Discover more from A Comfort of Naturists
Naturists don’t mind if you wear clothes.
My natural state is naked. I wear clothes because I am required to in order to interact with a society that is unwilling to accept wearing nothing as a legitimate clothing choice. I accept that clothing serves a purpose against the cooler temperatures and that there is no point in being uncomfortably cold just to stubbornly stand by one of the principles of naturism. Naturists are practical, not foolish.
As I have a private outdoor space and live in a fairly temperate climate, for much of the year I can be naked outside. Thanks to central heating and double glazing, I can enjoy being naked indoors all year round.
As a naturist, I really don’t care if you want to wear clothes or not. I believe that most people would benefit from spending more time naked, but it makes no difference to me if clothing is what you need to feel comfortable.
Alternatively, clothed people often seem to mind a great deal if people chose not to wear clothes and there are many examples where clothed people get upset at natural nudity.
At my local beach, there is a popular spot frequented by naturists, where for the most part we can sit and enjoy the freedom of sun on our skin with non-naturist people walking by indifferent to and largely oblivious to the naturists nearby. It is truly a shared space where people relax and get on with their own thing, not bothered by anyone else. Occasionally there will be a discouraging glance, or someone will walk past, notice that people are naked, and hurriedly pick up the walking pace as they scurry past, but thankfully these encounters are few and far between.
Occasionally there will be an article in the local newspaper about nude people on the public beach. Recently the NZ Herald published a story running the headline:
Pāpāmoa Beach nude bathing: 12 complaints about bathers or behaviour.
The story went on to detail that in response to an official information request, police revealed that there had been 12 complaints (4 in 2019, 4 in 2020 and another 4 in 2021). Due to the way the police records are kept, it was not possible to discern if the complaints were simply related to people being nude, not against the law in NZ, or if the complaints related to lewd behaviour involving nudity, which is against the law here.
Given the size of the beach, the number of naturists using it and the significant number of non-naturists using it, four complaints a year seems rather light. Four is four too many and I would prefer there were none, but nudity is not universally understood or accepted, so there will always be someone willing to complain.
Part of the beach is used by men looking for hookups in the secluded dunes between the road and the beach. Naturists call these men “meerkats” due to their propensity to pop up, look around, and then drop back into hiding. Occasionally, a meerkat will make its presence known and stand proudly in view, perhaps frustrated by the lack of offerings at hand, and vainly try to tempt anyone into the dunes to engage in sexual activity. It is my belief that these men are the reasons behind the complaints rather than people simply sunning themselves naked on the beach. Again an example of the few ruining things for the many. Police records are unable to clarify if this is the case.
In another article, the paper covered a story of a mother at the holiday spot of Taupo in the central North Island who called for g-strings and skimpy swimwear to be banned in public places. She told the paper that:
she felt uncomfortable taking her family swimming at a public reserve because others there didn't know what "appropriate" swimwear was.
While this person may have been in a minority, she was voicing an opinion that does exist in the community. There are always people willing to question moral standards when it comes to clothing, or lack of, in public.
There was also the case of a Wellington man charged for riding naked on a remote rural road after a woman complained. He was convicted but appealed it as far as the High Court, where he won. The High Court Judge said that the man's nakedness had not met the test of offensive behaviour, and he quashed the conviction and fine. It cost the man $5,000 to defend the $200 fine but he claimed it was about the principle.
There is a big divide between those who see clothing as optional and those who believe that any display of human nudity is unacceptable. When these two personality types cross paths, at a natural swimming spot or an outdoor setting, there will always be conflict.
While there is a hardcore group of naturists who believe that wearing any clothing at a naturist venue weakens the brand and should be discouraged, most of the naturists that I have engaged with over the years really don’t care and are more about the freedom to wear or not wear what you like.
This might be a little pedantic, but there is a subtle difference in perspective that illustrates the different mindsets of many naturists.
Naturists don’t take off their clothes, they put them on when they have to.
The difference between naturists and clothed people is that naturists don’t mind if you wear clothes.
Thank you for reading, have a comfortable day.