There's a conversation that goes around every now and again in the Fatosphere. It usually starts with the question of the other F/A; Fat Admirers. Unfortunately, it also tends to swerve into one of the other contentious regions of Fat Acceptance; Fat as a Gendered Issue and things usually get pretty messy from there. Still, the conversation has merit and a little mess never hurt anybody.
Fat Admirers have been around for a long time. Probably longer than either Fat Acceptance or Fat Activism and, thought it's not generally acknowledged, there are also women who prefer there partners fat. FFA or Female Fat Admirers is the generally accepted term but, again, we don't seem to ever hear too much about them. At most, if a woman fits a more mainstream archetype of what's considered 'beautiful' and her male partner is fat, we'll often hear 'What's she doing with him?' But if the man looks like Brad Pitt and his partner is fat? Well, he's a freak. Both are ridiculous conceits and, unfortunately, common ones as far as mainstream sensibilities are concerned. After all, every important avenue of information that we rely on to tell us how we should live our lives, the fashion and beauty industries, television, movies -hell, media in general- inform us that fat people are undesirable, unhealthy, and flat-out disgusting. So, of course, anyone who would choose them over 'beautiful' people are strange at best or just plain defective. What tends to smack my gob pretty silly is realizing that this might actually be an improvement over the previous school of thought. At one time Fat Admirers where equated with feeders and gainers. And, since these previously unheard of fetishes where so way-out, so off-the-charts weird, it had to be the only reason a man would be attracted to a fat woman. It's taken quite some time to dissuade people of this ludicrous assumption but, considering the cyclic nature of stupid folk lore, it may end up rearing it's knotted head again.
Are there any answers? It's a complicated issue with quite a few significant mitigating factors. Fetish Trolls exist, they're rampant, and they don't have hazard strips tattooed on their foreheads. Like the opportunistic predators they most resemble they stalk social gatherings, dances, and dating networks looking for the inexperienced, the trusting, wounded individuals, or anyone they feel they can exploit and then use all manner of strategy to influence, manipulate, and use people to get what they want. Walking or slithering away after completely destroying what should be an affirming or at the very least, hopeful, experience for the people they exploit. Or making, even those who DO manage to connect later on in their lives, suspicious or uneasy in relationships that should be supporting and happy. But then concern for others is not really the point for a predator. That has nothing to do with what they want and is therefore irrelevant.
Maybe there won't be any answers until the world changes how it sees, or is persuaded to see better. However, we should know better. We constantly talk about being stereotyped as binge eating couch potato's and yet unattached men who profess an attraction to fat women are often assumed to be weird. It is EXTREMELY frustrating to know that Fat Admirers, people with a preference, are still sometimes viewed by 'our own' as vaguely creepy.
Radio Head / Packt Like Sardines in A Crushd Tin Box