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nudity around children

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 
How much of your body does your child see? I am wondering if there are other families out there that bathe together and walk around nude? Our dd is only 19 mo but I wonder how long we will be walking around nude or taking baths with her! What are your reasons for sharing yourselves in that way? Mine is to teach her that our bodies are perfect and that we should not be a shamed of our bodies. A form of acceptance...

What is your philosophy?
post #2 of 32
Nudity is totally acceptable I think. My son (Lou) bathed with me until he was over 4...we only stopped because of my big pregnant belly Now he is almost 5 and Ian (the then pregnant belly) is big enough to get in the tub with him. I have no problem with nudity. It is no big deal to see us naked. I just don't see why it should be. I play it by ear...if my son at some point seems uncomfortable I will respect that. Of course we will also talk about it, too. But I will stay clothed only when he seems to need me to.
post #3 of 32
On principle I would say the more opportunity children have to see confident naked parents, the better. However, in experience, I just got annoyed seeing Dad run around naked getting ready in the mornings at around age 5.
post #4 of 32
My daughters see me nude a lot, like almost every day. It's either when I'm in the shower (glass shower stall) or getting dressed or undressed. No biggie. I think it's very important that young girls know what a *real* woman's body looks like and not just what they see in the media. They are now (at 8) starting to show they're uncomfortable at times, by immediately backing out of the room or averting their eyes. When this happens I reach for a towel or something right away because it's not fair for me to make them uncomfortable. I have started to warn them if I hear them coming and I'm not dressed and they usually want to wait to talk to me until I'm dressed. Dh is never nude around them, though, he's not comfortable with it.

We do bathe with our baby (5 months), and plan to do it as long as it's easier that way. I'm not sure when I'll be careful about keeping myself covered as he grows up; this boy thing is totally new to me. I imagine around age 4 he'll start showing that he doesn't want me to run around naked (not that I do often, but I'm sure he'll walk in on me).

Personally I think that as long as everyone involved is okay with it, it's okay. On the other hand, maybe some children don't know how to say that they don't like it so it continues too long and causes issues.
post #5 of 32
I take showers with my 21 mo dd, and she sees me getting dressed. Dh wouldn't DREAM of showing of himself and I respect that.

I was thinking about this issue the other day. I was thinking/wondering about how a child "naturally" develops a sense of modesty. My dd (who weaned at 13 mo) was with me while I dressed and was pointing at my boobs saying "boobie, boobie". She reached out but right when she was about to touch it, jerked her hand back, scrunched up her face and giggled. Now why would she have the notion of doing that? She breastfed, she showers with me. It really got me thinking.

I remember seeing my mom in the bathtub. She would always cover her boobs with a washcloth. I thought that was strange (I was maybe 5-6). I did not appreciate seeing my dad once, and I'm still traumatized by the vision :

I would say that I'll probably stop dressing in front of her around the age of 3. Not hiding, not jumping and eeking if she comes into the room, just not deliberately doing it in front of her. If she wants to take a shower together, I'm sure she'll ask, and I'll be totally fine with that.
post #6 of 32
Ds is almost 2 1/2 he sees me and dh naked all the time, baths getting dressed, undressed.
Just recently I've noticed my own 'modesty' about being naked, I think though, it has a lot to do with the fact that whenener ds sees my breasts, he wants to nurse!
He knows boys have penises, but I haven't gotten into the vagina dialog with him...
BTW-has anyone seen the Vagina Monolouges? Wow, what a great show!
I hope to accept my humaness and hope I can pass that along to my little one
post #7 of 32
my children don't really see any of me naked.

i don't take them into the bathroom with me.

i don't change in front of them.

i don't nurse.

im fine with other people doing so, but it makes me uncomfortable.

im not "prudish" at all though......i wear small little bikinis....short shorts....low cut stuff.

i just don't want my kids to see me naked. i don't feel comfortable that way, and so we don't.
post #8 of 32
Sleepies, I *never* saw either of my parents naked. It never even occurred to me that children could see naked parents. I'd rather have that than have what one of my friends had to go through--an exhibitionist dad. No kidding, she would have a friend over and her dad would be walking around nude. Totally inappropriate. There are times when it's okay, times when it's not, and if it's not comfy for anyone then it's gotta go.

LOL, I just remembered that when I was about 7 and learning how to shower rather than bathe, along with learning how to wash my own loooong hair my mom got in the shower with me--in her swimsuit!
post #9 of 32
hehehe twin.

i saw my mom naked

but, i didn't like it.

it made me feel afraid to grow up.
post #10 of 32
ROTFLOL...maybe that's why my mom wore her swimsuit, she didn't want to scare me! Hopefully I've scared my twins enough to avoid any early babies. LOL, they've seen the stretchmarks, the National Geographic boobs, the saddlebags, cellulite, and wiggly, jiggly flesh. They're not gonna want kids anytime in the next couple decades!
post #11 of 32
hehehheheh twin you are too funny!

my mom actually has a great body, but....it was still scary.

i hear you about it being built in birth control though!!! hahhaha
post #12 of 32
I haven't really thought about it that much - my husband is not naked as often as I am, I'm almost always caught once a day at the very least - and because I have a habit of smacking my little guy on his bare butt (I can't resist - its just too cute) - he does the same to me when he sees me naked - and we end up chasing each other around the house..... (screaming and laughing like crazy folk)

I never thought that to some people that might seem strange. I can't see myself doing that when he's in college !!! LOL :

But I haven't thought of a time to "stop" either.

