We all wish society was more accepting of naturists. We all wish there were more opportunities for nude recreation, without the occasional social and legal repercussions. We all believe that the lifestyle is healthy and natural, and we wish others could understand that.
Every naturist seems to have their own opinion of what the problems are and what needs to be done to advance our cause. My opinion is quite straight-forward — do what works. And I look to the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) community as a good example of what works.
The actress Ellen Page just announced she was gay at the Human Rights Campaign conference in Las Vegas. I applaud her for living out in the open and authentically.
That got me to thinking, we naturist need to do the same. We will never achieve respectability or equality if we continue to hideaway in the “closet.” But there is still the stigma that nudity equals sexual activity. A lot of non-naturists think we are a bunch of sex crazed perverts or swingers.
I have spoken to many naturists and there is a price to be paid for being open about their lifestyle. Many naturists have jobs or responsibilities that would be compromised if they were known to be a naturist. A few years ago, I had a conversation with Red of “Nudes in the News” at Clothes Free International. Red told me that she was past over at work for promotions and stigmatized by her co-workers for her naturism and appearing nude.
If our “lifestyle” (a term I hate, just as gays hate that term for being gay) is to have equality within society, we need to be open about being naturists. I’m not at that stage where I can say openly” I’m a naturist” publicly, and that’s the problem.