What is nudism

Exibitionism and nudism: what's the difference?

Nudity plays a highly ambiguous role in our society. While we can hardly save ourselves from bare breasts and buttocks in the media space, being completely naked in public space is punishable (causing public nuisance) and is subject to a taboo.

Two terms are often used in this discussion: exhibitionism and nudism. The terms are often used as synonyms, but mean completely different things.

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Naturism vs. Sexual Preference

Anyone who calls the nudist exhibitionistic is doing him an injustice. Nudism per se has nothing to do with sex or any form of harassment:

  • Nudism, also nudist culture or naturism, means the communal nudity of both sexes.
  • It's about the feeling of freedom and an "original" experience of nature.
  • For example, nudists indulge in nude bathing on the nudist beach. Vienna even has its own "Nackerbatzldorf" on the New Danube.

The demarcation from the exhibitonist is extremely important to the nudist, as the latter is often associated with cases of harassment and the exposure of genitals in public spaces. Exhibitionism is the sexual pleasure in other people's shocked reactions. Although it cannot be ruled out that one or the other nudist also has exhibitionistic tendencies, the two terms should never be pigeonholed.

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Exhibitionism as a disease

Anyone who thinks of such a "willing to show" person often has a man in mind who opens his trench coat in the subway and presents his genitals. If someone does this regularly and for sexual satisfaction, then he is considered to be ill and also culpable. Fines and imprisonment can be imposed, especially if others have been harmed by the behavior. The matter becomes particularly threatening when exhibitionists bare themselves in front of children or even tend to sexual violence.

In the ICD-10 (F65.2) exhibitonism is assigned to paraphilia. This means mental disorders that deviate from the sexual behaviors permitted in society. Incidentally, the counterpart to exhibitionism is voyeurism, the desire to observe others (often secretly) when they are exposed, for example on the toilet or during sex.

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What to do when an exhibitionist stands in front of you?

  • Do not pay attention to the naked person, do not look at him.
  • If that doesn't help: Make bystanders aware of the exposed person.
  • This is often uncomfortable for the exhibitionist and he pulls away.
  • Avoid panic and shouting, but threaten the police if he doesn't leave.
  • Call the police as it is a criminal offense.

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