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LargeInCharge Magazine - Eight Years & Going Strong!

 Issue#97- April 2012

Welcome to LargeInCharge Magazine

In this Issue of L.I.C.

 

 

Raqui-ism

Words of Wisdom from the Heart & Mind of Raqui

 

Good 4 U Food  ~ Xander

 

The Big GB My Gastric Bypass Memoirs 

Soyna Bennett and Angie Bee

 

From the Desk of NAAFA

National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance

 

Fashion & Products with The WebGirl ~ Lucia Roth

 

Fattitude - Its a Fat way of Life ~ Pat Llewellyn

 

The BIG - Beautiful Inspirational Girl  ~ Ms Suga

 

Big Girl, Small World - Gabriela Falarz

 

Dating Survival for Today's Woman

Kathy Hernandez

 

The Observer - Jness

 

LargeInChargeDating - Dating for the Large People who are going to be in Charge of their Love Lives!

 

LargeInCharge Friends - The Place for Big People to make Friends and maybe MUCH MORE!

 
Elite Plus!
Uniting Big Girls,
Taking over the World... One Curve at a time.

Elite Plus

By: Raqui

 

Featured Interview

LargeInCharge.com: What is your name?

Hi. My name is TroJah Irby-Morgan

 

LargeInCharge.com: Where are you from and what is your current Location?

I'm from Newark, NJ and currently I reside in the Oranges still right here in Essex County, NJ.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Do you consider yourself a BHM, BBW, SSBBW, SSBHM or a supporter of size?

I'm not even sure if I know the meaning of all of those acronyms. Must we always label ourselves? I guess if I had to choose it would be BBW!

 

LargeInCharge.com: Who is the owner of your organization... do you have any partners?

I am the Founder/President. I also have a team of women who are my board of Directors...my Vice President is Felecia Crute (who also happens to be my loving mother), Techla Nesbitt My Director of Model Services (coaching, recruiting, etc.), Lauren Boonstra Secretary and President of Miniature Elites(our youth division) division. We are currently in the process of interviewing other women to build our team in NJ, NY, and PA.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Tell us about your organization?

Elite Plus is and is still constructing a strong team of women who has a passion for helping and encouraging other plus size women who struggle with confidence issues, and learning how to truly love and accept themselves. We do this by simply providing the platform to celebrate who we are as curvy women. This would be through the occasional social event, workshops, as well as through the fabulous culture of fashion (be it fashion shows, photo-shoots, online blogging, magazine/newsletters etc.) and even arts & music. I want to provide women resources to assist them in everyday life issues as well as reach their lifelong dreams.

 

What will set us apart from other “big girl groups” is our service. I want to be fully dedicated to providing a service to these women. What will also set us apart is our aim to provide younger girls of size with the necessary tools to know(be aware) their bodies, understand, embrace, love, and celebrate their bodies. We are developing programs and workshops that cater to them that will help build their confidence and self esteem and also teach them simple things like choosing the proper clothes for their body types, shopping for the correct bra size, and even staying active and making healthier food choices etc.

 

LargeInCharge.com: How did your organization get its name and what is your mission?

When choosing a name I knew I did not want a name that was "common" or had the words "big girls" in it. I wanted something classy and catchy. A name that I could see in magazines, on a store front, and on the back on a pair of jeans! When I decided to create this organization I knew I did not want any and EVERY big girl on my team. I strive for the best and therefore I want to be in the company of the best. Since my main goal was to be of service to other women "the best" still wasn't good enough. I wanted a team of women who were "the best of the best" the "crem de le crem" of the plus community, and what better word to choose then "Elite".  When you think "Elite" you think "top notch", "high class", "the best", "exclusive". And all of THAT is what I aim to be. And since I am catering to the plus community it only seemed right to add the word PLUS at the end. We are the BEST of the PLUS community and we strive to help other women and young girls believe that they are the best too!

 

 

LargeInCharge.com: How did you get the idea for your org. how did it all begin?

I always knew I wanted to start something, but I had no idea what, when, or how...but I knew the WHY. I knew I had to create something to cater towards women like myself who sometimes felt out of place and alone. I felt like I was the only one in the world who was fat and dealing with insecurities. Aside from helping plus size women MUSIC is my deepest passion. Growing up that was my scapegoat. It seemed like having a gifted voice set me apart from the other "big girls". I was always known as "the big girl with the pretty face who can saaannngg". I went to a performing arts high school so I had after school activities I could indulge in and feel a part of. But as I grew older I wondered what happened to those big girls who didn't have a performing talent? They still needed a place to belong. They need a group of friends to share secrets with, go shopping with, and relate to. So one night my husband and I were talking. I don't remember about what exactly but he suggested I should start a group that caters to plus size women. I agreed but neither of us was sure of how this could be done. He asked me simple questions like what would I want to do with this group of women or girls and how could I help them if I still had insecurities myself. That was a good question. But it didn't take me long to realize that not only was I going to create this organization for them, I was creating it for myself FIRST. I had to think back to what I would have wanted out of an organization and what my current dreams and goals are as an adult. The bottom line was I wanted to fill a void. There are plenty of other "big girl groups" out there claiming to empower and encourage but it begins with their twitter accounts and END with their twitter accounts. Or they I'm about action. Going to the streets,

 

 

LargeInCharge.com: Does your organization have a motto or slogan; and what does it mean?

Our motto is “Uniting Big Girls, Taking Over the World…One Curve at a time.” It simply means we want to unite and bring together the curvy women in our communities and all over the world. We are hated on and discriminated against enough. It’s about time we come together and show the world we are NOT the minority…we are the MAJORITY. It’s not going to be easy therefore we are taking over the world one curve (woman) at a time.

 

LargeInCharge.com: How long have you been in active?

Since April 2009. And in July 2011 we re-launched.

 

LargeInCharge.com: What made you decide to cater to plus sized people?

That’s an easy one. I relate to the plus community. I AM a plus sized woman and proud of it. I know I have a story that other curvy women can relate too and learn from. And vice versa because the fact of the matter is…I don’t know everything. I’m still learning. It was only right to cater to my people.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Do you hold any events, seminars, activities?

Our goal to empower and encourage women will be accomplished through celebrating who we are as curvy women. Holding events, workshops, and other activities is the platform from which Elite Plus stands.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Are you currently expanding?

Most definitely, We are still building our team of women and searching for curvy and confident women in the NJ, NY, and PA areas. We even have a couple of virtual members in California.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Has your organization been showcased on Television or in Print?

Yes. I participated in a cable network show called Spotlight on Girls and the premises of that show was all about body image issues and what people are doing about changing society’s views on plus size women and young girls. I’ve also been interviewed and featured on a number of websites like Daily Venus Diva Magazine, HarlemDiva Blogsite, PlusSizeDiva.com, and a couple of other online sites. 

 

LargeInCharge.com: Was the site an automatic success or did it take time to kick off?

It’s still “kicking off”. Because it’s not an “interactive” site people normally visit it for more info about the organization and check out our latest photo-shoots.

 

LargeInCharge.com: What has been the response to your efforts in the community?

Everyone loves it. Even guys are like “where is Elite Plus for men?” They are elated to have an organization catering to curvy women and young girls that actually educates and do positive things without exploiting them. They are eagerly waiting our next move and I am eager to give it to them. These things take time as we want to do it the right way ya know.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Have you receive positive or negative feedback from the Plus Sized Community?

For the most part I’ve received nothing but positive feedback from the plus community. I mean, you have those groups who consider you “competition” and claim to support you but you later on you find out they are hating too. But all is fair in love and war. I’m not even thinking about that. The first part of my motto is “UNITING BIG GIRLS” so I don’t focus on the negative. I’m staying true to my hearts desires, which is to see us as a plus community evolve. 

 

LargeInCharge.com: Name some companies/organizations you admire?

Hmmmm….I don’t know if there are “companies” I admire but there are a few people in the industry I admire. One person in this industry I admire is Gwen DeVoe. Her story of once being a model and not being able to advance in that industry and turning her passion for modeling into a business by education and consulting and giving events is pure GENIUS! She had an “if I can’t get an opportunity, I’m going to make one” attitude and THAT is my personal motto. I’m not going to be everyone’s “type” and opportunities aren’t going to always knock at my door so I’ll work hard at making my own opportunities. Others in this industry I admire are Maddy Figueroa (Editor-in-Chief of Plus Model Mag), our angle in heaven Mia Amber(plus SUPERmodel) who’s story is also amazing, and Mike of Bigger and Better Thangs. To me he is the epitome of building your own brand. He’s been successful at what he does for years and that’s what I strive to obtain...longevity. On another level I most admire Queen Latifah because she comes from the very community I come from and she never allowed her personal tragedies nor what the media had to say about her curvaceous body stop her from succeeding in every aspect of entertainment!

 

LargeInCharge.com: Who are some of the people/companies/organizations you work with?

Well in the past I've worked with “Virtuous Women Ministries”, Mike of “BBT”, “Gwen DeVoe” has even been a speaker at one of our events, “Eddy Gee” (a plus model & radio personality & half of the new online boutique EDDY & BRI), Crystal Carmen (MUA and creator of Pink Stiletto Cosmetics), Jeannie Ferguson was also a speaker at our last event (a noted plus model & part of a force behind Manik Mag & BGU), “Shanda Freeman” (vlogger, co-star of MTVs Man & Wife show, Fashion guru). Just to name a few. And we have much more in store this year!

