Nudism / Naturism.
There is a big debate on the difference between Nudism and Naturism, which is material for another post. However, the reaction to either seems to be the same as depicted in this picture. That is what is unfortunate.
Nude, Naked, in your birthday suit, it's all the same and nothing to be ashamed of. (NSFW)
Admittedly, the title was meant to grab your eye, but if you think about it, what is it about being seen nude that makes people squirm? Remember when you were a kid and you would run around in your skivies or less, no shame, no embarrassment, no big deal. When did that change? Or why did that change? Was it something someone said to you? Did someone shame you? Or were you told that you were too old at one time? I have a pretty good idea it was one or all of those or even something else, that made you decide that you couldn’t be nude outside of closed doors any longer. But there is so much more to being nude then just sex.
Spending time nude as the day you were born is not only comfortable, but liberating as well, and going to a clothing optional resort, camp, or event is not as bad as you think. Why? Because nobody cares that you are nude and everybody is in the same boat. It’s no secret we all have something we don’t like about ourselves, but honestly when everybody is nude the flaws you think you have, seem to melt away. Being nude is natural and there seems to be health benefits as well. I know myself I am less stressed and love the feeling of the sun on my skin. It can also be a bonding experience among friends and I don’t mean that in some sort of exhibitionist or sexual sort of way. When friends are comfortable being nude around each other there is a level of trust, while at the same time showing that they have nothing to hide. I will admit growing up I would go skinny dipping with my friend and we would hike nude any chance we got. I miss that comradery and trust that we had.
Working while nude is another thing that I like to do. It’s comfortable relaxing and I seem to be more productive. You don’t have to worry about ruining any clothes and the it’s less laundry totally a win / win situation. I have what they call a dad bod. It’s a mix between working out now and then at the gym, working around the house, and yet still enjoying a pizza once-in-while. In other words, it's what the other 90% of us guys have and should not be ashamed of. Having a six pack and a sculpted body like a god, is in my opinion not realistic and takes far too much time to maintain, when there are other things I would rather do. What each of us has between our legs should be no more offensive than a finger, toe, or ear. It’s not like we all don’t know what is there, why get all upset about it? So, if you haven’t tried it before you should. Being nude seems to clear your mind and allow for important decisions to be made as well. Just get nude sometime and you will see it’s not dirty, disgusting, or perverted as it seems society would have a person believe.
Didn't see that coming!
So… recently I was enjoying some natural time back at our pond. Clothes free, cooling breeze, peace and quiet. The breeze coupled with the lemon grass spray kept the bugs away. It was a mostly cloudy day, which was wonderful because I have rather pale skin tone and can sunburn fairly quickly if I’m not careful. Thus, my chair is usually set up in the shade, and I will make brief forays into direct sunlight.
As I lay there, the cloud cover began to break up. I found myself exposed to strong, bright, direct sunlight. I decided to lay there anyway for a few moments before moving my chair back into the shade of the large oak tree.
Then, my phone rang.
I looked at the screen. “Private Number”. Hmmm. I rarely get those and don’t answer them, so I swiped the little red icon to quiet the phone. As soon as I set it back down, it started ringing again. I looked at the screen and sure enough it showed the same thing- “Private Number”. Again, I swipe the little red icon to stop the ringing. Strange that a private number would call me in the first place and even stranger it would call me back so quickly. I decided to wait and see if it happened again.
It did. No sooner had I swiped the red icon and decided to see what would happen than my phone started ringing again. And again, the display showed “Private Number”. I figured it would be best to answer it and find out what this is all about. I swiped the green icon and said “Hello”.
“Sir, please move your chair into the shade of that adjacent oak tree if you intend to remain nude.”
Alarmed, I started scanning the area, trying to find the trespasser who was obviously somewhere around me.
“Who is this?” I demanded, reaching for my firearm that I keep handy for snakes and hostile critters.
“Sir, there is no need to panic. Nobody is on your property. I’m with the National Security Administration. The sunlight reflecting off of your body is blinding several key satellites, now PLEASE move your chair into the shade if you intend to remain nude!” Then the call disconnected.
I looked up at the sky in wonder, and immediately moved my chair into the shade. I was starting to get too hot anyway.
An “issue” facing Parents of Naturist Families…
On a religiously oriented nudist forum that I used to participate in, someone asked what we thought “THE” issue facing parents and children practicing naturism is. This was what I posted in response:
My immediate response AND the conclusion I arrived at after much consideration are the same:
Misinterpretation/misunderstanding by outsiders.
