The Pressure of Going Naked

A couple of years ago, we’ve been front row spectators of one of the saddest scenes that we ever encountered on our naturist travels, and we’ve seen quite a lot. Remember, we’ve been to Cap d’Agde once. This had nothing to do with sex though. We were lazing away in the sun beds of a very genuine naturist resort and in the corner of our eye, we saw a new couple arriving from the reception desk.

 

They walked towards us, but after a couple of steps, they made a sudden stop. A smile appeared on the guy’s face. The dark-skinned face of the woman, on the other hand, turned bright white. She turned her eyes away and started marching towards the bungalow that had been appointed to them. This would be the first and the last time that we saw her for the whole week that the couple had booked at the resort. Apparently, the husband had come up with the marvelous idea to book a vacation at a naturist resort and not telling his wife about the plan. “Surprise, honey!”.

Going naked for the first time is a big deal

Maybe that man had read one of our blog posts where we say that “going naked for the first time is like a jump into cold water. You just need to go for it”. But this wasn’t what we meant. Going naked among strangers is most of all a step out of your comfort zone, something you need to mentally prepare for and certainly not something you want to have forced upon you.

 

When something uncomfortable happens to us, our instincts tell us to hide. To cover up. This was also one of our own biggest fears when we went to a naturist venue for the first time. All the possible scenarios raced through our heads. What if everyone looks at us? What if everyone is having sex with each other? What if we do something wrong? What if we do something stupid? Daunting thoughts on themselves, but multiplied by knowing that if those things would happen, we would be standing there in our most vulnerable state. Butt naked, with our clothes locked up. There would be nowhere to hide. No way to cover up.

The reluctant spouse

Did the guy from the introduction already talk to his partner about wanting to try naturism and did she say no? Or did he mention nothing at all about his desires and just took her to the resort? We don’t know. In any case, it was pretty certain that this was not what she had expected from her vacation and that she was quite reluctant to give it a try. Reluctant partners are common in naturism and we receive many messages, mostly from men, about how to convince their partner to start going naked.

 

One of the main struggles is exactly what we felt during our first naturist experience. The fear that they might like to cover up at a certain point, but won’t have the chance. This is a reason why naturist resorts can seem so scary. To us, the large resorts are specifically appealing because we will get the chance to do many things without clothes. Other than swimming and sunbathing, at those places we can do sports, go to the shop and have dinner in a restaurant naked. We can wander around for hours naked and meet lots of bare others along the way. But to many aspiring naturists, it’s an all but pleasant thought that they WILL HAVE to do all those things naked.

 

This may sound like an unjust judgment. With the uprise of the sarong, we all know that you can easily cover up if doing yoga or grocery shopping naked is that one step too far out of your comfort zone. But that solves just one part of the problem. In many cases, the pressure doesn’t come from the resort rules, but from the partner. The partner who does want to dine nude and go for a naked hike. The partner who, often without realizing, creates the uncomfortable pressure to go naked when you don’t really want to.

Each at their own pace

This is one of the reasons why we started to embrace the clothing-optional idea. Not for ourselves. When we are naked, we also feel that there’s a better balance if everyone else is naked too. But we also realize that more people would eventually get to enjoy social nudity if it wasn’t forced upon them. This is something we specifically notice a lot at clothing-optional beaches. Just because there’s no pressure, it’s much easier to give skinny dipping or nude sunbathing a try. There’s always an easy way back.

 

And as naturists, we know that going back rarely happens. Once you’ve enjoyed social nudity in a safe and comfortable place, you’re very likely to do it again. And again. If the guy from the introduction had taken his wife to a clothing-optional beach instead and didn’t pressure her to go full monty from the first moment, eventually she may have given it a shot. Or maybe not. But she most certainly wouldn’t have to lock herself up in a bungalow at a tropical naturist domain for a week.

 

PICTURE CREDIT: Cover image by Neto Soares

 
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31 thoughts on “The Pressure of Going Naked”

  1. My wife is not a naturist and, you know what? It’s not a big deal. I go to my clothing optional resort when she’s at work or doing something I don’t care to do. She also doesn’t like baseball so, you know what? I go to baseball games when she’s at work or doing something I don’t care to do.

    It’s not hard. We are all different individuals with different interests.

    I will say that I am lucky that she understands naturism is not about sex and trusts me to be at a beach or resort on my own.

    Reply
    • Is your wife interested in learning more about naturism or in hearing about the female perspective? The reason why we ask is that we are working on a new project about women in naturism. This will obviously be mostly something Lins will do. If we would create blog posts, videos, or even live chats about naturism for women, is that something your wife would be interested in?