DS - Trenton 8/19/99
post #13 of 32
my son is only 1 yo... I sleep nude and we cosleep. He sees me get dressed, get undressed, we bathe together... dh sleeps seperately, but he is very open w/ being nude. ds sees him go to the shower nude, change clothes, and he likes to go in the bathroom and watch him pee- he thinks it's sooo funny.
I posted a thread on this topic about a week ago. Asking others about their feelings on nudity- there were some great responses!
Anyways- my parents weren't very open about being nude around me. I don't remember ever seeing them naked. I wish they would've been. It took me a while to not feel so shy changing in front of other girls, or being intimate w/ men, or showering at the gym, etc.
Dh,as I said, is very open. I think he helped me get over my shyness and feel comfortable w/ my body being naked. I want to be open and casual w/ds about it, so he doesn't feel ashamed or awkward about nudity. I mean it's our bodies... they are beautiful...natural. I want him to fel that. I want him to be free of all the conditioning and taboo and sexual crap people lay on being naked. I want himto feel free to skinny dip!
post #14 of 32

Family Bath

Dh and I have a longstanding tradition of destressing at the end of the day in the large jacuzzi tub that came with our apartment. Along came dd(now 5 months); we learned quickly that she loves the tub. It's her favorite place.

It's very convenient to do her bath with us, but we were just talking the other day about how long it's appropriate for Dh to participate. We love the whole routine, and the squeals that Dd makes as she tries to join our conversation.

I used to work with a woman whose adult daughter is still in therapy because long ago stepdad once walked through the living room nude. I'm sure there's more to the story, but it gave us something to ponder.

I guess if she doesn't like what she sees, it'll keep her out of boy trouble later.
post #15 of 32
Thread Starter 
Tell us more... how did you feel seeing your dad naked? Why do you think your were anoyed? I'm curious. It happend to me too. A weird feeling that I can't quite explain.
post #16 of 32
I think the Sears' advice is sound. However, my oldest is 5 and doesn't yet seem anywhere close to discovering his modesty.

I'm actually a very modest person, no skinny-dipping for me. Even around friends I am self-conscious about nudity. But I take baths with my boys and they see me get dressed and it seems to me absolutely normal and natural; in a sense, my body still belongs to them, just as it did when they were babies. It won't always, obviously. But they are still just little boys, totally innocent about sexuality. They run around nude all the time, they are totally unselfconscious about their bodies, which I just absolutely love, it is quite a thing to have the privelege of witnessing such freedom and innocence. It's quite a beautiful thing.
post #17 of 32
I still bathe several times a week with both DD (just turned 3) and DS (4 months). DH generally has at least one bath a week with both of them. Esp. since they both still nurse and we co-sleep (therefore share a dressing area) I have no problem with nudity. DH does cover his "naughty bits" with a washcloth when bathing with DD.

I have no problem with nudity and just plan on taking it as it comes. DD does sometimes want to go to the bathroom by herself, but I think that is more about getting her own HUGE amts of soap than privacy (though she no longer invites her friends to "watch" her pee, but is fine with mom or dad or some other adults--- nana, poppa, etc...).

I *really* did not want to stop being naked yet around DD because that would make it soooo hard with having a new baby (hey, she even saw the birth, me totally naked squating without a problem).

Just this last year my niece started wanting to dress privately (she turned 8 in September) and wore a swimsuit when visiting and taking a bath with her brother (6) sister (5) and DD (2 then). We just had them all wear swimsuits so she wouldnt feel awkward (she didn't feel weird seeing them naked, jsut being seen, but thought it would be easier).

Whatever works, works.
post #18 of 32
Since day one we have all bathed together almost daily.

These days though, all the girls inc. dw have a giggle when I get undressed. :

post #19 of 32
My mom left when I was real little, so I don't remember ever seeing her naked...
My father came into my life when I was already 4 or 5 so I think he refrained fro ever being naked around me.
I saw my brother naked once, and I remember asking him why we were different. I didn't understand why nobody would tell me.
I've always been shy about sharing my body, even back when I had one to show off. DH is very open about it though, and it has helped me to open up some.
My DD is 7 months and sees me naked all the time. Nursing, bathing, changing, using the restroom.... she see's it all. My DH ont he other hand has never seen me use the restroom, nope... never. I'm a prude. I tend to change in the open room but when he isn't looking.... I think my body image problems stem from other places though.
I will probably continue to be naked around Malia until she shows discomfort about it. With her it is so natural and innocent, ya know? I mean she was born by means of my vagina, I just can't see being discreet with her

post #20 of 32
My mother and I have been openly nude around each other our whole lives (showering together or in front of the other, changing, whatever). It doesn't come up that much anymore, but we are still comfortable (at age 60 and 30). My dad was always very relaxed about nudity. I remember our family skinny dipping together when we were kids and if he had to change, I wasn't asked to leave the room. He didn't strut around, but he didn't hide himself. I have never gone to great lengths to hide myself from my brothers, and for some reason in our house, no one ever closed bedroom doors.

It was a non-issue in our family, and our "modesty" never kicked in. I think modesty has to be created and is not innate. Dh and I are openly naked around our 20 month old, and don't see any reason to start hiding ourselves.
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