Here are two perspectives on my being naked at the same event. The first is from my good friend, Kendra Holliday and the second comes from a mother whose son saw me naked.
So I knew David was doing the 10 Days Naked Project, but it was still shocking to discover him standing there naked in [the host’s] beautiful backyard. It was a typical summer cocktail party gathering - except there was a naked man there. Initial shock aside, I thought, “That’s cool, we’re all friends here.”
But then, a 5-year-old boy showed up. Immediately David asked his mom if she wanted him to put clothes on, and her reaction was to give that choice to her son. She said to her kid, “Would you like David to put clothes on?”
The kid was out of his element even without this unexpected twist. Uncomfortable, he mumbled something like he didn’t care, avoided eye contact and made a beeline to a secluded area of the garden away from the crowd to play his electronic game.
I thought WOW that was awkward, and was glad it wasn’t me in that situation, on either side. I’m totally into challenging adults. Nudity is no big deal to me and one of my causes; I’m all about promoting and demystifying the human body, but a kid wandered onto the scene and was asked for his consent. Should kids be put in that situation?
I’m also all about sex-positive parenting, but I can’t help but think that kid is going to have a weird memory someday and I hope it doesn’t affect him in a subtle and negative way.
Totally unplanned and unintended, shit happens.
OK moving on, we all sat down in a circle to do introductions. I sat next to David and have to admit I felt pretty damn cool to be sitting next to the naked guy, my good friend.
I half expected others in the group to shed their clothes because they saw him nude (I was tempted, it was perfect naked weather!) but they did not. Why didn’t anyone else disrobe?
Since David’s my good friend, I felt entitled to look at him more than I would some other random naked person. I noticed his penis had what looked like pre-cum oozing out of the urethra. I wondered, “Did he just pee?” So I kept checking it from time to time, and it kept sporting this little clear drippy fluid.
At one point, gnats started checking it out, and I caught myself waving my hand to shoo them away. “Get away from my friend’s penis!” I thought protectively.
Later, I commented to my partner Matthew, “I know that I have vaginal secretions, but I didn’t know men secrete, too.”
“I don’t,” he said.
“You don’t? Are you sure? Maybe you dribble a little after you pee?”
“My dick does NOT weep,” he said flatly.
Did David just pee? Or cum? Does he have a prostate issue? Is it normal for some guys to have wet dicks, and others to have dry ones? Now I want to go around and ask men about their urethra function, and I have David to thank for that.
The Mother’s Response:
I must admit that I am a little mystified that Kendra feels this way. Small corrections too, [my son] is 8, which is to me old enough for him to express his feelings to me honestly which I feel he did. I pulled him around the corner and gave him another chance to express any uncomfortable feelings he might have had. One of the big reasons why I felt like I could empower him to make that choice was that I knew that you would respect his choice, no doubt.
I initially sat him up in the gazebo away from the rest of us adults, but that didn’t last long. I’m sure you noticed him sitting by me, mingling etc.
I am confident that my son will not carry any negative emotions through his life though, I can’t even imagine what they would be of: seeing a naked man in public (not his first time) or being listened to and having his opinion count….
Finally I’d argue that contrary to the author who expresses “initial shock” of seeing you naked, David, my child was just shy. You’ve met my child multiple times and the first time he was shy and hiding behind his mom as well. You were fully clothed. Kids are fickle like that.