      Reply
  2. My wife is also not a naturist but has accompanied me to clothing optional beaches in the UK where I can enjoy being naked but she can remain clothed.
    She is uncomfortable being amongst naked people on the beach but I think it was because the times that we have been it was mainly naked males on the beach.
    More females and families would make her more comfortable and if it was mainly naked people there she may decide to get naked too.
    Here’s hoping she will strip off on our next trip to a clothing optional beach.

    Reply
      • That would be too much of a shock for her. I’ll settle for clothing optional beaches. If she doesn’t want to get naked it’s no big deal. I would just like her to be comfortable amongst naked people and be comfortable with her own body. As long as she comes to the beaches with me that’s fine.

        Reply
    • Is your wife interested in learning more about naturism or in hearing about the female perspective, maybe in having another woman to talk to about naturism? The reason why we ask is that we are working on a new project about women in naturism. This will obviously be mostly something Lins will do. If we would create blog posts, videos, or even live chats about naturism for women, is that something your wife would be interested in?

      Reply
  3. I’ve never been nude in a public setting with other people around but would consider it BECAUSE I like being naked.

    I would propose to those commenting and reading here that getting comfortable or having more women and children around could possibly make the deciding difference. If you don’t have the initial desire to some degree to be sans clothes I don’t think you can be gradually weaned into it or that your partner should expect that.

    It’s like accepting God into your life. It won’t happen unless at some point you want it. No amount of other’s coming-to-Jesus moments will affect you or your desire until that very moment you choose.

    You’re either ready and want to be naked or you don’t.

    Reply
  4. Ill never forget my first time at Turtle Lake, MI, USA. I had met a female friend who said I needed her to get me in (to balance the numbers, m/f) and she would help me get comfortable (which wasnt a prpoblem), but also all the etiquit issues like: 1. always bring a small towl to sit on (for ovious reason), 2. if you get a “woody” go take a cold shower, or fix it privately, 3. Look all you want but NEVER too long, and dont stare (probably the hardest thing to get used to), that mistake almost got me thrown out. But I never forgot it…sure they’re beautiful nude, but dont make anyone uncomfortable. So I learned to ask permission to stare….which the women really liked…its a complement. Just 3 things to remember, OOO and make SURE your girlfriend KNOWS she will be nude before you take her there…LOL

    Reply
  5. Like others my wife is not a naturist. A few years ago I booked a holiday in Gran Canaria knowing that there was a nude beach close by. While we were there we saw the sign for the nude beach, and I asked if she would like to go along and give it a try. Her no was pretty emphatic, in fact she wouldn’t even look that way despite us still being something like 1,000 meters it, so I never asked again, but we did agree I could go along on my own. I’d never have just turned up at the beach with her.

    The following year she suggested trying the walk from Playa del Ingles to Maspalomas, which many tourists do (clothed). I knew she knew about the nude beach between the two, but she was comfortable with that.

    Years later she’s no closer to wanting to try it out for herself. If someday she decides she does want to try it that’d be great. If she never wants to give it a try then that’s great too. It’s up to her.

    Reply
    • My wife (the non-naturist) and I have a holiday booked to Gran Canaria this year.
      She knows about the nude beach. I hope she spends some time with me there (provided we can travel this year).
      She’s accompanied me to nude beaches in the UK but isn’t comfortable. She may enjoy it if there is a mixture of people on the beach.
      I agree with you though, if she doesn’t want to get naked then that’s fine. But it is nice to share wonderful experiences with your other half and I think she is missing out on such an experience.

      Reply
    • Is your wife interested in learning more about naturism or in hearing about the female perspective? The reason why we ask is that we are working on a new project about women in naturism. This will obviously be mostly something Lins will do. If we would create blog posts, videos, or even live chats about naturism for women, is that something your wife would be interested in?

      Reply
  6. It has been a difficult thing for me to do, to let my wife progress at her speed. (However, we’ll also admit that we both wish that we’d have done more a long time ago!) We’ve been “home nudists” all of our married life (36+ years) and we’ve had some fun nudist / naturist times together with just me and her. But only in the last year have we ventured further out into our (very private) back yard, and we’ve even gone to a couple of nudist resorts or campgrounds, and we’re even planning a trip some time to another resort. I -gently- nudge her along and get her to try a little more, and then a little more, and so far she’s gotten more and more comfortable with being “socially” nude.
    But, you’re right. The secret is to make her feel safe and to let her progress at her own speed. When we go to visit the neighbors, I usually remind her to look at our fence to try to see through it, or try to see past her flowers and plants and bushes. Once she sees it for herself that it’s safe, and that very likely no one will see her, then she’s much more likely to venture out there nude. When I showed her the Cypress Cove video and showed her that it was clothing OPTIONAL, she was much more interested in going with me. No stress, no surprises. That’s never a good idea!

