New Way to Boost Girls' Body Image: Let Them See Your Adult Friends Naked

woman in showerA mom is making waves by saying she lets her two daughters see her adult friends and family naked -- for showers, skinny dipping, and otherwise -- arguing that this bare-it-all attitude wards off body hangups later in life. 

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According to British mom Jess Spiring, it all started quite naturally: Since she and her husband slept naked, her daughters would bound in in the morning and see them without a stitch. Then they started doing family showers together.

From there, the girls started joining Jess's female friends for showers. They're even allowed to see their uncle in the buff, although Spiring does draw the line at any other adult males.

This wasn't just a lifestyle choice, but an attempt by Spiring to nip in the bud any body hang-ups her girls might develop later in life. And her theory seems to hold water: Since nudity was so prevalent, it lost all mystery to her daughters. And as a result, they aren't self-conscious about their own bodies, unlike many girls their own age.

More from The Stir: When Should Toddlers Not Be Naked Around the Opposite Sex?

While Spiring's confession was met with plenty of hand-wringing, I have to say that I agree with her stance: I take a bath with my 5-year-old daughter every night -- and she sees my friends naked all the time when we change in the locker room at the public pool. There, there's just no other option, but overall I have no problem with my daughter seeing any female naked. (That said, my husband does not let my daughter see him naked, and that's fine by me.)

I've never thought of bathing with my daughter as a way to build body confidence and stem self-esteem issues, but Spiring makes a good point -- perhaps it helps. I like how her article argues that we blame the over-sexualized media all the time for our girls' body-image issues, but rarely look at what we do in our own home. Well, it's time to take a good, hard look! 

Because think about it: If you're constantly hiding your body from your own kids, what lesson do you think this drives home? That you have something to hide -- and that's bound to rub off on your kids.

And that's why I'll continue taking baths with my daughter, at least until she says she wants to take them solo. Besides, it saves water -- and if it helps save her self-esteem, all the better.

 

Image via Anastasia Tveretinova/shutterstock

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