Naturist, Clothes-Optional or Non-Naturist.
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Many naturists use the word ‘textile’ to describe non-naturists. It is normally used in slightly derogatory sense and is pretty meaningless to anyone who is not involved with organised naturism. I prefer to use the term ‘non-naturist’ to describe people, places or events where naturism is not an option. Non-naturist normally means for men: wearing shorts, pants or trunks at the very least, and for women: wearing at least a bikini or swimsuit. Non-naturists may view certain parts of the body as shameful or a source of embarrassment or amusement, which is why these parts of the body normally need to be covered.
As naturists, we are quite comfortable being naked socially with like minded people. But even as naturists, we are not always comfortable being naked in the company of non-naturists. When naked in the presence of non-naturists we may become self-conscious of our nudity and feel that we may be causing embarrassment or amusement to others. However, that’s not to say that naturists are naked all of the time when in a naturist setting. Naturism is a mindset more than anything else, a state of mind where nudity is not shameful or embarrassing. Nudity just is, and is met with indifference. There is no smirking, giggling, judging, or even arousal. Once someone ‘gets it’, they can truly call themselves a naturist.
And then we have clothes-optional. Like ‘naturist’, clothes-optional means that you do not need to be clothed (as implied in the name). Clothes-optional opens naturist events to non-naturists but any non-naturist should be aware and they may encounter and respect naturism. Naturists need to be aware that there might be non-naturists present and if they are not comfortable with that, they may want to stay dressed or simply stay away.
The Great Irony Of It All
Now here is the great irony. Some naturist clubs have non-naturist evenings and events. In fact, some naturist club members will go as far as to demand to only have non-naturist events for a variety of spurious reasons. However, whatever those reasons are, they come from a non-naturist viewpoint because if you see nudity with indifference, without shame or embarrassment, how could anyone demand to have a non-naturist event without suffering a massive loss of credibility when it comes to their naturism?
I’d like to know. Really I would.