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View Poll Results: When is it OK for kids to run around naked?

Voters
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  • Never

    7 41.18%
  • Anytime

    2 11.76%
  • Up until puberty

    1 5.88%
  • Up until 1 years old

    1 5.88%
  • Up until 2 years old

    3 17.65%
  • Up until 3 years old

    1 5.88%
  • Up until 4 years old

    1 5.88%
  • Up until 5 years old

    0 0%
  • Other

    1 5.88%
Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    Terminator's Avatar
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    When is it OK for kids to run around naked?

    Alex Nicola, who will be 5 in August, enjoys being naked as frequently as possible at home.
    "In the morning he gets up and takes his pajamas off, and rather than get dressed right away, he walks around naked," said Dawn Nicola, Alexís mother, a stay-at-home parent in Castle Rock, Colo.
    After school, he likes to take off his pants, recline on his stuffed animal chair and watch an episode of SpongeBob SquarePants while snacking on cheese-flavored crackers.
    "I call him my little naked boy," Mrs. Nicola, 44, said affectionately.
    Alexís desire to be unclothed is not shared by his twin brother, Andrew, or by his 6-year-old sister, Gabrielle. "Itís a stage heís going through, and heíll grow out of it," said John Nicola, 39, Alexís father, a sales executive at First Data Corporation.
    Usually Alexís state of undress is a non-issue. Several weeks ago, however, it caused something of a stir when a classmate of Gabrielleís and her mother came over for a play date. Alex asked his sister and her friend to paint his fingernails and then suggested a fleshier canvas.
    "Apparently, he decided to take off his clothes and was like, ĎPut nail polish on me! Put nail polish on my bottom!í " Mrs. Nicola said.
    The girls obliged, and after creating a shapely pink masterpiece, ran down to the kitchen to confess to their mothers. Mrs. Nicola was taken aback, but after admonishing the girls and examining her sonís backside, she found the situation mildly amusing.
    The classmateís mother, however, was horrified. "The mom was sort of appalled that Alex got naked in front of her daughter," Mrs. Nicola said. "She expressed concern that we hadnít talked enough about private parts. She said, ĎIn our family, we always talk about how certain parts of the body are not for anyone else to touch.í "
    For many parents, allowing a child to run around naked at home is perfectly natural, an expression of physical freedom that represents the essence of childhood, especially in the summer. But for others, unclad bodies are an affront to civility, a source of discomfort and a potentially dangerous attraction for pedophiles. These clashing sensibilities can create conflict, even when the nudity in question takes place at home.
    Often, the differences in viewpoint are generational. Rachel Sarah, 36, a writer and mother in East Bay, Calif., said that until her 9-year-old daughter, Mae, turned 7, she liked to wear only a T-shirt in the summer, a preference that Ms. Sarah found healthy, but that Maeís grandparents could not accept. "My mom and stepfather were very insistent on her having clothes on for everything," Ms. Sarah said.
    Although most days Mae ran half-dressed through the sprinkler or played with friends under a hose, she had to accept different rules when her grandparents were around. "Their view, I would say, is that little girls need to have their clothes on unless theyíre taking a bath," Ms. Sarah said.
    Aly Mandel, 41, a school psychologist and mother of five in Highland Park, N.J., said she, too, felt ire from extended family members for allowing her daughter Ava, now 6, to roam naked in and around the house when she was younger.
    "My mother, it used to drive her crazy how naked Ava was," Ms. Mandel said, explaining that the girl abhorred clothes. "My mother-in-law also, they both felt it crossed the line of what was appropriate. My mother-in-law would come in and automatically say, ĎAva, put on your clothes. Put on your underwear.í "
    Gloria Schwartz, Ms. Mandelís mother-in-law, says she didnít have a problem with the nudity when Ava and her twin sister, Emily, were very young. But "when they got to be 3 years old, it bothered me," said Ms. Schwartz, 65, a real estate agent. "I would pull up to the house and the girls were running around naked. It felt inappropriate for them to be standing on the street in front of their house naked."
    Ms. Schwartz said she has since become more comfortable with her grandchildrenís nudity, something that now comes up with Ms. Mandelís youngest set of twins, who are 2.
    Sometimes itís the grandparents who are more permissive. Robert Kohlbrenner thought nothing of it last summer when his grandchildren, two boys, ages 4 and 10, and a girl, 6, asked if they could skinny-dip by the dock on a very hot day at his home on Oneida Lake in upstate New York.
    "I think itís fun for them," said Dr. Kohlbrenner, 58, a psychologist in private practice, who found out later that his son did not approve. "If you canít do it when youíre a kid, when can you do it, you know?"
    Dr. Kohlbrennerís son, Justin, 30, said he and his wife felt that their oldest son was too old to be naked. "He was getting a little too big to be doing it, you know, especially in front of his brother and sister," he said.
    'Clothes can be uncomfortable'
    Experts like Sharon Lamb, a professor of mental healthat the graduate college of education at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, said itís all but inevitable that children will want to spend time wearing only their birthday suits, especially in certain situations. "Clothes can be uncomfortable," said Dr. Lamb, a co-author of the forthcoming book "Packaging Boyhood: Saving Our Sons From Superheroes, Slackers, and Other Media Stereotypes." "For some kids, getting dressed gets associated with something they donít want to do, like eating their veggies."
