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Woman says going on nude cruise with 2,300 strangers helped her overcome body image issues

Woman says going on nude cruise with 2,300 strangers helped her overcome body image issues

Helen had previously been totally against naturism

A woman has credited a naked cruise for helping her deal with her body confidence issues after she stripped off in front of thousands of people.

Helen Berriman, 47, from Bromley, London, had never considered herself as someone who'd be interested in naturism before she met her husband, Simon, in 2015.

Helen had been struggling with body positivity and confidence at the time, and although Simon, 47, preferred to live a 'clothing optional' lifestyle, that wasn't something Helen was interested in at all.

Helen Berriman previously struggled with body confidence issues.

"If he wanted to do it, I just didn't want to know about it," Helen said.

All of that changed, however, when the world went into lockdown.

"It was really hot, he was naked a lot at home, and I couldn’t be bothered to fight," Helen explained.

She took small steps to showing off her own body from there, saying: "I decided to get myself a bikini, which was a big enough step for me after years of yoyo dieting and hating my body.

"Simon took pictures of me in my bikini and I wasn't repulsed. I actually felt quite good. It just went on from there."

After regaining some of her confidence, Helen decided to push the boundaries by acting as a clothed model in a 'reversed life drawing class', where everyone else was nude.

"I felt silly being the only one in a dress on a hot day, so I decided to take it off," Helen said. "It was my eureka moment, and I finally understood why Simon liked it so much. I felt free."

Fast forward to this year, and Helen has just enjoyed her first holiday away with Simon - a nudist Caribbean cruise.

"The cruise was with a company called Bare Necessities, and it was a ship that accommodates 2,300 people across 11 decks," Helen explained.

"You can be nude anywhere around the ship, apart from when docking in certain ports, and if you wanted to go into any of the formal dining rooms.

"You have to get dressed if you want to leave the ship too. Otherwise, there was another general canteen where you can be nude as long as you take your towel to sit on, which is just common naturist etiquette."

During the trip, Helen enjoyed her first nudist beach experience, as well as doing a 'naked zip wire' and riding a horse across a beach topless.

Plus, the fact that it was a nude cruise made packing very easy.

"You also don't need to pack much for a nude holiday, so Simon and I shared a bag between us for the two-week holiday," she said.

The nude cruise made packing easy.

Now, Helen's every day is spent 'living and breathing naturism'. She loves the friendliness and openness of the community, and wants other people to understand how it can make them 'feel free'.

"I only have one skin, and although it's loose in some places, it fits me nicer than a pair of jeans. I used to struggle with body positivity and confidence, but now I am so different. My body is my vessel," Helen said.

"It allowed me to carry my daughter, and I wear my scars with pride because they are all a part of me. I used to equate nudity to sex and being objectified, but now my outlook has totally changed."

"In naturism, no one is objectifying you, no one is leering at you," Helen continued. "They're talking to your eyes and not your boobs. It is just comfortable."

Featured Image Credit: Caters

Topics: Beauty, Health, Life, Travel