In the US, the sexualized female remains a target of horror and judgment in a culture that apparently obsesses about sexuality while bemoaning it. Which, for example, causes women to cover up beneath tents when breastfeeding in public.
I thought of this incident last summer when taking my toddler daughter to our local municipal pool where even little babies wear bikini tops. At one point, I decided to test the limits and let her run around naked. Eventually I was approached and notified by a lifeguard that she needs to wear a swimsuit. When I asked if just a bottom was okay, I was told that all young children need to wear either a swim diaper, swimsuit, swim trunk, or bikini while in the pool, but a top is not necessary. And I was told that it is okay for her to be naked if I am changing her near our chairs, but if she goes into the water she needs at least a bottom.
Originally published on LOVE, SEX, AND FAMILY.
Quizzical mama, aka Anne G. Sabo, Ph.D., is a renegade academic, writer, speaker, public educator and founder of the new online resource center LOVE, SEX, AND FAMILY devoted to holistic human sexuality information for the whole family. Her blog quizzical mama is an educated and personal approach to the politics and philosophies of parenting, often addressing controversial issues, and often reflecting on different cultural values and practices in the US and her native Norway. She also writes about sexual politics and new porn by women (and some men) in new porn.