“Have you ever dated a nudist?” Of all the weird opening messages I’ve received on a dating site, this wins, hands (or other naked body parts) down.
“Sven” was a very attractive Nordic looking paramedic from Long Island. A short 75 minute ferry ride plus 20 minute drive away. That’s a bit of a haul when it involves getting on a boat. I’m too lazy to change out of my pajamas to go to Target sometimes, so I just go to Walmart instead. My laziness aside, I still hesitated. In my mind I self-identify as the most liberal of liberals, to the left of Bernie Sanders, and it pained me that I was judging someone for a lifestyle I knew nothing about. Suddenly I had become Mike Pence. I’m not closed-minded, or remotely conservative. Let’s not forget–I married a gay man (and an Italian).
Wanting desperately to prove how open-minded I can be, I engaged. “Can’t say that I have,” was all I could muster. Honestly, I just had too many questions to let this one go. He expressed how difficult it is to find someone who embraces his lifestyle. I should think not–you live in the Northeast. Too damn cold for that most of the year unless your house is a sauna.
“How does this work? How often are you nude?” I asked. “Pretty much all the time unless I absolutely have to wear clothes,” he responded.
He was divorced with two boys, 16 and 19. Now were the kids nude around the house too? Was it like a locker room there? Because that would just be weird. (And sounded a bit too much like many of my college fantasies.) Plus, Sven, you wouldn’t trust me walking around naked with a bottle of wine and a 19 year old, especially if he was Nordic-looking too. And definitely not if his name was Magnus.
I had practical questions as well. Do you cook in the nude? What if you are grilling a steak, do you just walk out on the patio naked? Do the neighbors watch? What if the flames flare up and your pubes catch on fire? Do oven mitts count as clothes? Do you have nudist friends over for dinner parties?
Are you nude around your parents? Do you open Christmas presents in the nude with them? Oh God, are they nudists too??
What was his furniture like? I mean, my furniture is always covered in dog hair. Is it covered in plastic? Do you slide on it if you have lotion on?
On the plus side, laundry detergent is expensive, so it probably saves a lot of money. Saves water too, so he’s environmentally friendly, which I wholeheartedly support. And no dry cleaning chemicals seeping into your body, so it’s healthier. And he’s way hotter than Al Gore.
He tried to convince me to try it, explaining that it is remarkably freeing. I might enjoy not wearing a bra every day, but I’m not sure anyone wants to see that. Plus gravity would take a toll and my boobs would be at my knees a decade too soon. It was a complicated topic.
Still, I wavered. I thought, “Hmm. I do need to loosen up a bit. Maybe he’s right. I could try it once.” There’s very few things I haven’t tried at least once. My Libra brain’s inability to make a decision ultimately brought the matter to a head. He unmatched me when I took a couple days to respond to his date invitation.
While I never actually believed I could be in a relationship with a nudist, I think the timing of this particular match was telling me something. For years, I’ve had body image issues, as documented in the posts linked here: https://bit.ly/2TLuNCt. A few weeks after chatting with Sven, I started talking to a sexy Irishman who, while not a nudist, could be described in one of my friend’s favorite expressions, as “sex on a stick.” Or as my other friend would say, “liquid sex.” I am aware that neither phrase makes any sense, but we drank heavily when these conversations happened. Anyway, for some reason, this is the first guy in years who actually makes me feel comfortable in my skin. Yeah, I’m still on a perpetual diet (that I perpetually cheat on) and I’m seeking out a minor cosmetic procedure before I could actually meet him, but I’m definitely not the same person I was 6 months ago. At least now I’m considering what sex would be like without wearing some big colonial woman nightgown/tent over crotchless Spanx to hide my body.
Could be all the reiki too, I’m not sure. But my confidence is coming back. I might just start a new trend of sending unsolicited boob pics to guys. I’m for equal rights after all.