by Kristen Darcy
In a word, YES. There is a special place for men to escape and contemplate life. I define it as “The Man Cave:”
- The Man Cave: A place for escape especially for males, perhaps your husband or partner. An opportunity to retreat when contemplating a given challenging situation. A space used for the purpose of regrouping and recharging.
Women often take offense at the men’s den, but they should realize that it’s not only necessary, it’s required for the well-being of their guy’s mind, body and soul. His cave doesn’t have to be a specific location, such as a garage or office, the “man cave” might be fishing, golfing, biking or another activity. It often is a solitary place, but in this process, he may connect with other men, which can be so helpful.
This is why RESOLVE New England (RNE) liked my suggestion and is having a Man Cave at the conference this year! Let’s be clear, this is NOT because we feel there is any shame in infertility or male fertility challenges. On the contrary, we wanted to create a laid-back space where throughout the conference there will be resources, information and support tailored for the guys!
What I know now (that I wished I understood earlier) was that the associations each of us hold in our mind regarding our creation process have a flow and a pattern. The emotional charge is consistently similar for both men and women. The difference is the way we react and process.
Accepting and appreciating the fact that your partner is digesting and processing your situation, and feeling similarly but showing it differently (perhaps suffering in silence), is so important. Remind yourself that through understanding you will create a sense of connection, not a divide.
Unconditionally understanding your guy’s need for solitude for the purpose of nurturing might be the perfect gift to give him. You might want to give thanks for his “man cave” and acknowledge its importance in balancing his mind, body and soul. One of my favorite quotes is that from Kahlil Gibran, “Let there be spaces in your togetherness and let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love: let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.”
So let the spaces in your togetherness fill you both up as you move through the creation time of your lives together.
Kristen Darcy is a noted author, fertility coach, motivational speaker and expert on the emotional aspects of infertility. She is the author of Girlfriend to Girlfriend: A Fertility Companion and the award-winning Love & Infertility: Survival Strategies for Balancing Infertility, Marriage and Life. Love and Infertility is the recipient of the Hope Award, Best Book, Coping, from RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association. In 2014, along with her co-host Sara Naab, Kristen launched the Making Dads Virtual Summit, which is held each June bringing together some the nation’s most prominent male fertility experts. Kristen will be a speaker and exhibitor at the 23rd annual RNE conference.