I have 2 boys, ages 2 and 5. We live in a house with 1 bedroom upstairs that we all share. I am very comfortable being naked and don't like to wear a robe to and from my bedroom when I am getting dressed in a hurry. I also love to take baths and hot tubs with my sons and don't want to make a big deal about my body. My older son has started to be fascinated by my ''beautiful nipples, cute butt and bagina''...his words, trust me that is not what I would say! I have told him that those are my private parts and it is uncomfortable for me when he to talks like that. I don't really care but I can tell that my husband does. He has said that it's probably time to put on the robe around them. I also want to do what is emotionally healthy for my boys but am feeling resentful that I have to make this accommodation. Any advise? I haven't read about this subject and would appreciate to hear what others know from experience from what the experts say is best. Wishing for a master bathroom.
Your 5 year old is growing up. You have a choice, either go around naked and be talked about or cover up and don't hear about your body from your 5 year old. I don't think you can call them your ''private parts'' if you are not keeping them private. anon
This is a case in which you have to weigh your current desires to be naked w/ your sons reaching an age in which you may be stimulating them sexually. Being a responsible parent means having to juggle what you want to do ideally with what is really best for your children. I have 3 grown children who grew up in a completely non-prudish home, but all people & kids need their own privacy. We had ours & they had theirs. You may be setting your boys up for really serious sexual issues in the future. You don't live in the Amazon jungle & you don't have a private, separate master bathroom. Bear with it! Happy Grandmother
I agree there's a problem, your boys behavour isn't normal but I speculate yours isn't either. For the sake of your kids, I'd talk with their pediatrition. Tell him/her everything, then sit back and listen.
Your oldest will be in school soon if he's not already and you don't want him to have problems. Even if he got through school, these issues could surface in the workplace and limit his ability to contribute to his chosen field.
What's cute at five is deviant in just a few years. If you don't call a halt to it you are setting your kids up for trouble. h
put a robe on, i have two boys and while they are still likely to walk in on me when i shower they aren't ''scoping out'' my ''cute butt, nipples etc'' it seems a bit icky that they comment on your body? When my oldest was about 3.5 he said to my husband ''Dad, did you know mom DOESN'T have a penis?'' My husband was laughing so hard he almost slit his throat while shaving...he of course said, ''son, you don't really want to marry a woman with a penis''
They were more intersted in how i was able to pee without a penis, not on what it looked like... jammie wearing mom
Sorry if this offends you, but at a certain age it is inappropriate for a parent to walk around naked in front of their child. Quite frankly, for most kids the thought of their naked parent is a disgusting one. Do your kids a favor and put some clothes on. anon
Your child's sexual feelings towards you are natural and innocent but you're not covering up around him is inappropriate. Sorry to sound harsh but it's your job to understand the longer term implications of these feelings he has. anon
Your husband's discomfort should not dictate how you relate to your sons. He's a grown up, and needs to figure out why he feels uncomfortable - that is about him, not you nor your sons. We are very open with our son (no siblings), he sees us naked all the time but at 4 he does show a renewed interest in my private parts.
I have asked him-and I reinforce this often-the following: Breasts: those are my private areas, I don't like to be touched there. You need to ask me if you can touch me before you do it. Sometimes I might say yes, but I will say no too. Vagina: he hasn't shown any ''clinical'' interest in actually seeing it but he does point to it or kneels down and wants to see how I urinate. My answer is the same as above in the case of pointing or touching.
However I don't discourage pure intellectual curiosity. This is perfectly normal at 2,3,4 and 5 it just manifests itself in different way at each stage because their brains comprehend more at each stage. We started introducing the subject of private areas around 3 and reinforce it at each stage. Children are also referring back to heir bodies as point of reference and anything different they need to understand. I would suggest that you correct his pronunciation and highlight correctness.
Often times when my son was 2 and 3 he would say'' where is your penis mommy?'' my answer was always the same: ''Mommies don't have a penises they have vaginas-that's what makes mommy-mommy-and daddy-daddy.
At four he is interested in the mechanics of my breasts and in showing me he knows his terms. I don't let him touch them often -even the nipples- but sometimes, and if he's followed the rules-ie: asked permission to touch first. I find that he's just interested in understanding how does milk come out from there-I have explained that they are for milk to feed babies when they are really small.
If given a choice he will always choose dad first to take a shower with before he chooses me. It's a recognition of his body in the body of my husband. We take baths instead because I am more playful in the tub, and that really is great way of redirecting attention after truthful but factual explanations. Lastly, we feel that it is important that children grow up with a ''real'' image of what women and men look like. Most women and men don't look like ''Barbies'' and ''Ken''... being truthful and real to us is more important than upholding some puritanical misbegotten idea. Naked, Open, and Happy
If I read this correctly you are saying that when your son talks about his attraction to your body you correct him and tell him that it is uncomfortable for you when he talks like that, but you don't really care. Are you only saying this because your husband has a problem with it?
Isn't this a little like saying no when you mean yes? If it doesn't make you uncomfortable and you say it does, don't you think you son knows that your words are not the truth? If this is what is going on you are playing with fire. For starters he will feel justified to not listen to you whenever he feels like it and my guess is that he will continue to sexualize you because your false professed discomfort is asking for more.
I would suggest that you begin by really being honest with yourself and seeing what is true. How does it make you feel when your son looks at you and talks about how hot you are? Ultimately I don't think it makes any difference whether you put a robe on or not. But you have already established a precedent of not really being straight with your kids. anon
Wow. As a public health professional, a sex educator, and a mom of a four-yr-old, I have to say I am disappointed--not by your question, but by some of the responses that you received. Whenever my son displays curiosity related to my breasts or genitals that gives me a flash of discomfort, I always ask myself how I would feel if he displayed the same curiosity about my elbows, or my knees. He is curious about bodies and how they work--all parts, especially those he doesn't have. And that is normal. Like one of the (great) responses, I occasionally bathe with my son, he sees me naked alot, and I let him sometimes touch my breasts if he asks politely. I would also ask yourself how you would feel if your son complimented other parts of your body (which I bet he does). Would his calling your hair or your eyes or your smile pretty make you uncomfortable? The issue is that we are a hypersexualized culture, battling intense shame--and some of the responses are great proof of how we are willing and really programmed to read sexuality into the most innocent of intentions. Your son isn't sexualizing your body, he's appreciating it, and kids that age absolutely see their moms as gorgeous. The language he has to describe it is limited (a four year old friend calls everything he likes 'sexy' right now--not, I assure you, because he is horny). You and your husband need to come to some agreement about what you feel comfortable with--your sons will pick up some undercurrent if you are not feeling comfortable. If you, your husband or anyone else doesn't feel good about being naked in front of your kids, then you shouldn't do it, and that is totally fine. But remember that it isn't because your kids can't handle it, it's because all of us are raised in such a body and sex negative society. It sounds like you are struggling to find a healthy, balanced attitude, and I wish you all the best. Good luck! sex positive mama
To original poster: I was really dismayed to see ''deviant'' come up in this conversation. I felt the shaming responders are speaking from their own issues, but you don't have to take theirs on!
