IMG_6819On Father’s Day, we went out to Central Park on the stroller-friendly Upper West Side, somewhat unsure of the reception we’d get. Would families out celebrating in the sun welcome us or not?

IMG_6754When someone from this family approached us, we thought for sure they were going to ask us to cover up or move. But no: they just wanted to know if we’d take a picture of them with their phone. We were glad to oblige.

A bit later, a police car rolled to a stop not far from us, and two officers climbed out. We thought for sure they were going to come over and tell us they’d gotten complaints. But no: the officers walked over to a group some distance away, and from the gestures that ensued we realized they were explaining to the group that we had every right to be doing what we were doing. Then the police officers got back in their car and drove away.

Preconceived notions.

That a family would be more likely to reject us than embrace us; that the police would be more likely to hassle us than defend us. Both turned out to be false.

IMG_6824What’s another preconceived notion? That women don’t have the same freedom to go shirtless in a public place that men do, simply because of the chromosomes swimming around our bodies.

IMG_6777Preconceived notions aren’t always false. But they can be. And you should always challenge yours.

IMG_6807The next holiday on the calendar is the Fourth of July — a fine occasion to challenge your preconceptions, while declaring your independence from vexatious clothing, from gender stereotypes, from body shame.

Won’t you join us? All it takes is an email, to

If you’re brave enough to expose your front, we’ve got your back.

(P.S. If you’re not sure you’re brave enough, you can always do what this member did:

IMG_6758There’s a way for everyone.)