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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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Well I grew up in SoCal (Orange County, specifically) and I do not remember it being anything even close to fat-friendly. I was a chubby little 5th grader and I was tormented mercilessly by kids and parents alike. Absolutely not. No way. SoCal is disgusting.

Wow. Sorry to hear you had such bad experiences. I didn't really experience open fat hatred until I was older, most of it in LA. The stuff that I experienced in my hometown was a little more subtle, but there was definitely an undercurrent of intolerance for people with different body types, and moreso for people who don't have 'fun,' outgoing personalities. Being a beach community, most of the people in my hometown enjoy the beach, outdoors, hiking, surfing, etc. As a morose little kid with an interest in reading, film and 'weird' music, I had a hard time fitting in with the prevailing attitude of sunshine, fun and outgoing personalities.

I mean, I'm a fat queer vegan anarchist indie kid. And I was always this way. So me and SoCal didn't mesh well. But my weight was always targeted, way more than the queer and anarchist leanings I was exhibiting even at the age of 12.

Ah, yeah. Not to harsh on OC, but I'd say that's not the best place to grow up as a queer, arnarchist vegan. But the fat hate...whew. I didn't know it was so bad there.

i think it really depends on your experience. i'm from the thick of OC (mission viejo) and the worst fat prejudice i experienced was in my own home. true, some kids at school could be assholes, too, but isn't that true of everywhere when you're young? when i got older, OC was much easier to handle--especially with some newfound confidence by my side...

anyway, i live in arlington, va--right outside of d.c. it's extremely fat positive here, but the snow this year (though rare!) might not be your bag. is your deal with snow that you don't think you could handle it? you do learn to layer, and even to enjoy the cold wind on your cheeks :) you never know.

I have a circulatory issue called Reynod's Syndrome. My capillaries are very tiny, making it hard for blood to circulate when I'm in cold weather. It causes my joints to ache, and particularly my hands. They turn purple and hurt in extreme temps. I can't do snow.

100% agree, unfortunately. I was born and raised in Torrance, CA (near LA), and couldn't wait to get out of there. I moved to the Washington, DC area as soon as I finished college. I have been in DC now for 13 years and LOVE IT!

I live in the Torrance area. Not Torrance specifically, but near it.

I grew up across the street from North High School, and then moved over by Torrance High School.

DC would be too cold for you (currently, we are in the 30s during the day), but it is a great city. The best part? You can live in Northern VA (like I do), and have the "small town" feeling without being far from the city.

Well I think it was bad experience because it was OC, all I hear about OC is how shallow & materialistic people are, I live in LA county and thats the impression I had all my life, I feel it even from just visiting & going shopping in OC. Although I can't say I have felt full on acceptance in LA, I do enjoy living in LA and have noticed being more comfortable and confident in my self has made it easier to deal.

I grew up in OC (and still live there) and I had a hard time of it, too.

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