We can still have boundaries without believing that bodies are gross / curiosity is abnormal. We're so uptight in this country about nudity, when in other countries, people are nude on the beaches, and Asians have deep soaking baths for their nightly family soaks. Parents' bodies are only ''disgusting'' if a family has weirdness and shame about nudity, which kids pick up on. A couple people said your son is sexualizing you - that is their interpretation. I think he is in awe of your feminine beauty - parts he doesn't have. How is this wrong or sexual? It's just pretty body parts and curiosity. The line comes at touching (IMO).
I disagree that genitals cease to be private when they are shown. Genitals always belong to their owner, and it is always your choice whether someone is allowed to touch. That makes them private.
I generally like to downplay things. I casually say and act like we all have bodies, no big deal (and some of us bleed, and that's no big deal either). If a child tries to touch, I tell them that part is just for me and I need a little space. I also remind children that we only touch our own privates, not others'. Obviously this isn't true in the grand scheme, but it's an age-appropriate explanation teaching an important social boundary. When I get compliments, I act neutral/disinterested.
I really liked the ''Naked, Open and Happy'' response, but she points to being accurate, so I will say: calling external female genitalia ''vagina'' is commonly used, but inaccurate. The vagina only exists internally. The vulva is the external, comprised of the labia majora, labia minora, clitoris, and vestibule of the vagina. If you want to keep it simple, calling it vulva is best and factual. I think nudity is fine until puberty
I just read the advice given regarding being naked in front of your boys, and summarized it seems like most everyone is telling you that you are being inappropriate or even going to damage your children!
My parents were very open about their bodies, and I (a girl) showered with my father. I have boys and they, too, are very interested in my body and whenever they see my breasts or I'm in a bra, they want to give me hugs. I tell them to wait until I'm dressed to hug them. I think it will be very clear to you when it is no longer appropriate. I don't think that curiosity is a sign of discomfort. I think your children will eventually feel uncomfortable seeing you naked and they'll probably let you know. Trust your own feelings.
Btw, my husband used to be really uncomfortable with me being naked in front of the boys, but now he is not - it was his issue, not mine. a
Do we comment on our children's cute little butts? If so, is it strange for them to return the compliment?
I think if you are comfortable being nude in front of your boys, by all means continue to do so. They will grow out their natural curiosity and will learn to be comfortable with women's bodies. Which is good thing.
To be honest, I don't think it's appropriate at this point. Kids talk about everything they do and see at home, to other kids and teachers at school. (Trust me, my son told a cashier that my mom doesn't have very much money after I told him that we couldn't buy something). Not sure how comfortable I would feel if all the other kids in my son's class knew I had a nice this or that.
I don't think it's particularily healthy for your sons either - as they grow up it may become confusing. Or if other boys somehow found out, they could become the ''butt'' of jokes.
If our society was structured differently, perhaps it could work. But given our current set up, I think you may be setting yourself up for unnessary problems in the future. Anon
I am concerned that my 5 year old daughter often see her dad with out a shirt on. My husband doesn't wear PJ tops to bed (and sometimes bottoms)and on some occasions they take a shower together.Can she misinterpret this? Does he blur the boundary between father and daughter? Or, how much is too much, for kids to see their parents naked as a part of the day, getting dressed, taking showers, etc? When do we need to be more sensitive and careful? SD
Did you say ''without a shirt on''? If your daughter ever goes to a swimming pool, she will see all kinds of men with no shirt on. As for taking a shower together, I don't know, it's not my cup of tea for children to take showers with naked parents of the opposite sex (just the height difference, yuck!) but you'll see in the archives that others think it's ok. but no shirt, is all ok by me. anon
My dad was semi-naked around the house my whole life - including when I came home from college. He walks around in his underwear. My father is a doctor and we were raised to view bodies rather clinically or matter-of-fact. An arm, a chest, a face: we all have them. I think our Puritan roots often cloud our view of things, but family nakedness is the norm in many European countries and public nakedness is the norm in many tribes that still exist today. It felt very OK for me to see my dad in his underwear as he is my dad and we therefore have an intimate relationship. It would not have been OK for me to have my dad in his underwear in front of my friends, but he never did that. Having that intimate, close relationship was healthy for us. My father was there when I delivered both of my kids and because of the open relationship that was established when i was a kid, I didn't feel weird at all about being exposed - I just felt supported and encourage by my dad. Lisa
My advice is to relax about this issue. I showered with my dad in the late 1950s and I don't think there were ever any thoughts of boundary issues (especially at your daughter's young age). Going shirtless seems a non issue. That's what she will see all the time at the pool, beach, etc. As the mom, I might request that he wear boxers, at least, around the house. But I think instilling a sense of body shame or wrongness at her age makes ''playing doctor'' more attractive later. My kids are now preteens, both sexes, and although they like their privacy in the bathroom, if they walk in on me getting out of the shower, it is a non event. relaxed mom
I am naked around my kids all the time. My son is 5 and my daughter is almost 7. We sometimes shower together too. My wife does the same.
I see absolutely no problem with this. Why make our bodies an issue?
There is a line of course - I don't allow them to touch me in any sensitive areas, nor do I touch them except to help them wash. And we are clear with them that it's completely fine if they want privacy, it's not ok for them to be naked in public, and it's certainly not ok for anyone to touch them if they don't want to be touched.
The result is that they are completely fine with being naked and seeing us naked, and there's never even a thought of any inappropriateness. anon
Around eight or so, your daughter will let you know she wants more privacy. Our daughter stopped barging in on my husband in the bathroom around 5, and they gradually had more privacy from each other. Now that she is a pre-teen, there's much more physical space between them, though they still love to talk and joke. anon
Truthfully, I don't see anything odd about a dad with no shirt, or in underwear, or sometiems naked. I'm pretty sure your daughter will let you both know when she's wierded out by it. For us, My now 17 yo son was about 11 or 12 when he was wierded out by my not closing the bathroom door, or changing my clothes with the door open, etc. It was at that time too that he started needing more privacy for himself. My 13 yo son started this when he was 9 or 10 or so. I don't think it's wierd and I wouldn't worry. my 2 cents.
