The first step in “normalizing nudity” is to spend as much time as possible naked at home. The people you live with are usually the most important people who need to be comfortable with your nudity. If anyone you live with isn’t comfortable with even the idea that you might be naked at home, then you may have to be secretive about it with them, at least initially. That’s often difficult and not really a good idea for a number of reasons. Perhaps the most important reason is that you’ll be constrained on when and where you can be naked – and you’ll always be afraid they’ll find out you enjoy nudity. You may even feel that what you are doing is “wrong” or “shameful” – which will certainly cripple your enjoyment of nudity.
This note is all about starting to be naked at home in the presence of others you live with – a spouse, unmarried partner, children, relatives, a good friend or friends, or just others you’re sharing a living space with. I’ll focus mostly on adults you live with, since children may be an additional complication. If you are living with children – and you’re not a single parent – you’ll also need to have the approval of your partner.
Unless you’re sure that you must be secretive about your interest in nudity, the very first step is to let as many as possible of those you live with know about this interest. Depending on the quality of your relationship with a particular person, you could just pick a suitable time and tell them plainly that you’d like to be naked at home. But don’t try that if you’re not confident your relationship is good enough that the immediate reaction won’t be disapproval.
Perhaps you’ve already discussed the idea in a general way with the person, without indicating that you have a serious interest in being naked. For instance, the idea may have come up based on something you or the other has read about naturism, nude beaches, or anything else involving nonsexual nudity. In this case, you should have at least some idea of how the other person feels about being around a naked person. That should help you guess how easy or difficult it may be to explain your desire to be naked.
But suppose the subject of being nonsexually naked with others hasn’t ever come up. You could, of course, bring it up casually yourself. For example, you might mention that you’ve read about, or heard about from someone, an event or activity of some sort that involves nonsexual nudity and caught your attention. It might be anything – something about nude beaches, a World Naked Bike Ride, nude yoga, or whatever. You needn’t just blurt out that the idea rather piqued your interest. You might simply say that you wonder how it felt to participate in that event or activity, or you wonder how much courage was needed to participate. That’s certainly a good approach if you think the other person is open-minded enough not to clearly dismiss the whole idea out of hand.
There’s another way to bring up the subject of nonsexual nudity without at first disclosing how much it interests you. That’s to visit, together with the other person, a museum or art gallery where photos, paintings, or other works of art involving nudity are on display. If there’s no museum or art gallery handy, you could purchase one or more books with artistic nudity and leave them in a visible location. Many people have this strange way of accepting or approving of nudity when it’s presented as “art” – rather than as something encountered in “real life”.
However, if you have little or no idea how another person might react to nudity, an alternative is to leave some clues around your living space that suggest an interest in naturist nudity. Perhaps you just leave your computer unattended with something about naturism on the screen. Or you obtain a book or magazine about naturism or artistic nudity and leave it around where it could be seen. If you’re lucky, the other person will bring up the subject on their own.
There are ways you can actually spend a lot of time naked without necessarily encountering objections. For instance, just start going to bed naked – if you’re not already doing that. If you sleep alone in a private room that shouldn’t be a problem at all. You could then let this “secret” get out – if you think it wouldn’t invite unfavorable comments. If you sleep with someone else, there shouldn’t be any problem, especially before or after lovemaking. However you do it, sleeping naked should be an uncontroversial way to let others know that you enjoy nudity. Another possibility, if you have a private spa or swimming pool, is to let it be known that you want to enjoy those things naked. This, again, shouldn’t be too controversial, especially if it can be done out of sight of anyone who might object.
Let’s move on. Suppose everyone you live with is aware that you’d like to be naked at home some – or even most – of the time. If you’re lucky, there might be, perhaps, some amusement – but no serious objections. So you can start going naked, perhaps a little at first, then increasingly more often. Hopefully, everyone will quickly get used to your nudity – and start to consider it “normal” for you.
Unfortunately, but realistically, one or more people you live with will either object to your nudity, or at least have significant concerns about it. As naturists, we know that most of the reasons that people are uncomfortable with nonsexual nudity are a result of the social conditioning they’ve had from an early age. Since most people have been raised to believe that nudity is acceptable only in very limited cases, they may well be unable to explain clearly the reasons for their feelings about it. Even if they offer various “reasons”, these will usually be due to misconceptions about nudity and nudism that are widespread in our society.
If others think they’ll be uncomfortable with your nudity, you can’t ignore it. You’ll have to deal with it. Luckily, that’s actually not so hard to do – if you’ve prepared ahead of time for the objections and concerns that may be raised. Provided that anyone who has erroneous beliefs about nudity respects you enough to listen to your explanations, it’s quite possible to persuade them to change their minds.
In order to be prepared you just need to think about as many of the possible objections as you can. Although there are a lot of them, they need to be taken seriously. The good news is that the objections usually fall into a smaller number of categories. Besides that, most people will be especially concerned with only a few of them. At least another entire post is needed to begin addressing the various objections, so I’ll save more details for later. But I can mention some of the major categories.
Some people think that nudity can’t be “normal”, since naturists are a rather small minority in most societies – and tend to be secretive about it as well. And there’s confusion about what “normal” actually means. Regrettably, many people feel that “typical” naked bodies are unpleasant or even “disgusting” to look at. You could point out that since most people rarely see typical bodies naked, they’ve gotten the wrong idea about what normal bodies “should” look like. People who’re religious may believe – rightly or wrongly – that their religion dictates strong limits on when nudity is acceptable. Most people in our society have been conditioned (wrongly) to believe that nudity and sexuality are very closely related. But this erroneous belief affects men and women differently. People with children may be concerned mainly about the effects nudity might have on children.
If there are concerns about the legality of nudity, you should know what the laws about nudity are where you live. In all but a few places, there are no laws against nudity in your own home, with certain provisions. Many people will be worried about whether nudity is “sanitary”. So explain how you shower or bathe frequently, and are careful that wherever you sit has a towel or some other temporary covering on it. Others will be concerned about your nudity when they expect to have friends or other visitors around. So promise to either cover up a little, or in some other way avoid being naked around anyone who might be upset about it.
You can, certainly, think of many other objections people might raise. However, since most people will be mainly concerned about only some of these issues, the first step in dealing with and assuaging the concerns is to find out specifically what the main concerns are. That requires having candid conversations to explore the concerns and identify the reasons behind them. But our society typically connects nudity with feelings of shame and embarrassment, so many people are somewhat embarrassed even talking about nudity. That’s a problem right off the bat. However, with enough tact, the conversation is possible. At that point, you can explain why the mistaken assumptions about nudity are wrong.
Emphasize to everyone that you don’t want your nudity to cause any problems. So if anyone has or finds additional concerns about nudity, encourage them to bring up those concerns with you in order to work out mutually agreeable solutions. Make it clear to everyone that you’re willing to meet them halfway on any potential problems – and you’ll make the necessary accommodations for particular circumstances if they’ll accept your nudity in general.
If you have any thoughts or experiences related to this issue, please bring them up in the comments. If you’ve had to deal with this issue, how did you handle it?
Here are some other things to read that deal with these issues:
- Debunking the misconceptions about naturism
- What to do when your spouse is not a naturist?
- Nothing wrong – and lots right – with a bit of public nudity
- The Misconceptions of Naturism
- Making Your Coming Out as a Naturist
- Gender Bias? When you tell people you’re a naturist?
- Recent articles on nudity and naturism, 2/10/20