June 2017
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LJ journey to openness & honesty; my love for nudity
I've had my LJ since 2003 -- more than four years now. Over that time I've made an incredible journey thanks to my LJing ways. Not long after I started my LJ I decided that I wanted to be more open and honest, and that I wanted to use my journal as a way to reach that goal. I began to share my thoughts and feelings publicly, which was very difficult at first; but as I shared, I grew closer to my friends and they became more supportive, which made me able to share deeper levels of myself. The rare attack served to strengthen me, because I stood up for myself with the validation of my friends. In 'real' life I became more outgoing and confident, because I had learned that people respond positively to confident vulnerability and earnestness, and that the occasional negative reaction cannot possibly overwhelm all the positive reactions.

The more open and honest I become, the more I value transparency. It extends to every part of my life -- I dislike secrets, do not care for privacy, and cannot stand lies. I don't believe that there is a such thing as TMI because I don't think anything should be taboo to speak of. I do not like hiding in any way -- concealing makeup, figure-altering clothing (or indeed, any clothing at all), keeping quiet when my spirit demands that I speak up, acting strong when I am weak, etc. I want to be on the outside the same as I am on the inside. There have been times when I have been afraid to post something because I worried that my friends list might react negatively; I saw those topics as a challenge, and once I had gathered enough courage I posted them.

My outspokenness has caused issues in my face-to-face relationships, but the only thing that has caused a significant issue here on LJ is my love of nudity. I've lost a handful of friends over it, one which I really miss (the others not so much). I take nude self-portraits and model for art nudes, and I share the images online. I consider nudity natural and pure (though it has been fetishized by society); some do not share my opinion and consider it crass or even wicked. Others are comfortable with the idea of nude modeling, but are made uncomfortable by me posting the images in my journal and using nude icons. I have made the compromise of putting large nude photos under an lj-cut that is labeled with a warning, but I will not give up my nude icons. Icons are a person's image on LJ, and nudity as pure art is a very important part of who I am.

When I realize my actions are making someone uncomfortable, I consider changing. I weigh how important the issue is to me with how much it bothers the other person, and why. If it is not an important part of my being and that person is speaking for themselves, I am happy to change to accommodate a friend. However, if the issue concerns something that I consider a vital part of who I am, I will change it for no one. For instance, I will not lie for someone (except perhaps in a life and death situation). Also, if I consider the person to be speaking for society instead of speaking for themselves, I am not likely to change because I do not care about society. I don't have to worry much about that one because I don't really attract those who tend to speak for society; I attract those who, like me, enjoy having their mindsets upended.

art nude of me standing boldly, chin up, arms upraised -- pit hair showing, full belly not sucked in. titled Imposing.

Oh dear, am I imposing? making you uncomfortable?
disturbing your world-view?


LJ idol topic 10: "Whose LJ is it anyway?" ((if you liked/got something from this, please vote for me))

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I, too, love my own nudity, because I love and accept and cherish me...and I must say that you are gorgeous! *drools*
belenen curvygirl -- me (belly goddess)
yay for loving nudity and thank you! :D
conformer transmitter

Well said.

And way to subvert the dominant paradigm.

One mind at at time.

belenen artless
haha, thanks! :D
earthy_goddess belly love
This entry is great! I love this photograph of you. It is really striking. You look so strong and confident here. You are so beautiful, Bel! Wow!

Good luck with LJ Idol. I am still voting.... :)
belenen curvygirl -- me (nude)
thank you! :D I can't wait to share the others. ♥
I feel at my most comfortable when nude and I like your photograph very much.
belenen revolutionary
me too. I'm almost always nude when I'm at home (the only times I'm not are when I'm too cold). ;-)

and thanks!
frecklestars amazing
I don't think I could say it enough: that you a completely amazing person and I hope that someday I am able to be as honest and open as you are!!!

Oh, and this is going in my list of memorable entries, if that's all right. I want to read and re-read this, so I might be inspired to drop some of my own fear of sharing too much or being too much myself.
belenen dancy
awww, what a wonderful thing to say! thanks so much!

and of course it's all right -- I'm flattered *hugs*
You are beautiful, inside and out.
belenen curvygirl -- me (swirl)
awwww, thank you lovey ♥
bluebl00d Jamie : Hazel Eyes
I love this entry ♥!
belenen adoring
yay! thanks :D
adpaz Cleavage
Bravo! I can definitely understand where you're coming from with everything - making small changes for friends but sticking by your guns for the big ones. And I'm glad to find someone who views nudity the same way I do. 99% of the time, I'm naked when I'm home. Not because it's titillating or to turn my husband on, but because it is how I am comfortable.

And I think you're very brave putting your photos out there. I applaud you for it. I'll have pictures taken of me without shame, but I haven't felt brave enough to share them with the world. Maybe I need to think about that a bit. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful entry.
belenen dancy
yay boobs! *giggles*

99% of the time I'm naked at home too, just because it's most comfortable. I only wear clothes when people who aren't comfortable with nudity are around, or when it's too cold.

Thank you. It took a LOT of bravery at first, but now I'm comfortable with it and it's second nature.

