Virgie Tovar

Virgie Tovar

Bio

Virgie Tovar, MA is an author, activist and one of the nation's leading experts and lecturers on fat discrimination and body image. She is the editor of Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love and Fashion (Seal Press, November 2012) and the mind behind #LoseHateNotWeight. She holds a Master's degree in Human Sexuality with a focus on the intersections of body size, race and gender. After teaching "Female Sexuality" at the University of California at Berkeley, where she completed a Bachelor's degree in Political Science in 2005, she went onto host "The Virgie Show" (CBS Radio) in San Francisco. She is certified as a sex educator and was voted Best Sex Writer by the Bay Area Guardian in 2008 for her first book. Virgie has been featured by the New York Times, MTV, Al Jazeera, the San Francisco Chronicle, NPR, Huffington Post, Bust Magazine, Jezebel, 7x7 Magazine, XOJane, and SF Weekly as well as on Women’s Entertainment Television and The Ricki Lake Show. Her most recent speaking engagements have included University of Washington, Earlham College, Hollins University, University of California at Berkeley, University of California at Davis, California College of the Arts, Sonoma State University, and Humboldt State University. She lives in San Francisco and offers workshops and lectures nationwide. Find her online at www.virgietovar.com. And on instagram. 

Virgie Tovar Articles

"Seeing big women portrayed as centerpieces in two different films in the same week was something I had never experienced."

Take The Cake: I Want To See Fat Women In Every Film

*Spoiler alert: some character-specific plot point reveals for the films

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image credit: Virgie Tovar via Instagram

Take The Cake: Are You A Fat Girl Who Can’t Say No To People? Welcome!

I have met many people who can't say no. We all benefit when we speak clearly and frequently about what we need in order to thrive.

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Vulnerability should be something we thoughtfully protect with boundaries. But never allowing anyone in harms our precious sense of humanity and our right to love.

Take The Cake: Vulnerability Is Haaaaaard

My sad little girl brain remembers exactly what it feels like to risk everything and get rejected. It happened so many times for me during childhood and then later in my early dating years. I’ve created elaborate systems of avoidance, emotional self-control and pre-emptive rejection. And frankly, girl, I’m tired of it. It’s a lot of goddamn work.

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image credit: Virgie Tovar via Instagram

Take The Cake: Cleaning My Closet Taught Me 3 Things About Fat Girl Scarcity

Fat Girl Scarcity — the sense that we are not enough or that we don’t have enough — permeates the life of a person in a marginalized body.

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There's a difference between a person genuinely admiring your gifts, and a person who sees you as a way to feel superior.

Take The Cake: Don't Just Blindly Say 'You Inspire Me'

Two weeks ago, I was in West Lafayette, Indiana. I flew into Chicago at around midnight, and I was picked up by new friend and hostess, Mel.

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Rock those short-shorts, no matter your size.

Take The Cake: Short Shorts + Jiggly Thighs Forever

I spent most of last week in a southern California heat wave.

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I thought we both knew he was our enemy, but in reality you both were mine.

Take The Cake: An Open Letter To The Woman Who Betrayed Me

I told you I never wanted to speak to him again. I offered that we work together to rid him from our lives. I thought we had both made the realization that he was garbage, but in reality, only I had.

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Unlike my childhood, near-daily exposure to fatphobia is not safely in my rearview mirror. That makes healing all the harder. Image: author.

Take The Cake: Fatphobia Gave Me PTSD

I think a lot of us are probably walking around with mild PTSD, anxiously calculating risk and making plans about what and who to avoid.... Even though I’m no longer technically walking the halls of junior high, I am living in a fitness-obsessed city that doesn’t feel as safe as it ought to considering almost everyone is over age 13.

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image credit: Virgie Tovar via Instagram

Take The Cake: 7 Tips For Medical Self-Advocacy As A Fat Person

Humane, proper medical care should be something all people — regardless of status — have access to. Here are tips for medical self-advocacy for fat people.

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