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fat-friendly cities and towns?
thirtiesgirl wrote in fatshionista
Hi fats. I come to you with a question. Based on your experiences, what places, cities, towns do you consider fat-friendly?
By "fat-friendly," I mean the town or city has a fat community with some knowledge of and experience with fat acceptance and health at every size; the dating scene is generally good for fats; and there's an overall friendliness and not much negativity towards fats from people of every size, gender and ethnicity. ...Or am I asking for a tall order, here?

I've lived all my life in Southern California, growing up in a touristy beach community, where beach bunny bodies were the norm. I've lived in Los Angeles for the past 12 years, where I moved to ostensibly start a new life that included a romantic partner, good friends, a job I loved and a neighborhood I was fond of. I've managed to find a few of those things in LA, but it's been a real struggle. For the past several years, I've been considering finding a new place to call home. I'm just not sure where that might be, so I'm asking for your knowledge and experiences to help develop my search.

I should mention a few things: I don't do well with cold winter weather when it drops below 40 degrees farenheit (meaning, very little to no snow). If I could handle snow and cold, windy temps, Chicago would be my go-to city. A fat friend of mine from LA moved to Chicago several years ago and couldn't say enough about the cute men who frequently hit on her and the general attitude difference she experienced, in comparison to LA. But sadly, I have circulation issues, so temps below 40 degrees in winter are not good for me.

I'm also not good with extreme heat or humidity; extreme to me meaning any temps over 105 degrees farenheit. I lived for several years in the San Fernando Valley where it can get as hot as 108 degrees in summer, which is a wee bit too hot for me, but just barely manageable. Thank goodness for A/C.

Places I've considered living include Portland, OR; Austin, TX; and Sacramento, CA. Portland is now off the list because it's apparently extremely difficult to find jobs in education there, especially if you're moving from out of state. I work in education, so that's not good for me. Sacramento's still on my list as a potential city for me to check out if I want to stay in California, but I know next to nothing about it. Same with Austin, aside from the great music scene there.

So now that I've given you my list of nearly impossible to meet standards (big surprise), what do you say? What cities and towns do you consider fat-friendly?

Thanks for reading.


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Heh, yeah. I do look kind of Hispanic. The Mexican and South American kids I work with at school always ask me if I am. I once had an older Hispanic couple approach me in the drugstore to ask a question about cold medicine because they thought I spoke Spanish. (Having worked for LAUSD for 10 years, I do know some Spanish phrases, but most of them involve curse words.) ...Then again, the Armenian kids think I look Armenian, and I sometimes get asked if I'm from the middle east by the Persian kids.

That's an interesting comparison between San Diego and LA, though. I'd agree that LA is the more culturally diverse city, but I had no idea there was that slightly polarizing factor in SD. Sorry to hear that.

yeah, you look ambiguous now that i think about it, beautiful nonetheless

i'm from inglewood, so you know it's predom mexican and blacks. while in san diego, there's black folks in some neighborhoods, but it's not saturated nor big as LA's. san diego is a military city, so keep that in mind.

Yeah, I know. The summer before my senior year of high school, I spent a month & a half in San Diego...going to a weight loss camp, of all things. At the time, I thought it was what I wanted to do and my mom was willing to pay for it, so I went. The 'camp' had outings in the city every week, so I got to see some parts of San Diego, including the naval harbor, while I was there.

Was it a fat camp in La Jolla, by any chance? I remember when I was younger seeing ads in the back of teeny-bopper magazines advertising for the fat camp there, and really wanting to go--thank god we didn't have the money for it!

Anyway, I know I'm kind of late to this conversation but I just have to say that, in my experience, San Diego is WAAAAAAAAAY more fat-friendly than the city I grew upin (Seattle). I was reminded of that when I went home over the holidays. When I go out with my girlfriend in San Diego, guys buy me drinks. When I go out with my girlfriends in Seattle, this is never the case. Then again, I haven't tried dating in San Diego because I'm in a relationship, but given what I've seen, people are definitely more fat-pos here than in Seattle.

Plus, the sun is always out... but the job market sucks pretty badly.

Anyway, good luck in your search!

Which I find interesting because Seattle's supposed to be such an 'alternative-friendly' community, in general, so you'd think they'd have some respect for the fats. The funny thing about some of these supposedly 'hipster' cities in the PNW (and also San Francisco) is that the same old preconceptions seem to exist underneath the 'hipster'/alterna-vibe. It doesn't help that there are a lot of outdoorsy people who live in these areas. Not that I have anything against hiking, camping, mountain biking, etc, it's just not my bag. But I've found that some of these people into the outdoorsy stuff come with a lot of preconceived notions attached regarding fat and health, even if they spend their days designing software, hanging out at the coffee house and going to Weezer gigs on the weekends.

Ha! I totally went to that fat camp!

Oh, forgot to add: the fat camp was on the campus of USD, the Catholic one. We used their campus dorms, kitchens, track and swimming pool for daily activities, and sometimes had afternoon and weekend outings to other places in SD. The real reason I agreed to go to fat camp in SD was so that I could listen to 91X, the 'alternative' radio station that was popular at the time. I loved being able to listen to Siouxsie, the Clash, Echo & the Bunnymen on a regular basis all the time. I spent so much money on batteries for my Walkman that summer (1986).

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