A Non Nudist Mom – Kids in a Naturist Setting and Home Nudism

| August 7, 2013 | 30 Comments

Questions From a Non-Nudist Mom On Nudist Etiquette, Home Nudism, & Kids

We recently received an email that we feel would be interesting to share. She is looking for insight and opinions so please make sure to leave comments on this site and not on Facebook (so she can see what people think).

A Non Nudist Mom Needs Our Help!

Here is her email:

I am writing to you hoping for your input regarding a situation in my life involving nudity. (Poll your friends, if you want also, I am happy to have more than one person’s feedback.)

I am trying to determine whether my perspective on a situation needs to be examined. I also would like to get a feel if my beliefs and feelings are due to my being almost exclusively living and interacting in a textile environment.

home nudist nudism etiquette kids children yna

Home Nudism And Behavior Etiquette

We recently received an email that we feel would be interesting to share. She is looking for insight and opinions so please make sure to leave comments on this site and not on Facebook (so she can see what people think).

Here is her email:

I am writing to you hoping for your input regarding a situation in my life involving nudity. (Poll your friends, if you want also, I am happy to have more than one person’s feedback.)

I am trying to determine whether my perspective on a situation needs to be examined. I also would like to get a feel if my beliefs and feelings are due to my being almost exclusively living and interacting in a textile environment.

This is the situation.

Due to many tragic circumstances in my life in the past year or so, I have become homeless. I have a 12 year old son that is currently living with my sister, which was my choice and I made it in order to provide him with a safer and more stable living situation than I can currently provide (as I have been staying with friends in their small apartment).

For background, whether it’s relevant or not, I was never exposed to much family nudity growing up. I remember seeing my mother nude on occasion, but not my father (and I had two sisters, but no brothers). I never thought about it much, but raised my two sons and daughters in the same way since I never was comfortable just walking around the house completely nude. That said, I have been casual, yet private, about being nude in front of them.

As each one of my children reached puberty, they became more private about being nude around me and each other. I never told them that it was unacceptable to be nude around the house. I have told them that the human body is natural and beautiful, but mostly it wasn’t something I ever thought much about. Even now, with my youngest son (aforementioned twelve year old boy), if we are in the same room, and I want to change clothes, I will say something like, “I’m going to change now, just so you know, if you want to choose to look the other way.” The other day he was visiting, and he wanted to change clothes, and asked me to leave the room. I lightheartedly dismissed his overly modest request, and told him that I would look the other way if he wanted me to, and I did. He was fine with that.

I have known that two of my friends are more comfortable with social nudity than I am and it hasn’t been an issue. I view it as a personal choice. I was told the first time I ever came to their house, that they have a clothing optional home. No biggie. The wife is more likely than husband to walk around completely nude. The husband has children from a previous marriage, and their policy has been that to avoid issues that could be caused by his ex wife. When his kids are visiting, the wife will wear at least a tank top and panties when in view of his kids. When my son has come to visit, the policy has been the same.

This couple is purchasing a large house. A couple of months ago they invited myself and my son to live there with them too and for as long as I wanted / needed. That was awesome and generous and I have been really looking forward to being with my son again after a year of living apart.

A couple of weeks ago, the wife asked me whether I planned on talking to my son about living in a clothing optional environment, or whether I would just handle it as it occurred (such as seeing her being nude around the house in front of him). I was very surprised, as I had assumed that the current policy regarding nudity around children would continue. That’s what I was used to and hadn’t thought about things potentially being different. I talked to the husband alone and he assumed the same. It was apparent at that point, that there was a communication breakdown and that they had to work out between the two of them what their policy was going to be. I waited for them to do so and come talk to me about it once they were on the same page.

