flying at all and that would be a huge waste of money.

Last edited by Banana Joe; 10th Jan 2019 at 22:26.
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