As you may have read in the very first post
of this blog, one of the main reasons why we started this project is to show the world that naturists are not some strange dark commune but that actually everyone could be one… Or could enjoy being one if they took the first step.
Our main example of “everyone” is of course ourselves, we write posts about naturism in general but also about our own experiences. But some of you might be thinking “Yes sure, those two are probably just the strange kids in the block…” (nah, we know you’re not thinking that about us, but we’re trying to write an introduction here). So we decided to let other naturists have a word as well.
So please sit back and get inspired!
Meanwhile we already published a couple of interviews, you can find them in the The Naturist Talks
Today Rob, 54 from Ohio, USA will tell us about his experiences with nudism and how this goes hand in hand with his relation with God.
Hello Rob, tell us something about yourself
Hello, my name is Rob – but you may know me online as Nytro – and I live in the suburbs of Cleveland, Ohio, USA. I am married to a wonderful lady, and we recently celebrated our 30th anniversary. We have one child. I am employed in the office of a construction sub-contractor, and my wife in an educator.
We are both born again, conservative Christians, and we are both active in our local church, in fact our relationship with Jesus Christ is first and foremost in our lives.
I enjoy sports and I am a huge follower of the local Cleveland sports teams. I also enjoy boating, biking, and hiking, along with playing around on the computer.
I have, within the last 2 years, become an avid bare footer, mainly due to my sore knees. Since I’ve become a bare footer, I just don’t understand how any nudist can ever wear shoes! Walking barefoot has really helped my knees, and I encourage everyone to kick off their shoes!
I am the only nudist in my family. I was born and raised in a family that never paraded around without clothes, but never said that we couldn’t, however I never really pushed the envelope with them either. It was in my early years though, that I found my love for nudity. My wife isn’t into the nudist life, but since our child has left our house, we are now empty nesters. This has allowed us to turn our home into a clothing optional home. My wife has joined me at a few nudist resorts and campgrounds over the years, not because she enjoys it, but because she knows that I do, and knows how much I want her to join me while nude.
We have a backyard pool, and we do enjoy the pool and pool deck while nude.
How and at what age did you become a naturist?
At the age of 5, my family bought an above ground pool for our backyard. I pretty much grew up in that pool. It was early on, when I would be alone in the pool, as a kid, I would remove my trunks and swim and play while nude in the pool.
Around the age of 11 or 12, I discovered that there were spots in our backyard, where I could be nude, without the neighbours seeing me, so I took advantage of those areas. I would swim nude for a while, when I was the only one within sight of the pool, then put my trunks back on, get out and head to one of those secluded areas, remove my trunks again, and just enjoy drying off, under the warm sun, while nude. I remember seeing shows on TV, like the old “Love American Style” that had an episode that took place in a nudist “colony”. I was intrigued, but since this was before the days of the internet, I didn’t have any place to gather information on nudists. I also felt that since I had accepted the Lord as my Savior, at the age of 9, that nudity must be a sin.
As I got older, I always tried to find places to enjoy being nude. Mainly in my backyard, or the local woods. But the “nudity is sinful” always hung over my head.
Fast forward 15 or so years. I’m now married, and working in an office, with another Christian. During one of our many conversations, that the two of us had, he mentioned that his brother and sister in law were strong Christians, but also nudists. I tried to help him with his struggle of understanding where they were coming from, but I took the side that nudity was sinful.
The more we talked about this, the more he convinced me that nudity was not a sin! We went through the scriptures, trying to condemn social nudity, but something just wasn’t sitting right with me about the subject. Since we were at work, something would interrupt us, and we never really finished talking about it.
