Healthy Hides of Houston Bare It All for Halloween (NSFW)
As I made my way into the living area of the quiet house on the outskirts of Houston, I looked down at my conservative sweater and dress, and suddenly felt very overdressed. Yes, my attire was part of my pop-art Lichtenstein costume, and yes, this sure was a costume party, but I was the only one in the room wearing clothes.
There were naked troll dolls, naked iron chefs. There was a nude witch, and a very bare ghoul. Breasts and buttocks surrounded me, and I suddenly felt a bit like a voyeur. What was I doing here, and why had I thrown on so many clothes?
It's a strange thing, the feeling of entering a party and being the only clothed person in the room. It's hardly like that old adage of picturing everyone naked to overcome your social anxiety. Let me tell you -- if everyone in the room is naked, and you're dressed for a snowstorm, you'll definitely still be dealing with those nerves. This experience proves it.
They were supposed to be naked, though. I was the one deviating from their social norms, because this was a Halloween party for nudists. I was in the company of the members of Healthy Hides of Houston, the non-landed clothing optional group that supports and fosters healthy nudism in a club environment.
And while they're all hanging out together while nude, they do normal people stuff, like throw Halloween parties. And no, there's no hanky-panky. Sorry folks. This is all good, clean naked fun. You'd be surprised at how normal sitting around with naked folks can feel, even if you keep looking down at your sweater with contempt.
Wayne Kircher, president of HHH
The world of nudism can be difficult to navigate, especially if you've never been exposed to it. The closest I'd come to nudism included a couple of drunken outings to alt-lifestyle clubs in the early '00s, which is hardly representative of what nudists are about. The naked sex that occurs in "lifestyle" clubs is easy to reconcile; they're naked with a sexual purpose.
But nudists, by definition, are not naked for sexual reasons. They are just naked. That idea can be quite confounding to contemplate. I mean, why folks would want to hang out together while naked if it's not for sexual gratification, right? What gives?