I’ve experienced and learned so much since I publicly came out to everyone on my Facebook page a year ago. I’ve realized things about the people around me, about the relationships I have and the dynamics in them, about what I’m worth and how I (didn’t) value myself because of how I’d been taught to view myself. Things have changed. I’ve changed. It’s a difficult journey with a lot of heartbreak and pain, but ultimately, it’s for the best. Continue reading “What I Learned From Coming Out: Video”
If you’ve read my previous posts, you know I’m a big BioWare fan. I love the stories, the characters, the depth and complexity of the worlds they create. Lately, that loyalty is being challenged by the upcoming Anthem, especially compared to Ubisoft’s next game Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey. Continue reading “Anthem vs Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey – Brand Loyalty, Concern & Change”
“That’s not for girls!”
“Those are boy hobbies.”
“Are you looking for something for your boyfriend”?
These are all things I heard when I really started getting in to comics and video games (around 2011). Whether it was from my parents, coworkers, or the people working in the stores that sold these products, the words they used made me feel like I was trespassing for my interests. Video games and comics are very male-dominated – at least in perception (the numbers of women consuming them are increasing steadily) – and that makes it hard for women to get in. It also isolates the women who are already in the culture.
I didn’t feel like I belonged. So I went looking…
I was hungry for more and I wouldn’t be stopped! Thankfully, the internet has something for everyone, and access is easy enough. When I started searching for more online, I stumbled on DeviantArt. You’ll find a lot of great art based on comics and video games (and more) of all kinds, by amateurs and professionals alike.
The art led me to the stories. Fanfiction.net and archiveofourown are sites where people write, post, and read fan-written fiction on all the above-mentioned media. Like with everything, there are some good and some bad. When you do find the real gems, they can take root in you even deeper than the source material.
The important thing these sites gave me was community. Keep away from the trolls (the mean people who like to pick fights), but feel free to engage with people. Be friendly! If you’re nervous, remember that the web is vast and you’ve got nothing to lose. You’ll be surprised at how nice many of them are!
The internet is where I found myself and learned to be confident in who I am.
I made my first online friend on DeviantArt. She’s an artist whose work I love, and I built up the courage to send her a message one day. Our messages became a friendship, and she gave me access to her group of friends with similar interests/hobbies. Suddenly, I wasn’t alone! I had others to share my interests with, people who I genuinely got along with from all walks of life. Their different backgrounds and perspectives had a great impact on the way I view myself and others. Some of those friendships can last years and can turn into real life friendships! In fact, that first friend checked in on me the other day and we had a great conversation about real life stuff.
My point is, there are communities of positive people in the world. Maybe there aren’t as many female and/or LGBT+ nerds out there as with other hobbies, but the internet brings us together. You don’t have to go at it alone. Send a message, write a comment, and maybe you’ll end up with more than you expected.