Since that time, I started praying and studying God’s word, about the subject. I prayed, for over 2-1/2 years, that God would show me if nudity was a sin. I searched the bible, I searched the internet, I read everything I could on the subject of Christian nudists. Finally, while driving in the car alone, on my way to helping with our church’s youth group, I was praying about this subject yet again, when God answered my prayers, in an audible voice, saying “I don’t care what’s on the outside of a man, but rather what’s inside his heart.” I almost drove off the road! I turned and looked in the back seat, to see who said that! That was my answer! However, also at that same general time, I read Isaiah 20:1-3 (ESV)
20:1 In the year that the commander in chief, who was sent by Sargon the king of Assyria, came to Ashdod and fought against it and captured it— 2 at that time the Lord spoke by Isaiah the son of Amoz, saying, “Go, and loose the sackcloth from your waist and take off your sandals from your feet,” and he did so, walking naked and barefoot.
3 Then the Lord said, “As my servant Isaiah has walked naked and barefoot for three years as a sign and a portent against Egypt and Cush.
Wait a second! If God is a good and just God, He would hate sin, and He would never command anyone to commit sin, but yet in this section of God’s word, he commanded Isaiah to walk naked and barefoot for three years, all while in very social and public settings! What about Noah, being drunk and naked, when his sons saw him asleep, or other areas in the bible that seem to condemn nudity. I have come to realize, that reading the entire passage of the areas in the bible, that seem to condemn nudity, you will see that the sin wasn’t the nudity, but rather the actions that were being commented while the subject was nude. Noah was nude when his sons covered him up, but something happened where Ham was cursed by Noah, for his actions. We aren’t told what his actions were, but two sons were there, but only Ham was cursed.
These two items, happened within days or maybe it was weeks, of each other, sealed the deal for me, that nudity, yes even social nudity, in a non-sexual context is not sinful!
Now having said that, as a believer and follower of Christ, I understand that the difference between sexual and non-sexual nudity, and I realized that in a social or public setting, we need to avoid the sexual nudity.
Also, not being religious, but rather having a relationship with Jesus, as my Savior, I have found freedom in my faith! This freedom allows me to enjoy my body, the body that God designed and has given me, and I am not ashamed to show off God’s creation! This is different view than most Christians. You see, religions are man-made, but a relationship with Christ is God made. Man-made religion is full of man-made rules! A faith in Christ offers freedom in him.
Having this new knowledge, I started trying to convince my wife that nudity was ok. However, I tried a little too hard, and actually got her mad at me, for pushing too much. That is when I turned it over to God, and I started praying that my wife would understand that nudity wasn’t sinful, and that she may give it a try.
It took a few years of praying, but finally, while preparing for a trip in the central east coast states of the US, that I suggested that we stop for a couple of days at Avalon Resort, in Paw Paw, West Virginia. She almost immediately said ok!
We made reservations, and ended up staying there for about 36 hours. Later in the trip, SHE asked if I know of any other nudist resorts close to where we would be heading! Me being who I am, already had planned for this, and knew that White Tail Resort, in Ivor, Virginia, was roughly an hour drive of one of the places we were staying for a few days, and so we made a day trip there, and again we both enjoyed it!
We also looked for other options along our trip, but things just couldn’t work out. We did visit White Thorn Lodge, in Darlington, PA, a few times now, which is about a 90-minute drive from our house.
Having said all the above, about my wife, she still isn’t very comfortable being nude herself, or even seeing others nude, so she really isn’t into the nudist life, or being social, but she does tolerate it, for me!
One concern my wife has, as an educator, is the fear that one of her student’s parents may see her, and report her to the school board, which “would dismiss” her due to the “moral conduct” clause in her contract. Because of this, I respect her wishes, and only visit nudist venues that are at least an hour away. There is a nudist campground within 20 miles of our house, but until she retires, we will not visit this location.
I would rather drive 90 minutes away, to have my wife join me, then drive a few minutes away, and not have her with me!
Is naturism allowed in your country and what’s the public opinion?
There are many nudist campgrounds, and resorts around the United States. There are many areas that you can hike and enjoy being nude in the great outdoors. There are also a few legal nude beaches.
