(Or woman cave. Or bat cave. Same rules apply.)
Over the past few weeks, my partner and I have been busy moving into our new place (yay!) and after what has seemed like an eternity, we have finally gotten our internet all hooked up (double yay!). This means we are both back to our old routine again: me blogging and him gaming.
During this time, my partner has been busily perfecting his designated gaming area in the apartment, which seemed like the perfect time for me to discuss guys and the importance of their man caves. While this topic is not limited to gaming guys, I’m guessing most readers’ partners will be using their man cave to house their gaming devices.
Man Cave n. [Informal]
A room or other area in a home that is primarily a male sanctuary, designed and furnished to accommodate the man’s recreational activities and hobbies: e.g. I hadn’t heard from or seen my partner in ages. It turns out he had just been gaming in his man cave.
Why do they need one? If you and your partner live together, it’s likely that they already have established their own ‘male sanctuary’, or at least expressed their desire for one. Now don’t worry, their interest in a man cave does not mean that they like you any less, that they find you boring nor are they feeling smothered, they just want some space to call their own. While I’m sure you both enjoy one another’s company, it is still important for the both of you to have your own personal space.
When my partner and I first started living together a few years ago, I’m sure he noticed the sudden appearance of make-up and other products on the bathroom sink, the increase of clothes and shoes in the wardrobe, the ever-lingering floral air freshener scents… sharing his space with a female would have taken some adjustment and I’m sure he may still find it a little overwhelming at times. I like that his gaming area is his own space, where he doesn’t have to worry about all that stuff. In our new home, his space is more of a man corner. In a cozy apartment, it’s pretty difficult to fit much in at all, but which is why it is all the more important that he gets his own designated area within this small space. If he needs a place to de-stress after work, a place to recharge, a place to relax and enjoy his games and Reddit videos in peace, he can zone out in his zone.
What are the rules of the man cave? The man cave is truly his area. General rules of cleanliness and hygiene do not apply in the man cave. Also, do not try to force your femininity into his area – if you’re really sneaky, you might be able to ninja in a spray of air freshener every now and then (but if you get caught, I never told you to do it). Spouses and children permitted by appointment only.
How he chooses to decorate and develop the space is up to him – they can range from the simple right up to the extreme man caves. The point is, he can do whatever he wants with that space – it’s his retreat (not yours!). For gamers, it will probably be where they set up their console or gaming PC. It may also give you gamer a place to stash all his retro games and geeky memorabilia. My partner is currently on the hunt for the perfect Zelda poster to finish off his corner.
And most importantly, what are the benefits for you? A man cave will hopefully mean a happier gamer guy. He gets to chill out in a space that is his and that he is proud of. If that wasn’t enough incentive, also consider that the more his belongings and behaviours are limited to this designated space, the less likely these things are likely to encroach on the rest of your living space. Specifically on the topic of gaming, this means that the majority of his raging and incessant mouse and keyboard clicking stays in his area. And by allowing him to have his own space to maintain, he will probably be less critical of your intentions to decorate around the rest of the house. He won’t flinch at that next candle/vase/fruit bowl purchase, as long as it doesn’t have to go in his cave.
So let him have his cave and let him enjoy it. While he’s in his cave, that means the rest of the house is yours!