Naked was the norm during my youth.
Seriously. I grew up in an unofficial nudist colony because everyone in our house was naked. And by everyone I mean the four of us—me, my brother and my parents. From the time I was just a wee little lad until well into elementary school, I thought it was perfectly normal to wear your birthday suit around the house at all times. Yup, that’s right. Not only did I sleep in the nude, but I thought nothing of walking around the house while letting it all hang out. And because everyone else did it too, I didn’t think it was strange at all.
Until I was old enough to start having sleepovers.
I’ll never forget the first time I had my buddy sleep over. I think I was 7 or 8 at the time. It was going really well all night, and then it came time for bed. So before slithering my way into the sleeping bag, I shimmied out of my clothes right down to nothing. Except when I turned to talk to my friend, he had this horrified look on his face.
His mom picked him up that night.
From that point on I reeled it in somewhat and went with a robe or boxers. And when I married MJ, I definitely covered up more. She thinks I’m nuts for still sleeping in the nude, because she sleeps in approximately 17 layers of clothing as she’s constantly cold. Now the only time I walk around nude is if I have to get up in the middle of the night for something, and when I go to take a shower.
And it’s the bathroom where my current dilemma regarding nudity has suddenly reared its head once again.
Will loves to be naked. What kid doesn’t? And during bath time I’m constantly playing games with him, including one I like to call “Butt Bongos.” In a nutshell, he sticks his butt out and I playfully smack both cheeks like I’m playing the bongos. We’re super intellectual at casa de Daddy Files. But hey, he loves it and it cracks him up, so it’s all good right?
We were in the bathroom practicing peeing in the potty and MJ was taking a shower. She finished up, turned the faucet off, grabbed a towel and stepped naked out of the stall. That’s when Will ran over to her and proceeded to paddle her bare ass with both of his hands while yelling “BUTT BONGOS DADA, BUTT BONGOS MAMA!”
I found it much funnier than MJ did.
MJ is much more puritanical about all things nudity than I am. She thinks it might be time to curtail the nekkidness around our house now that Will is older. But I don’t know. Butt Bongos incident not withstanding, we do stress the importance of keeping our hands on our own bodies. And the nudity made it much easier to identify and memorize the names of certain body parts. Will knows “penis” and “vagina,” and uses each of them correctly. A lot of people get creeped out by that but I think it’s fine. OK, and I like it when uptight people are uncomfortable.
Just as long as he doesn’t strip down in front of his friend at a sleepover, I see no reason to make a big deal out of nakedness.
But guys, just a tip: It’s cute when a 2.5-year-old does Butt Bongos. But don’t try to do it to your wife.