    Reply
    • Is your wife interested in learning more about naturism or in hearing about the female perspective? The reason why we ask is that we are working on a new project about women in naturism. This will obviously be mostly something Lins will do. If we would create blog posts, videos, or even live chats about naturism for women, is that something your wife would be interested in?

      Reply
      • I’ll pas along this message to her! Thank you! I wonder if it would also be informative for other women who are not participating much, if at all, in naturism as well? I’ve been paying attention more and more to the disparity in the numbers of male / female naturists and I do wish that it was more in balance.

        Reply
        • Definitely. The idea would be to provide information for women who are naturists, who are curious about naturism, or who have no intention to get naked themselves but have a partner/friend/… who’s a naturist and just want to learn more about how it works.

          We’ve noticed that it’s very hard for women to ask their questions online. We saw some cases when a woman asks something like what to do when they’re in their period, and then 15 men answer. For those things, they don’t want the answer of a man… And then there are of course the many private messages they get, as soon as a woman openly asks something about naturism.

          Reply
  7. I can understand the joy of sharing naturism with another. The freedom to simply be your naked self in the presence of one you love is both a liberating and bonding opportunity. But like love, each arrives in their own way, in their own timing. To forfeit freewill in order to meet another’s expectations is diametrically opposed to the authenticity naturism offers. I agree. The story tells of a sorry mis-step for the couple, and a sad introduction to a beautiful way of being.

    Reply
  8. I think that the clothing optional scheme is a better strategy for places and venues to allow newcomers used to the idea of going fully nude later, actually is what I’ve experienced in Germany and the FFK concept, you wanna be naked? Be naked! Wanna keep your underwear? Ok! So everyone is comfortable the way they better suit them. Ok, I know, let’s not forget that a relaxed societal attitude towards nudity and the paired knowledge of bodies that’s gained from it since childhood contribute a lot, but it’s that ‘mind your own business’ mindset that will drive change.
    By the way, this whole thing made remember that French film, Les Textiles.

    Reply
    • We’ve noticed that this is really location dependent. As you mention, Germany has a relaxed attitude towards social nudity, and naturism has existed in this country for a very long time. People just got used to it. In other countries, the clothing-optional idea doesn’t really work because it attracts all the wrong people. Those who come to watch the naked people often don’t feel much for getting naked themselves, if it’s not a requirement, it only makes it much easier for them…

      Reply
  9. Even my wife is not a naturist, luckily I do not have to be a secret naturist, when I’ve been on television. Luckily, I don’t have to go shopping with him, it’s his hobby.
    Women have more appearance pressures when there are many points where there is either too much or too little. For men with only one point that is too small, for me and many others it doesn’t bother me.
    Here in Finland, the national naturist days have a male majority. There are quite a few couples. Only 5-7 women without a man.
    I don’t know how many wives block her husband from attending naturist events?
    At least one man has blocked his wife from attending naturist events. One woman in a neighboring town was an active naturist. He actively drove the naturist beach to town. When she remarried, the new man did not want to be a naturist, nor has a woman appeared at the events.

    Reply
    • This is also a topic that’s not much discussed. We also met several women who would love to be a naturist but were not allowed by their husband.

      Reply
  10. I think there is another couple where the man has stopped attending naturist events ??
    The woman was starring in a television program that she was by no means “in the closet”. The man didn’t really like it when a stranger sought his wife many times to dance during naturist days.

    Reply
  11. My wife has finally become comfortable with me not wearing clothes in the house. I’m working on her becoming comfortable being nude casually and not just for sex.

    Reply
  12. One of the best places we’ve found for 1st time naturists is Nuance Bed and Breakfast in Battle Creek, MI. Bill the owner is so good at welcoming even the first time naturist-men and women. Everyone we’ve referred there has absolutely loved it. If you have a partner who is willing but reluctant, this would be a perfect place to go. Max 6-8 people at the B&B at any one time. Fantastic home and grounds: pond/lake, outdoor shower, hot tub, canoeing, paddle boarding, bocce, trails, lots of sunning areas/decks, wildlife (deer, sandhill cranes, etc.), home theater, beautiful great room, great breakfasts. But the best part is how comfortable Bill makes one feel. Highly recommended.

