WOMEN IN NATURISM
We hide our personalities behind our outfits but being naked allows you to be your real self. When you get dressed again you feel as though you’re putting on a disguise, to make yourself respectable for the rest of the world.
Whenever you’re putting on a different outfit, whether you’re going out, putting on a uniform, or staying at home, you’re wearing something to reflect the behaviour and personality you think you should have in that environment. When you’re naked, you don’t need to do any of that, you can be what you feel. You don’t have to pander to whatever you think everyone else expects and it gets rid of class distinctions.
Like any hobby, naturism brings diverse groups of people together. You interact whole range of people you wouldn’t necessarily interact with in your day to day life and everyone is so genuine.
There’s nothing particularly interesting about looking at a naked body really, so when you’re talking to someone you’re actually listening to what they’re saying and trying to understand it, rather than getting distracted by their body or clothes. The conversations are more profound and genuine that way. Being naked removes all artifice and pretence, and so you can connect with people on a deeper, more honest level.
However, women face much greater pressure with regards to body image and sexual objectification than men do. Women may feel particularly nervous about participating because of the way that the female body is sexualised in the modern world. but it’s actually clothing that sexualises everything.
The fact is there are an array of sociocultural factors lined up to make women feel insecure about their bodies and as a consequence are less enthusiastic about the prospect of spending time naked around other people. Unfairly men simply aren’t subjected to this to nearly the same degree. They have less to fear from being objectified, and there’s much less pressure on them to look a certain way.
Naturism promotes messages of body acceptance and is against objectification at every level. While negative body image is indeed a barrier, naturism itself offers an alternative to the men and women who are made miserable by this culture of body shaming. It’s one of the great things about this lifestyle and one of the best reasons to participate and support it.
After you go to a swim or event you’ll feel so good about yourself, women become more and more accepting of their bodies, and also more confident in general, if you can take your clothes off in front of complete strangers, you’ll feel you can do pretty much anything. Half the time you forget you’re actually naked, you just feel so natural and comfortable. You can just be yourself – it’s so freeing.
Also, by seeing how many different bodies there are out there you realise how ridiculous it is to compare yourself to other people – we are all so different. Why would you compare yourself to someone else when you are so unique? Everyone is on an equal footing, being nude is extremely relaxing. You feel comfortable in your own skin and it feels normal, organic, liberating, empowering.
Irish Naturist Association firmly believes in the positive benefits of naturism and with our Women-in-Naturism Action seeks to encourage women to try it out.