After they spoke, the wife said that she never thought that simple nudity would be an issue for me or my son. That said, now that she is aware of them, she said that while she would like to promise that she wouldn’t be nude around him. She did not feel comfortable to promise that she wouldn’t forget to put on minimal clothing when he was around. To be clear, she said she would try to remember, but that she couldn’t promise. She didn’t want to promise something unless she knew she could do it. She said that there have been times, she had nearly walked out of her bedroom naked when her husband’s kids were visiting. Her husband quickly reminded her to cover up and she did.

Since that conversation, I have been researching the nudist and naturist lifestyles. I have been reading opinions and whatever I can find on the internet to help me better understand the situation. This has led me to you.

My concerns go beyond my son’s father. I have family members who would not hesitate to call CPS (Child Protective Services) if they became aware that my son was living in a home where a female adult was naked around him. I could likely find myself in family court for custody issues over this and I want to get more information before I make any decision.

The issues that I am having a hard time understanding are as follows:

  • The idea that a person could somehow “forget” to put on clothes is extremely foreign to me. Is this something that some nudists have experienced in the past?
  • Does it make a difference that it would not be his mom who would be naked, but an unrelated adult woman whom he hasn’t spent a lot of time with?
  • I am surprised that she didn’t imagine that it would have repercussions for me or my son – is this common among the nudist community?

I want perspective and don’t know how much my concerns are due to my textile life experience. Any feedback, thoughts, or opinions would be very, very much appreciated. I am hoping that your experiences would be helpful to me in some way.


So there you have it. A non nudist is reaching out and trying to understand. Let’s take a moment and try to help her!

A Non Nudist Mom – Kids in a Naturist Setting and Home Nudism was published by – Young Naturists and Young Nudists America YNA

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Category: Social Nudity Blogs, Felicity's Nudist Blog, Nudism and Naturism, Nudist Kids

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!
  • saratje

    I can forget to put clothes on myself when I’m alone. I have window blinds and know from experience that with a lack of backlighting, nobody can see me when they’re half-open unless they peer in on intent, yet I can look outside. If company comes around who are textile-free themselves or atleast nude tolerant, I tend to dress beforehand. But if I take a quick shower or happen to have been tanning in the garden I may not bother (or forget to bother) dressing up again depending on the company.
    Kids adjust a lot faster than adults. Most 12 years old boys I know do not stare at a nude acquaintance of a different age. Those that do get over it fast on their own. Only very few boys would truly misbehave and nudity alone is then not the reason of that.

    Not if that person becomes somewhat of a guardian to him. You’ll always be their mom, but kids are also very quick to see an adult friend who lives in with the family as an aunt or uncle. You’d perhaps make it less strange if you too are nude. Kids tend to follow example of those they trust.

    As you said, I think it’s a lack of clear communications. If you mentioned you’re nude sometimes, she may relate that to nudity at random being a-okay in your household.

  • I see that you were concerned about this in 2013, it is now 2015. Tell  me what did you do? How is it going now?

  • barbirolli

    Maurice W Smith “…I am a non-smoker, I do not go to your house and expect you to not smoke around me.” Alas! Would that this were always so! You are welcome at my house, old man: more and more non-smokers expect me refrain from smoking (and to dress fully for that matter) in their company. They seem to think their presence makes my home a public place, for some reason.

  • ron_nitoc

    Very nicely expressed KrissyCO!

  • I agree with KrissyCO, not with dogdrool.  I raised my son as a nudist and we were nude at home but did not put on a show for his non-nudist friends.  We lived in regular suburban neighborhood.  Unless their parents were also nudists in their homes, we wore clothes when my son’s friends came to visit, out of respect for their families’ values.  Now if we had lived in a clothing-optional community, any of our guests would know that in advance of their visit so there would be no surprises on the way in.

  • KrissyCO

    I think the best part about being raised nudist is that being nude has no connection to sex for me.  There was nothing indecent about my growing up and my parents are not exhibitionists and my mom didn’t parade herself around in front of a bunch of guys for a thrill.  That is just simply gross.  Dogdrool – the woman you talk about was an exhibitionist and not a nudist.  Let’s remember that we’re talking about the mother of a 12-year-old, not the woman down the street or his friend’s mother.  Gross.  I hardly think “The Graduate” or “Summer of ’42” apply here.  Your minds are all wondering way off course….

