How naturism changed my life. (repost)

(This piece was written by my Dutch buddy Harmen. I’m proud to know him and to repost this, his first blog post, with permission.)

After being bullied for a small 14 years during my youth and a slow process of finding and accepting myself, plus a wide interest in a lot of things, I came across naturism 10 years ago. A lot of things naturism is about, like respect people, animals & nature were one of the main reasons. I knew it was practiced mostly in the nude, but since I already accepted myself for who I was at that time, the being nude wasn’t really a problem for me.

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So I jumped right in and joined a very good friend, which is also naturist and a second mom to me, to naturist resort Flevonatuur in the Netherlands. From the first second I arrived there it felt like home coming and my missing puzzle piece was found.

My interest in naturism grew and developed a lot these last 10 years, but not only that changed a lot. I think the biggest change in my life was my point of view at life. We are living in an era where time is money and money and status is more important then people. People that need help are left behind, people that don’t need help are overwhelmed with stuff they don’t need but also don’t decline. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a people person, I love people and I’m interested in them. The real them. It’s just the way people act these days what annoys me. The negativity and hate that’s in them lately. Open a news website and read the comments at stories that have the subject immigration for instance. So much hate to people they don’t know, they don’t know their story, their history, their motivation nothing. They just spill their guts on social media without even thinking or reading what they’re saying. I blame modern media for the most part of this by spreading fear and false information. But that’s no excuse for turning of your brain and just typ the most negative things you can think of.

In the end it’s all about giving and receiving respect. I always ask myself the question, can you look in the mirror before you go to bed and say ( and believe ) that you’re a good person? The problem with this is, that the majority of the people don’t like themselves. They don’t like their job, they don’t like their family and friends and most of all they don’t love themselves. Instead of making a change they just keep going on and on like this for years and keep building up that negative vibe they’re in.

When you look at naturists, there’s a lot of respect between them. They don’t judge people by what they represent but by who they are. And even then it’s not really judging. Live and let live. They literally know everyone is the same because there’s nothing they can hide. Not even theirselves cuz when you’re at a naturist resort or a nude beach, yourself is all you have to offer. There’s no rich or poor, no success or fails. But there is a Paul or a Jenny, a Rick or a Samantha. There are just persons. Real persons. Living persons. With a suit named skin. And that skin, no matter what color it is, is the same for everyone and everywhere. A female nipple isn’t any different then a male nipple, tho male nipples are accepted in public while female nipples aren’t. I talked with a lot of people about that, male and female, and the majority of the people that are against public female nipples give as reason that ” it’s sexual “. Well no it isn’t. They’re put there for a reason, feeding your children. And yes I know it’s an erogenous zone aswell but so are ears. You wanna cover up ears aswell? The point I’m trying to make is that the world isn’t as black and white as you might think.

I’m posting this and as you probably already noticed you can see my butt ( funny fact: did you know my butt is made out of the same cells and materials as the rest of my body? It’s really true, look it up ). Facebook is a very strange medium. ( Sidenote: When I wrote this it was a Facebook post first ) You can post violence, wars, blood, animal cruelty, filthy words, etc. but what you can’t post is skin that usually is covered up. Pictures of breastfeeding were removed and called ” sexual content “. This is the world we live in today. It’s okay to show which awful things are taking our lives, but it’s not okay what kept us alive the first most important period of our life.

I’m not asking you to agree with me, I’m only asking you to love yourself for who you are. I’m not saying I never made a mistake or that I know what’s best for you. I’m human, surely I do make mistakes and I don’t have the wisdom to say how you should live your life. What I do know, is how you could make it easier for yourself on this big planet and more enjoyable. We’re at a moment where the world needs more love and what a great way to achieve that in the first place by loving yourself. Also I’m asking you to think before you speak, especially on social media. I know the anonymity makes it easier to say things you would say offline but that doesn’t justify it.

Don’t judge people before you talked with them. Or even better, don’t judge them at all. Embrace your body, it’s the only one you got. Don’t like your job? Switch jobs. Don’t like your friends? Make new ones. I know it sounds very easy. It’s not. But when you do it, it’ll make your life so much easier. We’re born without judgement. Without hate. Without shame. These are all things that are taught to us. Only question you have to ask yourself is do I really wanna spent my time on earth trying to live other people’s lives or do I wanna live my own life before it’s over. So step outside that box and make a change. For yourself, for your surrounding and for the sake of this world. It’s the world we leave behind for our kids. Don’t let them pay for our stupid mistakes and narrow thinking. There’s more inside you then you think. Embrace it, don’t care what other people will think or say because in the end you’ll see that it doesn’t matter what others think about you. It’s about what you think about yourself.

Love yourself like I love myself. I know you can do it.

Thank you ❤️

If you want you can follow Harmen’s blog.

Naturist Adventure Weekend

The following experience was sent to my by Colin. Thanks, Colin, for offering this article!

Naturist Adventure Weekend

Despite it being August, the weather in our part of England decided to be very pleasant for a whole weekend. So LL and I planned a little adventure. We enjoy finding out-of-the-way places for swimming, sunning and generally hanging out – nude, of course. We have a guidebook to “wild swimming” places and decided to spend some time locating, and hopefully sampling, two or three of them. So we packed a couple of towels, some bottles of water and very little else and set off after an early lunch on Saturday.

The first destination was about 40 minutes drive away – a stretch of river, by a common, which was described as quiet and secluded. Following the instructions was challenging. We were on the correct road with the river to our left. It said to look out for a footpath sign. We counted five, all pointing in the correct kind of direction. We parked and chose the middle one. We needed to cross a couple of fields and followed the river upstream. Eventually, we could see that the river would be accessible ahead and figured that we had found the right place. Initially, we were dismayed as there was a man, sitting reading on a seat at the top of the bank.