You're worried about his bare chest? Wow. My husband bathes with our 5 year old daughter all the time. Its a wonderful time. Totally fine. She sees us naked, getting dressed, etc all the time too. I think it builds good body image.
Perhaps you get a weird feeling about your husband? If that's it, you should follow that further. But if it's just your own issues with nudity and sexuality, then let me assure you, her seeing your husband naked is just fine. I'd start worrying when she gets uncomfortable-probably about 10-11. mom of 5 yr old
Every family is different, but here are some thoughts:
Nudity does not equal sex. Male does not equal predatory (there is more of a stigma attached to male nudity around children than female nudity). opposite sex parent child bathing or showering together does not equal incest!
you are worried about ''blurring boundaries''; there are many different ways of setting, blurring, violating boundaries. Parents who have a deep inner respect for themselves and others and understand the adult responsibility to nurture children without exploiting them do not run the risk of accidentally blurring a boundary between a healthy parent/child relationship and incestuous-type interactions.
If parents and child are comfortable with what is happening in terms of dad and/or mom and/or child walking around the house not fully dressed at times, then it's fine. If dad or mom starts to feel uncomfortable, or if the child starts to express a wish for greater privacy, etc, then things can be adjusted. neither prude nor pervert
a friend's husband bathes with their three year old girl. This seems highly innapropriate bordering on worthy of making a comment to the couple that they should stop. They are very ''straight'', for lack of a better term, which makes it all the more odd. What is the conventional wisdom on this topic? liz
I think that you will find that your opinion is probably in the minority. My husband bathes (showers) with our 3 & 5 year old daughters. I've never thought anything about it. My husband frequently takes our daughters to the pool with another father of a six-year-old girl. After the pool, they take them all into a family dressing room. One dad, shampoos while the other dad dresses. As soon as one girl expresses concern re: the arrangement, then things will change. As long as they are not concerned about their nudity (and I can guarantee that my three-year-old is not...and my five-year-old asked recently why we have to wera clothes to the pool, so I can also assume that she is not very concerned...), then things will change -anon
Your post appears full of judgement. The conventional wisdom on this topic is that you should mind your own business. anon
I must be inappropriate/disgusting/etc, but I see no problem with this. I bathe with my 4 y.o boy and 2.5 y.o daughter (i'm mom) as does my husband. Big deal. Eventually my son will want privacy, but for now we're happy and clean. Please stop sexualizing and shaming, and mind your own business. Anon
I think it's probably not at all inappropriate for this father to bathe with his 3 year old daughter. My wife and I each occasionally bathe or shower with our 2.5 year old on nights when that's just the only way to make a bath happen. If you feel the need to comment to your friends, I would advise you to be humble. --showers with his dog, too
I think its great that her father is involved with her enough to get in the bath with her. She is so young that her fathers naked body is just that a body nothing more and most parents have very clear boundrys as what kind of intimacy they share. Your boundrys are just different than there's. It is not your place to put your boundrys on them. If all they are doing is taking a bath this is really there resposiblity to choose if it is okay for their child. I (mother) take my son in the bath with me, he is now only 6 months, but I plan on doing it till it doesn't feel right for one or the other of us. Who knows when that will be. hey we all used to be naked all the time, you know
The father bathing with a toddler girl is not necessarily inappropriate. What is completely inappropriate is that you feel you are the owner of the truth and have the right to tell these people how to raise their kids. As far as you know they are not molesting the child. There are different views on things and some people are less conservative than others. I am guessing you don't feel very comfortable with your body and/or nudity. In any case, unless you clearly know they are molesting the kid (by legal standards), it's none of your business. Amazed.
Would it be OK if the mother bathed with her 3 yo boy? I think it's OK for opposite sex parents to bathe or shower with their kids until one of them feels uncomfortable with it. Truthfully, it's not your business what your friends do in their home unless there is obvious abuse. mother of 2 clean boys
I (mom) bathe occasionally with my 3 y.o. son. Our whole family also plays outside naked on occasion (sprinklers, pool, etc.). I believe that ''conventional wisdom'' states that each family has their own set of values. This family seems to be teaching their daughter that the nude body has nothing of shame about it. If the husband were allowing his daughter to touch his penis or buttocks, or if he were touching her vagina or buttocks, that would be a completely situation. If that isn't happening, please, let it go. Three years old is very young; to me, this does not seem inappropriate at all. anon
There's nothing wrong with fathers bathing with their 3-year-old daughters. It may not be appropriate for your family's boundaries, but it's perfectly normal in many families. My husband took baths with our daughter until she was 3 or 4 and there was no impropriety - just a parent with his child. He still sometimes gives her baths now that she is 6, but doesn't get in the bath himself mostly because there is no room or time anymore. Unless there's evidence of actual abuse (not including the bathing itself) then it's really none of your business. anon
Call me old fashioned or sexist or uptight but I agree it ABSOLUTELY NOT okay for a father to be bathing with his daughter! She is 3 years old and still needs assistance bathing and someone present for safety reasons,but doesn't need anyone in the tub with her especially not her Dad.Nor does he need to be helping bathe her at that age.Or taking her to the potty. I'm sorry but men are wired differently from woman when it come to sex and they can get aroused by the most seemingly innocent things...
What is up with the mother that she allows or encourages that? Some people are so afraid of not being PC or so into wanting to believe that everyone has only the best intentions when it come to children that they will allow their children to be put potentially unhealthy situations. We want to pretend that molestation doesn't happen or ''not in my family'' so much that we would turn our head to something like this and convince ourselves that it's okay and '' He's just being loving with his daughter and men should be allowed to care for young children just like women'' etc. Well that's all fine and good but the fact is pedophiles are more likely to be male than female, and some fathers do molest their daughters. Some men behave inappropriately with their daughters ''out of love'' ( from giving massages, to sleeping with their daughters alone or kissing them on the lips a few seconds too long etc)just because they don't know any better But many do know better and they get away with it because no one has the courage to speak up. So ,Yes,please do mention it(I'd speak to the mother) and don't worry about how to broach the topic, just be honest and straight forward. Not afraid to speak up
Our family, and many, many I know, bathe with their children for as many years as both parent and child fit in the tub together. Dad with daughter, mom with son, etc. It is only abnormal if the intention or any behaviour in the bath is abnormal. For our own family, naked bodies are normal, bathing is normal, being together is normal.
