'Top surgery scar' offered for new Sims avatars

The Sims 4 has announced an update that allows players to select non-binary or transgender characters with mastectomy scars or accessories such as breast binders and tucking underwear.

Mia Ashton Montreal QC

The popular video game The Sims has announced an update that allows players to select non-binary or transgender characters with mastectomy scars or accessories such as breast binders and tucking underwear.

The Sims 4, a life simulation game advertised as being suitable for youth age 12 and over, boasts that players can now add a “top surgery scar” to their character which can be found in the “body scars category.”  

Also on offer is a “binder” for your teen or older Sims, and in the underwear category for “bottoms,” there is a new “shapewear asset.” 

Binders are dangerous chest compression devices worn to flatten the breasts of gender-distress teenage girls and young women who believe themselves to be men. These devices have been shown to damage rib and lung development and cause shortness of breath, overheating, and rashes. 

Shapewear appears to be a euphemism for “tucking” underwear worn by boys and men who identify as women and wish to tuck their genitals between their legs to create a more feminine appearance. While there is no research to say this practice is safe, there is evidence that “tucking” for long periods of time can cut off blood circulation and can also cause skin issues, irritation from friction or fungal infections.

The update announcement sparked outrage on Twitter, with many users suggesting such options promote self-harm and indoctrinate young people into thinking body-part amputation is normal and healthy. Some likened it to having an anorexic character option, or one with “cutting” scars.

However, others weighed in to say that the video game has had trans characters for years. 

“Since The Sims 4 release in 2014, players have had the ability to choose their sims gender expression regardless of their sims gender identity. This meant that we could enable our sims to be gender non-conforming and experiment with feminine and masculine styles,” explained one experienced player.

In 2016, it became possible to customize your Sim’s sex characteristics and gender expression, giving options such as having a male Sim with the ability to get pregnant or a female Sim with the ability to impregnate. 

Since 2019, there has been an array of Pride flags to choose from, including polysexual, aromantic, and straight ally, and in 2022, a pronoun feature was added allowing users to customize how they would like their character to be addressed.

Since 2014, the number of trans-identified children and adolescents has skyrocketed. Many experts believe that the messaging young people are exposed to, both online and in the classroom, has contributed to a social contagion of gender dysphoria in the adolescent population.

One Twitter user pointed out that if The Sims 4 truly wants to be representative of the transgender community, the game ought to include detransitioners who have been left with irreversible damage to their bodies because society and the medical world ignored all the underlying reasons why they believed themselves to be transgender.

The Sims

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