  • jacka

    Probably similarly obtuse in most states.  In the eyes of the beholder…

    CODE OF MARYLAND REGULATIONS (COMAR) defines child abuse and child neglect as:
    Physical injury not necessarily visible of a child under circumstances that indicate that a child’s health or welfare is harmed or at substantial risk of being harmed.The failure to give proper care and attention to a child including
    the leaving a child unattended where the child’s health or welfare is
    harmed or a child is placed in substantial risk of harm.An act or acts involving sexual molestation or exploitation whether physical injuries are sustained or not.Identifiable and substantial impairment of a child’s mental or psychological ability to function.Finding credible evidence that has not been satisfactorily refuted that physical abuse, neglect or sexual abuse occurred.

  • scotty1111

    Normally I would say that you should just go with the flow, and maybe even try nudism yourself.  However, you brought up the dreaded CPS issue.  If CPS gets involved, everyone loses.  I would do some research on your local CPS and see what their attitude towards nudism is.  I would also explain to your relatives your situation, warn them beforehand so they don’t get surprised.  Test the waters, so to speak.  I just don’t get people’s attitudes about nudism, and relatives who think they know better than you.  Are these the same relatives that offered you a place to stay, or help getting back on your feet?  It’s none of their business, period.  I hope that everything works out for you and your son, no matter what you decide.

  • PammF

    white_wabbit Please let us know what happens!

  • PammF

    I personally believe that nudism is a great environment to bring children up in (I had 2). I also agree with Krissy CO in that I am usually nude at home (even with other non-nudists) as I too am comfortable that way.

  • dogdrool

    This is a hell of a lot of pressure to burden a 12 yr old pre-pubescent child with!  I recall as a teenager, my friends mother was into being nude around the house, and that’s just where all the jocks congregated each lunch hour from school.  Can you picture this….15-20 young guys (14-17) drooling over this 35 yr old nude woman every day!  It was a virtual vision of loveliness, and the boys were lapping it up.  My friend should have charged admission.  He could have been very wealthy.  This basically went on for our entire 4 high school years.  We would have our lunches, watch the show, (like judges, we would vote on how she looked on any given day as she paraded around…..9, 10, 8.5, 9.5 etc), then be forced to walk bent over, as we made our way to the closest bathroom to deal with our “raging hard on’s”.  She obviously knew she had a spell over us, and it must have been comical to her, to see us there every single school day at precisely 12:05.  Although his Mom was an exhibitionist, and loved parading around nude for us especially, I think she pressed all our “hot buttons” on purpose, waiting to see who would be the first to uncontrollably bust a load into his jeans that day?  
    If I was a young boy of 12 again, I would find it very uncomfortable to be around a nude woman, who paraded around the house all day, finding that I had no alternative but to live in the same environment.  It would be an uneasy feeling, to say the least.  Totally different though at 15 or 16!!….I would likely enjoy it very much, and wouldn’t be in a hurry to leave the premises.  I would also have to be concerned for the sexual well being of the minor child, as we all know how one thing can easily lead to another, and before you know it…..he is a virgin in training. (aka, “The Graduate”, “Summer of 42”, etc.  It’s not a wholesome environment for the child to be put in, because of the woman’s exhibitionist ways

  • 1. YES, often.
    2. It depends, on what he has been taught, how well he is ajusting to puberty, whether he has ever seen the female body face-to-face. Chances are good, he’ll adjust fairly quickly. Living a naturist lifestyle isn’t the big deal some people make it out to be.
    3. Not really. The female body is essentially the same with minor variations from person to person.
    4. No, naturists are almost always very sensitive to the thoughts and feelings of others, especially those new or unaccustomed to the lifestyle.

