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Parental And Family Nudity

Talk about the different types of breasts and buttocks, I had seen almost all of them. I kid you not! I was the last of three girls and I had the pleasure, or so I thought, of my mother and sisters dressing and undressing in front of me. I was eleven and in J.H.S and this was still ongoing till. We had started to learn about Reproduction in Science and we the boys, especially were fascinated. I asked very direct questions which took my teacher by surprise. I will ask questions like, “Why do some breasts stand while others seem to be lying down?”
“Do nipples go in and out because they are more obvious at certain times?”
“At what age will my penis become close to the shape of the cucumber, hotdog or banana?”
My teacher was not taking it anymore and had to call my parents in. Before I was asked to wait outside after my teacher narrated her story and my parents were questioned, the head of school accused my parents of ‘Parental Nudity”. I had never heard that before. My parents had a clueless look as I looked them quizzically before walking out. I wondered what I had done to put my parents and me in trouble.
Parental or Family nudity could become a problem by age four, when it is believed that some children become sexually stimulated and become confused ,over confident as in Kay’s case or embarrassed by this feeling. It becomes necessary by that age to start segregating showers for them or stop dressing and undressing in their presence. Seeing parents looked slightly different could bring about a range of emotions which may include fear and curiosity.
Well, even if you do not segregate them as parents, they will call for it when they get older and may not want to see you naked. They will slam the door when you try to get into the bath when they are in there or use words like “ewww” when they see you naked. This does not mean that parents can continue to go naked in front of their children till they get to this stage.
When your child starts to pose questions about “private parts”, and are aware enough to notice and ask questions on breasts, penises etc, it is time to avoid being naked around them. These questions are signals of a child’s curiosity rather than discomfort. Worse of all ,some parents shut the children up when they ask these questions ,leaving them on their own to satisfy their curiosity with magazines and videos( children between 8 -11)
Exposure to family or parental nudity at a young age might cause children to become sexually curious before they are ready. This may become the beginning of early sexuality.Kay was almost towing this line because not only was he asking “adult” questions but trying to find answers from magazines he saved to buy from supermarkets. He schooled his naïve friends and in time, they were ready to peep while the girls changed for sports or when their cousins came visiting.
Some parents see family nudity as a natural thing and believe that making it a big deal is what is rather damaging to the child. When parents hide their bodies from children, the children learn to feel ashamed of their bodies and sexuality .It is not everyone who sees naked bodies, who thinks about sexually, they add.
This line of thought is true too but signs of sex curiosity should not be ignored and parents should not miss the sign when it is time to stop being nude in front of their children, regardless.
Kay’s parents were grateful to the school authorities for paying attention and vowed to do same. They encouraged Kay and his sisters to ask any question that bothered their minds as they could trust them better than magazines and movies. Everyone respects their privacy and Kay and his friends are no longer as curious. Their parents and teachers give them answers readily. Kay still gives them pep talks but from a well informed point this time.

August 24, 2017

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