    Around the age of 3 or 4, children begin to differentiate between whatís private and whatís public, experts say, and they usually begin to feel modesty soon after. But parentsí attitudes play the largest role in determining whether children are comfortable being naked at home, said Lawrence Balter, a psychologist at New York University and the editor of "Parenthood in America," an encyclopedia.
    "If someone has what appears to be an overly strong reaction to seeing young children running around naked, it tells us about their own hang-ups, their own inner conflicts," Dr. Balter said.
    Cultural norms are another factor. Katarzyna Psujek, 38, an administrator at Tiffany & Company and a mother of two sons who lives in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, said her son Sebastian, who turned 3 in May, often frolics at home naked and spent nearly an entire weekend naked last September at a rented house in upstate New York where the family celebrated a friendís wedding with about 30 other overnight guests.
    "Ninety-nine percent of the people who were there were Polish," said Ms. Psujek, whose last name is pronounced SUE-yek. "I remember thinking, if there were more people around, and if they were Americans, would they accept him running naked as he was?"
    In the United States, she continued: "I just donít think itís acceptable in popular culture. Americans have a sense that the body is very private. You donít talk about these things openly. Nudity is hush-hush."
    Some discomfort with nude children comes from the inevitable: they tend to answer natureís call whenever and wherever it beckons.
    Upon picking up her son, Hayden, from his friendís house in Burlingame, Calif., last year, Rachael Dominguez, an optician, said she was stunned when the friendís mom told her that Hayden, who turns 6 next month, was not welcome back because he had undressed and urinated in the yard. "She said, ĎI just think itís a bad example for my children and I think he shouldnít come over and do that anymore,í " said Ms. Dominguez, 42.
    Another factor that can play a role in attitudes toward naked children is the childís gender. Phyllis Halper, a fourth-grade teacher on Long Island, will not permit her 3-year-old son, Gavin, to get completely undressed at home, not because she thinks itís inappropriate, but because she is concerned that it might influence the behavior of her daughter, Jordyn, 5. "I expect her, especially as a girl, to be more modest," Ms. Halper said.
    Ms. Halper, 35, has taught 9- and 10-year-olds for a decade, and she said she sees firsthand how young girls are learning about sexuality at younger and younger ages, and finds it unhealthy.
    Masturbation is another landmine. "Kids like to touch themselves, they do," said Phyllis A. Katz, a psychologist and the former director of the Institute for Research on Social Problems in Boulder, Colo. "Parents sometimes feel uncomfortable about that, and maybe negative feelings about masturbation are mixed up with nudity."
    The sexual component of nudity ó and a fear of pedophiles ó is what makes some adults object entirely to letting children be naked. Jenny Louie said her husband is so uncomfortable when their 4-year-old daughter, Rebecca, is naked that, even if she is alone in her bedroom, in Los Angeles, he will immediately close her shutters.
    "Heís afraid of weird people looking in," said Ms. Louie, 35, a marketing consultant for Disney.
    Her husband, John Louie, 38, a vice president at the Mattel toy company, said that he is "definitely protective" of his daughter, but that modesty plays a larger role.
    At a party at a friendís home recently, Mr. Louie bristled when the hosts let their 4-year-old daughter splash naked in a childrenís pool, and his wife allowed Rebecca to join in. "I donít want to see her naked and, frankly, I donít want to see other kids running around naked either," Mr. Louie said. "Half the other couples there were fine with that, but Iím more demure."
    Another group that doesnít always appreciate unclad bodies: childless adults. Kevin Allen, 45, who used to work as a personal shopper, still recalls with horror the afternoon more than a decade ago when he was at a clientís house, and the womanís two young granddaughters came into the room and began changing outfits.
    "I was extremely uncomfortable," said Mr. Allen, who estimates the girls were 5 and 6. "I know the grandmother well, but I didnít know the children."
    When asked to reflect on the source of his discomfort, Mr. Allen, who is gay, said he feared the situation could all too easily be misinterpreted. "Being gay, youíre already thought of as a pervert by some people," he said. "If you look the wrong way at them or something like that, people are going to think youíre having some kind of lascivious thought. So itís kind of not appropriate even in your own house. When other people are around, you should have modesty."
    Psychologists seem to agree that parents are wise to teach their children that different situations call for different behaviors, and that taking guestsí feelings into account is a thoughtful thing to do.
    "I think there are societal realms of appropriate behavior," Dr. Katz said. "If a kid was having a birthday party and was 7 or 8 and suddenly decided to take off all his clothes or something like that, that would not be seen as an appropriate thing to do. Not because of the nudity per se, but because itís so unexpected."

