Usually I try to follow a happy post/grumpy post pattern, one per week. But this week I am seriously grumped, so you get two grumpy posts.
This topic sprung to mind when I was mulling over Monday’s Nazi post, but it is an unrelated behavior, linked solely by the fact that the offenders tend to be the same douchebags.
So, as most of you have read, or heard if you’ve seen me at conventions or listened to the podcast (which will be coming back. Promise) women who game tend to get a fair amount of harassment from our fellow gamers. Hopefully this is changing and the younger generation isn’t going to have to run the same gauntlet of grabby hands and gropey fingers that I and my friends did. But if you came into gaming in the 80s/90s as a woman you probably got harassed in one way or another.
Now, years ago, we had a member of one of our gaming groups who was gay and had an unavailability fetish, shall we say? The less interested in him a dude was, the more into him he was… sound like any straight boys you know? Yeah, me, neither.
Anyway, while he was in our gaming group, I watched him do the same things to the straight guys that many of them had done or did to me on the regular. The main difference being when he did this to the straight guys, they would flip their shit. “Get off me, dude!!”
This made me raise my eyebrows, because the same guys who would storm off and sulk if a woman asked them to ‘please not touch them, ok, thank you?’ got all affronted when it was a dude touching THEM. Because they were allowed bodily autonomy. One day when problem child wasn’t there, one of said dudes was bitching about him and his ‘Russian hands and Roman fingers,’ the constant offers of back rubs, and just constantly touching him.
I stared at said dude with a flat affect and said, “How terrible for you. I cannot imagine what it’s like to have someone lay their hands on you without permission.”
At least one dude in the group was abashed enough to come up to me after a gaming session where Handsy McFeely had been particularly grabby and apologize.
“I am so sorry if I have ever made you or any woman feel that uncomfortable. I had no idea…”
So, at least he made a stellar bad example.
And before anyone asks, yes, we did talk to him about his behavior. It didn’t make a damn bit of difference, and we eventually quit gaming with him. And while it was one of the major reasons, as I have said previously, bad behaviors rarely occur in singles, so there were multiple reasons.
But not before several straight gamer dudes had epiphanies.
If you like what you read here, or would like to see me hit more clueless dudes with a clue by four, please check out my Patreon. There is Patron exclusive content and the occasional poll.