Don't Men Get Erections?

This is probably the most-asked, and definitely one of the most debated, questions regarding nudism. Don't guys get erections? What should they do if they do?

Let me begin by stating one thing which may surprise you. This is generally more of an issue of theoretical debate, rather than an issue in real life. Why? Because erections do not occur that commonly in a nudist environment. As a friend of mine used to say, "It usually just doesn't come up."

Because textile (non-nudist) society has generally considered nudity to be a prelude or invitation to sexual activity, the assumption is that men will be sexually aroused by the sight and/or presence of nude women. However, that is not generally the case in a nudist environment.

I believe this is for several reasons:

• In a nudist environment, nudity is not the first step towards engaging in sexual activity. Once it is realized that there will be no sex, the likelihood of arousal is greatly diminished. This realization often occurs even before entering a nudist environment, particularly in such situations where club rules are handed out or where an individual has done research prior to visiting a nudist beach or other setting.

• Nudist bodies are everyday. Most nudists do not have bodies which look like the bodies of models or movie stars or Playboy bunnies. Men conditioned to be excited by specific body types will find nudists to be extremely average.

• Nude bodies do not have the sexually-emphasizing 'enhancements' brought on by much clothing. As just one example, there are no push-up bras and/or plunging necklines drawing attention to a woman's breasts. There is nothing that "reveals most, but covers a little"... which ironically serves to draw attention to the little which is covered.

• There are rules and manners which proscribe being among others with an erection, and which may lead to expulsion or ostracism. The knowledge of this discourages men from having erections.

• In a nudist environment, it quickly becomes obvious that you are dealing with real people and engaging in everyday activities. Generally, playing volleyball or having a picnic with friends would not lead to arousal. This is true in a nudist environment also.

What's the difference between a nudist and a naturist?

The word 'nudist' is more common in the US. The word 'naturist' is more common in many other English-speaking countries.

In the US, the word 'nudist' has been more commonly associated with AANR (the American Association for Nude Recreation), the International Naturist Federation affiliate. The word 'naturist' is more commonly associated with The Naturist Society.

Lots of people like to say that one is more about a hobby and the other is more about a lifestyle. However, there's no agreement which is which! Likewise. some people will argue that one is more about being nude in manmade environments, and the other is more about being nude in natural environments. However, once again, there's no agreement which is which.

Therefore, my answer to the question (which others will undoubtedly argue with) is that there is no difference between "nudist" and "naturist". (Which is not the same as saying there is no differences between AANR & TNS.).

What about when a woman has her period?

This is another commonly asked, and entirely reasonable, question. The answer is that practice varies from woman to woman.

All nudist camps, even those which are nudity-mandatory, permit women to wear shorts or bikini bottoms during menstruation. (Please note, however, that wearing only underwear is generally considered unacceptable.) This allows women to go through their period in the same manner they would choose in the textile world.

Some women who use tampons will continue to go nude during their period. This often raises questions about the string, and the answer once again varies from woman to woman. Some do nothing different than if they were clothed. Others take simple measures, such as trimming the string shorter or coloring it to match their hair color.

What Should Men Do If They Get an Erection?

It might happen.

There are lots of reasons men can get erections aside from sexual arousal. Merely waking up in the morning, the pressure from eating a large meal, certain medication, and many other things cause erections.

The simple answer is "be polite". The absolute wrong thing to do is to call attention to your erection... so don't throw back your shoulders and stroll down the waterline at the beach! (It's a great way to get yourself run off the beach or kicked out of the club.)

The right thing to do is simple... anything which makes the erection private until it subsides. This might inlcude rolling over onto your face while lying down, placing a towel on your lap while sitting, moving to deeper water when swimming, or excusing yourself and walking away.

Of course, if your erection is due to sexual arousal, it's important to remind yourself that nudism is about nonsexual social nudity. For some it may be necessary to remove yourself from the presence of others until your sexually arousing thoughts have diminished.

If you observe this little bit of etiquette, an unanticipated erection will give you no problem in the nudist world.

I'm New. Will I Be Forced to Go Nude Right Away?

This varies, although in most cases the answers is "no".

On public lands like beaches or public hot springs nobody can force you to be nude. There may be some gentle social pressure to be nude. After all, that's why people go to a nude beach. However, the choice is entirely yours. The only exception I know of is Cape d'Agde in France, where the law requires nudity on the beach.

At private resorts, campgrounds, and clubs the rules will vary. If clothing-optional, the obvious answer is that nudity will not be required. Note that some may call themselves "clothing-optional" but still require nudity in the swimming pool or hot tub.

If "nudity required", a very few will require you to undress when you arrive. However, most will allow first time visitors an adjustment period which can range anywhere from the length of a short tour of the facility up to several days' visit. Some allow first-time visitors to remain dressed outside of the pool or hot tub, but still require nudity for those places.

Your best bet is always to call ahead and ask. That way there's no confusion and no surprises.


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