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Old 02-03-2013, 04:14 PM   #1
1000HappyWishes
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Should we get the GAC?

Hello all

In a couple months I will be taking a trip to Florida with my choir, who my best friend happens to be in and going along with. She has a few sensory problems. If you didn't know her, you wouldn't know she had them unless she were to tell you. However, if she gets so overloaded (I have seen this happen twice) she starts having random panic attacks. I'm concerned that at a place like Disney, she'll easily have these problems, and I don't want them to get in the way of her enjoying the trip. So, my question is, should I bring up the option to her of getting the GAC? I've already spoken with my choir director about it, and he said that if that's what we need to do, then that's what we need to do.

Thank you!
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Old 02-03-2013, 06:28 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1000HappyWishes View Post
Hello all
So, my question is, should I bring up the option to her of getting the GAC? I've already spoken with my choir director about it, and he said that if that's what we need to do, then that's what we need to do.

Thank you!
Sounds as if you already have an answer
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Old 02-03-2013, 07:02 PM   #3
Cheshire Figment
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The key question is "what are her needs?" And can these needs be met with a GAC.

If you click on where it says "disABILTIES" at the top of this page it will take you to the Index. One of the top items is the "disABILTIES FAQ" which will gives lots of useful information, including in Post #5 which has some GAC information.

Or, if you want an easier route to the FAQs, click on the link in my signature.
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:39 AM   #4
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I think that your friend needs to be the one to make this decision, not you and not your choir director. She knows what she can handle and what she can't handle. Some things she will need to consider is just what kinds of sensory inputs cause her problems and what does she normally do to avoid sensory overload? What problems will she forsee experiencing at WDW? Knowing this kind of information makes it much easier to offer advice or even for her to talk to Guest Relations to determine if she can benefit from a GAC. Something to keep in mind is that with a GAC she will be separated from the group (she can bring up to 5 people with her but if you're a big group then any time she uses the GAC she and a few others will be directed elsewhere). Some people do not want to stand out and do not want others knowing about their issues. IMO this is the biggest reason why this needs to be her decision. She may already have some coping strategies figured out. As a friend, sit down with her and discuss your concerns for her and ask her what she wants to do.
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Old 02-04-2013, 03:45 PM   #5
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I also get sensory overload. The dark rides at Disney (Peter Pan, Pirates, etc) are actually great, they're like a break from the parks. Some restaurants like Columbia Harbor House are more calm. I would avoid character buffets! Splitting off from the large group might be helpful at times. Choosing less crowded parks for each day is helpful. If she does get a panic attack, there are cubicles in first aid to rest in. If you end up in first aid, that's a pretty reliable sign that a GAC was needed!
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Old 02-04-2013, 06:42 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clanmcculloch View Post
I think that your friend needs to be the one to make this decision, not you and not your choir director. She knows what she can handle and what she can't handle. Some things she will need to consider is just what kinds of sensory inputs cause her problems and what does she normally do to avoid sensory overload? What problems will she forsee experiencing at WDW? Knowing this kind of information makes it much easier to offer advice or even for her to talk to Guest Relations to determine if she can benefit from a GAC. Something to keep in mind is that with a GAC she will be separated from the group (she can bring up to 5 people with her but if you're a big group then any time she uses the GAC she and a few others will be directed elsewhere). Some people do not want to stand out and do not want others knowing about their issues. IMO this is the biggest reason why this needs to be her decision. She may already have some coping strategies figured out. As a friend, sit down with her and discuss your concerns for her and ask her what she wants to do.

You and the choir director need to just stay out of the situation. I'm assuming this is either a teen or a young adult and I'm sure she knows far more about her issues than you, and I'm sure that your "help" is probably unneeded and unwanted at this point.
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:27 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clanmcculloch
I think that your friend needs to be the one to make this decision, not you and not your choir director. She knows what she can handle and what she can't handle. Some things she will need to consider is just what kinds of sensory inputs cause her problems and what does she normally do to avoid sensory overload? What problems will she forsee experiencing at WDW? Knowing this kind of information makes it much easier to offer advice or even for her to talk to Guest Relations to determine if she can benefit from a GAC. Something to keep in mind is that with a GAC she will be separated from the group (she can bring up to 5 people with her but if you're a big group then any time she uses the GAC she and a few others will be directed elsewhere). Some people do not want to stand out and do not want others knowing about their issues. IMO this is the biggest reason why this needs to be her decision. She may already have some coping strategies figured out. As a friend, sit down with her and discuss your concerns for her and ask her what she wants to do.
I agree. It doesn't hurt to share info with her and just let her know the options out there. She might not know about the GAC.
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Old 02-04-2013, 09:59 PM   #8
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And, as was kind of already brought up, it's possible her triggers won't be nothing in the lines, but actually inside of attractions. She may want or need o find out information about individual attractions to decide if she even wants to try something. One good way o do this is by watching YouTube videos of different attractions.
It may also be helpful for her to know that all the thrill rides have a chicken exit, so someone can go thru the line and will be able to exit if they decide not to ride. This is for any traction with a warning - if you don't see an exit sign, ask a CM and they will tell you how to get out.

There is no exit once a moving attraction has begun to move, but it is possible to leave non moving theaters at any time during the show. The exit signs are well marked and are usually at the end of the row opposite from where guests entered.
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