Thursday, 4 December 2014
As a nudist of over 20 years its has always been a question that has plagued my mind. Why are there so few young nudists? As I have grown to love this lifestyle I have at times become a little disheartened with the lack of people in my age range enjoying such an amazing way of life. Lately I have been pondering this question and have come to the assumption that its not that there are so few young nudist but rather there are so few that have the ability to join in.
Traditionally the most common place for us nudies to hang out is the beach, camping and nudist retreats. This led me to think, what if it didn't like the beach so much? Or what if I cant afford to visit a nudist retreat? It was not till I had a discussion with a young nudist couple I am fortunate to be in contact with that I realised its simply just that. It may be that young people don't have time, they have uni or a busy social life which leaves them so little time to frequent nude beaches and retreats.
Another hurdle may be finance. Its simply not cost effective or affordable for young people to spend what little money they have on visiting a nudist retreat. I know when I was younger and had limited cash flow I could never afford to go to a nudist retreat. Even now I am reluctant pay all that money just to visit for a day and sit around doing nothing but gas bag next to the pool. This leads me to another point. There is nothing to do...
Most establishments don't have much and usually don't cater for the younger crowd or young family. There is simply not that much that interests young people to venture out and visit such establishments.
There are however on the rise, more nude events such as nude ten pin bowling or nude pub nights and even roller skating. These are great tho can also be a little on the pricey side. With the rise of nude events we may well see a change in the age balance but I believe it may take some time.
One reason may also be that some people simply prefer to enjoy nudism at home or in private. They have no desire to engage in social nudism and usually do not search for anything else outside of the comfort of their home.
A major factor I believe is lack of progressiveness. In Europe we see many more younger people enjoying nudism/naturism and we also see accompanying this a more progressive society. In almost all occasions my conversations with European people about nudity and nudism they have shown a much more progressive view on this aspect of life. They have less hangups about the concept of somebody enjoying an active nudist lifestyle while here in the western world the sentiment is different. In my case I have not been met with negative response but positive support however, many people I know have experienced otherwise.
With a society as closed minded and prudish as ours its not hard to imagine that many would be hesitant to reveal to others that they are a nudist. This would make it difficult to meet and find other nudists to socialise with. I have experienced this personally and have noticed that until almost 2 yeas ago I was having great difficulty meeting other nudists. It was only when I decided to reveal my lifestyle to all of my friends and family did the change come about.
I no longer had to hide facebook posts about what I was doing, I could speak freely and educate those who did not understand and most of all I could meet friends and have them in mixed company without fear of someone slipping up and busting us all for being nudists.
Young people have a lot on their plates with uni, part time work, busy social lives just to name a few. If we are to draw their interest we need to come up with more interesting ways to do so. I don't consider myself young or old but I have a few ideas up my sleeves which I hope will bring some young guns out of the woodwork.
A new outlook is needed and some fresh ideas and more exciting activities. It would be ideal to have a group similar to YNA (Young Naturists America) to do some progressive events and lead the charge in healthy body acceptance. The YNA is a prime example of this kind of positive promotion for nudism and body acceptance. They have done nude body painting with expert body painting artists right in the heard of New York City!! they have a nude Sunday session at a local gym and have planned and executed plenty more events since their inception.
A good friend and very active nudist in our community and a member of a very active group called QSN (Queensland Social Nudists) has done an amazing job of organising nude 10 pin bowling for three years running and as a result others have now begun planning events of their own. Nude snorkeling (which I regrettably missed out on), and soon to come roller skating.
Let's just hope we can attract more young people to these events, shift the tide and debunk the stereotype that nudism is mainly old lumpy and bumpy folks standing ankle deep on a beach looking out at the ocean. It will be a long journey, but I'm sure we will get there eventually.