New parents understandably have a lot of questions about bathtime. Even though you’re an adult who knows how to bathe, you bring the baby home and it’s like, “Wait…how do I give them their first bath? Is there something special I need to do?” Then, as they get older, it’s a question of when do I put them in the real tub? When do I take them out of their tub seat? What temperature is right? What bath products should I be using? What do I do if they’re trying to drink the bath water? What do I do if they won’t get in the bath? And on, and on, and on.
Well, Andy Cohen has another bathtime question that parents may grapple with, and so while filling in for Kelly Ripa as co-host on Live With Kelly & Mark, Cohen turned to Mark Consuelos to flesh out the answer. It all started after a discussion about crop tops.
“Speaking of skin, I wanted to ask you, I needed your advice about a parenting thing,” Cohen said. “So, [my toddler] Ben and I have taken baths, he loves to take a bath, whatever, I guess that’s normal. Now, were you ever naked in front of [your daughter] Lola? Like, I have a daughter, what is the protocol there? Because I’m a little bit of a nudie, and I feel like I need to start locking it up.”
Consuelos told the Bravo personality that he was “never naked on purpose” in front of Lola, 22 — who he shares with Ripa along with sons Joaquin and Michael, both in their 20s. The rule of thumb, Consuelos said, is that things change once the kids start speaking.
Cohen — who is a single dad to Benjamin, 4 and Lucy, 1 — said he will not be taking baths with his daughter. “That’s weird,” he said, looking to the actor for confirmation.
“Your eyes are telling me that’s weird,” Cohen said. “I just need the protocol.”
After asking Consuelos when he thinks bath time should stop with his son, Consuelos responded, “Like, two years ago.”
The matter of when to stop letting your kids see you naked is an oft-debated topic, but it’s not as big a deal as many parents worry it is. Licensed psychotherapist and marriage and family counselor Shirin Peykar previously told SheKnows that “parental nudity doesn’t necessarily cause psychological issues in children.” It’s all about how you present the nudity: “If the nudity is non-sexualized,” Peykar explained, “there shouldn’t be psychological effects on a child, especially if you’re all on the same page, are all consenting and are all comfortable with it.” Of course, if your kid shows discomfort at seeing you naked, even in a perfectly-appropriate setting, it’s time to stop hanging around them in your birthday suit.
So to Andy — as Ben gets older, you might feel the need to to hop out of the tub and sit beside it while he takes a solo bath. But it’s all good, you’ve had endless hours of fun (not!) road trip bonding with “big kid” Ben this summer. We’re sure you two want some space by the time you get out of the car.
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