A Mumsnet user has sparked a heated debate about whether it’s acceptable or not for her 6-year-old son to see her naked.
Recalling an incident where her sons teacher mentioned in passing that he’d seen her naked, the mum in question was left wondering whether her behaviour was appropriate.
‘Quite often we all sleep naked in our house and we are pretty relaxed about talking to each other whilst one is in the bath etc or walking from bathroom to bedroom naked,’ she explained.
‘My Ds’s 4 and 6, also quite often will sleep in our bed or one of us will lay with them (they have double beds) if they wake in the night etc. Ds’s are very aware that privacy etc if with other people and privacy of their own bodies etc.’
‘DS1 happened to mention he’d seen mummy naked to one of his teachers today, and though she wasn’t overly bothered, she did mention it to me as if I should start to avoid this scenario…. so that is my question really really is 6 too old for my son to see me naked?! AIBU to think its fine?’
As with lots of debates sparked on the popular parenting forum, the post has attracted heated responses from both sides of the fence.
‘I agree this isn’t about what you are comfortable with, it’s what your kids are comfortable with, take your lead from them. It sounds like he is now recognising it so I would stop if I was you. Not a lot of kids past this age want to see their parents naked,’ said one commenter. ‘Everyone knew THAT kid at school whose parents who did this. The kids are always embarrassed and hate it, the parents never think they are or refuse to accept it.’
Another said: ‘I grew up in a house where nudity was frowned upon from a very early age; I first saw a naked body other than my own when I started nursing at 18. With my DCs I don’t think they saw me naked after about 8 or 9, probably when they started preferring to cover up rather than run around naked. I think they chose to do so quite naturally, certainly it wasn’t imposed by me or DH.’
Speaking to Metro, psychotherapist and founder of The Mother Side, Zoe Tollman said of the controversy: ‘Hiding your body away gives them an impression there’s something wrong with nudity. It also helps them learn what’s right and wrong with their bodies, and what’s appropriate. That way they learn to vocalise and be comfortable.’
‘It’s especially important for girls so that they can learn boundaries. The more they feel comfortable with their own bodies the more they have ownership over them.’