When should you stop being naked in front of your kids?
“I mean, how can I expect my kids to have a positive body image if I don’t encourage that from an early age," says mum Jacqui.
For many families, it is commonplace for children to see their parents naked, often while taking a bath or dressing up. But at some point or another, it stops. In her Mama Mia story, Jacqui Porter asks exactly when.
“My son has just turned five and although it isn’t an issue yet, I know sooner or later I’m going to have to decide whether or not we are a ‘naked’ house,” she says. “I don’t mean naked in the sense that as soon as the door closes, we all immediately nude up.
“I just mean whether or not my husband and I continue to be naked around our kids hopping in and out of showers and getting dressed or whether we grab a towel and close the door as the kids get older.”
At this stage in her children’s lives, it’s not an issue yet. In fact, her children don’t have any qualms barging into her shower to ask her to do things for them, like find the remote or fix them food.
“Part of me thinks that if I don’t make an issue out of it, it won’t be an issue,” says Jacqui “I mean, how can I expect my kids to have a positive body image if I don’t encourage that from an early age.”
But on the other hand, it makes her think whether or not her children would be awkward about it.
“Is it kind of a mutual respect thing that comes in to play when your children reach a certain age? When they start getting uncomfortable, we start covering up?”
Speaking to other mums about the issue, Jacqui received varying opinions.
Some mothers believe that you should never cover up, especially around your own house. Meanwhile, others have covered up ever since their children were little. Mothers of boys in particular feel “weird” being naked around their sons.
Jacqui understands the hesitation some parents have about embracing nudity; it’s hard to be open and confident about one’s body in front of honest and uncensored eyes.
“Children have a way of repeating a lot of think outside the house and your untamed bush might not be a home tale you’d like told,” she says. “Not only that but we all have our insecurities and a child has a way of pointing them out so brutally.”
But should this be a deterrent for parents to be nude in front of their children? she asks.
“For many people it seems that the way you were raised plays a big part in how you see nakedness. Some people have seen their parents sans clothes for as long as they can remember and for them, it’s not a big deal.
“One friend told me ‘even now, I’d strip off in front of mum and siblings without another thought. It’s not an issue for me…but others tell tales of seeing their fathers saggy arse rummaging through the laundry pile and being scarred for life.”
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