Hi everyone, I was grouting the patio, as you do and thinking about the terminology people use to describe our activities / way of life. Nudist, Naturist or Clothing Optional? What floats your boat and why? I have always prefered naturist over nudist, which might be a European vs USA thing, but recently I am leaning towards the concept of Clothing Optional (CO). Maybe some of you will think the terms are interchangeable, but I am not convinced as they each come loaded with expectation, for example Naturist implies the natural state, a oneness with nature and all that…

I think I prefer CO because it more accurately describes the culture I would like to inhabit. I prefer to be naked but don't want to force my preferences on others, if you tolerate my nudity, I will tolerate your choice to remain clothed. This attitude seems to be more realistic for us because our teenage daughter is at that embarrassable age, whereas the little one is not bothered. We have to manage our public nudity so as not to upset each member of our family, it is all about acceptance, non judgment and understanding I guess…

12 thoughts on “Terminology”

  1. As one of my recent articles asks the question, "what is naked"? The problem is not nudity, the problem is being called "nude" when in fact, we are not. We just choose not to cover our bodies with clothing as if it were shame. Clothing is not bad if used for its true purpose: to protect us or to signify our position or job. So if we choose not to wear them for the sake of comfort and health, or to avoid discomfort of clothing, then that is an option for us. Clothing is an option as much as being without them. But again, the angle is towards the clothing when describing those without clothing. It still shows "lack" on our part. By saying "Clothing Optional", we are putting the favor back to our natural state. Clothing is optional, not nudity. We are born this way, so we have no option physically speaking. God created us in His image and likeness and said it was very good. So what else is there? To wear clothing then is an option, otherwise nudity (if you still want to call it that, which God did not call it that) is the normal state of humanity. In short, CO should be the best way to describe it, not nude or naked.

  2. It can cause issues, but whichever you adopt unfortunately is always subject to the interpretation of the receiver. That is to say, if I define and adopt one term then use it in conversation, the recipient might interpret my term in a manner that I had not intended.

    For me, I used to prefer naturist, because nudist sounded as though it had lewd/rude connotations. More lately I've come to accept both terms because at least 'nudist' cannot be misconstrued as 'Naturalist'

  3. I understand that people require all they interact with to have a name so they can identify it in their daily activities. The word "nude" meant bare, without clothing. A "nudist" was someone preferred to be without clothing. Simple, I like it.
    I also like CO because it further explains the freedom of choice that we embrace without any extra bells. These words are inclusive and "inclusivity", if I may invent a word appeals to me.
    All the people who try to define nudism (naked all the time) to the exclusion of others simply define what is wrong with this world. I am special and you aren't. Now there are Naturists who not only respect nature but must be nude while doing so and on and on gack1

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