"My husband wants to fly, and I say no way. It makes me very nervous and very uncomfortable. I'm not OK with it," says Lisa, who has been married to Erik for 12 years. Although she was supportive of Erik's passion when they got married, now that they have three young boys, she would like him to give it up. "I look at Erik's flying as a very dangerous hobby. I don't want to be left alone to raise three kids on my own."
"There are a number of hobbies I've decided to forgo for the sake of the family. Flying is the one thing that I have the hardest time
saying, 'I'm just not going to do that anymore,'" says Erik. "Flying is absolutely the passion among passions for me. My wife perceives flying as a very dangerous use of my time. I, however, feel like it's perfectly safe." He points out that more people die every year from traffic accidents than do in small planes. "I wouldn't go bungee jumping. I w
ouldn't go skydiving. I wouldn't do that and unnecessarily put my life in danger."
Lisa recognizes that flying is a big part of Erik's family life. His father and grandfather are pilots. "I try to be supportive of his hobbies, but this particular hobby is life-threatening," she says.
"I probably should recuse myself here, because I've been a pilot since I was 16," Dr. Phil tells Lisa and Erik.
"I know that this is important to Erik," Lisa says. "It scares me. It's not something that I grew up with, so it's not as familiar to me."
Dr. Phil assures Lisa that in small planes you can glide for miles if something goes wrong. "It really is not that dangerous," he says. He also points out, "You don't want to ask somebody to stop being who they are because they're part of a couple."
Dr. Phil tells Lisa and Erik that he sides with Erik. "Once you had children, did you start flying differently and thinking a little differently?" he asks Erik.
"Absolutely, I did," Erik says.
Dr. Phil says that he went through that as well. "Once I had my first child, I really started flying differently," he says.
Dr. Phil shares footage of his once-in-a-lifetime experience of flying with the Blue Angels. "The plane that Dr. Phil and I are going to fly in this afternoon will do one-and-a-half times the speed of sound," says a Blue Angels pilot. "We're going to basically stand the jet on its tail and climb to an altitude of about 6,000 feet."
"That thing takes off like a rocket," Dr. Phil says.
Dr. Phil addresses Robin. "How do you feel about me flying all the time?" he asks.
"I totally support you flying because I know that it is a true passion, and I have total trust in his ability. I know that he has done everything he needs to do to learn to fly safely," Robin says. "When I'm with him in the airplane, I feel safer flying with him than I do any other pilot."
Dr. Phil reveals that on their first date, he took Robin flying.
"We were first dating, and I had just gotten my license, and we went flying a few times, and it was an absolute thrill for her," Erik says.
"It was," Lisa agrees. "I think your perspective changes when you have kids."
Dr. Phil assures Lisa that Erik is not being a reckless pilot, and he is flying a safe and forgiving airplane. "Take a deep breath," he suggests.