IT’S NEVER nice when you feel uncomfortable about something but don’t know whether you are just overreacting or not.
Well, one man has been left in a predicament after discovering that his mother-in-law still bathes and showers with his nine-year-old niece.
The man felt extremely uncomfortable upon this discovery and took to an expert for advice.
The man, known as ‘Concerned Uncle’ sent a letter to Parents.com’s Ask Your Mom, to ask columnist and parenting expert Emily Edlynn, for her thoughts on the situation.
He said: “My mother-in-law still bathes and showers with my 9-year-old niece.
“I find this very strange.
“When I talk to my partner about it, they say “they’re close.”
“Is this weird and should I say anything to my in-laws?”
In response to the man’s concern, Emily the expert confesses her initial reaction was “yes, this is weird”.
But she revealed that when she “took a step back” she realised there’s actually much more to the situation than meets the eye and that we are often “too quick to associate nudity with sexuality, and sexuality as taboo; therefore, nudity = taboo”.
Emily said: “Looking outside of the lens of our culture, I more thoughtfully changed my response to, “no, this is not strange.”
“The scenario also brings up interesting considerations around how we teach our children about bodies and boundaries.
“Nudity among strangers reigns in certain settings, like locker rooms, spas, and French beaches.
“As my children have become more private with age, I have explained that there will be situations in their future of undressing in front of others, and it doesn’t have to be embarrassing or ‘inappropriate.’
“As parents, we need to look for these opportunities to distinguish naked bodies from sex.
“In fact, as crop tops have become the style du jour, I intentionally made no issue of my daughters bearing their tummies all summer because I did not want to sexualize their young stomachs.
“Nudity and showing body parts does not have to equal sex, despite the American tilt in this direction.”
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Emily continued to share her view on the situation and said: “Assuming that you do not have concerns about sexual abuse, I would recommend doing what I did: think more about your own reaction.
“Since this is happening between family members outside of your nuclear family, it does not seem to warrant your intervention.
“You make decisions for your family based on everyone’s comfort level, and other families will make their own choices.
“As long as our children are safe and learning positive messages about bodies and boundaries, we can all work to embrace a wide range of ‘normal’.”
So what do you think?
Meanwhile, in other real life news, mum hits out at vile date who complained he didn’t ‘consent’ to seeing her breastfeed.