Last week we saw a movie called The Sessions. The film is based on a short story written by Mark O’Brien. Mark suffered from polio as a child, remains immobile and visits a sex surrogate. I had never heard of sex surrogacy but let’s just describe it as physical therapy for other parts…Helen Hunt plays the sex surrogate and while I have all sorts of thoughts about this profession, I was more intrigued with Hunt’s nakedness. Helen Hunt doesn’t have a nude scene in the movie, she’s nude for most of the movie and seemingly totally at ease.
On the Today Show Hunt said, “all right, all right for God’s sake, I’m naked. People keep saying this is a ‘brave’ performance and I keep thinking ‘brave’ means ‘naked’”. I’ve written before about the naked locker room people (and how I am sooo not one of them) but while naked for covered-up types like me is “brave” I am thinking for the naked-and-happy club naked is sort of natural.
Hunt also said “my role in this movie is to come in and give the audience a glimpse of what it would be like if we dropped all our strangeness about sexuality.” Where does this strangeness about sexuality or nudity come from though? Is a comfort level in the buff tied in with body image? If you feel better about your body are you more apt to sleep naked or parade around without clothes? A piece on Mind Body Green actually suggests time in front of a mirror naked as a way to reduce body hatred and improve self-esteem. I haven’t tried it yet.
I’m also intrigued by whether growing up in a naked house makes you more comfortable naked. Interestingly, I have a mother who was very comfortable (and still is) about her body. She didn’t parade around when I had friends over but didn’t ever seem in a rush to cover up either. You’d think that would make her children “free” in this sense but it didn’t. Is that our personalities or do you pull away from what you’re used to? Again not sure.
Matt Lauer said to Hunt something to the effect of as the film goes on you sort of forget she’s naked. This may just be really good acting but it would be really nice if we could all forget the discomfort and awkwardness that nakedness presents. There will be no “sessions” in my future or group nakedness (I didn’t mean it like that) but I do think body comfort is something to aspire to. Do you?
Have you seen The Sessions or heard about it? Are you a naked sleeper or locker room person? Why do you think some people are naked-and-happy? Is it from your family, where you were raised or is it individual? What do you think of the naked time suggestion from Mind Body Green?