Essay:Video game culture and genderfluidity
It is no surprise that I deeply enjoy video games. Whether it's shooting a zombie's head off in Left 4 Dead 2, to committing mass murder in Grand Theft Auto V, being the perpetrator of a genocide in Spore: Galactic Adventures, and my most well-liked video game franchise of all time, the Super Mario series, what's not to love about an escape from reality where you can be you, and you can control the universe you're in (and modding video games only adds to that)?
However, one thing prevented me from enjoying video games to their fullest: the lack of female interest in video games in general. The seemingly boy's only club that made it ripe to spawn dumpster fire crapshoots such as Gamergate. Every game event I have attended has been primarily populated with male people, with me being one of the few female people in there feeling a bit awkward. Most gaming forums and on the internet have been predominately male. Most of the big-name directors that I know about? All are male. All of my closest friends in real life have been male thanks to this one shared interest in gaming. So many people in the internet will probably already believe that I'm being a girl only for grabbing attention or being a "special snowflake" when I personally believe that's the stupidest fucking thing I'll ever do and their attention is the last thing that I want.
Any time I register on the forum and I don't reveal my gender, although I believe my name, BabyLuigiOnFire, is fairly gender neutral, people automatically assume I'm male because, again, females are relatively rare compared to the prevalence of male gamers on the internet (hell even at times where I do reveal my gender, people don't bother looking at my profile/signature and still assume I'm a male and it's because I don't use a very "feminine" sounding username, and "masculine" in this case refers to pretty much any username that is neutral and not explicitly "girly"). Initially, I was a bit bothered to be referred to as that during my first moments online, but as the years went by, I realized that...I don't mind all that much. I've gotten used to being called a guy to the point where I don't bother correcting anyone any more to what my "proper" gender really is, and to be frank, I don't mind it at all. I guess it suits me, and that I feel more "fit" in when I think I'm a guy at points.
I guess I always preferred the male options over the female ones. The female-tailored clothes are for some reason ridiculously tight, have this dumb v-shape that doesn't do a good job at covering up breasts (and this is coming from someone who is very skinny herself) and I feel like the shirts for males are bigger, bulkier, more casual, and that's how I like them. Pants for girls feel like they want to strangle your legs, and I usually have a hard time finding pants that are designed for boys. I hate dresses and would rather prefer to wear a suit. The same deal goes towards gendered toys in stores. Black, shiny, hell-bent fiery muscle cars are far more cool and appealing to me than a pink fairy princess doll, and those baby dolls designed for girls are the scariest, most uncanny fucking thing out there that I don't think should be pandered to anyone. I hate bras and I don't like wearing them, my cup size is so small, even A cups are too big for me. And I'm honestly fine with that. I don't care about the size of my breasts or hips or whatever. Hell, the smaller they are, the better. The less said about dealing with menstruation, the better. And urinary tract infections.
So am I a transgender? No. Despite all of that, I still legit enjoy some parts of femininity and having a female identity. I still enjoy offering a different perspective on video games than the status quo, and when venturing to new video games, I still generally gravitate towards the female character option, if there is any available and they don't don a ridiculously awful design/outfit because I feel like the gender of the character represents me more than the male. Are there exceptions? Of course there are. My favorite video game character of all time is Baby Luigi, though one can argue that he does have girl appeal by being an adorable baby (and he is) and that I grew up with Luigi being my favorite hero, and my favorite survivor from Left 4 Dead 2 is Nick. Even so, I like using cutesy characters that do have female appeal, such as Toad, Baby Mario, Teensies (from Rayman), Torchic/Turtwig (from Pokemon), Ness (from Earthbound) and I don't even realize my favorite characters are cutesy and girl appeal until I analyze my character selections.
I don't know the reasons, but there's something about being female that I like that I don't want to give it up entirely and jump straight to the dedication of having a male gender.
Are you a bigender then?
Not exactly either. Keep in mind that those thoughts that I have don't occur every day. I felt like gravitating towards different genders is the best way to describe how I feel, and hence why I consider myself to be genderfluid, at least to an extent. I haven't revealed these thoughts to anyone in real life, because I feel like people won't take me seriously. Hell, even I don't take myself seriously that much when I think "I'm okay with being referred to as a guy, I'm a bit manly myself". Back in middle school (or was it elementary school) I treated those masculine thoughts as simply fleeting. If anyone hears my voice online, I won't pretend for a minute that it's a voice that belongs to none other than a girl.
I'm not content being fully either gender. I feel like being a girl with this much devotion to video games in a heavily male-dominated community and with all my interests towards male-centric stuff doesn't exactly feel "right" to me, nor is believing that I should abandon all thoughts that I'm a girl and asking people to refer to me as a guy online the other route that I'm fully comfortable with, and I feel like these thoughts are often changing, with me changing my mood and personality day to day. So this 100% devotion to either gender one day or another doesn't exactly suit how I feel compared to changing time to time that comes with being genderfluid.
A quote from a genderfluid that I like
“”Gender fluidity is not really feeling like you’re at one end of the spectrum or the other. For the most part, I definitely don’t identify as any gender. I’m not a guy; I don’t really feel like a woman, but obviously I was born one. So, I’m somewhere in the middle, which — in my perfect imagination — is like having the best of both sexes. I have a lot of characteristics that would normally be present in a guy and then less that would be present in a woman. But then sometimes I’ll put on a skirt — like today.
- ↑ Gray, Emma (June 6, 2015). Ruby Rose Breaks Down What It Means To Be Gender Fluid. Huffington Post. Retrieved January 20, 2018/