I posted this message when the Nudity Forum was stated nearly a year ago, but it has generated litlle comment, possibly due to an obscure location; I'm submitting it again, and would welcome comment:
My story: I was born into a family with relatively conventinal standards on personal exposure for the time (1950's-early 60's); you weren't allowed to be unclothed around the house. But at school, the rules were a lot different than in recent years. Showering in an open area was mandatory after Phys Ed instruction began in the seventh grade, and the local YMCA encouraged all-male groups using its enclosed indoor pool to swim wthout benefit of any clothing.
In my own case, this was a pretty negative experience. Two years before, I had been diagnosed with spinal curvature (idiopathic scoliosis), which was immediately corrected surgically, but left me with a noticeably off-center torso. Thus, I was not only the last picked for competitive sports, but endured plenty of locker-room bullying, aggravated by the circumstance that I was a late-bloomer sexually.
But time eventually cured much of this problem, and when I entered college, I was enrolled in a mandatory swimming class and, with the dumb-bully element removed to the University of Vietnam, found myself in a supportive environment with the added benefit of mastering a physical challenge for the first time.
I became a lap-swimmer for life, and moved around quite a bit in the first few years afterward, becoming acquainted with a number of local 'Y's. By that time, most required a suit, usually the Speedo which was common practice on campus, but a few still offered an opportunity to swim "au naturel".
Around this time (early 80's) a friend had noticed my deformity and suggested a visit to a local nudist camp, which normally dissuaded single men, but made exceptions in cases like my own. I found the atmosphere very open-minded and stimulating, but there was a point beyond which a single could not go, and the nudist movement of the day encompassed a broad spectrum, with some members committted to a broad and enlightened social philosophy, others little more than thinly-disguised "swingers".
In the years since, the nudist movement appears to have come under attack, by a strange combination of both the traditional religious conservatives, and the new movement of "political correctness", which seems to view an earlier generation's general acceptance of physical exposure in same-sex groups, as some sort of threat to a heightened level of sensitivity.
I have a "nephew", now age 27, who seems typical of this trend. Raised almost entirely by women, and somewhat feminized in his behavior, he is definitely intimidated in a locker-room environment. And in my own visits to the local 'Y' pool, I notice that most members over the age of 35 or so have no nudity hang-up's, but among younger men, the "towel dance" is a common practice. A male in any swimwear that doesn't extend halfway to the knees is likely to be viewed as suspect in his sexual orientation.
Who turned the whole thing upside down? -- Comments, please.
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