Bring Your Body Positivity to Life
Author: Amy Pence-Brown
I started the Boise Rad Fat Collective as a small private Facebook group four-and-a-half years ago when I needed a safe space on the Internet to share body positive links, news articles, and personal struggles and triumphs with like-minded people. I’d been a body image activist for a few years already at that point and had earned myself one vile Twitter troll and lost many other friends due to my standing up to bigotry about bodies and fatphobia on Facebook. I kept the rules simple and strong and they remain today: you don’t have to be fat or live in Idaho to join in, but you do have to be open-minded, post positive, and check your privilege and diet talk/intentional weight loss ideas at the door. We’ve grown now to nearly 2,000 folks of all genders, nationalities, sizes, religions, abilities, and political persuasions from all over the world and it remains one of the most amazing and uplifting spaces on the Internet. We challenge, grow, share and inspire on a daily basis.
I find that while the Internet can provide community in extraordinary ways, meeting face to face in real life is also important, so we organize opportunities for body positivity group activities nearly every month. We get together for fun things like “chunky dunks” at the local hot springs pools, our “Radical Reads” feminist book club, plus-sized fashion shows at our local plus-sized consignment shop, and pinup photo shoots with cake – to more educational things like RADCAMP: A Body Positive Boot Camp For Feminists each summer in the mountains and speaking out on body liberation at our annual civil rights march. While we may start out as strangers, the community of acceptance and love and positivity both in our online forum and at our real-life events bring has been integral in growing body positivity for all our members. It’s also given us the personal power and tools to speak out bravely on the Internet and in real life in the name of radical acceptance and love.
To join the Boise Rad Fat Collective: www.facebook.com/groups/boiseradfatcollective
Photography Credits: Conspire Photography