 

LargeInCharge.com: What are the most important elements to running a successful Online organization that caters to the Larger than Life Person?

What comes to mind is something my mom has embedded in me, being able to remain relatable, teachable, and inspired. You have to always remain relatable to the community you are serving. Never think you’ve “made it” or gotten to a certain level to where you don’t struggle with the same issues or insecurities as everyone else. Also you have to remember that you don’t know everything. I don’t care how long you’ve been in the business or how much you’ve accomplished; there is ALWAYS room for growth. And staying inspired is a given. Something has to drive you and keep that passion strong and flowing. The moment you become uninspired is the moment you lose the people and you lose sight of your vision. Stay in tune with what’s going on around you and never be afraid to give of yourself. You never know how your story may inspire someone else and vice versa.

 

 

LargeInCharge.com: We hear that you have a children’s division to your organization?

I do. We are rebuilding our youth division which is called is called Miniature Elites. As I mentioned before we want to provide younger girls of size with the necessary tools to know (be aware) their bodies, understand, embrace, love, and celebrate their bodies. We are developing programs and workshops that cater to them that will help build their confidence and self-esteem and also teach them simple things like choosing the proper clothes for their body types, shopping for the correct bra size, and even staying active and making healthier food choices etc.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Do you find it easier or harder working with children or adults?

Hmmm. They both have their challenges and they both have their highlights. When working with children they tend to depend on you a lot more and look to you for all sorts of things. I enjoy that responsibility but it can also be hard to deal with. It’s a little harder to deal with the adults because they are very set in their ways and sometimes not willing to adapt to change or share their feelings. But I find that once the adults realize that they are not alone in dealing with certain insecurities they become more willing to share their experiences.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Are there any special requirements that you must consider when working with children of size?

No special requirements. We simply interview each girl and their parent to find out the initial reason for wanting to join an organization such as ours and what would they expect to gain from us. We are all about servicing them so the only requirement we request from them is commitment. Give us all you've got because we are certainly giving our all.  

 

LargeInCharge.com: Do you work with plus sized parents and their children?

We most certainly can. We haven’t come across that situation yet, but we are more than happy to assist any person of size looking for help.

 

LargeInCharge.com: How has the internet helped your org?

We all know technology makes the world go round. Social media is arguably the best type of advertising, and its free. The internet is an easy way to reach thousands of people in record time and they have the power to view what they want whenever they want. 

 

LargeInCharge.com: What can the readers at LargeInCharge do to help support your business?

Providing a platform for advertising is always helpful to our organization. Right now we are really working on membership for both divisions so spreading the word about that is most important at this time. I appreciate this opportunity. Thank you so much.

 
 
 

Thank you for Reading The LargeInCharge Feature

 

 

  Sicilia Curves!

 

 

Cover Model Interview

 

LargeInCharge.com: What is your name?

Sicilia Curves

 

LargeInCharge.com: Where are you from and what is your current Location?

I am a California girl

 

LargeInCharge.com: Can you give us some information about yourself (Age, Height, Size, Nationality, Marital Status, Children, etc.)? 

I have been a plus model for over 6 years now and I love it! I am 29, 5'6" 370lbs, size 32, Sicilian-American, single, no kids.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Were you a big child, or did you gain weight later in life?

I was a large child growing up.

 

LargeInCharge.com: (If you were a big child) how did you feel growing up as a large child?

Growing up, I never thought of myself as any different until the teasing and name calling started in school. Then later on I got the comments about my weight from my family and my pediatrician. My parents even tried to put me on diets at the advice from my doctor ( can you believe that, a CHILD on a diet?!), which obviously never worked. I never understood why being overweight as a kid was such a big deal, it didn't make me different on the inside.

 

LargeInCharge.com: (If you gained weight later in life) what caused you to gain weight and how did you feel about it?

I have gained more weight over the years, in the past two years I became my biggest. My health began to decline, so I began making better food choices recently and some physical activity. I believe in health at all sizes. I have lost a few pounds in the last few months as a result, but I'll never be "skinny" because my body isn't built to be. My goal is optimal health and mobility right now.

 

LargeInCharge.com: What made you decide to enter the LargeInCharge model search? 

I kept telling Raqui that I was interested in the exposure, but I never thought my pics were good enough, so finally I took a chance.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Did you find it a hard journey to be accepted by others at your size?

It's an ongoing difficult journey. I was in nursing school at one time and an instructor pulled me aside and basically said that I was too fat to be a nurse! I couldn't sue the school because weight is not a protected category under the law! Unfortunately size-ism is alive and well. I even went on dating sites only to get some nasty emails. It's always going to be a hard journey as long as the weight stigma is there.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Do you find it a hard to accept yourself as a Plus Sized Person?

I accept myself as is-flaws and all, big or small! As long as I am healthy I will be a happy camper no matter my size. The number on the scale doesn't define me at all. I still don't see myself as different from anybody else on the inside. Look and none of us will because size doesn't matter. Being a good happy person does.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Do you find acceptance among your family and friends?

I keep very open minded friends, I guess because I am a very open minded woman, so they accept me with no problem. My family however have their rude remarks sometimes, but you just have to consider the source. Some people are still going to talk even though they have no room to! Furthermore, I have found a GREAT network of friends within the BBW community that I am so glad I have found and am a part of!

 

LargeInCharge.com: What would you say inspires you most in life?

Music. I am constantly listening to music, it's what motivates me. I love dance music that is upbeat, it helps me be upbeat and when I am upbeat I feel I can conquer a lot!

 

LargeInCharge.com: What is your primary occupation?

I am actually a certified medical assistant, but right now I am a full time model.

 

LargeInCharge.com: How did you get into this line of work?

For medical assisting, I loved the medical field-I was premed at one point, but that didn't work out, but I stayed in the industry. For modeling I just did my research on plus modeling and networked online with some outstanding people in the BBW community! I always did modeling contests and submitted pics and then one day BODacious Magazine called...I was flown to LA and before you know it, issue 5 was on newsstands. It was then things took off and I did more print and even web work.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Do you find acceptance in the work force?

I tried to go back to school for nursing, but then there was that incident with the instructor telling me I was too fat! I think there is a lot of size-ism in that industry because people automatically think you are unhealthy if you are overweight, which isn't quite true. I'm for health at every size! Now for modeling, you have to have a thick skin because you can be anywhere from too short, too flabby, too fat, butt too big, etc., etc...it's very competitive because if you don't have the right look for the job, the job goes to someone else who they think does. However, I find myself amazed and blessed with many fans who accept me for who I am and love my work and to me that's the acceptance that matters when it comes to my modeling.

 

LargeInCharge.com: What changes do you believe should take place for Large People in the work force?

I don't think anything will change in the medical field until EVERYONE ACCEPTS that you can be healthy at any size. As far as modeling, the mainstream industry needs to accept that the average woman is a size 14. A lot of times, actually all the time, in catalogs the girls selling the plus size clothing are like a size 8! Let me see that outfit on a real size 32! Employ more supersized models! I don't see why not!

 

LargeInCharge.com: What do you think about the fashion industry for big sized clothing?

I'm tired of seeing tents and mumus for supersized women! We like style just as much as the non plus sized woman does! However, I have been seeing a "movement" of many plus size fashion bloggers and small shops and designers coming out with some real style for our sizes! I think so far it has come a long way than what it used to be and we do have more choices than we once did! But we still need more!

 

LargeInCharge.com: What do you wish to see change with the fashion industry?

More supersized women, modeling, supersized clothing. And a mass burning of tents and mumus...ha!

 

LargeInCharge.com: What changes do you think will happen if plus sized modeling for men and women were to expand?

I think we plus sized and supersized individuals would be accepted in society more, clothing would be more stylish, and less hard to find our sizes.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Tell us some of the places you buy your clothing from.

I love to get my tops at Torrid, but I wish their pants went to a 32! I have to get my pants at Avenue or Fashion Bug or order from Woman Within and OneStopPlus.com. I like Lane Bryant lingerie, but they seem to have gotten snugger in their sizing! I know I am not the only one who noticed that!

 

LargeInCharge.com:  Tell us one of your secret beauty tips.

I use a few products that I love: Shiseido day moisturizer before foundation to give your skin a healthy refreshed look. I also use Shiseido White Lucent brightening massage cream to give me a glowing complexion. My complexion is far from perfect, I still break out, but I like to wash my face twice a day with Neutrogena and that controls it. Vitamin E ointment to prevent wrinkles and for those of us with piercings, to prevent keloids because I get them for every piercing!

 

LargeInCharge.com:  Give us some tips on how to have a successful Photo shoot.  What should models be prepared for?

Have an open mind and have fun with it! Don't act like a diva and don't tell the photographer and makeup artist how to do their jobs. Come early to your shoot, come prepared with clothes if none is being provided and jewelry-lots of options! Remember to eat a good breakfast before and bring a light snack if it's all day, but don't eat too much. Treat each shot like it's the cover shot! Always be friendly and flexible.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Look at Size acceptance five years ago... look at size acceptance now.  What changes do you see?

