My husband, Edric, needs cave man time ever so often. This could mean an early morning bike ride with friends (or alone), hanging out with buddies to play strategy games or PS3, basketball on a Sunday afternoon, watching NBA or UFC on TV, isolating himself in a room so he can read, make plans, or meditate on scripture. I don’t even know where I got the phrase “cave man time” but basically it means his own space to do his own thing.
Most men I know are the same way – my father, brothers, in laws, friends, etc. Guys have particular things that they like to do to that recharge them emotionally and even spiritually. My dad can spend hours playing golf. He even thinks it cured him of Dengue years ago! He went out to play when he was feeling sick (and didn’t know he had Dengue) and claims that being outdoors and getting fresh air helped him significantly. Perhaps…
Over the years, I have learned to be understanding about Edric’s need for personal “me-time” or the need to be with other men, shoulder-to-shoulder to connect through activity.
Initially, I felt Edric’s guy stuff took him away from me and left me out. But I realized that it has nothing to do with wanting to get away from me. In fact, he will often call me while we are apart to tell me that he misses me and is thinking of me. It’s really about enjoying his cave man time so he is energized to get through another week.
Fortunately, Edric’s idea of fun doesn’t involve beer, bars or interests that give me cause to worry. So when he says, “I’m going to hang out with my cousin tonight” or “I’m going biking tomorrow with some friends” or “I’m playing ball this weekend,” I am happy for him. Go ahead, honey, knock yourself out. After all, he doesn’t do this every single day. His priorities are still clear – God, wife, kids, ministry/work. He makes it a point to invest a whole lot of quality and quantity time with the kids and me so we don’t feel deprived of his presence or attention. We feel secure in his affections toward us.
Edric also knows that I trust him. I know he loves the Lord and wants to please him so if he were to do anything that involves compromise, that’s between him and God. In the past, I have said, “Hon, if you want to sabotage your life or forfeit God’s blessings by doing something that displeases him that’s your choice. I know I can’t police you.” Even if I wanted to, I can’t keep Edric on a leash. (Husbands hate it when wives try to control them!)
If a husband wants to go off and do foolishness, God will surely deal with him, if not right away then later on. As wives, we can relax in the knowledge that the Lord keeps our men accountable for all their actions and he holds them responsible for their choices. Their position as head of the family is a sacred trust. Our role, as wives, is to pray for them, build them up, and encourage them towards Christ-likeness by our own behavior and love for the Lord.
Being at-rest and refraining from strangling or smothering my husband with neediness or manipulating him to always be and do what I want him to helps us to have a healthier, happier relationship. He appreciates being able to have his cave man time but at the end of the day, I am still his best friend and preferred companion. Yeah! He stills says, “I have the most fun with you.” Well, me too!
Proverbs 31:12 “She does him good and not evil all the days of her life.”