My two older children are now reaching adolescence and they naturally have become shy about their own naked bodies while still being totally comfortable seeing me and my husband naked (while we change clothes, come in and out of the shower, take a bath with their little (8 yr old) brother, etc.).
Everybody's family is different. I hope that you can find a way to honor this particular difference without judgment. naked in Berkeley
I'm sure you mean well however, keep in mind that every family has it's own set of rules. Many parents and kids are naked in front of each other until puberty. Unless you have evidence that there is abuse going on KEEP OUT OF IT, IT IS NOT YOUR BUSINESS jenny
I shower with my four year old son every other morning, alternating with my husband. Until I read your post, I wouldn't have thought anything strange about it at all. I bet they don't either. Don't say anything. clean mama to a clean boy
While I cannot give you the ''conventional wisdom'' I can tell you that I (mom) take showers with my two sons, ages 6 and 4. I'm not sure if your concern is about ALL children spending time with naked adults of the opposite sex or just girls, but either way, my opinion is that nudity in the privacy of one's home that respects the boundaries of other individuals is completely natural. Of course, if there were any sexual overtones, it would be totally inappropriate, but that's not what you stated.
Perhaps you were uncomfortable with the physical proximity? Again, I think it's natural and would be fine to bath with my sons. Maybe you're concerned because it's a Dad and daughter (rather than a Mom and son)? If so, that seems vaguely hypocritical.
I applaud the family for their openness and comfort with their bodies and I hope you are able to see through your own issues to what is, in my mind, completely natural. anon
Hmm... this sounds like none of your business. Unless the father is otherwise creepy, I wouldn't judge this family and their bath time routines. Does it bother the wife? Does it bother the daughter? Perhaps they are more comfortable with nudity than you are. End stop. I bathe without my clothes on, too
Maybe he's a pervert. Maybe he's perfectly normal. Maybe the guy down the street is a child molester; you don't know. I take a bath with my two-year-old daughter from time to time, and I'm not a child molester; sometimes it's the only way to get her in the tub without screaming her head off; I don't know why she hates taking a bath so much, but if she still hates it at age three, and me jumping in there too is the only way to have a peaceful and fun bath, count me in. kevin
I think it would be highly inappropriate for you to share your judgment of this practice with the parents. You will do nothing but alienate them. Also, I think that you should be aware that many cultures bathe together as a family. I feel like such a culture exists in my own demographic as many of my friends and I have toddlers who bathe with daddy. I just don't think it is weird for a small child (who is practically still a baby) to bathe with their parent. I think it is weird to think it is weird, actually. Nudity isn't categorically sexual. It is possible to have these boundaries firmly in place while nurturing your child. Not Hungup on Nudity
I appreciate that your posting comes out of a genuine concern, but I think this behavior is cultural and entirely in the normal part of the spectrum, even if it seems shocking or inappropriate in your mind.
Every family has their own standards of nudity and privacy regarding going to the toilet, taking a shower or bath, or sleeping in a family bed etc. I think we need to be respectful of our differences. Family bathing together can be playful and delightful. The fact that a parent is nude with his/her 3 year old child of the opposite sex doesn't, ipso facto, mean that something nefarious or illigitimate or predatory is going on. Especially since this is a 3 year old toddler, not a teenager!
Some families are extremely careful to avoid seeing one another nude. Other families find nudity very natural and normal. I don't think one is right and one is wrong.
I was raised in a family that had no problem with nudity; the whole family would get into the tub together. We did not do this with our own kids because my husband is from a different culture and is not as comfortable with this. Fine! There are a thousand ways to parent well. Please be careful not to impose your particular morals, preferences or customs on other families.
If you see signs of child abuse, by all means, be an advocate for the child and get 'involved'. Merely bathing together is by no means in the realm of child abuse, in my non-professional opinion. Anon
Well, we're a family where both parents regularly bathe and skinny dip with opposite sex children (ages 5 and 9). I don't find it the least bit weird or sexual. We all walk around the house without clothes on sometimes, too -- out of the shower, clothes are in the dryer in the garage... Have to admit, we also often leave the bathroom doors open while, you know, using the bathroom. People have different levels of comfort about their bodies. Unless you've got a deeply rooted and closely examined perception that there's something abusive going on, it seems quite out of place to me to judge or comment on another family's bathing habits. --- we do it, too
Wow - I'm so fired up by this post! Unless you have reason to think this father has a history of sexual abuse, why would you find anything wrong with it? I actually can't even imagine whether you are concerned about the father seeing the daughter nude (should he also not change diapers?!) or the daughter seeing the dad's parts (and what's your ''rule'' here? Should she also not see her brother or what about the little boy having his diaper changed at the beach?!) Or do you think bath time has some particular sexual connotation? Would you feel the same about mother/son?
My husband takes bathes with our kids and they love it since he's much more liberal with the splashing than I am. And I consider myself super-lucky to have such an active, involved husband! Bathing beauties!
Wow! Three years old is quite young to be worrrying about this, isn't it? We have a pretty open situation regarding nudity at our house, and my daughter (now 9) is fine with seeing my husband (and me) naked. It's really no big deal at all. I'm sure she and her dad took baths together when she was 3, and maybe even older. I'm assuming that their bathing together is all about innocent fun and getting clean. If there is any reason to think otherwise, then the bath isn't really the problem.
On a related note, when our daughter was probably 5 or 6, my husband came home one day very upset because a complete stranger (female) had scolded him for touching his daughter in appropriately! For him and our child it had all been totally innocent tickling or poking or whatever it was. I think this woman's comment was clearly a reflection of her own issues. comfortable in my own skin
I'll be curious to hear how others respond, because my husband occasionally bathes with our almost 5 year old and 2 1/4 year old girls, and I really hadn't thought much about it. They get such a kick out of pouring water on his head, washing his hair, etc. I've just felt that there has never been anything inappropriate about it and it makes them so happy! But, maybe I'm wrong. They know not to touch other people's genitals and so that's never been an issue while he's been in the bath with them.
Looking forward to hearing others' thoughts on this. anon
I wouldn't say anything to them. Unless there is reason to suspect abusive behavior outside of the bathing context, this seems totally fine to me. anon
There is absolutely nothing wrong with a 3 year old having a bath with their opposite sex parent!