I see many more women embracing their curves, even in mainstream media!

 

LargeInCharge.com: What changes do you think will happen five years from now with size acceptance?

I think if we continue to demand for acceptance I believe that we can go far. I think we will have more plus size stars in mainstream and just maybe a real size 32 woman wearing a size 32 dress on the runway and in the catalogs. 

 

LargeInCharge.com: Do you face discrimination in your daily life as a Plus Sized Person?

You always wonder what other people are thinking when you walk by and in public, but I don't worry too much about it. I don't blatantly face discrimination daily.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Tell us about your goals as far as modeling and other interests.

I want to enter more mainstream modeling eventually if I can, but that will be quite a challenge with today's standards. I don't know if I will return to the medical industry, but that's not ruled out.

 

LargeInCharge.com:  What have you accomplished as a Plus Sized Model?

I have been published in a few magazines in U.S., Canada, and the U.K. I have been featured as a web model on a couple of sites. I have done commercials as well.

LargeInCharge.com:  Have you entered or won any Contests, Pageants or Awards?  What was the experience like?

My interview was featured on Mo'Nique's FAT CHANCE Paris a few years ago, but I didn't make the final cut. It was amazing to see myself on TV though. I was featured in BODacious Magazine which is very selective on the models they print, so that's an accomplishment!

 

LargeInCharge.com: Can you tell us about an inspirational moment in your life that made you feel good about your size.

The very first time I saw myself in magazine print. It was beautiful! I've never loved myself more, it was me, all of me, and it was tasteful. I no longer had any shame left in me about my body. Since then I never looked back.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Is there a person in your life that keeps you going?

Sadly my aunt Ruth passed away July 2011. She always supported my modeling and bought every publication and always defended me when I did something the rest of the family didn't agree with. Her memory keeps me going because she would want me to live life to the fullest as I always have. Her son, my cousin, who is still with us reminds me every day.

 

LargeInCharge.com: What advice would you give to other people of size who want to model?

Do your research, ask other models, find photographers in your area and bring escorts to your shoots. Buy fashion magazines and mimic the poses you see in there in a mirror until you can do them without the mirror. If something is fishy don't do it. Check out the magazines and websites FULLY that you are interested in. Know what's expected of you and that the company is legit.

 

LargeInCharge.com: What plus size figure do you most admire?

I admire Velvet D'Amour as a plus size figure, she inspires me and I am glad to say someone I can call on whenever I need advice.

 

LargeInCharge.com: Describe yourself with one word.

Unique

 


 

Thanks for reading about our

Cover Model of the Month

 

 

     Raqui the Owner and Founder of LargeInCharge.com, Raqui's  "Tell it like it is" style of writing has brought thousands to her blogs and millions to LargeInCharge.com.  There is so much behind the woman who has brought this magazine into existence.  Being Internationally known as a wrestler/squasher lead the way to modeling for companies and being featured in magazines and documentaries from all over the world.  She has made a career out of her size and personality. Born, Raised and Residing in the Bronx NYC. This city girl is taking the world by storm.

 

     For the past 6 years Raqui officially moved into Size Acceptance and Empowerment.  With the creation of LargeInCharge she took what she said to individuals to a higher level and made it public to the internet world. She is a woman who doesn't let things get to her.  Knock her down for the moment but she will rise up stronger and better.  Being a speaker on behalf of many subjects and counseling Plus Sized people online her grace and style has made people love her.  Raqui continues to set an example of a powerful woman who will bend the world to fit her, her way.

 

     Raqui's appearances include, Uk Television, German TV, Japan, Europe, Sweden and the Spanish circuit.  Her many magazines appearances have been world wide.  She has hit American Television in 2006 with Good Morning American and since has appeared on The Cristina Show,  The Maury Show and The Tyra Banks Show.

To view her Online portfolio visit www.Raqui.com

Raqui's New Blog titled Raqui-ism "Soulfully Speaking! - http://raqui-ism.blogspot.com/

 Raqui Host's Super Sized Seminar at 15th Annual Vegas Bash 2011

go to www.Raqui.com Portfolio Section

Raqui-ism - COUGAR-ISM - A lifestyle to live by?

Written By: Raqui

 

This is a question I have been asking myself for a while. Being a 37 year old single woman is not always an easy thing, but it is not terrible either. My husband died almost 11 years ago and I am on the adventure of my life. Traveling and visiting, seeing places and passing through locations I never thought I would see. I feel happy and peaceful for the first time in my life and will never regret my decision to try and see a few little spots in this wonderful US-of-A.

When it comes to dating I live by certain codes.

1. I will not date or have sex with a man who has been with someone I know well. I don't care if they did break up, if the woman is not OK with it I AM NOT OK WITH IT! And in reality it kinda creeps me out thinking about sharing a penis with one of my friends. BLEECH!

2. I am not interested in women. Yes I am straight and while I love my female companions in life. I never have nor will I ever see them sexually.

3. I am a big woman who will not apologize for my size. If you don't like it don't look. While I might be HUGE woman (6'4 and 600+ lbs) in comparison to others, I have never had a lack of attention from men.

4. Be open and honest with your needs and wants to avoid confusion.

And I am ending it here because I could go on.

5. When it comes to dating I prefer a man in my age range. Being a Cougar is not my style.


Now I have dated a younger man a few times in my life. 2-4 years isn't much of a difference. I was engaged at one time to a man 6 1/2 years younger and I felt weird about us dating at first. I was turning 31 and he had just turned 24. I did realize that 6 1/2 years wasn't that much of a gap when we had so much in common and we enjoyed each other. Alas it did not end well, and I felt a lesson was learned.

After that relationship I was being approached even more often by younger men. I wondered how could women in their 40's or older date such young men? Like the ones who were approaching me. What future do you have if any? Doesn't it feel strange dating or going to bed with someone closer to your children's age? Is being a Cougar a good lifestyle for a woman?


Definition of a Cougar (about.com) - The most commonly-accepted definition of a cougar is a woman 40 years of age or older who exclusively pursues very young men. The onset of the cougar years is hotly debated. Some feel that a cougar can be as young as 35, but women of this age would not be viewed as cougars unless their sexual conquests were no older than 25; the ten-year age difference seems to be an unspoken but accepted minimum between partners.

Typically, cougars prey upon men almost young enough to be their sons. Thus forty-something cougars would be attracted to men in their 20s, and fifty-something cougars would pursue men in their 30s and so on.

During my daily life I do not pursue younger men; I am the one being pursued. These men are not a few years younger than me, but 10 years or more younger, Some just out of high school at the age of 19 or 20 years old. I constantly tell these men that the age difference is too great, but they do not back down, they are determined to show they are a man, and one worthy of a date. A man who can hold his own and be a companion to an older women.

 

"Us Younger men treat older women better than the older guys." - One 24 year old told me while we chatted on the phone.



While networking I talk to many women. I have learned that the average cougar is not what is seen on TV, A super slim, plastic surgery patient, who is rich or well to do, searching bars at night or meeting in night clubs to pick out and go after younger men.

 

The average cougar is not a predator at all, I'm not even sure cougar is the right term. They are taking care of home, maybe a widow, divorced or single. Maybe they have children or maybe not. They are not HUNTING for younger men, they are chased by them. Slowly being convinced by these young men, that they should be given a chance, to spend time, date or maybe more. Yes many of these young men want relationships, and are more than ready to start a life with a woman who is not in their age range.

In fact many younger men have a strong resistance to seriously dating women their own age. I have heard it all.

"It is just too much drama and problems". a 23 year old told me.

"If it’s not their gay best friend, it is every female friend they got in our business, or their family or mama". One 27 year old said

"If I treat them nice they treat me like a dog". "If I am a asshole they love it and can’t get enough, I can’t be a asshole and I don't want to be either". A 25 year old young man vehemently spat.

"I don't want to live in a reality show, have you seen how some of these chicks act"? a laughing 24 year old told me during a phone conversation.

"They dress like candy canes, act like drama queens, and have no sense of pride". a 21 year old told me strongly one evening at a dinner. He was a bus-boy.

"Maybe it is the females you’re picking". I said in reply.

"Why do you think I am talking to you, you’re a real grown up woman".
"That is what I want". The 21 year old told me without hesitation.

I never wanted to date a man that much younger than me because I felt my own mother made a mistake in marring my father 10 years younger than her.

My mom was a young mother in her early 20's (with 3 children), when my father (only 11 years old at the time) would pass by every day to look at my mother from afar. Sometimes going inside and saying hello. My mother worked at the local dry cleaners in the Bronx NY, to provide for her children from her 1st marriage (an abusive drug addicted man she divorced). She worked very hard and was a good mother. My father had a full blown school boy crush (one that I have found most men share) the crush on their ultimate woman.