Thank YOU for your lovely comment!
jendaby Petal
I always find your openness and honesty inspirational and insightful. I enjoy reading your posts because I know you are going to say what you mean and I don't have to second-guess - and it reminds me that i do not need to feel so uptight about things. :)

I think your portrait is lovely! :)
belenen incitement
aww, thank you! :D One of my favorite compliments ever was from Ben's twin, who said that when I give her a compliment it means a lot, because she knows I never say things I don't mean ;-)

thank you! I have a series to share soon ;-)
amber_n_teal left breast
- I dislike secrets, do not care for privacy, and cannot stand lies.

loved this post
belenen honesty
yay! thank you for the comment ♥
How come you're so amazing, Bel? ♥
♥ Seconded!

(PS, Bel, I started reading Mystic & Rider, only got in the first chapter, but I already love it. Thank you forever.)
You are absolutely beautiful. I wish I was a strong as you are. Keep being who you are!
belenen beautiful
thank you! ;-)
puppetmaker40 Cute and Cuddly
I love that you know who you are and don't give two figs about what others think.

You are a Beautiful Person inside and out.
belenen amused
I don't give one fig either! haha :D

thank you so much ♥
delicatexflower 08; candles. "glowing wicks"

beautiful picture!

your openness and honesty is so inspirational and thoughtful.

i always look forward to hear what you have to say ♥
belenen adoring
thank you so much! ♥
You should know that because of you I have a goal to become a more open and "honest" person as well, and by "going public" on LJ, I think that is a great way to do it.
belenen incitement
oh, how wonderful! I am so glad ♥
crucibelle black and white me
Wow! You are very beautiful! I envy your confidence, terribly. I voted for your entry on LJ idol, by the way. =)
belenen blossoming
hey, no need to envy my confidence -- just grow your own! it blossoms on the self-love plant. ;-) if you want any cultivation tips, just ask!
I think it's wonderful that you won't budge on what make you feel content. Too often people give in the wrong areas of their life sue to social constraint or outside opinion.

Keep doing what your doing! The picture is great!
belenen revolutionary
thank you so much! ;-)
roina_arwen Dream Stone
Beautifully stated, bravo!
belenen beautiful
thank you!
minikin Nude Deb
Thank you for being you in your journal. You lead out in confidence and honesty!
belenen honesty
aww, thanks!
I think it is great that you have chosen to write your journal for you and not others. I have been struggling with my own journal and what I want to have in there and find myself too often worrying about what others might think of what I have written. I hope that I can take some inspiration from you and just begin writing it for me and not worry about what others think of it.

Thank you. :)

p.s. - I think your nude pictures are fabulous. You always look beautiful in them. Thank you for sharing them with us.
belenen iconoclast
it's hard to get to that point, I know, but bravo to you for working on it! it's amazing when you actually get there ;-)

thanks so much!
yay for niches of friends who aren't sticks in the mud:)
belenen heart in my throat
haha, yay indeed! I have really collected the very best flist ever. I am blessed beyond imagination!
Wonderful post and you are truely a stunningly beautiful lady. (HUGGS)(KISSES)
belenen powerful
thanks! ;-)
I love how fiercely yourself you are. That uncompromising sense of spirit I get from you, it's refreshing. And you are beautiful, all around. I am not sure I could ever bring myself to post a nude so brazenly (even though I am nude as much as possible at home!)
belenen iconoclast
oh, what a beautiful compliment! thank you so much!

and it is very cool to hear that others are part-time nudists also :D
Your openness is what keeps me coming back here, Bel.
I wish we lived in a world where everyone felt safe enough to express what they really think and feel (although, I actually do think there's such a thing as TMI -- not because there's anything that's particularly taboo, but some people can be verbal exhibitionists that bypass politeness just to get attention).
I love your love of nudity. I, myself, am just starting to get comfortable with it. I should also thank you for introducing the concept of the "nudity fetish" to me. It's created some thoughtful discussions with my friends in both the art and naturism communities.
In fact, I probably never would have found you if not for the photography. So for me? Heck no. I'm not offended. You're not an exhibitionist. You're not trying to shock, offend, or arouse people with it. You're just expressing yourself, and you do a way better job at it than I do.
belenen blossoming
♥ thank you.

I think that those verbal exhibitionists are guilty of being rude and/or selfish, not of sharing too much -- it is not the things shared, but the way in which they are shared and the reasons for them. Two people could talk about a disturbing health problem and one would do it just to let others know what they are going through while the other would be intending to shock/embarrass/annoy. And I wouldn't call that TMI, I'd call it rude. But I think you meant the same thing and just used different words ;-)

Thank you very much! I am happy that you understand me so well. ♥ And I've been intentionally/consciously working on expressing myself more and more for... *counts* over 8 years now, so I SHOULD have gotten pretty good at it by now ;-)
((for those coming in from LJ idol, not seeing the lj-cut -- at the bottom of this post is a nude image, so scroll carefully if you want to avoid it.)

There's also a nude image in your header/banner, and in your icon, both of which appear above the warning.
belenen garrulous
in the link I provided to LJ idol, I added "?style=mine" which would make the banner a non-issue, but the mods took it off (I guess they have their methods/reasons) in the poll. And the icon I figure is small enough to be a non-issue, but the photo was large enough to be noticeable from more than two feet away, so I warned for that.
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on communication, social justice, intimacy, consent, friendship & other relationships, spirituality, gender, queerness, & dreams. Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.
Expect to find curse words, nudity, (occasionally explicit) talk of sex, and angry ranting, but NEVER slurs or sexually violent language. I use TW when I am aware of the need and on request.