It’s taken me a few years to be able to enter and use the mancave space without it bothering Scott. (too much…)
A few tips I’ve learned:
DON’T CHANGE IT
You cannot enter the ‘mancave’ with the intent to change anything about the space. Don’t look around and wonder how you could decorate it.
There will be things from when he was younger
staking his claim upon the space… (perhaps it’s a tribute to his freedom gone)
Things you won’t let him hang in the house with the excuse, “It will scare the children.”
There will be momentos from the kids, although long out of ‘season’.
Yes, dusty Santa holds the pencils and pens year round here…
It doesn’t matter.
Just be glad you are being allowed access. Look past the décor…
And don’t suggest changing anything about it.
PUT IT WHERE IT GOES
If you borrow a tool, put it back.
This means, don’t just throw it on the workbench with what you assume are the other ‘miscellaneous’ tools he needs to put away anyway.
Although it may look like a haphazard mess, believe me,
he has his own organization system going on. He wants things where he put them, not where you put them.
USE TOOLS ONE AT A TIME
As a woman, if I am baking in the kitchen I like to look over the recipe and get out all the ingredients I will need.
I then place them on the counter for quick access as I am baking.
THE MANCAVE DOES NOT WORK THIS WAY!
If you get out a pile of all the tools you are going to need during one project you will be banned from the cave…
DON’T TALK TOO MUCH
Scott is very patient and listens to me talk a lot. When in the mancave, he is there to do his own thing. He enjoys my company, but not for me to nag and complain. So, if it’s quiet besides the music he’s decided to listen to and the power tools, let it stay that way.
Occasionally, another guy will come to Scott’s mancave.
I used to think this a social occasion. But, as I would poke my head out there, to see how it was going I was often surprised to find 2 men with their bodies hunched over their own projects and no verbal communication. ???
So, no meaningless chit-chat. That’s a girl thing…
If he helps you with a project, be sure to thank him. Be appreciative that he helped you build a birdhouse he would’ve rather not built.
A “Thank you so much! I love it! You are awesome!” with a little peck on the cheek goes a long way. …and most importantly, it ensures
re-entry into the cave…