my mum is terrified of flying and takes beta blockers when she flies. She says that this helps her alot. Also there are courses run at airports for phobics, I saw these on tv but im sure if you google it you will find them. Best of luck!
granary, I have a terrible fear of flying and haven't really found the answer! My parents also live abroad and I live in fear of them getting ill.
You can go to the doctors and they might give you betablockers (which stop your heart racing when you get nervous) or some diazepam which is an anti-anxiety pill (valium). The beta blockers did nothing for me and all the valium did was make me slightly sleepy so I still felt terrified but tired at the same time!
If you aren't travelling with the kids, then I would ask the doc for a sleeping tablet to just knock yourself out. If you're going with the kids, plan LOADS of activities (games etc.) to keep your mind off the actual flight. The Allan Carr book is a good idea as well.
Once when dd was 4 months and the second time when dd was 2 and ds was 1. I was terrified both times. The first time was OK as the plane wasn't packed and dh and I had a row to ourselves.
The second time was the worst flight in living memory. Ds screamed the whole way there and the whole way back - and it's a 12 hour flight. He never gave up once, woke up all the other kids and in fact, the flight back so terrified my husband (not scared of anything!) that we went to the chemist in South Africa and begged them for something to dope ds. They gave us something but it only worked for 2 hours and then he started screaming again (for the next 10hours!!). I think it must have hurt his ears because the minute we landed, he stopped.
I have not been on a plane since then and dh has refused to fly with the kids till they are older (this was 2 years ago!). In a way, I was so distracted with ds that I couldn't be frightened (I was so worried about him) but it was still awful.
The less you fly the worse it gets. When I was working, I travelled all the time for my job and the fear gradually disappeared. Just think to yourself, if you flew everyday like you drive everyday, you stop getting frightened of it. I know how difficult it is though.