We did not want an audience, so went closer to see what the actual riverside looked like. There was a little beach area, as we had hoped. At one end was a lady, who turned out to be the man’s wife, sunbathing nude. Of course, we then went down there and had a dip in the river. The lady and her husband also sampled the water. I got into conversation with them. It was their first visit to the spot, as they were exploring in exactly the way that we were. While we were standing around chatting, still nude obviously, some more people arrived – a woman and two young boys. LL spoke with the woman, who seemed quite unconcerned about us. The boys were more interested in investigating the water. In due course, we bid our farewells and headed off to find our next venue. On the way back, we found the better footpath, so our next visit will be easier.

Artikel ColinThe second place we looked for was some distance downstream on the same river and much closer to our home. The parking place being a 15 minute drive from our house. From this spot, it was a 20 minute walk along the river to reach the designated location. It was quite out of the way, some distance from the road, with just a small campsite nearby. We made our way down to the beach, which was idyllic in the late afternoon sun. The sole occupant of the beach was a middle-aged lady in a frumpy swimsuit. LL went to chat with her and learned that she worked at the nearby campsite. While they were talking, another bikini-clad woman appeared, accompanied by her two cute dogs and, I guessed, as I heard a voice just around the corner, her husband. LL came back to me and we discussed what to do. LL thought she might just go topless – leaving me to wonder what was “safe”. Yet another woman appeared and was talking to the first one. She changed into her swimsuit in a very practical way – just took off her clothes and put on her suit, with no messing with hiding behind a towel. We took this as a good sign – they were clearly not totally afraid of a little nudity. LL and I took off our clothes and waded into the water, by which time the two women had also got in.

Under these circumstances – going nude where nobody else is – there can be three possible outcomes. Most often, nobody seems to care and you are just ignored. Very occasionally someone will be upset – this is obviously what one fears and wishes to avoid. The third outcome is best of all: everyone else joins in. The two ladies came out of the water to remove their swimsuits and got back in. The bikini lady and her husband swam around the corner, both nude too. Another lady appeared, spoke briefly to the first two, took off her clothes and got into the water. Eventually there were 7 people [and two dogs] and not a swimsuit in sight. The #3 lady got out of the water at a similar time to us and she went off [back to the campsite] just wrapped in her towel. We dried and dressed and, as we were leaving, the #2 lady was sitting on the sand nude, just enjoying the sunshine. It is interesting how, sometimes, it is just a matter of someone being the first to get naked. I felt that it was LL’s “bravery” that enabled everyone else to be uninhibited and thoroughly enjoy the experience.

On Sunday, we headed for another place on a different river. It took 45 minutes or so to reach the parking spot, which we found easily. It was then about 400m to walk to a bridge over the river. We then walked for a while, following the meandering river. We saw a couple of possible bathing/sunning places, but the instructions promised us better if we kept going. After about 30 minutes, we found the place. It was a very sharp meander with lots of beach. The water was cold, but both shallow and deeper areas were to be found. We spent quite a while nude in and around the water. From the time we had left the car, we never saw another person – and this was beautiful accessible countryside on a lovely weekend afternoon. Where was everybody? I even hiked back most of the way nude quite confidently. Eventually we did see someone, quite close to the car, asleep by the river.

All in all it was a very successful and pleasant weekend. All three places were great and we will probably return to them all [as well as seek others]. In many ways, the one nearest to our home was the most enjoyable. Although solitude and isolation can be good, like-minded company is often better. The opportunity to introduce others to naturism or simply facilitate it in a relaxed way is a true pleasure.

A nudist experience – by guest blogger Dean

Dean

“Hey, let’s take our clothes off”, he said.
“What for?” I asked.
“’Cause it’s more fun” he replied.
At six years old there was no thought of ulterior motives; it was just two close friends in the playroom, while their mothers held a tea party in the garden. We still carried on with whatever games we were playing, only now we were naked. Jeff was right, it was more fun. And a lot more comfortable.
I have always had very sensitive skin, as well as an allergy to anything wool. Getting dressed in the morning was a bit traumatic for me, because most clothing in the day was made of natural materials. Synthetics came out a few years later, but at the time wool seemed to be the fabric of choice. All my socks were woolen, the school had a dress code that included grey flannels (I still itch just thinking about them) and a starched white shirt (ouch!). And they all wondered why I had concentration issues. Of course at “sleepy” time, I got to slip into my flannel pajamas…what a treat! My mother never knew that once tucked in and “nighty-nights” were exchanged, I would slip out of those PJs and hide them under the bed.
Blue jeans had to be washed three or four times before they started to become bearable. New, they were like slipping into plywood. So Jeff had shown me another way to live; comfortably. I became the one to suggest to friends that we take our clothes off “because it was more fun”, and most were willing to try.
Once puberty arrived the whole dynamic changed, of course, but I still had a group of friends who made the distinction between innocent nudity and “show and tell”. We would all go on camping trips where naked activity was integral, and skinny dipping was anticipated and frequent. (As were the requisite farting contests, but that’s for another blog ) 😉
Eventually we all separated and went our own ways as adulthood and responsibility arrived, and by then synthetics were very popular and a lot more comfortable. (I still have shivers thinking of the eczema on the soles of my feet). But I have very fond memories of the freedom I was able to experience, thanks to Jeff’s suggestion that it was more fun.
I suppose the purpose of this missive is to try to clarify the “ist” and “ism” attached to my being. I don’t really qualify as “naturist”; I happily eat meat and tofu makes me barf. I don’t know if “nudist” really fits either, as I don’t see my nakedness as a lifestyle choice so much as a simple comfort issue. I suppose I would call myself a “gymnophile”; someone who likes to be naked. And, of course, in the company of others it’s always “more fun”.