In life, very little remains the same forever. Seasons change, our neighborhoods change and so do people. Sometimes it’s just an obscure subtle difference that we scarcely notice and others times, it’s a major change that catches the majority of us by surprise and causes unsettling stress into our lives. But people evolve, we change, all the time. The person we thought we knew ten years ago could very well be a completely different individual know. It isn’t anyone’s fault, it’s just human nature. For the most part, we don’t even notice it – it just happens.
Aaron, my husband, and I have several gay couples as friends who are also bare practitioners (naturists/nudists). On more than one occasion, at least one of the men of the relationship have commented to us, “I never thought that I would ever be sitting naked in a room full of nude men and be completely comfortable.”
My spouse and I laugh, as do the other couples partaking in the conversation. I look to Aaron and smile and his eyes dance as he grins back at me. We had the exact same conversation ourselves on our very second night together. My better half (spouse) made almost the same identical comment to me while we were talking about our naturist/nudist backgrounds.
Unlike myself, Aaron did’t have the same bare experiences in his life. He grew up in a clothing traditional household with minimal exposure to social nudity. He didn’t even encounter others who preferred clothes-freedom until he left home for university. He never skinny-dipped until the night before he left home to move into his university dormitory.
Aside from changing clothes for his gym class in school and dressing in the same room he shared with his older brother, he had no regular opportunities to be naked around his peers. And very little inclination to do so until he discovered skinny-dipping. By that time, he had awakened his inner “bare” self and began to seriously consider that he may even enjoy being nude socially.
This transformation in Aaron’s attitude on nudity didn’t happen overnight. He didn’t suddenly discard all of his clothes because of one skinny-dipping incident, but that experience opened his mind and allowed him to begin to investigate social nudity and become receptive to other naked opportunities. He also discovered that he enjoyed being naked in the company of other men.
Aaron became cognizant of his emotional and sexual attraction to his own gender before he graduated secondary school. At that time, he thought of himself as bisexual (attracted to both men and women). He didn’t recognize his exclusive preference for other men until halfway through his undergraduate days at university.
In other words, his self-awareness of his sexuality and his preference for living the nude life happened at about the same time. For him, this epiphany about who he is occurred at a perfect time in his life as he still had the chance to explore both worlds (gay and nude) while still in college and to grow in confidence in himself before embarking on his career.
My spouse is mature enough to admit that in his personal journey into both the gay and the nude world, he made some bad decisions and a couple of mistakes. At the same time, he has enough self-esteem to realize that through our mistakes we all grow as a person. He never allowed himself to be defeated by his missteps and took the lessons that he learned from those into stride.
Aaron believes, and I tend to agree, that in acknowledging his same gender attraction as well as his preference for clothes-free living, he avoided most of the headaches and heartaches that those sometimes bring to those who “come-out” at an earlier age. By not understanding these aspects about himself until he was a university student gave him an advantage of a mature perspective. It also allowed him to learn from the mistakes some of his peers previously encountered.
This isn’t to imply that he didn’t make his own poor judgments along the way. He did. But it allowed him to have an older and somewhat wiser point-of-view that helped him to avoid some immature pitfalls.
As with most of the passions in his life, my spouse embraced both his nudity and his sexuality with enthusiasm and zest. This is not to mean that he was irresponsible or reckless, if anything, he was cautious and thoughtful. As I wrote above, he did make some mistakes, but then, so do we all. However, sometimes Aaron does tend to “over-think” situations and occasionally this means that he allows opportunities to pass him by.
He recognizes this about himself and has since learned to try to modify his behavior. He is also one of the first to admit that he would rather err on the side of caution than be filled with regrets.
Despite all his misgivings about some of his past misjudgments, Aaron is a very proud and confident gay and nude man. He doesn’t broadcast his preference for nudity or his sexuality to the entire world, but when asked, he doesn’t deny it either. If others have a problem with it, he’s cool. It’s their problem, not his.