If there was inappropriate touching, that is where it becomes wrong. If you saw the child act afraid of her dad, traumatized, or behaving sexually inappropriate with other children (beyond childish curiosity - something that she would never understand otherwise) then perhaps your involvement would be warranted. But bathing with your kid is not inappropriate in and of itself. Saying something to these parents will just make you look a) Nosey b) Prudish.
When I was a kid my parents took me to Harbin Hot Springs, and not only was I not traumatized, I think I have a healthy view of naked bodies, both mine and others.
You won't catch me on that show How to Look Good Naked! Naked is not evil
I don't think this is weird at all. I'm pretty sure my husband bathed with my daughter when she was three and beyond. She is now six and I can't think of any recent instances of them bathing together, but we never officially stopped or anything and we still think nothing of nudity around the house.
I think it all depends on the particular family and what people are comfortable with. We have always bathed with our kids and it just seems normal. Jenny
Well, doesn't it depend on the family's attitudes about nudity? And about saving water? In my family, nudity is no big deal, it's certainly not necessarily ''sexual'' or problematic. We often bathe together to save water and to help do hair, backs, etc. We are older parents, with one grown daughter who is 30 ( and was raised similarly) and a 9 yr old daughter. No problems here with any of it! andrea
I am sad to hear that you find this so inappropriate as to consider meddling in their lives. There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with taking a bath with your kids, particularly when they are young. It is YOU with is sexualizing the issue. I often take a bath with my two kids, who are 5 1/2 and 1 1/2 (of different genders), and I feel totally comfortable with them (plus then we all get nice and clean before bed. I think it is a sad societal statement that people feel the need to hide their bodies from their kids. What is wrong with this culture? Being nude in your own home is not a crime!
I think that it is completely normal and very healthy for parents to be comfortable around their children when they're naked. Why should we be ashamed of our bodies? There is absolutely nothing wrong with young children seeing us in the nude. I am regularly naked around our 3 children and no one in our family thinks that that is odd. I'd hate to teach the children that they had to hide their bodies, because I am hiding mine. They often beg me to take a bath with them. The only reason that I don't do it regularly is because I like more space in the tub and that's tough with all those little bodies around me. My husband and I don't ''parade'' nude through the house, but we never hide our bodies either. It would be highly inappropriate for you to mention something to these friends. You would impose your prudeness on them and that could very well cost you your friendship. I would certainly be insulted if one of my friends thought that bathing with my 3-yr old was a bad thing. Happy to be Nude
I don't want to sound rude, but your post seems more disturbing than the behavior you're so upset about. The parents are, by your own admission, normal people (as you say it ''straight, for lack of a better term''). There is nothing wrong about a man or woman, straight or otherwise, bathing with his/her same-sex or opposite sex three-year-old child, unless said parent is a pedophile (and in that case, there should be no child anywhere near that person).
You sound genuinely concerned about children, which is admirable and good; I really hope you find a more productive way to channel this concern. I suggest the National Association to Protect Children or any similar advocacy group that does work to protect children who are really in danger of being exploited (from your post, it doesn't sound like the child you discuss is at risk, but many children are). Cheers
It's odd to you, odd to me, but not odd to them. I know perfectly reasonable people with perfectly adequate sexual boundaries who bathed with their children at an age that I would have found uncomfortable. The ''conventional wisdom'' is to mind your business. Now if the little girl came up to you and started talking about things that seemed clearly sexual, I might worry. But I seriously doubt that anybody who is unworried about you knowing that they bathe with their kid is doing anything other than bathing with their kid: trying to double-task, get clean, clean the slippery darned kid, play with the kid, establish a normal lack of queasiness about parents' bodies. Chill. REcognize your own discomfort for what it is. Yours.
Honestly, I can't think of any reason he would need to bathe with his daughter. I'm sure it was fun to have baths with her as a baby, and maybe they are afraid to leave her in the tub alone, but at three she is fine alone in the tub with an adult in the room. When my children were around three, I started to expect more privacy for myself when dressing, bathing etc. However - I don't really think it is your place to tell them it is weird. Unless the mom is asking for advice or you honestly suspect she is being harmed. Weird, but MYOB
My husband and I have been bathing with our two daughters since they were born. They are now 6 and 8. We do not do it each time they take a bath, but certainly once in a while one of us gets in with them. mom who thinks it's fine
I am always so perplexed when someone here asks these kinds of questions. I am sure that there are plenty of customs in your family/cultural background that I would find strange and inappropriate, however I would never feel the need to point it out to you.
A father bathing with his daughter is nowhere near inappropriate! It is a normal cultural practice held all over the world. Privacy the way that we have it here in the west is very original to the ''western developed'' world, not so in areas where people live in small homes, with one communal space. Does that mean that these dad's are molesting their daughters? Most likely not. I was disgusted by someones response assuming that there is anything sexual about this, it actually made me ill. Americans are so caught up in their cultural mores that they often times forget that people have the right to live differently than they do. Get over it, leave this perfectly normal family alone and mind your own, I am sure you can focus your time on something better. I would recommend even an introductory course in Cultural Anthropology, it might be quite eye opening Gabriela
Hello, my son is now 39 months. He LOVES water and sometimes I have him take a shower with me. At what age will this no longer be appropriate? Many thanks bobbie
When is it no longer appropriate? Probably around 11 years-old, when your son will likely become painfully self-conscious and not be able to bear changing his socks in front of any one. Certainly, at only 36 months, you've got a long way to go. Keep on showering together as long as both of you are enjoying it Splish Splash
I have very traumatic memories of showering with parents when I was old enough to be showering alone. Not because of anything that happened in the shower, but because it really sucks to be an adult and have indelible pictures of my parents' naked bodies in my mind... And to know that I was old enough to shower alone yet they felt the need or desire to have me in the shower with them. I still don't understand why a parent would do this. A child who is old enough to shower or bathe alone, or with a parent sitting nearby (age 5 or thereabouts for most kids) is TOO OLD to be taking a shower with a parent. In fact, I think taking a shower with a kid who's old enough to shower by themselves is setting a kid up for poor boundaries, parent issues and issues around body privacy and sexuality. I say this as someone who is not a prude about nudity but feels that still taking a shower with my dad at 7 or 8 was highly inappropriate. It's never too early to teach kids about good boundaries, but I think that ages 6-8 is a particularly good opportunity to have an open dialogue about bodies & sex, but to also let kids understand what is and is not okay around nudity and touch and other body-related stuff Anonymous
I'd say: right about now. Some things (such as the nude body of the parent of the opposite sex) are better left completely to the imagination. I agree with a recent poster that each child needs to develop a sense of privacy and personal boundaries around their sexuality, and what better way than to see that modeled by parents who have a firm sense of privacy and personal boundaries. At 39 months, your son is quite aware of the world around him and beginning to form early opinions about these sorts of issues.
