Raise your hand if you’ve been spending extra time in the bathroom lately, in the hopes of just a couple minutes of alone time, only to have partners and children barge in on you there, too. Even celebs like country star Jessie James Decker are experiencing this. So when viewers tried to shame her for posting a photo of herself in her underwear with her sons in the room, she was having none of it.
“You walk around like that with your kids around,” someone wrote on the post, in which she’s rather dramatically reclining on a chair in her bedroom, bed unmade, glass of wine in hand.
“No different than a swim suit,” Decker replied, according to People. “I teach my children the body is beautiful. Nothing to be ashamed of.”
The mother of three has faced this kind of comment for years, and she’s a pro at brushing off others’ opinions of how she raises her own kids. But in case this kind of criticism has you wondering if it’s OK for you to walk around your house in various states of undress with the kids around — since they are ALWAYS around — the answer is yes, with a small qualification.
“If the nudity is non-sexualized, there shouldn’t be psychological effects on a child, especially if you’re all on the same page, are all consenting and are all comfortable with it,” licensed psychotherapist and marriage and family counselor Shirin Peykar told SheKnows in an interview last year.
That bit about being consenting and comfortable is where it’s your job to pay attention to your kids’ reactions. Their comfort level might change as they get older, and if they start requesting privacy for themselves when they get undressed, that may be a sign that they’re also not comfortable with their parents’ nudity, Peykar told us.
As they reach their tween years, at maybe around 9, it may be time to teach another lesson, according to Dr. Lisa Lewis, a board-certified pediatrician and author of Feed the Baby Hummus.
“[I]t is important to teach children socially appropriate boundaries, such as dressing privately,” Lewis told SheKnows. “For this reason, I suggest for moms to gently not allow their children to see them naked at approximately 9 and up.”
But for now, with 6-year-old daughter Vivianne, 4-year-old son Eric, and 2-year-old son Forrest, Decker can continue to lounge in her undies. Not that she has too much choice in the matter. When a fan first pointed out the boy in the back of the picture, she wrote, “I can’t get away from them.”
Same, girl. Same.
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