  • white_wabbit

    Thanks all for your thoughtful input. I really appreciate it. I have decided, in the interests of research, to conduct a personal experiment. I will be naked when in the house for the next week. True, there will only be my friends around to see me, so it won’t confront many of the issues that make me most uncomfortable, but I think it’s a safe way to at least see if I enjoy being naked, and in that way, may serve to provide a potentially enlightening experience. I am assuming that I won’t wind up all of a sudden saying, “I love to be naked!”, but I am open to that happening. It will be interesting, if nothing else.

  • KrissyCO

    White_Wabbit – I grew up in a nudist home and nudity was the norm for us any time we were home, at our club, etc., so yes, after being nude for a while, you stop thinking about being nude, much like you don’t think about the fact that you’re wearing clothes, so I have found times where I have to remind myself that I am nude and can’t just walk out the front door that way…
    As for my family, growing up, my parents would cover up when my or my sister’s friends would come over, but my sister and I weren’t required to get dressed, unless we wanted to, so I have no problem being nude when others around me aren’t.  It’s really a non-issue for me.  Now that I’m married, my in-laws have not been thrilled about me being nude around them, but I do agree with some of the other comments here… If I come to your house and you’re not nude and don’t want me nude, then I have to respect that… But in my house, you don’t have to be nude, but I hope you don’t mind if I choose to be.  I’m in no way an exhibitionist.  For me, nudity is normal and very comfortable at home, and truthfully, having to be dressed in my own home is really quite annoying. 
    We never had any issues with Child Services when I was growing up.  My mom’s parents are also nudists, so there was no problem there… My dad’s parents were tolerant of us, so there weren’t ever any issues, thankfully.
    As for your situation, it sounds to me like you’ve already made your decision, and I think you’ve probably made the correct one… That is, if you have any doubts about how the nudity might affect you or your son, you should probably look for a different living situation.  It seems to me that the nudist couple that have offered you a place in their home would be understanding if you choose not to live there.  But, if you do choose to try it, even for a short while, just make sure you keep the communication lines with your son open.  Let him know what he’s getting into and make sure he’s okay with it… He’s probably the one most likely to “tip off” a relative, so if you know how he feels and he’s good with it, I certainly don’t see that there would be any harm in it… If you’re worried about him seeing “other” naked women… He’s probably already seen plenty on the internet…
    Hope it helps…

  • Eddie Gamble

    I have lived with my girlfriend and her 12 year old son for the past 7 years. I’ve been a home nudist all my life but at home I only go naked when the boy is in school or sleeping. He is, and has seen us, naked around the house in “appropriate” situations, like coming from a shower, etc., but never for prolonged periods. The main reason we keep it this way is because of his father who is very conservative (Never left the bathroom or the bedroom without being fully dressed)and would start a lot of trouble if we lived a nude lifestyle in front of his son, even though that is normal for us. This is my house and I should be able to wear, or not wear, what I want in my own home, but it’s not worth the trouble it might cause. You have to consider the alternatives and make a choice to solve a problem.

  • jacka

    Living as a naturist at home, and having lived at Avalon for a year, I’m constantly having to remind myself to cover up when someone rings the doorbell, or before I go out to the mailbox or into the backyard.

  • SteveYnaNY

    My opinions on each point are as follows:
    a) Can people forget clothes?  Absolutely.  I remember a nudist who tells how he jumped in his car, drove half way to town on an errand and then realized he was naked.  Once you live without clothes for a time, you normalize to it – like when you get used to cold or hot climates. 
    b) Puberty is diffiicult for many issues, not just nudity, and in my opinion nudity does not change this one way or the other.
    c)  What about the ‘stranger’ ?  When you live together for awhile she will not be a stranger.  Secondly, nudist children are frequently together with family, friends, and strangers in nudist environements and it does not make a difference as long as the  same behavior applies as when wearing clothes – i.e. no active sexual behavior
    d) Your surprise that she does not see repercussions subjective.  In terms of personal growth and development, nudists believe its healthy.  If you expect legal warfare opt out of the offer to live with the naturist family (do not expect them to change lifestyle) – or obtain legal advice about how to protect yourself in the nudist environment.  That can be tricky and depends on the level of anti-nude sentiment that may or may not be prevalent with local social workers, local laws, etc.

