Nudist Clubs and Male or Female Genital Jewelry Revisited

| September 18, 2015 | 27 Comments

It’s Time for Nudist Clubs to Change Their Policies on Genital Jewelry

There’s an issue in the nudist world that has long been bothering us as an organization that bases our values on acceptance. It’s the issue of nudist clubs and naturist resorts that bar entry to people with body and genital jewelry.

nudist clubs genital nipple jewelry piercings naturism nudism yna

YNA Addresses Body Jewelry & Piercings at Nudist Clubs

A few years ago, we discussed the issue of nipple piercings. My home club, Rock Lodge, had a rule against them, but they changed this policy not too long after we published the article. Now nipple piercings are allowed. We were really happy about that and felt the change was long overdue.

As we pointed out in discussing nipple piercings, even Susan Weaver, who was then president of AANR, had her nipples pierced. Despite this, AANR hasn’t taken a stance against clubs that would bar entry based on nipple or body jewelry. Even if a club is a “100% AANR club,” they can have a policy that would technically exclude an AANR president from visiting (though to my knowledge, no club ever told Susan that she couldn’t visit, even if they had a rule against nipple jewelry).

I haven’t come across any club or resort that still has a policy forbidding nipple jewelry. (If you know of one please share in the comments.) But the issue of body jewelry policies doesn’t stop at nipples. Rock Lodge, along with a number of other nudist clubs, still has a rule against genital jewelry. This bothers us, for the same reasons as the nipple piercings.

Nipple Piercings at Nudist Resorts

Nipple Piercings at Nudist Resorts

Those who are against genital decoration argue that people are making nudism sexual by having their genitalia pierced, and that they are doing something wrong by drawing attention to that body part.

Let’s explain why this makes no sense. The main tenet of naturism is that the human body can be sexual or not, depending on the context. When people are nude together in a naturist setting, the genitals are no more “sexual,” “dirty” or shameful than the stomach or elbow.

Humans are sexual beings, and of course, being naked doesn’t prevent anyone from thinking sexual thoughts about others. As a result, it becomes quite evident that your biggest sex organ is actually one that you can’t see… your BRAIN.

When it comes to the human body and sexuality, it’s all about context. There’s a time and place for everything.

So it would go that genital jewelry can just be just as innocent as pierced ears or a pierced belly button. Or on the flip side, earrings are just as sexual as genital jewelry. There are definitely people who get sexual pleasure from their piercings, in private, behind closed doors. Unless a person is treating their jewelry like a sex toy in public, there’s really no reason why they shouldn’t be permitted to join a nudist setting.

As for how it “draws attention to the wrong area,” well 1. By saying that, aren’t we treating the genitals like some taboo body part in the same way that society at large does? 2. I can say from experience that unless someone has decorated their crotch like a Christmas tree, nobody seems to have any trouble with staring. You look or you glance at it, just like you would at a necklace, then you go back to looking at the person’s face.

These anti-piercing arguments were even more troubling when it came to nipples, which are not sex organs. The primary function of female breasts / nipples is to feed babies. Some people, of all genders, do get sexual pleasure from their nipples in a sexual context. Just like some people get sexual pleasure from their ears, but we don’t forbid piercings on them.

The other argument against piercings has to do with the idea that they’re inappropriate in family settings where kids are present. But the issue here always falls on the shoulders of those parents who are often afraid to deal with their kids’ innocent questions. (As a side rant to parents, please don’t lie to your kids or deny them information about their bodies. There’s such a thing as age-appropriate answers. We have the Internet now. If you’re not sure how to answer a question, Google it or email someone who might have the information you seek.)

If a kid points at a penis ring and says, “What’s that?” The answer is simple: “It’s a piercing.” If the follow-up question is, “Why does he have it?” then the answer should be something like, “because he thinks it’s pretty.”

The issue of genital jewelry also came up in the context of San Francisco’s nudity ban. Some of the male nudists were wearing cock rings in public. As we noted in this article, a cock ring is typically worn on the base of the penis and is used for maintaining erections, but can also just be worn for decoration. In that same article we also ran a poll on whether cock rings were “too sexual to be worn in public,” even if just worn as decoration.

Some 300+ people took the poll, and these were the results below. Nearly 70% said cock rings should be acceptable in public if they’re just worn as a piece of decorative jewelry. A small percentage said they thought it shouldn’t be worn around children.

nudist clubs genital jewelry piercings cock rings poll naturism yna

Cock Ring YNA poll results

 

In the nudist world, opinions on body jewelry have definitely shifted in recent years. Like it or not, more and more people have nipple and / or genital jewelry, especially young adults. Some clubs have changed their policies out of necessity, as more visitors or members have showed up with body jewelry. Others, however, are holding onto their policies that seem increasingly outdated for 2015.

I wouldn’t argue that a body piercing is crucial to a person’s identity or an aspect of themselves that they can’t change – like race or sexual orientation. Piercings are removable to some extent but they are a form of self-expression. We see this issue as a dent in the naturist philosophy. At least as far as accepting a person as they are, as well as recognizing that nudity doesn’t have to be sexual.

