"Is This Normal?": Nudist"

"Is This Normal?": Nudist"

A concerned new mom writes:

Dear Dr. Phil,

I can't sleep at night. I just had a baby girl five months ago. All of our parenting views have been discussed and agreed upon, except for one small issue. My fiancé is a nudist. As soon as he gets in the house, it's like spontaneous nakedness. I have never seen a person strip so fast in my life. Cooking and eating dinner, watching TV â€" you name it, he's naked. I already see his nudity rubbing off on our daughter. She is
the happiest when she's naked. I'm the only person in the house with clothes on. I know my fiancé's nudity is not normal, but should I make him wear something before our daughter's old enough to understand what naked is?

Fully-clothed Ruthanne

Ruthanne further explains her trepidation to Dr. Phil by telephone. "I just don't want her to go to school in three years, when she goes to preschool, and think it's OK to be buck naked in front of everyone," she says.

"That is a legitimate concern. The truth is, in cultures all over the world, there is a lot more nudity than there is in America," Dr. Phil says. "But the problem is, you don't live somewhere else around the world."

"No," she says.

"One of the things that we have to do as parents is to socialize our children to the point that they kind of know what the social rules are. They know what the expectations are, and they have respect for the boundaries and privacy that other people are going to experience when they're out there," Dr. Phil says. "As she gets old enough to start noticing the difference between guys and girls, then that's going to be a point of discomfort for her."

Ruthanne has expressed her concerns to her husband. "He's more than willing to put on clothes. That's not a major issue," she says. "It's never weird or inappropriate, but he has such a great self-image, that I want her to have the self image that he has in himself. I just don't want her to be buck naked all the time."

"There's is nothing really unhealthy about nudity. Research tells us that these people are more comfortable without clothes, and they're often quite peaceful and pleasant in their experience without clothes. But you have to look at the socialization on your daughter," Dr. Phil advises. "I think it's really important that he kind of start respecting those boundaries, so she doesn't have a problem getting into the flow of mainstream society."