  • Rick407

    I married into a family in progress with a hateful “ex” with lots of money.  Otherwise I would have raised the kids in a more casual way about nudity.  As it was, we skinny-dipped often and the kids were always welcome to join in.  But they didn’t.  Just as I foolishly didn’t with my parents when they invited me and my siblings to do the same.  I’m thankful that they tried, and I believe I did learn something from their casual approach to nudity between them and toward us.
    CPS has no grounds to go after you in that situation, but it’s manned by political hacks  who are more looking to make a name for themselves than in following the law and doing what’s best for the kids involved.  Otherwise, I’d say “bring it on”!   You can’t be halfway in the closet about anything with those guys.  But if you’re willing to go to the mat with it, you’ll likely win.  
    As to your other questions…  It’s annoying to have to guard your being naked if you’re used to not having to.  But if she’s willing to try to be vigilant about it, I’d give her the benefit of the doubt.  But it really isn’t fair to her.
    People get used to nudity pretty quickly, even at his age, so I wouldn’t worry about that.  It being someone in his household and it being obviously inappropriate to be sexual is enough for it not to be a problem.  People too quickly just assume that it would be.
    As far is this being common in the nudist community… Every situation and every family situation is different.  As are the people outside the community who are involved.  It works for many and it should work for all, but it likely doesn’t work for some.  
    I’m just sorry that I didn’t try harder with my kids to make it OK for them.  Otherwise, I probably wouldn’t comment.  

  • AmyHi1

    Well I admit this is a complex issue . I came away from this article with a few questions of my own . the main one being the child’s father did not step in when she became homeless nor when he moved in to another family home . But would become involved when he may see a woman naked that seems a bit off to me! Next ware were all these family members when the boy truly needed  them? But  now would call protective services because of nudity ?.Also in a year she was not able to pick herself up for the good of her son .But that is another topic altogether no judgments intended just observations . That said has anyone bothered to ask the boy his thoughts and feelings on the topic ? I don’t think any parent can make an intelligent life decision about the needs of their child without consulting the child and getting their input .especially when this has become his home .He needs to have a voice in this .That is if the issue is the sons comfort level safety overall welfare . My knee jerk response was to expose the child to nudism outside the home be it a beach or resort and go from there . that assumes the story is the child’s welfare not the moms . She is moving into a home for her and her son free of charge? I would think some condition to the lifestyle of the homeowner would be in order .Last option to keep things as they are it seems these people have extended themselves to help her with nothing in it for them but to be good people .I think an attitude of gratitude is required when someone opens their home to you and your child . she does not need to live their if its so uncomfortable . child protective services has much bigger fish to fry . talk about your urban myths never in my lifetime of nudism have I even heard rumors of a child being removed from a home  due to nudism in the home .

  • ZamesC

    I think the first question is the most telling.  “Is this something that some nudists have experienced in the past?”  Of course it is.  The question presumes that all people consider clothed their normal state, and nudists are deliberate showing off to shock people.  This is nonsense.  Nudist go naked because they find that’s the natural state for them.  They may always remember to get dressed before going outside but in their own home they naturally go back to “natural”
    To put it in more common terms, say on most day you could wear anything in your closet, except on the second Tuesday of the month, you couldn’t wear the red shirt.  Do you think it’s possible that on one of those days, you’d forget and wear the red shirt?