  2. #2
    TXCharlie's Avatar
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    I voted "never", because after a certain age, you don't want perverts hanging around your house to catch glimpses of "naked boy" running around in the yard.

    And before that age, whatever it is, you don't want the kid to run around on the good carpet without a diaper.

    Runny #2 can leave a pretty bad stain

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  3. #3
    Five-0's Avatar
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    I put until 2. However, with the sexual deviants running around that would only be at home. Luckily I know the names, addresses, and vehicle descriptions of all the offenders within 5 miles of my home. Having to go check on them every six monthes will do that for you. There are not that many living around me.

    Meanwhile, fishing in Russia:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkzV5AIK8iM
    "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." -- Frederic Bastiat

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  4. #4
    kcnuke's Avatar
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    and she can do it again until she is 18, I know a good sitter. Seriously though, there are alot of sickos out there and I don't even have kids, but I'd even be eary of people I know and trust.

  5. #5
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    irishmick is offline Do not mistake my kindness for weakness.
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    I voted "other". If your kid wants to be naked, they're going to be naked. We're not the "you must put clothes on" type of family, but we also won't do it around other people, other family members, or the general public at large. With it being as hot as it is, I have no problem with kids running around in their own homes with no clothes on. And yeah, I'm paranoid to a certain degree...but it's our home and I know that neither myself or my husband are going to do anything untoward.
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  6. #6
    pgg's Avatar
    pgg
    pgg is online now Damnit, I'm hungry again.
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    You mean you have to be clothed as you grow? Crap now what am I going to do when I get home

  7. #7
    Five-0's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pgg View Post
    You mean you have to be clothed as you grow? Crap now what am I going to do when I get home

    We're talking about kids here. When I want to run the wierdos off without hurting anyone I just let them see me naked. Worse than shooting them in the kneecaps I promise.

    Meanwhile, fishing in Russia:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkzV5AIK8iM
    "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." -- Frederic Bastiat

    "Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter." Ernest Hemingway

    The opinions given in my signatures & threads DO NOT reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only, thereby releasing my agency of any liability, or involvement in anything posted under the username "Five-0" on Officerresource.com

  8. #8
    Xiphos's Avatar
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    The kids will run around naked after a bath, or sleep in their underwear and play in the house. No big deal. It's just us. We've had the talks about strangers and also about how nobody else is supposed to touch or look at your "private parts." No big deal.
    Pleasing nobody, one person at a time.

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  9. #9
    CT209's Avatar
    CT209 is offline Once..... Forever
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    About two weeks back, I was watching my grandson- 2 and half yo. As we were walking around outside, he decided he wanted to climb into the back of the pick-up. We had a lot of rain a day before and the pick-up was parked on a hill so there was about 8 to 10 inches of water in the front of the bed. Long story short, it was a warm day, the water was clean and warm, and he wanted to play. I stripped him down and play he did.

    He enjoyed himself. I didn't see a problem with it.
    "When a crime is committed, liberals blame society. Conservatives blame the criminal." -Debra Saunders

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