A lot of time and energy goes into clothing your toddler. From choosing colors, to outgrowing their clothes every 20 minutes, new parents have their plates full with keeping their toddlers clean, comfortable and clothed.
So what do you do when all your toddler doesn’t want to wear clothes at all? How do you deal with a toddler who just wants to be naked?
At about 12 to 18 months, your baby will most likely want to run around the house naked. This is completely normal, and actually could help a little bit with potty training.
Obviously it can be a bit of an issue when trying to introduce social norms. And of course, you don’t want a naked toddler running around when you have people over for coffee or lunch. Yikes. lol
So what do you do when your toddler doesn’t want to wear clothes?
The best thing to do is not discourage this behavior entirely. Set limits about where and when your toddler can be naked and enforce them. It’s tedious, but repeatedly re-dressing your toddler may be the best way to get the message across.
Keep an especially close eye on your toddler in public. Not just because they might strip down, but because you don’t want to lose expensive things like shoes or jackets.
Allow some naked time
Setting a “naked time” where your toddler is free to roam around the house for an hour or so a day is a good way to set limits on acceptable behavior. Make sure it’s a time when you can be around to monitor them very closely and make sure that they don’t hurt their more exposed areas.
Also, it’s probably best if naked time is when your house doesn’t see a lot of traffic. Your toddler may be comfortable with their naked time, but friends and neighbors may not be. lol
Making play dates for right before or after naked time can be a good way to demonstrate the difference between private time and public time. And it lets them start making their own boundaries in their mind.
Make getting dressed fun
Have fun while getting dressed, and stress the importance of where and when it is okay to take off your clothes. This way your toddler begins to understand how grown-ups wear appropriate clothes every day. (note: if your husband sits around in his boxers all day in your house, don’t use him as an example. lol)
Use your little one’s newfound freedom to encourage them to choose their own clothes. Let your toddler dress herself as much as possible. So hopefully she might like to get dressed as much as she enjoys taking her clothes off. I like to give Toot a couple of weather appropriate outfit options rather than just letting her dig through her dresser.
I also try to buy her some gender neutral clothes because she doesn’t always want to be girly.
Keep the discipline clothing related
The most important thing to remember is not to let your discipline about clothing become about your child’s body. It’s easy to make your child feel ashamed of their naked body, even if that’s not what you intended to do. This kind of discomfort can go a long way in determining how your child feels about their body in the long term even into adulthood. I know that sounds scary. You don’t want to scar them for life. Just do your best.
Does your toddler run around naked?
Let me know in the comments below.
This time in their life is a lot about exploration. So it’s important to let them figure out some stuff on their own. Set some boundaries, but allow them to do their thing.
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