WomenGamers.com features articles on women in gaming, how to break into the gaming industry, and gaming reviews. Gaming has been a stereotypical male activity, but studies have shown that over half of online gamers are women. This growing trend has changed the way we look at raising children. Gaming mothers face different challenges but in the same token have new and exciting opportunities.
Atari from WomenGamers.com talks about these challenges in her article “Gamer Mom to Be.”
By Ismini "Atari" Roby
"So can you guess what it is?"
I squinted at the ultrasound dumbfounded. I had no idea what I was looking out. "Ok, you got me. I give up."
"It’s a boy. See this right here?" I didn’t see it. I still don’t see it even after she drew an arrow to it and printed it out for me. All I see is a white blob next to a bunch of other white blobs. But the nurse seemed quite certain.
I really didn’t have a preference on sex. Having grown up mainly around girls, I knew a girl would be at least easier to understand (although not necessarily easier to raise). On the other hand, a boy would be quite an adventure for the very same reason. As a kid, I barely understood boys. As an adult, I now have a chance to see that same timeframe from a different perspective.
As we left the doctor’s office, something unexpected happened as I was thinking about the sex of my baby. I started thinking of all the crap that can happen between now and… well lets see I’m up to when this kid gets married and has kids of his own. I prepared my "talks" in advance from day 1, knowing full well that what I am going to say will completely depend on the personality of the kid and will likely change dramatically. I started thinking of things like:
- Fighting off the monsters under the bed
- Finding porn on his computer
- His first girlfriend
- His first black eye
- Teaching him about strangers
- Teaching him about drugs
- Instilling good eating habits on him
- Dealing with depression
- Dealing with loss
- Breaking down stereotypes
- Respecting women while not getting his heart torn up
- Showing him good strategies for playing FPS games
And the list goes on. You also start to worry about stuff like whether you should go to a flat screen monitor so your kid doesn’t become ADHD (new studies have shown that the refresh rate in TVs and monitors effects a child’s brain increasing their chance of getting ADHD during the first couple of years), and whether I should be writing this article right now knowing that the radiation from this 21" monitor might be affecting my kid. Hm, good reason to get that flat screen now… I wonder if my husband will go for that…
Of course, the worrying didn’t end there. Does it ever end I wonder? As I was going maternity clothes shopping today (staring through the cheesy racks of pastel pink clothes that were about ready to make me gag), I started thinking about the kid’s clothing section and how I found both the boy and girl sections to be nearly as frustrating. The girl’s section is riddled with flowery designs in pastels and hot pink, and the boy’s clothes look drab and washed out with images of sports and cars on just about everything you see. Looking at the clothes reminded me of those idiotic Barbie and Hot Wheels computers for kids. It’s so difficult to find things that aren’t stereotyped to a certain sex when you are shopping for a child. Especially when shopping for boys. Girls have far more options as they can cross over with little reprecussions. For example, a girl playing with Hot Wheels is far more acceptable in today’s society than a boy playing with a Barbie. How does one broaden a kid’s choices when so many of the toys and images available are so narrow in vision? All I gotta say is, thank god for Legos.
Speaking of toys, I’ve also come to the conclusion that my kid will probably hate video games since his parents play them rather religiously. It’s Murphy’s Law after all. Besides, my hobbies are somewhat different from my parent’s hobbies. I wonder what he’s going to find interesting and fun? Hrm, there goes my aspirations to make him my crafting mule when he gets old enough to use a computer. Ok, I’m not that mean. And according to one of my Dark Age of Camelot friends up in Montreal, it’s more likely that my kid will put me to work by making me powerlevel him.
Well that’s the beauty about individuality. You never quite know what you’re going to get. For now, maybe I should just stick to figuring out how to change a diaper and leave the ulcers for another day.