Those of us who are practitioners and promoters of genuine nudism and naturism are all too familiar with the knee-jerk reaction of many who see nudism/naturism as a sexually based lifestyle. Here is a partial list of what I have heard/read the misinformed believe about nudism/naturism:
Nudists/Naturists are exhibitionists. They get their kicks from showing their naked bodies to other people.
Nudists/Naturists are voyeurs. They get their kicks from seeing other people naked.
Nudists/Naturists are swingers/partner swappers. They have sex with each other’s spouses and have orgies.
Nudist/Naturist gatherings are sexually charged events.
This is partially OUR fault! I will get into that a little more later on.
Combine the above misconceptions with the insanity of modern society, and it creates a problem. Pause for a moment and consider a few things…
The following were common in American life (and worldwide) but in the last few decades have disappeared or have become very rare:
Casual nudity as dictated by circumstance.
An example would be working or playing outside and removing one’s clothes on the back patio to avoid spreading dirt throughout the home. Sometimes we would strip completely and hose off before even going inside the house to bathe. I’ve worked in places where upon finishing work for the day, it was common to change out of dirty clothes, shower (at work) and change into clean clothes.
Whether spontaneous such as in lakes, creeks, ponds, or pools, or organized such as in schools or the YMCA, skinny dipping was a generally accepted activity. As far as I remember, it was sometimes segregated by gender. However, even in our public schools it was common for males to swim nude, even in mixed gender classes. For some odd reason, females were expected to wear bathing suits. Back in the day, it was still common for groups like the Boy Scouts to let the kids skinny dip, and there were camps that did likewise.
Casual nudity in the home.
Just what it says. Bathing/showering with the bathroom door open, drying off and letting one’s body breath and de-humidify, walking back to the bedroom nude, etc. Granted, years ago most houses only had one bathroom and thus occasionally it was necessary for more than one person to be in that room at the same time. Modern houses tend to have more than one room with a toilet and sink. Years ago, houses were designed and built to take maximum advantage of breezes- lots of windows and good airflow ability through the house because there was no such thing as AC or it was something that only rich people had. That also led to families being less clothed in the home during the warmer seasons. Now? We have eliminated designs with lots of windows, and refrigerate our homes to the point where if one is nude or wearing very light clothing, one feels uncomfortably cold.
Casual child nudity.
They’re natural born nudists, and up until recently, nobody had a problem with a naked kid playing in a wading pool, sprinkler, sandbox, etc. The naked baby/toddler pictures were a common thing.
There are more examples but y’all get the idea.
Here is part of what I believe happened…
Kids need protection. I agree whole-heartedly. However, as we allowed more and more so called “experts” to dictate to us, we failed to notice the slow encroachment of “their” values over the rights of the family. For example, spanking is now not tolerated in some areas. CPS will snatch your kids away if they learn that you have used corporal punishment. This encroachment keeps creeping along. As each “new” thing is vilified and thus no longer acceptable to society in the name of protecting children, they pick something else to focus on.
I used to ride my bike fairly far away from home when I was 9. Stayed gone all day, usually without any direct adult supervision. Just my friends and I playing and exploring. Now? It is actually ILLEGAL in many places to let your children out of your direct sight. Society has subscribed to hysteria. My neighbor goes through figurative hell because it is illegal to leave his two 13 year old sons home alone for more than a dictated amount of time. Both the parents work, so they are constantly shuttling their sons to various places to be “watched”. When I was 7 or 8, I had my own key to the house and let myself in when I got home from school! I was alone, and would feed myself, watch tv, or play until my biological mother returned home hours later.
Society is ever in search of something else that we need to be protected from, particularly children. As we “protect” ourselves and our children from anything and everything we can think of, we also protect them from being able to be independent adults. We prevent them from being able to lose a game, take an insult, stand up for themselves, think critically, etc.
We’ve turned a generation into weaklings in need of protection from opinions that are counter to their own.
When you combine our knee-jerk reaction to protecting kids from anything we feel might alarm them or cause discomfort (much less actually be harmful to them) with society’s sexualized view of nudism the result is obvious. Anyone who goes nude in front of a minor or allows a minor to be nude must be a sexual predator. There can be no other acceptable explanation. Thus, I think that is the primary issue facing parents and children practicing naturism. The uninformed making the assumption of sexual motive in order to “protect”. In their eyes, the truth is what they say it is. The actual truth gets shunted aside. Many nudist parents live in increasing fear that the “wrong” person will find out about their familial nudism and start the life destroying process of child protective services, law enforcement, courts, etc. all because we have been taught we must assume the worst case scenario. Society, especially in many schools, teaches children that secrets are bad and they must tell the teacher everything the teacher wants to know. Parents are faced with the Catch-22 of trying to teach their children that some secrets are good and how to tell the difference, how to keep family business private (such as nudism), etc. In some cases, all it takes is one hateful person making an unsubstantiated claim to destroy lives, families, and careers. And that’s the case even when it is finally proven the claim was wrong.
