Last Tuesday morning birthday boy Exhibit A tweeted that his DMs were open for “allllllll your best nudes.” I giggled, wondered how many he’d get then thought nothing more of it. Shortly after midnight he tweeted a thank you. I suddenly realised that not only had I not sent him a birthday nude but it had not even occurred to me to do so.
I am a very bad sender of sexy nudes. I’m an excellent taker and editor of arty farty flattering nudes. I’m on the money when it comes to adding flourish and humour to photos. I’ll make sure my friends and I have so much fun being naked that we forget about the bits of ourselves we don’t like. But I hardly ever just grab the camera to take a candid shot of naked me to send a partner or lover, to let them know I’m thinking about them or to turn them on.
Don’t get me wrong, I do send partners nudes, but it’s always just an advance viewing of one that’s going to be on a blog. And even if it’s for their eyes only, it’s still always slightly curated and edited. In short I send them the photos of me that I like, not the unfiltered unedited ones that are the real me, that would help them imagine they’re there with me. It’s ridiculous really. I’m not a shy naked person. When I’m with a partner I happily wander around with all the wobbles on show and I never feel the need to cover up when we hang out on the sofa after sex or sit and eat dinner. But when they’re with me they’ve got all of me – the whole package of what makes me me and my body is just part of that. When I’m sending a photo suddenly my body is a one dimensional thing captured in pixels and I’m less confident about my nudity. Which is why they get the same curated shots that the outside world gets. And that’s terrible because I’m demanding of their natural off the cuff nudes and I whine if I haven’t had any for a while.
So anyway, in the early hours of Wednesday morning I read Exhibit A’s thank you tweet, had a sudden flash of guilt about not sending him a birthday photo, sat bolt upright in bed and snapped three quick photos. I sent them along with an apology and a less wordy version of this post. The response was encouraging but also gently chastised me for continuing to think this negative shit. And you know what, I do like this photo. The natural me isn’t as bad in reality as it is in my head. I doubt you’ll see many photos like this on my blog. I like my arty farty funny style too much. But I am resolving to send partners more photos that are simply me.