Yes. Time to reclaim my feminine wiles and while I'm talking about dating, I am hoping that they will eventually lead to more dating and sex. So, let's have a chat about nudity.
I was reading an article on Jezebel the other day about how women are nudity "happiest" (yes, in quotes) with their bodies at age 34.
It got me thinking on a personal level when and even if I was ok with being naked...even by myself.
I've never enjoyed sleeping naked (what if there's a fire?) and have only done it on a few occasions when it was either too bearable to wear clothes or at a partner's request. Even though I live out in the country, I never strip down to put on a bathing suit in the backyard (we have a pool), but instead get dressed and undressed in my room or the bathroom and make my way down to the pool. I barely even look at myself naked in a mirror (let alone with clothing on).
I only ever skinny dipped as a child and in a daring turn of drunken events, once at a friend's cottage (and that was mainly to impress upon the crush of my desire that I was a brave girl (consequently a very drunk one)).
Nakedness or nudity was never a bad thing in my childhood or growing up, so I wonder when I developed this overly sensitive fear of getting down to brass tacks and taking my kit off (as my Scottish friends would say).
In the past with boyfriends, I immediately knew who was 'worthy' of seeing me naked and those who were not. Boyfriends who complimented me and loved me and made me feel beautiful helped lessen the constant state of anxiety about getting naked in front of them. My high school boyfriend definitely saw me more naked than any of the other men I've dated. But I suppose I didn't have the hang ups about "how I was supposed to look" back then (despite reading Cosmo) and he always embraced my shape and body and made me feel beautiful. That's one of the things I miss most about him...his ability to make me feel good!
Since then, I've had a slew of boyfriends who may have made me feel good about myself from time to time, but far too nervous and uncomfortable to be totally naked in front of them for varying reasons. Sex and nudity is something I've always struggled with...positioning sheets or clothing in front of areas that I personally find unflattering on myself. I've even dated men who have asked about why I hide my body from them, but I've failed to tell them that I need to be told I'm sexy, beautiful, hot, desirable with my clothes both on AND off...and frequently.
Needy chicks do that and I'm not needy...or at least I didn't think I was. But maybe I am.
A tougher question would be, why do I not date guys who make me feel like I want to get totally in-your-face naked with them early on? Rather than the "let's do it with the lights out" sorta guys. The guys that I can never fully trust (even though I want to). My last 'serious' relationship, I started dressing more and more out of his view because in my mind, he didn't deserve it and it was my way of punishing him because I wasn't getting what I needed out of the relationship. Sensing that, I should have just come clean and broken up with him. Not that it would have mattered to be honest.
Part of it is because I don't like my body (I'm working on this) and partly because I've dated men who have only been concerned with themselves and their needs and wants (and I've given into them with wild abandon of my own desires). These are the things about my personal life that I'm desperately trying to change/understand as I hurtle towards 40.
Yes.,...at 34 I wasn't exactly happy with my body either, so I'm not entirely sure what these women were talking about. But then again, I'm assuming they aren't single either. People like Lena Dunham of HBO Girl's fame has been an inspiration in the whole 'embrace your nakedness campaign' for women and for me personally. Like the show or hate the show, you can rest assured that main character Hannah (played by Dunham) will be putting herself out there and is ultimately comfortable with being naked and not being perfect.
It's a quality I find endearing and something I'm aiming for myself.
So what about you... how comfortable do you feel getting naked?