She is the woman around the block or town, she is the teacher they love or hate, she is the baby sitter that cared for them, the female friend of their mother or mother of one of their friends. She exudes everything womanly. In her 30's 40's or 50's these women that boys love as they grow up, are everything they want in a woman. They represent the ultimate in female, strong, confident, self-assured, provider, temptress, fully mature with ripened breasts, Bellies that have carried children, and legs and butts that have swollen. They have a movement that is looser, more relaxed than a young woman but is not of a old woman. She is just right. She comes in all forms, tall, short, skinny, fat, really fat, and all in between, she can be dark or light, long hair or short. She is exactly what the young man sees as attractive. She can be every woman or fit a certain type.

She isn't seen as a mother figure like most people believe. In fact many younger men hate the term cub (the cougar and her cub) because they date older women. These women do not represent MOTHER, one young man told me. They represent everything womanly and feminine, confident and able, mentally stable and no-nonsense.

"They are the best of everything that is WOMAN"! one 26 year old told me as we had a conversation.


My fathers crush lasted way into his late teens and developed. When he finally was a physically mature man and able to go into the navy (during Vietnam) he told my mother he wanted to marry her and would be back. He wrote her letters during the war, and while he saw others, he never lost sight of the woman he really wanted, the one who he had been watching for years. While his teenage hellos went by unnoticed by my mother, his love grew, Until finally he was a man and could express it.

After the war he came back actively pursuing, wooing, and married my mother at the ripe old age of 21 with my mother being 31. No one could tell the difference in age (My family line is one that gracefully ages, on both sides, always looking 10 years or more younger.) I was born when my father was 26 and my mother 36. They loved each other fiercely but yet my father was still to young mentally and life was not happy. Mom tried hard to make it work, but after 11 years of marriage it was over. My mother divorced my father all the while he protested. My Father has said he owes everything to my mother she taught him so much and he changed because of her. He grew up. Still to this day my father would do anything for my mother if he could. I guess you never lose sight of your first love.

I didn't want to be that woman, helping a young man grow up. NO I WANT A MAN WHO IS GROWN ALREADY! But during the dating process I started to notice something. Many men (not all but many) in my age range who are single, and available, seem so sad, mad, hopeless, hurt, and yes some down right depressed and affected. Lets say jaded in some ways, maybe years of hurt, pain, and failed relationships took its toll on them. To the point they don't even try anymore.

The younger man isn't that way, they are hopeful, ready, happy, funny, and looking for some joy to counter act the hard work they are putting into developing themselves. Younger men still have some romance left in them. They take a chance in speaking to a woman even if they feel she is out of there league. They are not as afraid of rejection and openly flirt, yet they don't have particular expectations. Open to listening and talking, not judging and enjoy what the older woman has to say. They appreciate a older woman who spends time with them, whether its talking, going out, or more. They know she doesn't have to pick them to spend time with and are happy if she does.

Men my age feel that if they have a house, car, and a job they don't need anything else. Maybe that will impress a woman in her 20's but a woman in my age range needs more than that. Chances are we already have our own house, car, job and maybe more than what he has. He isn't giving the one thing that would impress a woman in her 30's 40's 50's genuine interest, companionship, and worth. Many men in their 30's 40's 50's feel if he isn't getting exactly what he wants, as he wants it, then getting to know a female is a waste of time. Why even bother having a conversation if she doesn't fit in his little box of wants, forget that she is a individual of her own.  It is what she can do or will do for him immediately.  The thing I don't get is if you don't get to know a person how can you figure out what they can or cannot do? Most importantly what can you do for her in return other than talk about yourself and the items you own.

It seems like the difference in approach is significant.

As a loose example here are two approaches from men that happened to me with in a week period. (This does not represent all men)

The Man in his 30's - He saw me our eyes locked and he walked past me. I saw the attraction and waved hello to him but he kept going only coming back when a friend of mine was walking to my vehicle. He got my name from her and then came over to speak to me. We spoke briefly he flirted some but was more focused on telling me what he had, such as house, car, etc. He thought I was 25 when I told him I was 37 he was surprised. We exchanged numbers and the phone call he promised, didn't happen. He texted me a invitation to his house two days later and when I suggested we meet up to get to know each other he declined. I understood he was only looking for one thing but the way he handled the situation was totally classless. I could have been looking for the same thing but he guaranteed rejection with his actions. What happen to the Get to Know a Person Process?

The Man in his early 20's - Upon parking I was getting together my items to place in my shopping cart to enter my residence. He was sitting outside smoking a cigarette. My cart rolled away, He ran up to help me, His eyes were large and almost dreamy while I said thank you and put my items inside. He watched me carefully and smiled at me as I started walking. He opened doors and kept asking me questions about myself and answering questions about himself. He made me laugh and I didn't want to go inside because this was a nice conversation. He also was surprised at my age, he thought I was 26 (he is 24).

When i told him my age he said;

I guess I just love a woman like you, Your built, your look, everything is amazing.

I looked at him with a side glance and he immediately said;

I don't want you to think I am flirting with you... because I am.

OK he got me with that cute move, I came out after I put away my things. We sat and talked for quite a while. About life, what we want to do, music, where we came from. What we want to accomplish while we are here at this location. What we like and dislike, all the while his smile and humorous flirtations just tickled me. He was so vibrant and hopeful, he looked at me like I am not just a woman he liked, but everything he ever dreamed and hoped for in the word WOMAN. I was his image of her placed right down in his path like a gift. He wanted to know me and that was a nice experience.

It is a similar situation every time I come across a younger man. I am more often than not treated like my time was a gift that I was sharing. This is not just one young man one evening... this is over and over again from the younger men who try to get and keep my attention.

As I was about to get up to leave he gave me his hands to help me up. He looked at me up and down. My extreme large 6'4 600+ lb frame super curvy and thick with extra helpings of everything, compared to his 5'8 180 lb nicely built young body.

He then says, "I think I can pick you up"!

Humor in my voice I say, "go ahead try it".
Knowing he wasn't going to be able to.

He came in close and put his arms around my waist and rested them on my overly ample hips. I heard him smell me with a few deep breaths and press himself softly against me. He backed up slowly staring me deeply in my eyes.

"No... I don't think I would try to pick you up... I would rather make love to you, if I ever got close enough to you." "If I was ever given that chance."

He statement while serious and sensual it wasn't dirty... and it was said in such a sweet way that I couldn't help but give him a kiss on the cheek.

"AWE your too sweet... Then I smooched him.

"Can I give you one back?"

"OK" I replied

When he moved in closer to me with his arms around me he leaned up to kiss my face three times from my ear down my jaw line.

As he did this my thought was... "I see why".

I saw why dating a young man with a fun, vibrant personality, yet sweet was something cougars do. These men haven't been through the ringer yet and hopefully they wont become like the men who are in my age range now.

His kisses didn't come with expectation; he just lived with me in the moment and hoped to share more moments. He kissed my face so softly and sweetly as if he might never have the chance again. Yeah of course this could just be his way but whatever it was worked because I gave him my number to call me.

The next day I looked at the evening before and the kisses as just a wonderful experience and I then looked at cougars a different way. In many culture the older woman, young man relationship is very important. She in her wisdom teaches him to be a man and to treat women correctly. What type of women has the qualities for a wife and which don't. She takes this seriously and realizes she is preparing him for life with woman as companion. But now relationships are coming about from older women, younger men relationships.

What about relationships that start with young man/older women. Some studies have shown that they can be the longest lasting most successful relationships. In a twist other relationships with older man/younger women or partners of the same age do not last as long. Some say it is a horrible experience and some twist it to make it sick. Yet these relationships are still happening, the numbers increase, and more and more happy couples are coming about from it. I can’t judge any one's relationship and if it works then I say be happy. Still I don't know if it would work for me.

As my phone range several times the next day, I wondered if it was this young man who had kissed me so sweetly with dreamy eyes. When I answered his voice was happy and excited.

"I have been thinking about you all day!" he said to me.

"I thought about you too." I replied.

So me and this younger man hung out, had fun, and laughed more than I have laughed in a long time. There was no pressure, no expectations, just two people being people. I can say I enjoyed being with this young man and it opened my eyes to Cougar-ism in a new way.

I guess rules are made to be broken because I am going to date whoever actually wants to spend time with me, as two people getting to know each other. Now I can’t say I would have a full blown committed relationship with a man much younger. But at this point I am never going to say never. I don't need to be proven wrong again! HA HA HA

Raqui

 


LargeInCharge Radio - Weekly Radio show discussing Plus Sized Issues.  Friday's 7-9 pm EST - Call in & Chat in our Chat Room.

 

Thank you for Reading Raqui-ism

Please send thoughts and comments to

articles@largeincharge.com

 
 

 

     Xander brings blend of life experience and culinary twist to his writing. From cooking on television and live demonstrations, to writing Xander cook’s like he feels. A former Chicago native transplanted to Tennessee, His goal has been to experience the fullness of food heritage. He believes that as a people and society, can learn a lot from what we eat. Combining a great life lesson and a easy recipe.  They go hand-in-hand to provide a tasty addition to your day. Xander has to confess that ingredients in a great meal are like the ingredients in a great life are never far apart.

