I used to always think being friends with other women was just impossible for me. A few memories from my childhood are embedded in my mind and I want to say it’s a reminder of how much I’ve grown and evolved over the years. I don’t ever remember being taught to think that other girls where my enemy or competition but I always remember feeling threatened. By the time I was done with high school I had a good group of friends I worked with. Most of my gal pals had boyfriends but there was one who was on and off with relationships. At the time I was very judgmental. I was raised with different types of religion but all and all religion only taught me that I couldn’t sleep with a man if I wasn’t married and I had to ignore my feelings for the same sex. Overall I judged my friend for her behavior. I heard others whispering “slut” and “whore” behind her back. I didn’t want that for her so I attempted to talk with her about how she was acting. As if what some group of people said mattered that much but that conversation turned into an argument. By the time the argument ended she had come to the conclusion I was jealous of her and all she had. She pointed out every single flaw on my body and compared it to her own. As she compared our bodies I went on to call her the names everyone else was calling her “SLUT!” “WHORE!”. This is only one story, but the point remains the same. When women feel threatened by other women, our first instincts is to punch a sore wound. These types of actions grow on top of our insecurities and most of the time these actions can stick on people for a long time. I’m not going to lie, that conversation still somewhat haunts me today. I have come a long way with how I treat my body but sometimes when I look in the mirror and look at the flaw she pointed out. It’s a reminder of a horrible fight with someone I thought of as a friend and in the end we just hurt each other.
You probably hear this babbled a lot but we often just wanted to be treated as equal as men and I don’t mean equal rights. (Sure that matters to but the point is.) When men sleep around they’re the “pimp” the “stud” the “ladies man”. When a woman does it they’re a “slut” a “whore” a “tramp”. This type of situation has grown even more problematic over the years. You have your own gender judging you for those actions while a man doing the same thing is just following his natural human instincts.
Now in the gaming community. Things are a bit different but also very similar. Say about 3 years ago if another woman showed up in a voice chat I would avoid and ignore her. Thinking to myself “she probably just another snobby chick”. Continue to avoid her and start to get irritated at her very presence. As years went on and I slowly started to see how my behavior seemed irrational. My attitude began to change and I made some really great friends along the way.
All in all the point to this blog is to inspire the women of the gaming community to start empowering each other. Instead having so much irrational hate toward one another. I have come across many women online that call me an “attention whore” for being a streamer. Or if I complain about harassment I get from men on voice chat, the only way it can be fixed is by not talking in voice chat at all. Saying the only solution to have these types of issues online is to act as if you don’t exist. To “pretend” to be male instead of female and if I accept any help at all in a video game I’m “just another fake gamer girl getting carried”. If we want men to stop saying these things, then we need to stop saying these things to each other. Empower each other. Defend each other… and most of all encourage each other! Sounds super cheesy I know. But maybe that’s just what we need 😉