While my own parents were deeply narcissistic and so screwed up in so many ways in my childhood, at the least they got this whole issue right. I never recall seeing my father in the nude, and I bathed with my mom until we couldn't squeeze in the tub. As a mom, I wouldn't dream of letting my son in the room with me undressed, and I still take the occaisonal tub with my tween-age daughter. I hope I'm conveying a message to my daughter of ease with her body, and a message of separatedness and personal boundaries with my son. I think they are relieved and appreciate of my clarity around this issue, and my husband is in full agreement and behaves accordingly. It's a good thing you're looking at this issue now before your son gets any older
I'm not sure about a child of the opposite gender, but I regularly swim with my ten year old and we shower in the locker room (along with other adults and children). I keep expecting her to feel modest, or awkward about my body, but that stage hasn't arrived yet. I also think that maybe because it is part of our exercise routine, we both feel comfortable showering together. At home we don't shower/bathe together, but that is because of the space in our shower as much as anything else. If it starts to feel uncomfortable for you or your child, you should stop, but until then you should enjoy the togetherness. berkeley Y member
I have to say I am totally shocked by the responses from this \x93progressive\x94 community about this subject. What a skewed view we still have of the human body. There was a lot of postings about boundaries and sexuality. People, we\x92re talking about a 39 month old here! Children at this age have no concept of sexuality. If any of the posters are feeling concerned about sexual feelings, it\x92s not coming from a 3 \xbd year old. The most interest children at this age have in the body is how bodies look different. There\x92s no need to sexualize it by our adult thinking that genitalia are for sex. The idea of sex enters the picture at different times for different kids. But not at 39 months.
As for boundaries, kids develop them when you set a respectful example. We have a 43 month old who still bathes with her dad and showers with him at the pool. We also have 2 teenage girls, both who bathed with their dad until THEY decided they no longer wanted to. One became modest very early \x96 4, if I recall. The other probably closer to 6 (she would bathe at home alone but was afraid to be in the locker room at the pool by herself. When her sister wasn\x92t there, she showered with Dad). We modeled boundaries by respecting both of their decisions to close the door and be alone. If my little one asks her dad for privacy, she gets it. If he is in the bathroom and asks for privacy, he gets it. Those are boundaries.
Maybe I was just raised to have a healthier concept of the human body. There\x92s nothing shameful in it. No one in our house is freaking out if my daughter sees her dad naked because it doesn\x92t register with her. Why create a weird dynamic around the human body? We do explain that body parts are private and that\x92s why she can\x92t lift my skirt up or pull my shirt down in public. She understands that\x92s why we wear clothes \x96 because bodies are private. But while we\x92re still wiping her bottom and giving her baths, her body is not that private to us. When she is ready to be private with her dad, she will be. It happens quickly and usually overnight. So, have a healthy, respectful attitude and stop worrying about damaging your child permanently. That\x92s just nonsense. And the rest of you \x96 perhaps some therapy? Bare and Balanced
What I find interesting is that you refer to your son as a 39- month old. I'm not a prude, but if you started referring to your son's age as it really is - 3 1/2 years old now, since your posting - then maybe it would sink in that he's perhaps a little too old to do this. Unless, of course, when he's of driving age you will be celebrating his 192nd monthday -It's high time you used years.
I didn't see the original post but I was very surprised by a lot of the responses. I grew up in a Scandinavian household and our whole family still goes on trips to hot springs around California. (In Norway some kids have co-ed PE classes and shower together! It may or may not be related but they have very low rates of sex crimes up there.) The idea has always been ''as soon as it's not comfortable for someone, you stop,'' -- our children will let you know when it becomes awkward to see you naked. We have some friends who have a fantastic, huge Japanese bath and my understanding is that the whole family ciimbs in there! Clearly it's a personal choice and different people have different attitudes and comfort levels. (In an effort to see if there was a consensus about this, I looked briefly on the web -- one site said any child over *4* was old enough to bathe him/herself and wash their own hair, and if a parent of the opposite sex needed to administer the bath then the child should wear *underpants in the bath*!!!! That seems a little... extreme.) It is not until ages 4-6 that children develop what is called ''gender stability'' (boys know wearing a skirt doesn't change the fact that they're a boy, etc.). This is the same age some kids start to get a little modest about ''the opposite sex'' (though this is likely more learned than inherent). By age 7-9 they usually get the idea of ''privacy'', though deciding what that actually means comes mostly from family/cultural teaching.
So it's really about your own comfort level and the comfort level of your kids (which, mostly comes from you). It's unlikely you can cause any psychological harm unless you ignore their wishes when they tell you they wants to stop Scandi (Not Nudist!)
I believe that sexual awareness comes in developmental stages and I could tell when both of my boys became curious about my body. One son was about 4 and the other well over 5 when that developmental stage occurred - and then no more showers together and I personally just felt more comfortable covering up around them. I really believe adults sexualize alot of things that young children are just sexually UNaware about - unless perhaps they have been abused anonymous
I have to agree with the previous poster who was \x93totally shocked by the responses from this progressive community.\x94 This is the kind of thing that makes Europeans snicker about us uptight Americans. There are ways to teach your child boundaries about their bodies without making them feel \x93uptight\x94 about their body or about nudity in general. Not to put this on any religious group, but I just so happened to be raised Roman Catholic and it took me almost the entire ten years of my 3rd decade of life to get over the shame that I felt about my own body and about sexuality. Those were some wasted years that I would not want to wish on my son, or anyone for that matter. My son is seven and he showers with both my husband and I when we are in a rush or if he just wants to join one of us. We have taught him about personal boundaries and private parts of the body. He has his moments when he is shy about his body and we respect that absolutely. Many people have told me that he is an exceptionally well- adjusted, well-mannered and sweet little boy. While many of my women friends lament about their children no longer being affectionate, our son continues to be very loving and affectionate to both my husband and me. I\x92d like to think that this has to do with how open and affectionate a family we are, and the fact that we practiced attachment parenting when he was a baby. We must be doing something right and I can\x92t help but think it has something to do with how comfortable he is in his body, and how comfortable he feels when he is close to my husband and I. I say, eschew the dominant paradigm and become concerned about the things in this world that will actually do some real harm to your child\x92s psyche. \x96 television! Barely on Albany Hill
Bravo Bare and Balanced! You summarized my thoughts exactly. I have two sons, 2.5 and 5 years old. We have a big shower and so the whole family gets in every morning together. It is quick, efficient, and fun for the boys. We plan on doing this until the boys can shower on their own, or they express a need for privacy, which ever comes first. Why Americans feel this insane modesty and shame about the human body baffles me. My husband, who is from Europe, thinks we are whacko about this---he always says, we can show extreme violence on TV to young children, but god forbid they see naked bodies, or even worse sex. We, as a nation, need to get over our fear of nakedness. Please understand that I am a firm believer in clothes and privacy in public but I don't think parents being naked around kids is bad No shame about my body
I find it hard to believe that if my son sees me naked that is going to scar him for life (I'm his mom). There are (adult) people all over the planet who are more comfortable with their nudity than us North Americans and I'm sure they don't hide from their kids and I can't believe all the kids in nude- friendly northern Europe, for example, are scarred for life. I think we Americans sexualize nudity and that is why some of us are so uncomfortable with it.