In the northeast, I’ve found just 2* nudist clubs that still forbid genital jewelry: Berkshire Vista (MA) and Rock Lodge Club (NJ). (I’ve also found that many nudist clubs in the U.S. don’t address piercings on their websites at all. I haven’t inquired with every club, but the ones I did contact said they were permitted.)

For clubs that do permit jewelry, many specify that it must be “discrete” or “inconspicuous.” I think this is reasonable. Nobody needs to walk around with big chains and bells on their genitalia.

Solair Nudist Resort in Connecticut is one co-operative club in the northeast that recently changed their rules to permit genital jewelry. We’ve been talking to them about this policy for a few years, and as a co-op it took time to get enough votes to support it. It was changed this past June and we applaud Solair for becoming a more inclusive, accepting club!

Not everyone was on board with their new policy, however. On a recent trip to Solair, we met one member who said he thought it went against “family values.” Unfortunately he was not able to articulate how exactly.

In 2015, I think the nudist community is ready to become more inclusive when it comes to body jewelry. It’s time to better practice what we preach.

(*In fact there are 3 clubs that bar entry to people with genital jewelry if we count Cedar Waters Village in New Hampshire. Cedar Waters is a private resort for heterosexual couples ONLY who don’t want to hang out with gay people. They don’t allow nipple or genital piercings or same-sex couples. You read that right…they openly discriminate against gay people. In 2015.)

Young Naturists & Nudists America

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Category: Felicity's Nudist Blog

About the Author ()

Author of Felicity's Blog. Co-founder of Young Naturists America. 3rd-generation nudie. Avid reader. Feminist. 70% vegan, 30% vegetarian. When I'm not busy eating, I'm writing about naturism, censorship, topfree equality, body image and other fun topics. I like feedback, so plz leave a comment when you've got something to say!
  • MrSandy Well personally, I don’t care if they do. Upon further reflection I think the limitation of it being “discrete” is actually unnecessary. It seems like most clubs don’t end up having to deny anyone entry due to crazy elaborate piercings. People have told me they have multiple rings / piercings on their genitals for example and have had no problems at whatever club they go to. At Juniper Woods there was a guy who you could actually hear his penis jingling down the road. The clubs that say “discrete” don’t attempt to define it specifically and of course it’s up to them where to draw the line. It’s the same with trying to draw the line for acceptable clothing.

  • carlnudi

    SoWhatAgain influence culture wear less frankesparza6 Well stated, @SoWhatAgain. Your experiences closely mirror mine. Thank you of giving a different viewpoint.

  • frankesparza6

    I would like to add my two cents worth here. .appropriate genital jewelry can be all right so long as it’s not gaudy nor sexually suggestive. As nudists/naturists we don’t make it a big deal to see each other’s privates and so long as you don’t use anything to draw attention to them I feel personal choice and propriety plus the club rules that you’re going to should take precedence.

  • MrSandy

    JackieDeeNJ What about everyone else? No two visitors represent Rock Lodge.

  • MrSandy

    ” For clubs that do permit jewelry, many specify that it must be
    “discrete” or “inconspicuous.” I think this is reasonable. Nobody needs
    to walk around with big chains and bells on their genitalia.”  What if they want to?

  • SoWhatAgain

    influence culture wear less SoWhatAgain frankesparza6 
    We are in danger of wandering well off topic.
     I’m from the UK and due to the not-so-grand ole Empire, we are maybe used to having Muslims live in our midst for longer than other Western countries.

    I’ve worked with Muslims and although maybe generally much more attendant to their religion than their Church of England counterparts, I prefer to take them as I see them, one by one, and generally I found them to be typical people who didn’t make a thing of their religion around me. Neither have I had Muslim evangelists knocking on my front door like I have had Presbyterians doing on numerous occasions. Those were probably second or even third generation Muslims and often have as much problem in dealing with their parents, grandparents and the elders in their community, viz social and cultural disagreement, as they have with the majority whites in the community. Most I found were just interested in having a job, making a career and having whatever the Abduls or Zias next door have, whether that be a smartphone or a 40″ flat screen.

    We also have to remember that some of the most militant and violent Muslims that have gone to the Middle East or Africa on a jihad, have been white converts to Islam. Personally, I view such people as authoritarian zealots first and ‘X’ religionists second. Sure, their particular brand of religion facilitates their propensity for fundamentalism and extremism, but if it wasn’t religion, it would be something else. Religion amongst other things, is a form of tribalism that sets your tribe against another tribe and as the old joke goes, “If religion didn’t exist, someone would have to invent it”.

    What religious fundamentalists fear above all else is change, the unknown future, but they are not unusual in that respect; that is the essence of conservatism. Conservatives don’t want change but when it is forced on them and they eventually like it, they don’t reject it any longer as a matter of principle. Indeed, they will often go so far as to claim it as their own. Personally, I don’t understand that mindset and never will, for which I will be forever grateful; the thought of living in perpetual fear.