I hike in a gorge that has a long history of nude use, and the local authorities “look the other way”, and “allow” nude use in a small portion of the gorge. Those that enjoy using the nude area, try to police the area, making sure that we don’t lose this privilege.
As for the majority of the US population, they are brainwashed by popular media, Madison Avenue and it’s marking of clothing, and their long standing religious beliefs, that nudity ALWAYS equals sex, and you cannot enjoy simple nudity without the situation being sexually charged. Hollywood shoves sex down our throats, Madison Avenue shoves “sexy” clothing down our throats, and traditional religion tells us “thou shalt not…”, but this isn’t the truth!
We hate to divide people into groups, but we’ll do it anyway…
Do you consider yourself a naturist, a nudist or an occasional nudist?
I used to call myself a naturist, not because I followed the philosophy, but more because the word, at least in the US, isn’t quiet “in your face” as nudist is. However, now I identify myself as a nudist, that’s right “I’M A NUDIST!” There, I said it!
I am nude as often as I can be, at home, or any other place. My wife and I have been enjoying an annual nakation for the last 10 years or so, taking a long weekend, to just get away, and enjoy ourselves, without clothing. We now also look for side trips while we vacation, where we can both enjoy some nude time. I said it before, she isn’t entirely into the nudist life, but she does compromise for me, and that is really appreciated!
Do you find it easy to make naturist friends?
I would say, if I’m out hiking in an unofficial nudist area, I will open up and talk to others that are also enjoying a nude hike. However, when at a nudist camp or resort, I will let my wife lead, since she is more private and not as comfortable in her skin, as I am. If she starts talking to someone, I’ll join right in, but I want her to be comfortable. As a result, as a couple I would say, while we are nude, we are a little more “loners”.
We have a very close couple, who know that our house is clothing optional, and that we have visited nudist venues, but they have never shown an interest in joining us, and to be honest, I don’t think my wife would want them to either.
What’s the best tip you have for beginning naturists?
As far as tips go, I’m not a good sales person, because I’m not good at coming up with cute sayings, however, I will say what many before me have said… Give simple, non-sexual nudity a try, you will be amazed at just how fast you will become comfortable in your skin. Start off at home, when it’s just you, then move to staying nude at home around your spouse, then move to a more social location, like an established beach or a club.
Anything else you’d like to share with our audience?
My very first “social” nude event wasn’t really an event, but rather a hiking trip in the Chautauqua gorge, in western New York. This is an unofficial location, in a deep gorge, where the local officials know about the long standing (100+ years) of nudity in a small portion of the gorge, but pretty much turn the other way, and let us continue to enjoy the gorge while nude. I have hiked this portion of the gorge hundreds of times since 1989, and will continue for as long as I am able to make the trip down and back up.
My first real social nude event however, was a swim with the North Coast Naturists, a non-landed club in the Cleveland, Ohio area. I went to one of their swims in 2004 and another in 2005. A funny story about my first nude swim, as I entered into the club, I was told where the locker rooms were, and headed that way. Being so used to looking for and entering the men’s locker room, I just did it again. As I opened up the door, two women were just leaving the men’s locker room, and we passed each other, the two of them nude, me still dressed. That was an awkward moment, and it made me stop for a moment and take another look, so see if I was walking into the women’s locker room, but as soon as it hit me that I was at a nudist event, it all seemed normal.
I do have a website, not a blog, about Christian nudity, and the story behind me growing into a nudist, as a Christian. Please take a few moments and stop by, and if you do, please use the “Contact Me” under the “My Links” section, and let me know you visited, and that you read my interview here on Naked Wanderings.
Update: website seems to be down
Thank you so much for your participation Rob!
Do you also want to tell your story and experiences in naturism? Please get in touch via the CONTACT page! As long as we have people who like to contribute, we can keep The Naturist Talks running!
Picture credit: The photos in this post are coming from Google and Twitter. If you find one of yourself and you don’t want it to be on our blog, let us know and we’ll remove it.