I didn't see the original post so perhaps this is off-topic, but my kids grew up in Japan and there it's common for families to visit their neighborhood bathhouse together, either for necessity (some older apartments in the cities don't have baths) or to relax after a long day (even if you have a bath, you can go soak in huge hot-tubs and have a steam and sauna for about four bucks). Hot-spring resorts are also popular destinations for families on vacation. My kids loved going to the baths! Bathing facilities are always segregated by gender, but boys up to the age of about six are commonly seen on the women's side, bathing not only with their moms but a whole bunch of naked women of all different ages and sizes (lots of grandmas). Very educational. People are more matter-of-fact about nudity in the bathing context and it feels healthier. Come to think of it, it's also really common to have company trips to spa resorts at the weekend, so not only do Japanese people routinely see their family members naked, they often see their coworkers (of the same gender) nude... I don't think the experience has affected my son negatively. He's now fifteen and has a respectful and tolerant view of the human body. Of course there are plenty of shy people in Japan and Europe, but they seem fewer by far. Does it have something to do with the strong influence of Christianity in US culture? I guess it is all conditioning. Hot Spring Fan
Hi - My husband and I are talking about the concept of showering with our toddler (girl - 1.5 YO). I'd like to hear perspectives on showering with kids in general and with the other sex parent in particular. Thanks for the insights
Ever since he could stand up, we've both taken turns showering with our toddler, who is almost 3. Since you wanted ''insights,'' here's why we do it: it gets him clean. -Not much else to add
I think it's a great idea, so long as shame isn't part of it. Be prepared to answer lots of questions, and when she's about 3, dad should be prepared for a yank. Kids are curious after all, but it's just like (post-nursing) children wanting to touch our breasts - we tell them it's not okay to touch mommy's private parts. anon
We have a 2yo (girl) who showers regularly with either me or my husband (or both on mornings when she is in a shower mood). We have found that it has been a great opportunity for us to teach her about the differences between boys(men) and girls (women). She just accepts that Daddy has a penis, just like she has a vagina and her pee-pee comes out of her urethra. We've gotten a book on the human body that she LOVES to read (especially the part about babies, since I just had my second baby & she was curious about WHAT was in Mommy's tummy). Although we have very strong beliefs about WHEN people should start having sex, we also have strong beliefs about talking about sexuality the same as going potty or learning to run or why we eat vegetables. My husband and I were both raised in such a way that sex and nudity were fairly taboo and we don't want our children to have to overcome those taboos when they are in a position where it is appropriate to have sexual relations. regular family showerers
my husband and I both bathe with our children (one of each gender and 1 and 2.5 years old) we find it more convenient than leaning over the tub to play with and wash them. It also nice not to have to worry about getting clothes wet. as for body parts, we name them all as they come up tummy, penis, leg, hand, etc. Vagina hasn't yet come up since our daughter isn't talking yet and my son hasn't noticed or asked. sometimes I wonder at what age we'll stop bathing with them - I guess we'll know when we get there or soon they will just be bathing with each other. rub a dub dub
It's pretty fun to shower with a toddler, but you have to be a little careful. My little boy (2 years old) doesn't like it when I take a shower, and half the time doesn't want to take a bath, but if I'm in the shower and ask him if he wants to come in, too, oh boy does he! It's great fun for him and very easy for me to clean him, but it's more difficult getting myself clean. If I use regular soap (Dial whatever), then it could easily get into his eyes, so I have to use his baby shampoo, too. If I wash my hair, then I have to squat while rinsing so that the shower doesn't get the soap on him. Since he's still nursing, that means he has access to breasts, which he will try to pinch and poke and then laugh about it. You also really have to guard against slipping in the bathtub. I don't think he's ever showered with his dad, but one time when he was a year old, he toddled over to a guy friend, reached up through his shorts and grabbed some pubic hair! Very uncomfortable for the guy, so maybe your husband should make sure he keeps his eyes open. I don't think kids have real long-term memory until after age three or so, if you're worried about him or her remembering and being weirded out about it. a mom
I can't tell you what the general recommendation is for this. But I can tell you that I showered with my mom when I was very little. I'm female. (My father wasn't in the picture.) I don't remember the exact age. But I was old enough to remember. There was never anything weird about it for me. In fact, I remember it being fun because of the spraying water and feeling safe with my mommy! Cathy
I read this post and was delighted to be reminded of one of my favorite experiences with my daughter when she was little. We had a very tiny tub with a seat at the back and I began showering with her when she was really just an infant. I remember her pleasure at being ''naked in the rain'' and my joy holding her sweet little body in my arms while we giggled and lathered and washed our hair together. It was one of the most lovely moments in our day and much easier than leaning over the tub to bathe her and waiting for her to finish. I highly recommend the practice! We even jump in together to this day (she's in college) if we both need to use our single shower at the same time. We are a family of two women who are very relaxed about our naked bodies and are very physically affectionate when we're clothed. It was the same in my family of origin, although the presence of brothers and dads seemed to alter the climate a bit when the kids started to reach puberty. I think the most important part of this is to communicate ease with your body. If you can't, don't. It sends the wrong message. naked in the rain
My daughters are 3 and 1 and shower with daddy several times a week. They have a blast and there is nothing weird about it. We realize that will probably come to an end soon. but, we will enjoy while we can. -showering family
I often shower with my son (now 3.5). At various points he has preferred it to baths (though right now he would rather have a bath). We both love it and I see nothing wrong with it. For me it's easier than giving him baths because I'm getting in the shower anyway, and it's not any extra prep work. We also have a sort of game with the water stream, I have no idea how it started: one of us is in the water stream, and the other one says ''Get out of there, Reorge!'' or ''My turn, Reorge!'' Then we both burst into giggles.