  • Al Mahany

    You have raised several issues here.
    First is the legal one.  There is no law that says you cannot introduce children to a naturist environment, but that will not stop clothing compulsive people or overbearing bureaucratic assholes from CPS from making a fuss.  I suggest you discuss the legal issues with your lawyer, as he knows best.  I can tell you that it was an issue with the father of my step children (the kids themselves could not care less), but he never got anywhere with his CPS complaints.
    As far as your son goes, the naturist environment may very well show him that it is no big deal.  Again I can only relate to personal experience, as my step children got their introduction to naturism from me.  The boy never cared from day one, but it took the girl some time to realize that what I told her about a non sexual environment was right.  She even asked me once to take the family to a naturist resort after reading World Guide To Nude Beaches, but the trip never materialized for other reasons.
    Puberty is a weird age, but i find that most resistance from kids that age to naturism is not the nudity but instead the feeling that they are much too cool to hang out with “farty” adults.
    It might even be helpful that the adults there are only naked some of the time, and if you do the same and act no differently when you are nude, he will see that it really does not matter whether another person is nude or not.
    Not knowing your son personally, I can only generalize.  I hope at least some of this helps.

  • I think it’s important to keep certain principles in mind.
    1) The head of the household gets to set the rules, whether clothing is optional or mandatory.
    2) Regardless of the dress code, it’s important to treat others with courtesy and to respect their choices (within the rules, of course).
    To address your specific questions:
    >    The idea that a person could somehow “forget” to put on clothes is extremely foreign to me. Is this something that some nudists have experienced in the past?
    It unlikely that one could actually “forget” for very long.  More likely, one chooses to remain nude.  We who live in clothing-optional homes are very protective of our right to go nude at home, and resent others who infringe on that right.
    >    I have concerns about how difficult it would be for my son to adjust to a clothing optional environment at his age (puberty).
    As long as he is not forced to do anything (see rule #2) he should be OK.
    Sometimes newcomers feel uncomfortable about seeing others nude because of a lifetime of learning rules about “don’t look.”  They need reassurance that it’s OK to look, or to not look, as one chooses.
    >    Does it make a difference that it would not be his mom who would be naked, but an unrelated adult woman whom he hasn’t spent a lot of time with?
    I don’t see a problem as long as that woman is respectful to him (as per rule #2).
    >    I am surprised that she didn’t imagine that it would have repercussions for me or my son – is this common among the nudist community?
    Nudists who are comfortable living without clothing tend to not see anything wrong with that, and so we have trouble understanding those who do see something wrong with it.
    I hope these answers help.
         – Rich

  • Hello again, 
    I’ve just read your responce, it posted as I was writing mine.  A forum I belong to had a discussion about female willingness to join husbands/boyfriends who are naturists. The conclusion was that when women get undressed the last thing on and often the first thing off are a ladies underwear. The bra being the the first thing on and the last thing off. My point, baldy made, is that if you kept your bra on why would it matter?

  • The first thing to say is that naturism is an ideal that isn’t always practice. Family nudity and nudity in the sense of an extended family through friends should be natural and non-problematic but that isn’t the way the world works and from what I’ve read, especially in the USA. 
    The only bullet proof way forward is to explain the situation to all relevant parties and have written consent in place. Unlike your friend you need to cover your butt.
    If it can work and you are brave enough to join in your son could grow up in a very healthy environment. Naturism isn’t sexual. Encourage your son to be a naturist but give him the cover up option as he is in the window of being plagued/blessed with endless erections. It’s only marginal but an eighteen year study concluded that boys were more likley to benifit from adult nudity than be harmed by it. 
    As for forgetting to get dressed. I’m nude at home whenever the weather allows. Getting dressed is always an uncomfortable and restrictive experience but not something I forget. I always have a handy pair of shorts should they be needed. 
    Lastly, join either of the two major naturist associations and encourage your friend to do the same. I believe they are very good at legal suport. Home nudity isn’t a crime. 
    All the very best, JCP

