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Growing Up as a Nudist – Part 1

Note: The following is an article from the March 2017 issue of The Bulletin. To regularly receive The Bulletin, become an AANR member today.

Photo Credit: Katie Mo Photo www.facebook.com/katiemophotography

I don’t have a first-time story, mostly because I cannot remember it. Also, I was born into the nudist way of life and had to get most of the story from my parents.

It all started long before I was born when my dad was working as a summer law clerk in the Midwest. He read an article in the Kansas City Star about a travel editor’s visit to Club Orient. The same issue of the newspaper contained a small advertisement for an open house that Prairie Haven Club in Scranton, Kansas was holding the next weekend. On a lark, my parents went on a road trip to the club thinking they would drop in for about 10 minutes, then check visiting a nudist place off life’s ‘to-do’ list. After meeting some friendly people and watching my dad enjoy a skinny dip, my mom then knew things would be different for him. “You’ll be ready to do the nudist thing again soon,” she predicted as they drove out.

It may have taken a few more visits and Florida’s warm sun when my folks moved there a couple years later, but my mom became convinced too. Fast forward to 1992. I was two weeks old, and my parents headed to Cypress Cove with me in tow for a day of sunshine, and a special family tradition in birthday suits to celebrate new birthdays. By 1998 dad was working at AANR, I had a little sister, a little brother, and we all had little use for swimsuits.

We lived a few blocks away from the Kissimmee-based resort Cypress Cove. This was such an awesome way to grow up. Imagine knowing that after school or Church, we could ride our bikes down the road and go to the lake or the pool and have fun.

In 2000, my littlest brother was born, and our family was complete. With us growing up and getting more friends, we invited a few friends of the family to try it out. I remember it was always the same process. We would get there, they’d be a little nervous, but eventually, they would want to undress and join in on the fun too.

Growing up as a nudist has given me a stronger bond with my family. Whether it is having a road trip to get to an AANR Convention, or riding our bikes to “The Cove” on Sundays after Church, there has always been a connection there that so many families miss out on.

Through experiences with the AANR Youth Summer Camps, I was able to share fun experiences with kids my own age too, and learn more about naturism/nudism and education from the excellent leadership that the AANR youth camps provide as well. This helped me tackle and overcome the pressure about negative body image, and gave me a better view of body acceptance.

As I grew older, I was more exposed to the advertising of the impossible “ideal woman” the world has conditioned us to adopt. I knew in my heart, from growing up with talking to people of all walks of life, young and old, that people aren’t built to the unrealistic visual expectations the world has for us. We are so much more. Because of my upbringing in this body-positive environment, I can still be happy knowing that while I may be judged for my body, it truly doesn’t matter to me.

When thinking back, I remember what my younger self would have said while building castles on the beach, listening to a cover band play Rock’n’Roll classics at Nude-a-Palooza: “This is awesome, I hope it never ends.”

Me too, younger Alix, me too.

Stay tuned next week for part 2!

Alexandra Schuttauf,
Public Relations/Communications Specialist, AANR

 

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3 Responses to Growing Up as a Nudist – Part 1

  1. joey birdd says:

    such a lovely story about your life and body experience which was so normal thanku

  2. Kenny Dean says:

    Such a great article, I want to see and read your next installment I’ve only been a nudist for a dozen years or so, but wish I had grown up a Nudist, the feeling of not wearing any textiles is so exillirating

  3. Alix,

    Thank you for this great article. I hope it inspires more young people to explore the nudist way of life.
    It’s a pleasure to be your boss.

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