Horrified mum’s G-string ban demand
A group of mums who go to a popular swimming spot in Taupō, New Zealand, say they are fed up with seeing "G-strings" in the district's swimming spots and have called for public signage banning the cheeky swimwear.
Kayla Edwards started a debate when she posted her concerns on social media about the swimwear.
She told NZME she felt uncomfortable taking her family swimming at Spa Thermal Park, a popular public reserve for locals and tourists alike, because others there didn't know what "appropriate" swimwear was.
Ms Edwards said she was shocked when more than 100 people replied to her Facebook post, many with "negativity and backlash".
"I actually expected that most people would agree … and maybe we could actually get a sign?" she said.
But she said she was labelled "jealous and a prude".
"I don't have to prove I'm hot by prancing around in public wearing a G-string. I have enough self-love to do that clothed respectfully," she said.
She apologised to anyone who felt belittled but said her opinion hadn't changed.
"Maybe it is good that people are stirred to consider their moral standards," she said.
Another Taupō mother, Renee Gray, backed Ms Edwards.
She said she had often seen "G-string type bikinis" in the reserve.
She said her daughter thought the swimwear was rude "as I've taught her about dressing modestly".
Ms Gray said she also often saw people "undressing right by the swimming spot instead of going up the walkway to use the changing rooms".
She was "horrified" one day when a middle-aged man "got out of the water and pulled his shorts down exposing (himself])' next to her family.
"My daughter was disgusted being exposed to a man … and put her hand over her eyes," Ms Gray said.
"I do think council should put signage to say no nudity or undressing at local beaches."
Other locals had no issue with skimpy swimwear.
Bonnie Petrie, a Taupō resident of 15 years, told NZME "as long as private bits were covered, what does it matter?"
The former pole dancer and mother of twin girls said she "got naked in front of both women and men at least three nights a week and did shows (for) some of the boating companies 10 years ago".
"They certainly weren't complaining, it was entertainment not sexualisation," Ms Petrie said.
She said she had seen "a few others down at the lake wear G-strings, sunbathing mainly … and once a lady with her bikini top undone but face down on her blanket".
Ms Petrie said women wanted respect "to breastfeed their babies in public without being looked at as lewd or inappropriate" but the post was "the complete opposite".
Another Taupō mother, who did not want to be named, told NZME she saw "a lot of people prancing around half-naked" in the district.
"I've seen men in mankinis, women walking around in G-string bikinis and even the odd naked person getting changed in public. It's disgusting and it has to stop," she said.
She said her husband hated seeing it and most of her friends felt the same way.
"Yesterday two girls were walking into town in bikinis. How is this acceptable? It makes me damn right mad … I know they say 'if you have it, flaunt it' but this is ridiculous."
Taupō solo dad Craig Smith disagreed with Ms Edwards' concerns and said he had heard of people being abused over their swimwear.
"Small swimwear is definitely the fashion and it was everywhere in Napier where I visited last week and here at the lake as well. G-strings or pulling bikini bottoms high so the butt is showing is definitely very prevalent now," he said.
Kinloch father Jason McIver laughed when he saw the post.
"Taupō is a warm, sunny, geothermal spot so seeing G-strings and breasts is nothing shocking … I try to make sure that my kids don't see nudity as bad and that it doesn't need to be sexualised," he said.
In a brief comment, the Taupō District Council said it had not received any complaints about skimpy swimwear or public nudity at council-owned swimming sites in the last year.
Taupō DeBretts Spa Resort operations manager Mirela Petrar said the privately owned facility did not have a policy on G-strings.
"We are a family-orientated business but to my knowledge, we haven't had anyone raise concerns," she said.
"We have private pools if people want to be romantic or in a quiet area."
This article originally appeared on the New Zealand Herald and was reproduced with permission