  • white_wabbit

    I am the author of the email that inspired this blog post. Thank you all for your insight, so far. I really like the input about nudity being akin to bare feet, and the “red shirt” analogy. Yes, that does help my understanding. Unfortunately, I do think the CPS/custody issue is the main problem, and one that will probably lead me to decline their offer.
    I have also been thinking about why I have never been comfortable walking around the house naked. While there may be other factors, such as not being aware of there being another way to do things besides the way I was raised, now that I am aware, am I more likely to walk around completely nude? Probably not, and here is why. I have very large breasts, and they get in the way if I try to do things around the house nude. I sleep in the nude, except on the most frigid nights of the year, and have to adjust my breasts with my hands to a comfortable position just to be able to fall asleep. I can’t imagine trying to sweep the floor, scrub the toilet, or load the washer without them making me uncomfortable. In summer I experience profuse and uncomfortable sweating underneath them when naked, and wearing a bra and tank top is more comfortable than nude for those reasons. I wonder what well endowed nudists do!

    • Maurice W Smith

      white_wabbit Childrens Protective Services in my area are already well aware of the lifestyle I choose to live. They have come to my home to interview me and my family, even hired a counselor for our daughter because of other issues she was having regarding impulsive behaviors. They all came to the same conclusion, it is a lifestyle choice, there is nothing sexual about it and therefore not sexually abusive.

  • Maurice W Smith

    My home is a clothing optional home and everyone who comes to my home knows that. If my daughter has a friend over I will wear a sarong but only because of legal reasons. Any adult that comes to my home knows that I will morethan likely remain nude when they are here. I explain it this way to people who try to object. If I come to your house, I do not expect you to do anything to accomodate me and my wishes, for example, I am a non-smoker, I do not go to your house and expect you to not smoke around me, I am in your home, I expect the same courtesy, do not ask me to put clothes on since this is how I live my life and you are in my home.

  • Unisus1

    Hi there!
    First, let me applaud your open-minded and well-written question. I think it’s wonderful that you’re taking the time to understand the nudist lifestyle. I’ve only been to a couple of nude events, so I’m not sure if my perspective will be the same or as complete as everyone else, but I wanted to give my two cents.
    Nudism was something I sought out as an escape from the judgment and
    hassle of society. It was remarkably affirming and liberating for me to
    drop the clothing, and I now find myself much happier being nude when
    I’m at home. I can understand how a woman used to a nude lifestyle would
    want to maintain that lifestyle at home, and possibly even how she would forget to “switch gears” when your son is around. It sounds like she’s trying to compromise but she doesn’t want a huge row if she messes up, which I think is good of her to address up front.

    I come from a completely textile-only home, and my family would have called child services too if anyone of the opposite gender had been nude around me when I was growing up. I definitely understand your concern, and it is definitely true that our society has made the naked human body into something with incredibly sexual connotations. I believe part of what made visiting a nudist resort so special was that every person there was genuinely seeking to reject those connotations. It was amazing how easily they fell away, and nudism was something not sexual at all, but just something very natural.
    The key is: I was seeking this out. Your son, because he is coming from the textile world point of view, might feel very uncomfortable suddenly seeing a nude adult woman. I would never ask to be nude in someone’s home because I know they would see this behavior differently than I would. However, since your clothing-optional friend is kindly offering a place in her home, I can understand how she’d want you to find a way to accept her lifestyle in case she messes up, which leaves you in the position of trying to address it. It seems like you’re genuinely trying to do this.
    I think it would be very important to talk to your son, and explain that nudists believe the human body is something beautiful and natural. Ask if he has any objections to the idea, and allow him to process the concept. I personally believe it would be very beneficial for you guys to consider visiting a nudist family resort, to be exposed to it beforehand so it doesn’t seem “weird” if your friend forgets to put on clothing. I cannot imagine a better place to understand nudism. There were lots of children running around the places I visited and they were all completely at ease. I think you might be pleasantly surprised. :) If that seems too much, I would at the very least suggest talking to him about it before making the decision to go live there. Laugh about it if you need to, but please make sure he understands where she’s coming from and see how he feels about it before coming to a final agreement. I truly believe you might be pleasantly surprised by experiencing nudism yourself once, even if you all remain clothed around the home thereafter. I don’t think this would be damaging to him in the least and would actually be quite beneficial as long as he’s “on board” from the beginning.