 

   

Battles We Must Fight

by Xander The Food Dude

 

In mid-December my mother had one of two massive strokes.  These occurred about a week apart from each other.  They robbed her of her ability to use the right side of her body and she cannot speak.  In the seven weeks since the start of this journey I have often cursed the fates, tried to blame someone for what had happened, and given into the feeling of hopelessness and despair.  I have walked on the edge of giving up before this journey has even begun.  Even now after weeks of sleeping mere feet from my mother in the many hospital rooms, I worry if this is the night that I lose my mother. 

 

The night is the worst time, when very little distracts your focus from her breathing and how shallow it can become.  You watch and wait as each little part of you wonders “don’t let that be the last breath, please God !!, help her.  You spend your time in prayer that God should take my life before my mother’s.  You make every deal you can in your mind with whatever cosmic force will potentially listen to you in an effort to keep her alive a little longer.  Finally, resignation comes in the form of asking that she should not be in pain, you would do anything to at least stop her pain.  If she has to die at least don’t let her be in pain.

 

This would give you a good representation of what my last seven weeks have been like in the late evening and early morning.  My friends have done their best to reach out to me, but I can only isolate myself even more.  There are only two things in my universe right now, my mother and what I have to do to help her.  The exhaustion falls into place and in those times I finally find a few moments of rest.  I have given up the fight.  I have nothing left to do battle.  Through this all I have tried to be conscience about a “lesson”, any lesson I should be learning, but up until now it has escaped me.  I finally got it yesterday.

 

After  many days of illness and sickness, my mother is finally well enough to be involved with her physical therapy and speech therapy.  While progress has been very small, they can see some level of progress.  Over the last three weeks all the nurses and therapist constantly tell me what a sweet mother I have.  I see the way that she interacts with them, the waves and excitement on her face when she sees them in the morning and how they look at her when they get her into bed after therapy or other treatment.  These folks have taken care of and even fought for the care of my mother.  In a word, that have loved her like she was family.

 

For the most part my mother is a very sweet lady, good disposition, but the folks that work with her often say she will touch their hand, arm or shoulder in reassurance to them and simply say the one word she can say “Good”.  One night I heard a nurse tell my mother that she (my mother) made her job a joy.  The message finally hit me.

 

Despite the lack of words or ability to do many things that she once could, she still has the ability to reach out and touch people, not just physically but on a spiritual level as well.  I was reminded once a again that we are all more than the sum of our parts, that we too have the full ability to “touch” others in a positive way if we just use what God has given us to do just that.  I can tell you that in that particular moment I was washed in a sense of awe and shame.  The awe can from what I had forgotten about our mission in this life…to help others.  The shame was from coming close to giving up on one person I should never give up on.. my mother.

 

We al have our own battles.  Sometimes we admit defeat before we even start.  But we must continue to fight the necessary battle everyday, if not for ourselves then for someone else.  When we get week we need to seek the guidance and counsel of those we trust the most.  In that way, no matter the outcome, we can at least always fight the battles that need to be fought.  My mother and I have only begun the journey of her recovery.  Together we stand resolute in the eventual winning of the day.  To this end I pledge myself, because I owe nothing less than everything I am to my mother.

 

From this day forth, pledge yourself to fighting those battles that need to be fought.

 

God bless each of you until next time.

Xander

 

Xander's Recipe of the Month

   
Tailgate Superbowl of Chili

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds ground beef chuck
  • 1 pound bulk Italian sausage
  • 3 (15 ounce) cans chili beans, drained
  • 1 (15 ounce) can chili beans in spicy sauce
  • 2 (28 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 green chile peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon bacon bits
  • 4 cubes beef bouillon
  • 1/2 cup beer
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce (e.g. Tabasco™)
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 (10.5 ounce) bag corn chips such as Fritos®
  • 1 (8 ounce) package shredded Cheddar cheese

 

Directions

 

  1. Heat a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Crumble the ground chuck and sausage into the hot pan, and cook until evenly browned. Drain off excess grease.
  2. Pour in the chili beans, spicy chili beans, diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Add the onion, celery, green and red bell peppers, chile peppers, bacon bits, bouillon, and beer. Season with chili powder, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, oregano, cumin, hot pepper sauce, basil, salt, pepper, cayenne, paprika, and sugar. Stir to blend, then cover and simmer over low heat for at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
  3. After 2 hours, taste, and adjust salt, pepper, and chili powder if necessary. The longer the chili simmers, the better it will taste. Remove from heat and serve, or refrigerate, and serve the next day.
  4. To serve, ladle into bowls, and top with corn chips and shredded Cheddar cheese

 

 
   
 
   
   
   
 

Thank you for Reading Good Food 4U

By Xander the Food Dude

Please send thoughts and comments to

articles@largeincharge.com

   

Angie BEE grew-up a standard-sized young woman, educated in communications, promotions and planning.  She became a wife, mother and ministry support member while building businesses and her faith.

Through stress, age and a poor diet and while suffering from major depression and attempted suicide, Angie BEE's weight climbed from 180 pounds to 360 pounds.  She was diagnosed with high blood pressure, diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, an overactive bladder and poor leg circulation.  At the age of 40 an anxiety attack and the decline in her mental health forced her to stop work and look at improving her declining health.  It was during this time that Angie BEE became inspired by her younger sister Sonya Bennett during her process towards Gastric Bypass Surgery.  Sonya launched this column and will return occasionally to contribute to it, but now that she is three years-post surgery... her life is focused on something new!

Now, celebrating her first year of a new life since having the procedure herself, Angie BEE is healthier than she has been in over a decade.  Losing the first 100 pounds was just the bonus!  She is now diabetes-free.  She has normal blood pressure.  The circulation in her legs is normal.  She sleeps without a c-pap machine and more!  The joy that she feels is documented each day in her syndicated radio show, a brand new weekly  TV show documentary and each month in this article.  The Big GB stands for The BIG Gastric Bypass and it also stands for "Getting (my life) Back".  This article reflects how Angie BEE's life has improved... by the grace of God and as the result of having Gastric Bypass surgery on Feb 28, 2011.  This is now her life!

 
I Know What I'm Hungry For!
with Angie Bee

 

Tonight I was the guest on a BlogTalk Radio show.  The host is Gail Moore Richardson and I have been a guest on her show before.  About one year ago, I was a guest promoting a tour event that I co-created and she was cordial and kind enough to allow me to speak with her about the tour.

 

However, during this past year my relationship with Gail has grown.  She ministers to me.  She sends me daily scripture through text message and her Facebook messages to me are stimulating and encouraging.  At one point during our talks, Gail said to me "When God gives you something; He doesn't want you to give it to someone else.  God gave that to YOU!".  Now I know what Gail meant.  I have a hunger in my belly and this hunger is for me.  Now, I know what I am hungry for.

 

It is now my 13th month, since having gastric bypass surgery.  I look GOOD!  I mean, I really do!  I look in the mirror and I want to put on earrings and I paint my nails and I try new eye shadow looks (thanks to my daughter Jasmine for teaching them to me!).  People see me and they say "YOU LOOK GREAT" and I can't believe that my clothes are falling off of me.  I was on webcam chat with my sister Sonya and she exclaimed "Oh My GOD!  Your face is SO SMALL" - even my night cap is too big for my head now - lol - I know that I look good... but I'm not hungry for the compliments.  The compliments are just an appetizer for what I am REALLY hungry for!

My health concerns prior to surgery are a thing of the past now.  Let me tell you what happened: My new primary care doctor sent me for a sleep study to confirm what the new setting should be on my C-PAP machine.  My pulmonologist suggested reducing the pressure from 12 down to 10 and my primary care doctor wanted to be sure.  So, off I went to the study.  Two days later, the sleep lab technician called me to say "I'm not supposed to tell you this, you're supposed to hear it from your doctor; but you don't have any indication of sleep apnea.  If you had it before, it is certainly gone now". 

 

Yesterday my phone rang.  "Angela!  You signed up to participate in a diabetes study 18 months ago and now our program has funding.  We can compensate you up to $500.00  When can you start?"

My reply:  "I have been off all diabetes medicine since March 2, 2011. 

Her response: "Wow!  What have you done?  Diet? Exercise? Alternative herbs?"

My answer:  "Gastric Bypass Surgery.  I was discharged from the hospital with normal blood glucose and my endocrinologist kicked me out of her practice three months later.  My A1C is 5.2 and I am fine.  Can I still have the $500.00?"

 

I remember when my blood sugar was out of control.  I would eat a peanut butter sandwich while popping a bag of popcorn in the microwave... all while cooking rice for dinner.  I would have consumed it all in less than 30 minutes.  My great-grandmother used to say "You gotta feed that sugar" and that's what I was doing.  I was hungry all the time.

Then, when the diabetes and high blood pressure crept in, I developed a hunger for a life with no prescriptions.  Medicaid was paying over $1,200.00 per month in my prescription costs and I was consuming over 14 pills a day plus two (2) insulin injections.  My sister Sonya had to teach me how to use an insulin pen!  I was hungry all the time... taking medicine all the time and drowning in misery. 

