As I've written about before, I have a fair amount of thin privilege being an inbetween fat person, a person of actual average size (and still shrinking, sadly). Part of what goes along with that, since I'm talking about nudity, is having a much easier time being naked with others since I'm acceptably fat-acceptable, if just barely, according to current societal standards. Other than a c-section scar I don't have any major physical 'flaws' so being confident and getting naked isn't so difficult. Fewer 'YOU SUCK' messages are absorbed into my brain because I don't identify with them.
SO! When a nudist publication asks "Hey ladies, where are you?" I know at least part of the answer right away-we're hiding! As BJ posted in the comments on Monday, being naked around strangers is something many women wouldn't consider in a million years. We've spent a HUGE part of our lives hearing and seeing thousands and thousands of negative messages about ourselves. Men? Not so much. This probably explains in large part the reason why there are so few women, compared to men, who are nudists. It takes a lot more work to shuck all that garbage, to learn to accept ourselves enough to take that first step, whatever it might be. Many women wear clothing specifically to cover up and hide their bodies-too much cover and you're a prude, too little and you're a slut. Fat? Cover up! Scars? EW! Never forget, ladies, your body is public property! The colours, patterns, and style of what we wear is instantly judged by the people around us because of *their* conditioning.
BUT! Once that first step to being socially naked is taken, the easier it gets to dump more of the mental and emotional garbage because of the exposure (no pun intended) to other bodies. There are no clothes hiding anyone's 'flaws', their scars, their lumps and bumps, their saggy bits, or other uniqueness. Being naked by yourself is a good way to start off, so you become used to your own body and what it *really* looks like, 'flaws' and all. After that, who knows where you'll end up?