    Reply
  13. I’ve told this recently somewhere but can’t remember whether it was on this site or a different one. I can’t see it anywhere on this site, but apologies just in case I am duplicating it.

    There are some interesting comments on here that suggest it’s men more than women who want to be naked. However, I have a very different experience…
    I had a girlfriend during my early 20’s who was always wanting to get naked. We’d go to various places such as beauty spots local to where we lived and she would say, “let’s strip off and run around naked”. We often did. That was all her with no influence from me.

    Later though, when I was married, my wife was not supportive of me getting naked in public. Although, oddly, she liked to go topless. Again, that was her choice with no influence from me. She didn’t feel that bare breasts were an issue (and of course they’re not). But she did have an issue with exposing your genitals. She would not consider taking her bikini bottoms off and was very against me being nude. She told me straight she didn’t like other women seeing my penis, it was only for her to see. She eventually had to reluctantly put up with though. I wouldn’t be controlled that way.

    Then, after I was divorced, I met a woman through an internet dating site. I had made it clear in my profile on the site that I was a nudist/naturist. I was actually surprised how many women responded positively to that. When I first met up with the woman, I ended up seeing for three years, she asked me why I did it. I was simply honest and told her I liked being nude out in the sun, air, and sea. She initially told me she would come to the nude beach with me, but she wouldn’t get naked, she would only go topless. However, on our first visit to the beach together, before we left her house, she put her bikini on under her clothes, which included a denim miniskirt. The bikini bottom was uncomfortable under the skirt as it had knots on the sides which the skirt was pressing into her. So, she took the bottom off and placed them in one of the bags but didn’t bother replacing it with underwear.

    When we arrived at the beach we parked and walked up to the nude section. We found somewhere to settle down for the day and I got naked straight away. My girlfriend then realised she had left her bikini bottom in the back that we hadn’t brought with us. I offered to go back to the car and get it and she surprised me, saying she’d try it without them. She slightly nervously got naked and lay down on her towel. After about 30 minutes she sat up and with a smile on her face said, “This is nice, isn’t it?” By the end of that day, she was happily walking around the beach and swimming naked. She loved it and we went to nude beaches together many times.

    I had three other girlfriends after her who also took to it like water. One of those was a neighbour who had seen me walking around in the nude in my house and was intrigued. She was also much younger than me by thirty years, in her early twenties. She had already wanted to go to nude beaches but hadn’t had the opportunity or confidence to do it on her own.

    So, my experience of women and nudism/naturism is a more positive one. I would say there are lots of women who would like to do it.

    Reply
    • Thanks for sharing your experiences. When looking at the demographics of naturists around the world, one could easily conclude that men are more into naturism than women. But, of course, this is only a generalization and can be completely different from person to person. In countries/cultures where gender inequality still strongly exists, it’s not uncommon that you will find more men in naturism than women. But we’ve also seen, for example in Brazil, where there is an uprise of feminism combined with strong “machismo”, that women were more likely to get naked than men.

      We heard a story the other day at a campsite about a group of teenagers. The girls would go naked and the boys would wear sarongs. And it was the girls who pointed out that this was a naturist campsite and that nudity is the norm.
      But on another occasion, it could have been the complete opposite.

      Reply
      • That’s really interesting. Some things I’ve observed and heard tell me that girls/women like to be nude.

        Some of the girlfriends I had after I got divorced had daughters. In each case, when they heard we were going to the beach, we explained we were going to a nudist beach and gave them the option whether they wanted to come or not. Most of the time the answer was yes.

        The first time we took one girlfriend’s daughter to the beach, she wanted to go in the sea. The tide was out and the sea was 200m away. Her mother wanted to stay laying in the sun, so I walked to the sea with her daughter, who was 11, nearly 12, at the time. As we walked across the beach, both naked, she turned to me and said, “This is really OK isn’t it?” When I asked her what she meant she said, “Being naked, it feels really nice, and there’s nothing wrong with it is there? I like it.” I assured her there was nothing wrong with it. A similar thing happened with another one who was 14 at the time, who, once she had tried it and quickly got used to being naked around me, started casually being naked around the house.

        Another was an ex-girfriend of my son’s. She was 18 and after she and my son split up she still wanted to keep in touch. She started coming round on Sunday mornings for a brew and a chat. One morning she told me that she had been watching a documentary about naturists while her parents were out at the pub and intrigued by it she stripped off and got naked. She was telling me because it was funny, because parents came home early and caught her naked. But she enjoyed it so much that whenever her parents were out she would get naked and just go about her business in the nude.