 

Now, I have lost nearly 140 pounds in 13 months and I am prescription-free!  Tomorrow, I will give my C-PAP Machine to someone that really needs it.  My blood pressure on March 16th was 101 over 66 and my pulse was 78.  When I am hungry now, I can snack on a piece of cheese and a handful of nuts and I am full.  I am hungry for the Word of God.  Now, I can read scriptures and not fall asleep.  Now, I can stand and praise God without my ankles swelling.  Now, I can speak on the goodness of how God healed me through gastric bypass surgery and I can testify on the hell that I lived through these past few years with major depression.  My testimony is stronger every day and now I know why:  I was hungry for a closer walk with God, and now I have it!

 

BEE Blessed, Fam

 

 

 

Angie BEE

Author, Magazine Publisher, Producer, Promoter &

The Host of The Hottest Home Hotspot WORLDWIDE

Syndicated Holy Hip Hop Radio Show

www.AngieBEE.com

Last Week I wanted to Die!

NOW AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE!

http://www.amazon.com/Last-Week-Wanted-Die-ebook/dp/B004ZLTM5O/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1324757865&sr=8-1


 

   
 

Thanks for reading

The Big GB - My Gastric Bypass Memoirs

Sonya's Links:

www.SonyaBennett.com

Sonya Bennett on Facebook


     Founded in 1969, NAAFA is a non-profit civil rights organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for fat people. NAAFA works to eliminate discrimination based on body size and provide fat people with the tools for self-empowerment through public education, advocacy, and member support.

 

     This Column is dedicated to the tremendous work NAAFA has been doing for over four decades.  LargeInCharge wishes to support NAAFA in spreading the word of its work, and give the public more information into issues we as plus sized people should be aware of.  The fight for equality for people of all sizes is one we support.

    

     This Column will include News Releases and Calls to Action from NAAFA Directors.

 

This Column has been Approved by NAAFA.org

 

Hi Ho! Hi Ho! A-Stigmatizing Fat Kids We Go!

from: NAAFA.org

 
In late February, NAAFA was appalled to learn that Disney, a traditional hallmark of childhood happiness and joy, had fallen under the shadow of negativity and discrimination. It appeared that Disney now believes that using the tool of shame, favored so much by today’s healthcare corporations, is the best way to communicate with children.

 

After pressure from NAAFA, physicians groups and other special interest groups, Disney has chosen to close their Habit Heroes attraction at Epcot Center for “retooling” and their website for “maintenance”.  There is no date posted for re-opening.  We thought you might still like to hear about their project, write to them with your opinion, sign our petition and cast your vote regarding this project, if you haven’t done so already.  Media articles are clearly pointing to NAAFA as the responsible party for the closings, but we need to make sure they “hear” us about what changes need to be made.
 
Disney, in partnering with Blue Cross/Blue Shield to create the new Epcot attraction and on-line game, Habit Heroes, has taken the side of the bullies.  Although their website is now closed for “maintenance”, (http://www.habitheroes.com/bad-habits-gallery) you can see a few of the characters used on Canadian Dr. Freedhoff’s blog:  http://tinyurl.com/7s53loa and a video tour of the exhibit at:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoM38R9xfMs  
 

 

The attraction and game feature negative stereotypical characters such as "The Glutton, Overeating and eating too fast"; "Snacker, Too much fatty, processed food"; "Lead Bottom, Not enough exercise"; "Stinkbomb, Bad hygiene";  "The Fungus, Eating rotten or expired food"; "Stress Case, Stressing Out"; "The Prescriptor, Ignoring doctor's advice" and "Cereal Killer, No time for breakfast".  The use of these stereotypes, traditionally used to torment overweight kids, will potentially reinforce and strengthen a cycle of bullying, depression, dis-ease, eating disorders and even suicidal thoughts.

 

Disney theme parks and characters have always been associated with positivity and joy; there is no upside to following this new negative path. Let’s keep Disney theme parks "the happiest places on Earth!"

 

NAAFA encourages everyone to call and write Disney to express your opinion.. 

 

Call Epcot Center: 407-824-2222 and register a complaint about fat characters used in their Habit Heroes Exhibit and online game.

Call Disney Corporate Headquarters: 407-354-2754

Write Disney Corporate Headquarters:

Attention: Kristin Nolt Wingard

Senior VP of Public Affair

1375 Buena Vista Drive

Lake Buena Vista, Florida 32830

 

Email Disney's Communications Dept: TWDC.Corp.Communications@disney.com

 

Sign the petition NAAFA has created at:  http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/stop-Disneys-war-on-fat-kids/

 

NAAFA recommended that Disney and their partners, Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield and Wellpoint, review NAAFA's Child Advocacy Toolkit: http://issuu.com/naafa/docs/naafa_childadvocacy2011combined_v04?viewMode=magazine&mode=embed   This toolkit is a resource that focuses on a health-centered approach to improve the health of our children without doing harm.y takes one click, just a couple of seconds: http://todaytravel.today.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/03/01/10550307-do-you-think-disneys-obesity-exhibit-was-insensitive

Help us bring permanent change to these new Disney projects!

 

Help us bring permanent change to these new Disney projects!Help us bring permanent change to these new Disney projects!Help us bring permanent change to these new Disney projects.  All children, regardless of body size, should be free to enjoy the "happiest place on Earth"!

 

.

                                                ~~~~~~~~~~~~*~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

 

NAAFA Convention EARLYBIRD SPECIAL!

NAAFA is pleased to announce that we will return to the San Francisco Bay Area for our 2012 fund-raising convention.  We have worked hard to keep the cost of this convention down and to move quickly in making our convention package available in time for you to give or receive a convention package for the holidays!  

NAAFA is once again offering a Early Bird Special price is $199.00 from January 1 through May 31, 2012.   Beginning June 1, 2012, full convention price will be $265.00. 

The 2012 NAAFA Convention Package would make a great holiday gift for you, your family and all your friends!  Can’t afford a convention package?  Why not give a one year contributing NAAFA membership for only $15.00? 

Make your reservations at the Westin San Francisco Airport Hotel. Room rates are $89 per night!   This group rate will be available until July 10, 2012.  Westin is prepared to receive your NAAFA convention reservations today at:  https://www.starwoodmeeting.com/StarGroupsWeb/booking/reservation?id=1112156171&key=A819C

We encourage you to register for the NAAFA convention package today and to fully participate in this life-changing event.  We made it easy for you to register for the convention as well as the hotel through our website at www.naafa.org.  Watch our website for more exciting details as they become available.

Founded in 1969, NAAFA is a non-profit human rights organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for fat people.  NAAFA works to eliminate discrimination based on body size and provide fat people with the tools for self-empowerment through public education, advocacy, and member support.

On the web:  http://www.naafa.org

 

 

Thanks for reading

From the Desk of NAAFA

Link

www.NAAFA.org

    

Our WebGirl Lucia Roth, was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. Graduated with a B. A. degree in Communication from Southeastern Louisiana University and is considering going back for her Masters degree. Lucia a people person and is always willing to help out a friend in need. She enjoys music, movies, poetry, and good book on a rainy day. Lucia has several mottos about life.


This is one: Knowledge talks, wisdom listens.

 

I just wanted to re- introduce myself, since I just joined Large In Charge magazine last year. My name is Lulu, and I am a fashion writer for largeincharge.com I am a fashion junkie:) I look forward to finding wonderful fashion find and product of the month for you. I also look forward to chatting with you all an reading some good fashion comments! Please let me know if you have a favorite. Web_girl1999@yahoo.com

 

 

The WebGirl Picks of the Month

Fashion Find Product of the Month

Fashion Find Type: Sale

Sale Price:  25% Sale

Link: http://www.yoursclothing.co.uk/landing-sales.aspx

Ladies!  Spring time is here… 4-U.  This awesome site call Yours Clothing offer quality on trend plus size clothes that both fit and flatter, in sizes 14 to 32 (UK sizing). New styles are launched weekly on the web with everything from dresses to knitwear, jeans to nightwear, lingerie, shoes, and stunning accessories. At Yours Clothing you will find the hottest trends at the best prices.

 

 

 

Product of the Month

Recommended by: Lucia

Name of Product:  iPad

Type of Product: Computer

Where Product can be found: http://store.apple.com/us/browse/home/shop_ipad/family/ipad?afid=p219%7CGOUS&cid=AOS-US-KWG

Description: iPad with the stunning Retina display. 5MP iSight camera. And ultrafast 4G LTE. Starting at $499.00

 

 
 

Pat is a forty something woman living in Southern Ontario, Canada. She has a varied past and has worked teaching literacy and English as a second language to adults, as an environmental science technician and in the health and safety field. Currently she works in marketing.

Pat fiercely believes in human rights for all and has volunteered for organizations that raise funds and develop and implement programs to help impoverished people and educate women in third world countries. Although relatively new to the size acceptance movement, Pat believes with all her heart that people of size deserve equal treatment and respect.
In her spare time she likes to read fiction, go to bashes and spend time with friends.

Are You The One?

with Pat Llewellyn

 

Last month I talked about a nasty series of emails a jerk sent me on a dating website. This month I want to talk to you about the general lack of effort and lack of understanding what a woman is looking for on a dating website. While the idiots make great stories for entertaining my friends, I really would like to meet a solid guy.

