Living with the Caveman: The Good

Just like chocolate, it’s not all bad!

Ever found yourself among a group of friends, relatives or close co-workers discussing life, kids, marriage, relationships, etc.? There’s always a good chance that at some point, the conversation will turn to our partners and what drives us crazy at home—starting with the unequal division of labor in marriage!

It has happened to me many times, and interestingly, it always plays out the same way: As we share our stories, laughing, we realize that we all have the same gripes! And far from making us feel worse, it actually puts us in a better mood—instantly! Not because there’s always someone who has it worse than we do, but because we realize (or we’re reminded) that we’re not alone in our boat, and that our feelings are valid—or at least, shared.

Just like those “I’m-right-there-with-you-girlfriend” talks, this blog is here to remind you that you’re not alone, and validate your feelings. And speaking of which, you have many—some good, and some not so good! Being the Caveman’s partner will do that to you…

Let’s start with THE GOOD

Note to readers: The following list—based on my own experience—is by no means exhaustive. Feel free to share your experiences and feelings in the comment section below. The more the merrier!

When your partner is a Caveman, chances are that:

1) You feel like The Flash (or another speedy superhero)

Most evenings, in the time it takes me to pick up toys, clean the kitchen, check backpacks and supervise tooth brushing, my Caveman will have managed to warm our little one’s milk—standing in front of the microwave with a blank stare plastered on his face the whole time.

Bedtime aside, there are plenty of times when I will notice him standing in the middle of a room staring into space (or to his phone screen)—or even stretch leisurely—while I flit around like a demented bumblebee. I won’t lie: Most days, it’s annoying as heck. But when I’m in a good mood, it’s actually pretty cool. I do feel like The Flash! Without the stretch suit, that is.

The Caveman's partner: A speedy superhero. Drawing shows the Caveman's partner dressed as the Flash and running at super speed.

2) You feel you could excel in many careers

There’s nothing like living with a Caveman to make you acquire skills that you would never have acquired otherwise, which could come handy if you’re ever looking into changing careers or re-entering the job market. From resort manager to majordomo, property manager, project manager, handyman, bookkeeper, personal assistant or professional organizer, you could do it all! Heck, there are days I feel I could have my own HGTV show!

"Hire Me!" post it

3) You feel like a super parent

To all appearances, my Caveman’s idea of parenting is watching TV with a beer while the kids occupy themselves. On my end, I handle the school events, the extracurricular activities, the doctor’s appointments, the birthday parties, the clothes/supplies/gifts shopping, the taxiing around, the “difficult” talks, the little booboos, rules and limits, etc. That, by itself, is enough to make me feel like a super parent. But my teenager telling me I’m the best mom in the world… now that’s the best feeling ever!

Drawing of the Caveman's partner dressed as a super hero with "POW", "BAM!", "KAPOW!" interjections around her.

4) You feel resourceful and self-reliant

Let’s be clear: I don’t enjoy fixing leaky toilets or regrouting any more than the next gal, but it beats a two-month chase to get it done! After spending over two decades with a Caveman, I don’t think there’s anything I cannot do around the home. Plus… that Family Handyman magazine subscription has really paid for itself!

DIY project

5) You feel you may very well be the most patient person on earth

Although I often hear from my Caveman “Why does everything has to be ‘right now’ with you?, I know for a fact that I have the patience of a saint. I mean, honestly… Who would last 20+ years with someone who thinks putting his clothes away is simply a matter of moving them to another chair?

Drawing of the Caveman's partner as a saint with wings and a halo

6) You feel you could write a book (or a blog!)

My Caveman is a never-ending source of inspiration… Just when I think he could no longer surprise me, he comes up with something new! Take last week, for example: As I was putting out an oven fire like a professional—albeit slightly stressed—firefighter, he was leisurely strolling by to take a shower (to the sound of our five year old screaming “Fire, daddy! Fire!”). When he finally came out of the shower and noticed the foam-covered kitchen, the only thing that occurred to him was: “What about breakfast?

For years, I thought “I could fill a book with that stuff!”. Turns out I was right…

Photograph of open book with pencil

7) You have awesome resume-worthy skills

OK…not really a feeling, but worth mentioning as a positive (especially because our list is so short). All the Caveman’s partners I know often mention that they could use longer days, but the amount of stuff they do fit in a day is nothing short of mind-blowing! Surely, all those planning, task-initiation, prioritizing, time management and multitasking skills we have acquired living with the Caveman would really make us stand out in a pile of resumes!

Drawing of a pile of resumes with one resume standing on top of the pile

That’s all I can think of for THE GOOD, but as I mentioned earlier, the above list is based on my own experience. Feel free to share your experiences and feelings in the comments section below. The more the merrier!

And don’t miss the second part of this article: Living with the Caveman: The Not So Good.

Until next time.

Elle

2 comments

  1. Chère Elle,
    quelle magnifique façon de positiver tout cela… Thèse, antithèse… Conclusion avec ouverture et perspectives de solutions ! Car sinon… Autant reprendre la copie et repartir à zéro avec un homme moderne non ?
    Je ne pourrai pas témoigner d’un caveman. Pour ma part j’ai beaucoup de chance, je vis avec un homme moderne. Mais je vois des femmes jeunes, me dire “il ne m’aide pas pour les tâches ménagères” etc… Et à chaque fois je les reprends en leur expliquant le même principe “aider ? Comment aider ? Mais cela vous appartient à tous les deux ! il ne t’aide pas… Il fait au même titre que toi la moitié du travail ! ” Je passe mon temps à matraquer ces esprits féminins encore formatés pour être de bonnes mamans…. Je me surprends à ressentir une certaine colère rien qu’en écrivant ces mots.
    Fort heureusement, il y a des changements, et fort heureusement dans le sens d’une plus grande égalité. Mais ce n’est pas gagné, et cela reste un combat. