It’s warm and sunny once again, in our little neighbourhood that backs onto conservation forest land, and that means… our neighbours are out sunbathing in the nude again.
And we are at a loss as to what to do about it.
We’re not prudes. Or maybe we are. But either way, I do not want to see my neighbours naked. And I certainly do not want to look up from weeding my vegetable garden to see the twigs and berries of someone else’s ill-tended garden, if you follow the way I have drifted.
Our neighbours are European, which means, when I tried ever so gently and diplomatically to ask them not to sunbathe in the nude last summer — or at least, to refrain from doing it where I can see it — they dismissed what I was saying with “It’s natural.” And I realize that in other parts of the world, it is fine to parade your bits and pieces for all to see. But we are not in other parts of the world; we are in suburban southern Ontario. And I just don’t want to see it.
I have issues, not just for myself, but for my daughter. When I begin teaching her about stranger danger — which has been on my mind a lot lately, with the abduction and murder of a little girl in a nearby town — how do I differentiate between these things? How do I explain that strangers showing her their “private parts” is not appropriate, when a neighbour does it every sunny weekend?
We’re not nudists. We’re going to start to deal with the whole “privacy” and nudity issue within our family when our child is old enough to understand and talk about these things. We’re family, but we’re drawing what we feel are appropriate lines when it comes to nudity and privacy. But that is within our family. We certainly do not have a level of familiarity with our neighbours where we feel it is “okay” for our daughter to see them naked.
We honestly don’t know what to do about this. We’re finding we are unable to enjoy our backyard because we don’t want to look up and see our neighbours in all their naked glory. We want to be good neighbours, and we don’t want to have conflicts, but I can’t see any real way out of it. If we go and talk directly to them and tell them that they cannot, by law, sunbathe naked in their yard, we will piss off our otherwise quite lovely neighbours — and good neighbours are hard to find. But we’re angry and annoyed with the fact that it is an issue for us and we can’t enjoy our weekends as we’d like to. And the only other option is to call the police and have them come and speak with them, and that would be worse, I think.
So what does one do with a naked neighbour? BDH suggested a paintball gun. I am thinking of moving. Neither option is really viable.
All I know is, if I have to bleach my eyeballs one more time, there’s going to be trouble.