One of the first things I notice about your profile is your username. It can be clever, funny, honest & it reflects who you are. It’s a tool to get me interested in communicating with you. It literally is my first impression of your personality. What a woman doesn’t want to see is what you think your sexual prowess is (Magic Lick, ThckNLong), your recreational drug of choice (Higg420) or contain the number 69. If that is all you have to bring to the table, I’m not interested. I want a person who is articulate, not the guy who just wants to get laid.

Before you send me a message, read my profile. I clearly articulate what I am and am not looking for. If you send me a message and you clearly haven’t read my profile, it shows you just don’t respect me or what I’m looking for. When you are sending me a message, don’t send me a picture of your penis. I really don’t want to see it. It’s not a turn on.  Really, it’s not. Also, don’t start off telling me how you want to *give it to me.* It’s not a compliment and it certainly won’t endear yourself to me. At best you will get a sarcastic comment back and blocked. If it’s particularly vile, I’ll get your account deleted.

If you are sending me a message, you should be selling yourself to me. Just because you send me a message, it doesn’t mean I’m going to *hit that*. I have loads of self-confidence and am willing to pass on someone I don’t think would be a good fit. I am not obligated to meet with you or even respond to your message. It’s a little thing called free will.

If you can’t handle rejection, don’t go on a dating website. For every yes you get, you will get many women saying no. Don’t start insulting me or *gasp* call me fat. I know I’m fat, I don’t have a problem with it. Trying to insult me with the word is like insulting me by calling me blonder. Don’t tell me you are doing me a favor by asking me out, because I’m fat and must be desperate. It just makes you look pathetic when the women you pity thinks you aren’t good enough to date?

 

When I say I’m not interested, I really do mean it. Repeated messages trying to engage me in conversation is not acceptable and not going to end will for you. Sending me pictures of your penis will get you reported and your account deleted.

Before I respond to your message I read your profile. If you don’t have information about yourself or fill the about yourself section with gibberish, I will respond in kind. If your profile is rude or is all about how your ex screwed you over, I will take a pass. Every time a guy, who has said on his profile how nice of a guy he is, messaged me he turned out to be a jerk. If you are nice, the way you interact with me will show it.

If I agree to meet your for a coffee or a drink, that is what I actually mean. It’s not code for come over and have sex with me. Sending me random message asking me for sex is also not going to work. Most sane women are not going to agree to go to  a complete strangers home or agree to have them come to their home. I don’t know if you are a creepy stalker or a nice guy. I’m certainly not going to put myself in a position where you could hurt me.

If you are sending me a message I’m guessing you like fat women. There is no need to tell me your preference is a BBW. Also, putting down skinny women to try and impress me won’t fly. I believe is size acceptance. That includes fat, thin, tall, short… If you think I’m pretty, by all means tell me. Just don’t try to build me up by tearing down someone else Also, don’t insult me then say it’s ok, you’d date me anyway.  You shouldn’t be taking dating tips from Howard on The Big Bang Theory. In case you haven’t noticed, he’s not a ladies man.

By now you are probably thinking I hate men.  I can tell you it’s not true. I LOVE men. I want to find a man to share my life with and someone I can respect. I just am dismayed at the lack of understanding men have of what will attract a woman.

 

Lots of love

xoxo

Lulu


 

     Ms Suga is a plus size woman hailing from Sunny South Florida. She is a 24 year old recent recipient of a Bachelor in Arts degree in Communication Studies. Being plus size for the majority of her life she has overcome many obstacles to finally come to the point where she is fully content with herself and her life. This self love has also allowed Ms Suga the privilege of sharing her love with those around her. She is very passionate about life and loves to help others.

     Ms Suga likes to see herself as the one everyone can go to for positive, inspirational and truthful words of advice and/or support. She is the Beautiful Inspirational Girl that is blessed, intellectual, trustworthy, caring and hardworking.

     Ms Suga has had a passion for writing since she was a little girl when she used to think of short stories about what her life would be like as she got older. This is Ms Suga’s first opportunity for her thoughts to be public for the world to see. Excited about this column Ms Suga is also very optimistic of her future in writing and promoting self love and acceptance in the plus size community.

 

Hoodies Up

with Ms Suga

 

 

 It breaks my heart  when people especially children are wronged and treated unjustly. I live in South Florida about 3 hours south of the Orlando/ Sanford area. Up until now the state of Florida has had its share of news worthy tomfoolery but I think the events of the past few weeks really take the cake.

Here are the facts. On a grey and rainy Sunday afternoon, February 26th 2012 to be exact, a man called 911 to report a suspiciously hooded figure walking through his apartment complex. He described this suspiciously hooded figure to the 911 dispatcher and instead of doing like normal people and letting the cops do their jobs; this man, Mr. George Zimmerman, followed the suspiciously hooded figure. The 911 dispatcher stated that Zimmerman needed not to follow the person and to wait for the police to arrive (this entire conversation can be heard on the 911 tapes released by request of the Martin family). The next several minutes and actually next few days are rather "fuzzy" to put it loosely.

Another 911 call is made by an unknown woman who states she hears someone outside her back door calling for help but she has no idea why and is afraid to go outside to investigate. The 911 dispatcher can also hear this unknown voice in the background yelling for help and then there is a "pop.” The caller tells the dispatcher she heard a gunshot and opts to go and hide on the upper level of her home. When the police arrive they find the original caller Zimmerman with a broken nose standing over the previously referred to suspiciously hooded figure with a recently fired gun in hand and blood splattered all over him.  He tells the police that he shot the suspiciously hooded figure, which he was told not to follow, in self-defense. The police, considering the original 911 call, take Zimmerman's statement at face value and basically rule it as an open and shut case. The now dead suspiciously hooded figured is tagged as a John Doe and taken to the morgue. It is documented that in John Doe's possession is a bag of skittles, a can of Arizona iced tea and a cell phone. Nobody ever went through the cell phone to find a family member or even a last call made to help identify John Doe. John Doe's body is tested for drugs and alcohol but the tests came back negative and he sits in the morgue for roughly 48 hours before his identity is discovered. Nearly three days after being shot in the chest the previously referred to suspiciously hooded figure is finally identified as seventeen year old Trayvon Martin.

Now I wonder how those three days went for the Martin family; scared out of their minds with grief and worry that the worst has happened to their beloved Trayvon. Constantly praying that Trayvon returns home safe and unharmed. Tears of grief stain their faces as the time ticks on and reality begins to set in as to what may have happened to Trayvon. And then that devastating knock at the door, the investigators entering Trayvon Martin's mothers home and delivering news no mother ever wants to receive. The officers saying something like "Ma'am unfortunately Trayvon was shot in the chest a couple days ago and he has been sitting in the morgue as John Doe. The man who shot him stated he was acting in self-defense and Trayvon was walking around suspiciously in an apartment complex in Sanford." I can’t begin to imagine the pain and anguish his family must have felt. The anger that their son, brother, cousin, nephew was chased down by a man he had never known,  murdered in cold blood then treated like a common criminal who simply “got what he deserved.” My blood boils at the thought that this man is still free nearly a month later and has yet to be arrested for anything. I mean what the hell is the hold up? He confessed to shooting this child, they have him on tape being told not to apprehend this so-called suspiciously hooded figure. I know I'm a few degrees short of being a district attorney but that at least sounds like interfering a police investigation, kidnapping, and possession of a firearm something. People have been convicted with way less than this and this asshole cowardly excuse of a man Zimmerman doesn't even get a warrant out for his arrest. Heartbreaking Injustice.

In the weeks that follow, the murder of Trayvon Martin has become a household discussion. Rallies have been held, petitions have been created, and people all over the United States are demanding justice! Leading the movement have been the family as well as famous actors, athletes and several community figures all asking for the same thing; that this man at minimum be arrested and the crime be truly investigated.  Students at a high school in Miami Fl, staged a walkout in the middle of a school day in honor of Trayvon. Pictures of people in hoodies are plastered all over Facebook with captions like “Am I A Threat?’ and “I am Trayvon Martin” beneath them. Talk is brought up about the "Stand Your Ground" laws and how racism still exists within the nation that has an African American man as the Head of State. Trayvon's murder is now being compared to the murder of Emit Till how both young men were brutally murdered by white men in cold blood for no apparent reason other than them being black in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Now I will not say that I am one that always feels like racism is still the root of all problems in society and the "man" is always trying to keep us down. But I will say that it's painfully clear that this is an issue that is still very real here in 2012. Being young in the United States is stress enough in itself why are we still being exposed to this hatred. Last time I checked the skin you are born with is the only skin you get. No matter the hue, or the fact that some people actually attempt to change the color of their skin you cannot change the person God has created you to be. If you don't like me being black take that up with God! I'm just playing the game with the cards I've been dealt. I've never felt nor was taught to be superior or inferior to any race or nationality. We all are born, live, cry, laugh, bleed and then we all die.

I encourage you all to take a stand against racism and injustice. We are all God's people and we need to start spreading love and peace throughout this nation we call home. Land of the free and home of the brave is what we claim this land to be. Prove it. Don't let Trayvon's death go by in vain. Let the love and positivity start with you. #hoodieup

 

Be blessed, Be safe, Be inspired

Ms Suga

 

 


 

Gabriela Falarz lives in Toronto, Canada. She has been up and down the scale for most of her life (mostly up), and is proud to say that she loves herself no matter what her size, although it has definitely been an evolution.