Now, to continue why do I think this is OUR fault? In answer, I will simply copy part of an article I wrote regarding so called “sex positive” blogs and representations of nudism that promote sex, and how they are partially responsible for the horrible opinion many textiles hold in regards to nudism and family nudism.
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God created us nude. It was not designed to cause arousal. In fact, we were nude long before there was a need to have sex for procreation. Unless we need protection from the environment, we are actually meant to be nude. Clothing interferes with some of the human body’s systems and actually can be detrimental to health- physical, mental, and even spiritual. Nudity was, and should still be, commonplace. There is simply nothing inherently sexual about it.
I honestly believe that the false modesty of clothing is the greatest cause of people viewing simple nudity as arousing. When genitals are only exposed FOR sex, then they come to automatically represent sex WHENEVER they are in view. If genuine nudism was more common, I believe the porn industry would fail or come close to it!
Now… about those “sex-positive” nudist blogs-
The fact of the matter is nudism did not come from sex.
Nudism and sex are NOT inherently related to each other.
Yes, sex is natural. However it has no place in nudism. There are many things that are natural that have no place in nudism.
“Sex-positive” tends to be code for porn.
When I run across the “sex-positive” blogs, they always include eroticism/pornography and use the same argument to justify it; i.e.- sex (or erections) = natural and thus should be celebrated and included. Uh… No.
They use this “natural” argument as a means of trying to bring some legitimacy to their position. They try to pass blatantly sexual behavior off as simple nudism. When they are called out on this, they defend their position by claiming anyone who doesn’t like to include sex in nudism is denying how natural it is. This allows them to call themselves “nudists” and label their behavior as “nudism” instead of calling it what it really is – pornography, swinging, exhibitionism, voyeurism, etc.
So what’s the problem?
They are falsely equating nudism with sex. They are linking them together and reinforcing that link.
When a solitary nudist or a textile interested in nudism see’s that, he or she may get the impression that a majority of nudists think that way. This may cause them to never reach out to other nudists, never visit a resort, and even feel ashamed of their own nudity even though it is not arousing for them.
When a textile see’s these “sex-positive” blogs, it just reinforces their assumption that nudists are perverts and nudism is all about sex, swinging, orgies, partner swapping, etc.
THAT in turn makes it more difficult for real nudism to be accepted. It also lends itself to another problem, and that is the exclusion of family. When one presents nudism as being a sexual lifestyle, one is also creating an atmosphere that requires precluding nudist families. As a result, more and more people see nudity of any kind as automatically sexual.
This in turn shapes laws, corporate policies, etc. Just look at tumblr- more porn than one could ever view in a single lifetime and those blogs remain. But when genuine nudists try to promote family friendly non sexual nudism, they get banned. Why? Because tumblr either sees nudism as an “adults only” sexual lifestyle or they don’t want the hassle of constantly having to defend non-pornographic nude images. And it’s not just tumblr. Most websites that allow any kind of nude images have similar policies.
Why did this happen? Because we, the real nudists of the world, have allowed the perverts to sully the image of nudism with sex and pornography. Because we sat silently by while they taught the world that nudity is all about sex, not about simply being normal and natural. We let them define nudism because we didn’t want to get into a debate. We didn’t want to get involved. We figured to let them have their perverted part of the internet and simply exclude them from our genuine nudism and nudist sites. That has backfired in the worst way.
The same way the gross misbehavior of some single male nudists backfired on all single male nudists. Nudism is being viewed more and more frequently as a sexually based lifestyle. Thus, this erroneous stereotype is being applied more and more often to ALL nudists. Nudism is being linked to sex, and the more “sex-positive” junk that is out there to be seen, the stronger that link becomes. This results in more and more restrictions upon nudism.
These “sex-positive” folks are creating a bad image, a stereotype that is being applied to all of us.
We are being punished for the actions of others who falsely claim their sexual behavior is representative of nudism. We are allowing this to happen.
Assert the principals of genuine nudism.
Engage in being an active defender of genuine nudism… or sit back and watch it disappear. Sit back and allow you and your nudist family, friends, etc. be labeled as perverts when in reality you are far from that.
Don’t be an entitled lazy nudist and expect everyone else to do it for you. Step up and help… many hands make light work!