I also remember when I was really young, not showering with my dad but seeing him naked, and it was natural and no big thing. I think seeing your opposite parent naked is a good way to encourage a healthy attitude toward bodies in general and particularly toward sexuality. anon
I'm a mom and shower with my 4 1/2 year old son every day. I haven't had any problems. I'm not exactly sure what your concerns are but I'm sure your daughter will be fine if you are. If you're not comfortable with it, that might be a different issue because she might pick up on the vibe. showering mom
We (both my husband and I) bathe with my 2.5 year old daughter in the tub semi-regularly and sometimes she joins us in the shower as well. I suppose we'll stop when it starts to seem weird but it doesn't yet. I imagine it will seem weird when she develops more awareness of things sexual. At this point her awareness consists of being able to identify boy, girl, man or woman, and that's it. Kate
My husband and I have been pretty loose about nudity in the house (both our own and that of our children) since the kids were born. Now that my older daughter is almost six, though, I'm starting to feel uncomfortable with my husband walking around naked in front of her--in part because his groin, and all its apparatus, are right at eye level for her. We are fairly progressive parents, but suddenly I'm beginning to squirm. Any thoughts?
What does your daughter say or how does she act when your or your husband are naked around her? Most kids will let you know when they are no longer comfortable with nudity. If you and your husband keep an eye and ear out for how she is reacting, youwill know when/if it is time to cover up. jen
I grew up in a family that attached little importance to physical modesty. My spouse grew up in a family with one modest parent and one hyper-modest parent (we have to take it on faith that her father, like other ordinary mortals, does indeed have occasional bowel movements). In our own family we are relaxed about nudity.
It has not been an explicit or conscious policy, but I hope it gives children the healthy message that their is nothing mysterious about body parts, their parents aren't embarassed about their bodies, and they shouldn't be embarassed about theirs. I don't think there is any age threshold when you should stop sending that message. And perhaps it is more, not less, important for children to get that message as they get older. I believe that a better understanding of the human body, and more comfort with their own body, helps young people develop a healthy sexuality.
Still, I do think we each have our own comfort level. For example, my 3rd-grader is ridiculously modest, e.g., usually wears a belt with his pajamas (perhaps his maternal grandfather's modesty skipped a generation). At the same time, I am surprised that my middle school daughter is not more modest about her changing body, especially with a teasing younger brother in the house. It took me a little while to realize that the problem was me -- if she doesn't feel embarassed about her changing body, why should I?
The only conscious decision we made is to use correct names for body parts, e.g., vulva (not vagina, unless that really is the part you are discussing). Depending on your own upbringing, this can be very hard to do! Children are curious, and if you can talk matter of factly about body parts, they ask about it all. The only drawback that I can see to the open discussion of body parts is that all of our children, when very small, have occasionally said things that made other adults wilt. But this seems pretty minor -- if grandma and the Safeway cashier fall off their chairs because they distinctly heard a tiny girl say ''clitoris,'' who has the problem? Not the child. On the other hand, my elementary-school children have come home and laughed about the great confusion that exists among their peers when it comes to boys' and girls' bodies.
I look forward to what I anticipate will be a great many posts, some of which will undoubtedly make me feel like a prude! Don't Worry, Be Naked
When our oldest daughter was about the age yours is, we faced the same issue. We decided not to rush to cover up. Attitudes to nudity are obviously highly variable across cultures, and mainstream American culture seems to us very pathological. Nudity and touch are sexualized much more than in some other countries, and some people are left so modest (prudish? pathologically ashamed of perfectly normal bodies?) that they can't name their own body parts aloud, and are uncomfortable being seen naked in locker rooms, doctors' offices, and by lovers. Many, especially the young, are too uncomfortable to negotiate safe sex, or contraceptive use, with tragic results. There are plenty of communities in which young mothers have felt pressured not to breastfeed because they and others are uncomfortable about exposed breasts.
We feel our policy has paid off. All of us are comfortable with are bodies, and our kids can talk about their bodies very matter- of-factly. Such a contrast with my own childhood. Despite frequent camping trips, shared motel rooms, and the constant use of beaches with no bath houses, I have never seen my own father naked. My first glimpses of adult male genitalia came from flashers and during an attempted sexual assault. My shock and perplexity at their appearance left me that much less able to think clearly about what to do about the threatening situations I found myself in. I was also completely unable to tell my mother about some health problems I had, and that I was beginning puberty, because I was just too embarrassed. Not rushing to cover up nudity sends the message that there's nothing abnormal or bad about human bodies, something my husband's family always knew, and reinforced by their casual attitude to nudity. Anonymous, but not under cover!
My child is not old enough for this to be an issue with us, so I have to talk about my experience as a child with very loose parents.
My parents were naked around me all the time. And you know what? It wasn't an issue for me AT ALL! Why? Because it wasn't an issue for my parents. I promise you, if you don't make a big deal about it, it won't be a big deal for her, and there is a very important added benefit: your daughter will grow up much more comfortable with her body, because her parents modeled that THEY were comfortable with their bodies.
So, your husbands penis is at your daughters eyel level. So? I would encourage you to really follow where your thoughts are going and what your fears are. Are you afraid your daughter will develop sexual feelings for her father? If she does, it makes no difference if he's naked or not. Childrens first sexual feelings are *usually* for their parents. They are unconscious and, as the child grows and develops, will move on to more appropriate ''targets'' (so-to-speak), especially if parents don't make a big deal about it and realize that this is perfectly normal and has NOTHING to do with whether or not they walked around naked. Being nude does not (neccessarily) = being sexual, as I'm sure you are perfectly aware.
Will your daughter be curious about daddy's penis? Perhaps, perhaps not. I never was, as a child, particularly curious. I was so used to seeing my parents naked that it just wasn't all that facinating. And, getting back to the added benefit: I grew up with a MUCH better body image and am much more comfortable in my body than just about ANY of my other women friends. I definitely think my parents attitude about their bodies (and respect for mine) played a big role in this.
So, my opinion is, if you can be comfortable, your daughter will be too and it will probably not really be an issue - and could ultimately teach her healthy ways of thinking about her body. happy daughter of nude parents