 

She blogs about size acceptance in her blog, Celebreight Yourself (www.celebreightyourself.blogspot.com).  Gabriela discovered Large in Charge Radio about a year ago and has been hooked ever since. She is thrilled to be writing for Large in Charge and to be part of an organization that helps all large people realize how beautiful, special, and amazing they are.

 

Ghosts of Diets Past

with Gabriela Falarz

 

 

Here and there, in dusty dark corners of my house, live ghosts of diets past. Every once in awhile, I’ll stumble across one of them and reminisce. I’ll find them in my medicine cabinet and the occasional cupboard – herbal supplements, “fat burners”, diet pamphlets, diet recipe books.

 

The most frequent reminder of my ghosts of diets past are in my closet. There are clothes ranging from a size 10 (my smallest) to 26. There are also clothes in every size in between. Nowadays I’ve settled at about a 24 and I’ve stayed at that size for years, fluctuating a little up or down at different times of the year. It seems to be my “natural” size. Summers I tend to lose a little weight, being extra conscious of the less clothes I wear and the skin on display.

 

I know a lot of people say that if you want to feel good about your body, you shouldn’t keep your “thin clothes” around. If they don’t fit anymore, just give them to Goodwill, love the clothes you wear now, and add more pieces to your closet that you enjoy. Still, I do have fond memories of the clothes, if not the diets. I can still remember slipping into that sleek denim mini skirt and the ecstasy at being able to pull up the zipper. I remember turning around to admire how those cute denim pockets accentuated my ass. I still gaze fondly at the designer labels and the lovely fashionability of the clothes and wonder why it’s just not the same with plus-sized clothes.

 

Somewhere far back in the corner of my mind there is probably still the fleeting dream that one of these days, I will be able to wear them again, through some miracle or other. Of course I know that won’t happen. But I still can’t bring myself to throw or give them all away. (Actually, last summer I donated a few huge bags of old clothes to a woman in need, only keeping my most sentimental items.)

 

What is most likely to happen is that these old mementos will end up clothing my daughter. She’s already raided my closet and adopted several items for herself. I guess I can live with that. If my body could not accept being size 10 for too long, perhaps my daughter’s body will be more accommodating.

 

I can definitely do away with the old diet pills, though. Time to chuck those relics in the garbage where they belong.

 



 

Kathy is originally from a small town in Michigan but has lived in San Diego County since she's been 18 years old.  Kathy graduated from San Diego State University with a Bachelors in Finance in 1999.   She has a real estate broker’s license and works as a mortgage banker.  

 

Kathy also owns BBW Club Catalina in San Diego which has monthly night club parties and other fun events on a frequent basis.  Kathy has been an avid supporter of NAAFA, Vegas BBW Bash and San Diego BBW Bash and believes in size acceptance and health at every size.  

 

Kathy is a firm believer that people need to have a full life by going to the movies, dinner, bowling, dancing and anything that will make them a happier person and not wait til they are at the perfect size to start living their life to the fullest. 

 

Kathy is in her mid-40's and her children are grown and living productively on their own.   In her spare time she likes trying new restaurants, dancing, modeling, bowling and spending time with family and friends.

 

 

Are you dating a true BBW or FA Lover?

 with Kathy Hernandez

 

I've dated men in the past where I didn't think it was important that the man I dated preferred BBW's or larger women but after a few mistakes I realized that it was important that I was their type on the outside as well as on the inside.

 

These men that I dated liked my personality, my blues eyes and smile, intelligence, sense of humor and we had lots of common interests but when it came to my weight they were settling for a larger woman.   In the end these men would ask me to lose weight because I was perfect for them in every other aspect except for my weight.   I want a man who looks at my curves and can't keep his eyes off my face and my body because I need to know that I am his type and he's not settling for me until he finds what he is really looking for. 

 

I decided about 10 years ago that I needed to ask a man if BBW's are his type and if his response came back with "I like all women and I don't have a type" than he wasn't the man for me to date.   It's pretty hard to invest your time and heart in a man who you think really likes you then he gives you an ultimatum to lose weight or he is going to find another girlfriend just because you aren't the size he wants you to be.  

I understand that when we start dating someone that we are physically attracted to the person that we meet and if someone's weight goes up or down 50 or 60 pounds then we might not be as attracted to that person as we were when we first met them.    My weight didn't go up or down when I dated these men and I guess they figured they could either deal with the extra weight or convince me to lose weight just for them. 

There is a flip side to this also and that is when men who are dating BBW's and then their girlfriend loses weight or says they want to lose some weight and are told by their boyfriend or husband that if they do lose weight they will break up or divorce them.   I think at some point when you are in a true loving relationship that you have to love that person no matter what their size is because I have a lot of friends who have lost weight due to health problems and mobility issues.

 

Can you imagine getting dumped by your loved one because you lost weight and are giving an ultimatum to put the weight back on or you will lose your relationship over being healthier?  

 

I have asked men who tell me that they exclusively date BBW's why they are attracted to larger women versus women of what society considers an average size.

 

 The responses I have received have varied from them and include the following:  

I think larger women have larger breasts and booty's and I'm not attracted to a woman who looks like a 12 year old girl who hasn't blossomed yet.  

 

I think larger women are better lovers in bed. 

 

I think larger women aren't as bitchy as smaller women are.  

I think larger women want to be in a committed relationship and will give their relationship all they can.

  

How do you tell if a man really does like larger women and they aren't just trying to have a hit and run with you?

 

Is the man asking you out on what I consider a "real date"?  A real date to me is going to dinner, seeing a moving, bowling, having drinks etc.   These are things you do out in public and not just being invited in private to his place to "hang out".   Does he introduce you to his friends, family and coworkers?  

There are many in the closet BBW Lovers out there today and yes they really do find BBW's attractive but they are embarrassed to tell people that they like larger women...  this is definitely a man that I wouldn't date because I'm not a fetish and if you can't be proud to tell the world that I'm your girlfriend than you need to go back into the closet until you get a pair of brass ones and can tell people that larger women are your type.

 

My current boyfriend dates only women with curves, plus size, BBW's or  whatever you want to call women who are considered larger than society's norm and he won't ever ask me to lose weight for him but if I did gain or lose weight he would still be with me and love me regardless of my weight.  

 

 

Celebrating almost 2 decades as a Graphic Designer/Published Illustrator, Jean Nerestant Jr (Jness) got his start as a graphic artist in 1994, Still working as a graphic designer by day/ Jness devotes time to his hip hop Culture, comic book art and Plus size/BBW Art.

 

 

Before Plus Sized Fashion

with Jness

 

It seems these days that every plus size conversation leads to the topic of fashion. It’s certainly a good thing that there are clothing designers developing plus size apparel more than ever before. But let’s turn back the hands of the clock to a time when the plus sized community wasn’t viewed as a viable market, and there were little to no options available.

 

I had a close friend share the details of an experience that gave me insight to some size-related injustices. (Let’s call her Cary) She was a young girl only 10 years old. She was a heavy-set girl with pretty jet-black curls and olive skin. Her favorite thing to do was to go out with Mommy on Saturdays. They would go out for breakfast, stop at the baker to buy fresh bread; they would visit her aunt who lived near the baker’s shop. Everything was perfect until it was time to shop for a new dress. From one store to the next, her Mom’s pleasant disposition would gradually change as dressing room visits reveal that nothing available fit Cary. As a grown woman giving me account of these experiences still cause the corners of her eyes to fill with tears.

 

In the dressing room Cary’s mother would grab her by the collar pull her near, look her straight in the eye and say,  “You mack truck, you don’t fit into anything!” She would say it in a deep threatening tone to prevent the sales person outside from hearing the piercing words. As her mother tried to stuff her into various outfits she would pull Cary from side to side, pinch her and eventually smack her in frustration. Once she got a full blown spanking when they got home because one of the dresses ripped, and her mother had to pay for the torn merchandise.

 

As an adult Cary has self-esteem gray areas, she is confident about her career, and very successful. She is a beautiful full-figured woman, but in the quiet times looking in the mirror getting ready for her day, she will still whispers to herself “I look like a mack truck.” It’s almost as if her mother’s voice is forever playing back in her head. Cary never truly feels beautiful. At a time when her mother could have placed words of affirmation into her, instead she dampened her spirit with painful, hurtful words. To add insult to injury when Cary tried to speak to her mother about how those days made her feel, her mother denied that it ever happened. This would’ve been an opportunity for healing and closure. But that will have to come later.

 

Sometimes we have to forgive those who hurt us, whether they apologize or not. It’s the only way to heal, and the only way to find peace. I am not suggesting forgiving people and affording them the chance to hurt us again. I am just referring to the steps necessary to achieve personal growth.

 

The art I create is in the hopes of causing the viewer to identify with images of self-confidence, and empowerment, which are qualities that can only come after struggle, and after overcoming life challenges. While you are in the eye of a storm, it’s hard to understand what good could come from it, but when you come out of it, the strength of the storm is the gage that measures your strength of your endurance. 

 

 

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