    Anecdotally, it reminds me of the guy I met for a lunch-time business meeting one time, He was Jewish. We were having a finger buffet for lunch and as soon as the sandwiches arrived he declared he was starving and dived straight for the ham ones. I laughed and said to him “I thought you weren’t supposed to eat that sort of thing”? He just shrugged, smiled and said that he liked them and as he liked them he eat them. We then had a conversation on the “Imm-ness” of bacon sandwiches; whether smoked or unsmoked, tomato ketchup or brown sauce (a UK thing).
    It’s little experiences like that which has taught me that the world is not the black and white place that others would have me believe it is. I like seeing it that way and I like when it is that way.

  • frankesparza6

    I bet bowser you’re the kind of perv that hides in the bushes with binoculars and stares at the naked people that you hate so much. If it bothers you so much then stop dogging us put away those field glasses and stop staring at us.

  • carlnudi Thanks! :)

  • BillBowser hahahaha. I’m too young to understand? That’s your response? Jordan is 39 and he agrees with me. Is he also too young to understand? Do tell, at what age does a person finally understand the issue of nudist clubs not permitting genital jewelry?
    Funny you should talk about age. The reality is that most nudist clubs have a 50+ demographic, and yet most nudist clubs allow genital jewelry. Seems like they’ve got it figured out and agree with me that clubs should allow it. Unless there are some big controversies that I’ve been missing around this issue at these nudist clubs. If there are I’d like to know about them.

  • JackieDeeNJ Do you really think it’s appropriate to publicly name the people you didn’t like there? Because it’s really not.

  • JackieDeeNJ …how exactly does that sentence discriminate against anyone?

  • JackieDeeNJ

    On a recent trip to Solair, we met one member who said he thought it went against “family values.” Unfortunately he was not able to articulate how exactly.

    I think it is shameful that you discriminate against those who aren’t articulate.

  • carlnudi

    Felicity, this is a well-reasoned article and I can tell you put a lot of thought into it. 
    I have 10 genital piercings and have been to Lake Como in Pasco County, Florida, and have had no problems. The people are are really a down-home, welcoming bunch.
    But because there are other area resorts that are not as progressive, I just visit the nude beaches, especially Playalinda, where I don’t have to be subjected to anyone’s personal likes or dislikes.
    BTW, I’m rebloging this at https://lookingatbothsidesnow.wordpress.com

  • frankesparza6

    I was asking because in some of the clubs and resorts that I’ve been to including some of which I’ve been a member of some of the ladies who had piercings that did actually show. Just asking. Thank you for your reply. .

  • frankesparza6

    Then why are you on this site? Are you trying to fulfill some sick voyeuristic perversion or what? Could it be that you really want to join us but to scared to give it a try? It’s okay really it is we won’t laugh we don’t laugh at anyone. ..we promise. .

  • BillBowser

    What makes sense to one person is not necessarily what makes sense to others. Many of those problem solutions which are so obvious to you when you’re young become much less clear when you are older. The idealism of youth gradually fades and reality dawns. These issues are not as easy to deal with as you think.

  • frankesparza6 if a club forbids genital jewelry, the rule presumably applies to a person of any gender, though a labia piercing for example might not be visible to anyone anyway.

  • BillBowser Well duh, of course any business can set its own policies. There’s no legal obligation for them to change on this one. The point is that it just doesn’t make sense. 
    The “I don’t want to see that” argument is also idiotic, whether a person doesn’t want to see nudity or any kind of body modification or even a person’s physical flaws. You can’t really live in the real world today and avoid ever seeing a tattoo or piercing. If you don’t want to look at it, the solution is pretty simple…don’t look.

  • frankesparza6

    Thank you

  • BillBowser

    If the clubs you frequent, or any other businesses you deal with, have policies with which you disagree then you can try to get them change, but you must keep in mind that personal freedom permits business owners to adopt whatever policies they think are appropriate except where the government has interfered by imposing regulations. Just as there are people who don’t want to see naked people, there are those who don’t care to see piercings and tattoos.

  • livefyrebob

    The Buddha has some important things to say about desire — mainly that we would do well do be rid of them.  Seems to me that people aren’t wearing much when they reach heaven.

  • HomerJayK

    I wondered that about gay female couples attending Cedar Waters as well – except for the removing it part

  • HomerJayK

    Wow I didn’t know that Cedar Waters Village was bigoted, I haven’t been there yet and I guess I won’t be now. That is a shame as there are not too many clubs we can attend in northern New England.
    As for piercings – I won’t be getting one but each to their own

  • SoWhatAgain

    It’s positively hilarious that people would not object to someone’s swinging willy in full public view but be absolutely aghast because it’s got a nail through it. Arbitrariness writ large.

  • SoWhatAgain

    frankesparza6 Public nudity of ANY sort is unacceptable “to the rest of us”. How does that irony suit you? Think of the children. The country is going to hell in a hand-cart. It signals end times and the rapture, blah, blah, blah.

  • frankesparza6

    That might be acceptable to a few friends but no it’s not acceptable for the rest of us.

  • frankesparza6

    What is the position of female genital piercings. Would they have to remove them before entering any of the clubs or nudist resorts?