        Me and one of the girlfriends were on holiday in Corfu one year. The place I like to go to has a beach which is clothing optional at one end. We were sitting on the beach one day, nude of course, when a young couple walked in front of us about 30m away, and stopped. They were looking around almost nervously, then sat down. The sat there for an hour then got up and left. They remained clothed the whole time. The following day they came back and this time put towels down about 20m to our right. The boy stripped to his shorts and lay down, but the girl stripped off completely and lay down in the nude. They stayed like that for several hours before getting dressed and leaving. The girl remained in the nude the whole time. They came back to the beach several times that week and did the same every time. I could only conclude from that, that it was the girl who wanted to be nude, not her boyfriend.

        I’m getting on a bit now, 60+, and I have been doing this for most of my life, so I have lots of experiences I can recount. I honestly believe that girls/women are more comfortable being nude and have more desire to be nude than men. But, it’s more difficult for them, especially if they’re single, because for a girl/woman to go to a nude beach on her own, might lead to unwanted attention, it’s not necessarily true most of the time, sometimes it is, which is a sad situation. I think if girls/women felt safe to go to a nude beach alone, more would do and there would probably be more women than men.

        Reply
        • It’s not just a matter of safety, but also of social expectations. We often make the comparison that if a drunk guy gets on a table in a bar and pulls down his pants, most people will just laugh. When a drunk woman does the same, people might think a bunch of other things. Because of our historical luggage, decency is more expected from women than from men. And in our world, getting naked is (unfortunately) still often considered indecent.

          Reply
          • I can’t really agree with that. Every woman I have known personally who has become a naturist after meeting me, have all said that safety was the concern that always prevented them going alone to a nude beach before.

            It’s not so much fear of being attacked, but simply of inapproprite attention.

            We know that as unwelcome as it is, it happens. It happened to two of my partners at different times while I was away up the beach for a walk. More or less the same thing happened each time, the girl lying on a towel sunbathing, bloke walks up to her and stands over her masturbating while making lewd remarks about her body parts.

            That’s what most women have told me they were worried about. It makes them uncomfortable at the very least.
            It’s hopefully fairly rare but it does happen unfortunately.
            To be honest, I think only a minority of society, at least in the UK, consider nudity indecent these days. Most aren’t bothered by it.

            I’ve also found over the years that women, at least the ones I’ve encountered while nude, are less bothered by it than some men.

            There’s a place I used to go to a lot where there is a forest next to the beach. It isn’t an official nude beach but is known for being used by naturists for decades. It’s possible to walk nude through the forest to the beach. I was walking through the forest one day and came across a Forestry Commission worker with a Range Rover, doing some kind of maintenance. I had to walk past him so slipped on a pair of shorts. As I walked past, we exchanged pleasantries, but he then told me he was the Forest manager and that I needn’t have covered up. He told me that he was OK with nudists and supported our right to be nude. He didn’t mind us walking through the forest nude. He also said to look out for a younger guy who was also a Forest worker and was usually in a pickup. He told me that this younger guy was completely anti-nudists and was likely to get angry and aggressively rant at you. I’ve never bumped into this guy fortunately.

            Whenever I have encountered women who weren’t nudists/naturists, they have always seemed unbothered by me being nude; many happy to stop and chat.

  14. I’ve just remembered a lady who I didn’t have a relationship with. I was once renting an office in a local council-owned building. The manager of the building was a lady in her 50’s, about 10 years older than me at the time.

    I used to sit and have a tea or coffee and chat with her during breaks sometimes. One day, she told me her husband was taking her away on a weekend break to a nice hotel in the country that coming weekend.

    The following week I had a coffee with her and asked her if she’d had a nice weekend. She told me it was lovely. She then confided in me (not aware that I was a naturist) that, in her words, she’d done something naughty. She had gone down to the swimming pool (indoor) very early one morning when no one else was there, and she took her swimsuit off and swam a couple of lengths in the nude.

    I told her that was great, and it wasn’t naughty, also telling her at that point that I was a nudist. She then confided in me further, that from being a young girl she had always wanted to swim in the nude and would love to go to a nude beach. I encouraged her to talk to her husband about it and told her one of the best beaches to go and try it out. I don’t know whether she ever did.

    But this is my experience, there are women, ladies, girls out there, who want to be nudists or naturists.

    Reply

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