  • ron_nitoc

    I am a nudist or naturist.  While your friend uses the word “forget” it may not be the best way of explaining her concern.  I understand you were not raised a nudist so let me try and put it in terms you may understand.  Do you ever walk around the house bare footed.  Are you comfortable doing so?  Do you stop to think if you are barefooted or not when you go from your bedroom to the kitchen?  What about if there are other people in the house?  However, do you remember to put shoes on before you go out of the house to the street?  Many nudist feel as comfortable at home nude as most folks feel barefooted, hence The Naturist Society used the phrase “Bare Foot All Over”.  Your friend is probably so comfortable nude that she will not give a second thought to who is in the house.
    How difficult would it be for your son to adapt?  This depends on every person and how their family up bring and society has helped form their minds so far.  We (being parents, school and society in general) teach our kids shame and to be shameful about our bodies.   While on the one hand you believe and tell your children that “the human body is natural and beautiful”, on the other through your own dress code and society’s standards we are telling them that it is a natural beauty that should remain hidden.  Now if your son had been raised in a nudist environment or visited nudist resorts all his life, moving into a clothing optional house would have been no concern at all.
    I would not over emphasize the fact he is going through puberty.  Yes, I find both boys and girls become a little more conservative at this age but can also reason and understand.  Unfortunately to often adults continue to treat them as if they were much younger and do not consider their opinion.  If this was the only issue I would sit him down and explain the situation on the opportunity to live together again and discuss the household policy.  You might even consider trying a visit to a family friendly clothing optional resort together.  It is often easier to start in a situation were every one is nude and not just one person.  I have a teenage son a little older than yours and seeing nude people is indifferent to him.  Of course while his mother is not a nudist he has seen her and other family members nude on multiple occasions.  He knows that simple nudity is natural and not sexual and everyone’s body is different like no two noses are a like.  While he is not a nudist, he is totally comfortable around other nude people and being nude himself in the appropriate setting.  So once you reach this level of comfort it becomes irrelevant if it is a parent or third party that is nude.
    As for not being surprised that this would be an issue for you is a little more surprising.  However, we often go by “when in Rome do as the Romans” so maybe she felt that as you had seen her nude around the house and you where choosing to take her up on her offer and move in with them for an unlimited time, that you would adapt to their lifestyle and not be offended by a “natural and beautiful” thing.  In general, nudist and naturist adapt to society’s standards much more than we like, but in our house we still like to be able to do as we please.
    Finally my concern is when you say “my concerns go beyond my son’s father. I have family members who would not hesitate to call CPS (Child Protective Services) if they became aware that my son was living in a home where a female adult was naked around him. I could likely find myself in family court for custody issues over this.”  This would be my number one concern.  There is no point in moving in with your son is someone is going to use the situation to separate you from your son permanently.  Unfortunately all CPS matters are surrounded by a veil of court ordered secrecy intended to protect the children involved but which protects the system itself.  They do not base their decisions on common sense or what is in best interest of the child involved.  They rule exclusively to protect the child so even if there is no harm in the child seeing a nude woman if the judge feels he needs to be protected that is what he will do.  Outsiders often with good intentions and some times as a tool to get at their ex-spouse use this to their advantage and cause more damage than anything else to the child involved.  If this is a true risk them I say politely decline.

  • ChristopherJudson

    I do think it’s possible to forget to put on clothes. For me, personally, clothes aren’t even important in the summertime so I can see doing that as much as forgetting phone, keys, wallet.
    I would do your best to allow your son to slowly adjust to the new environment but in time I think he’ll come to enjoy it.
    Many people find nudist scenarios to be less awkward with people they don’t know.
    Repercussions? Nudism is healthy! There’s many physical, mental, and emotional benefits to nudism… not including the fact that it’s enjoyable!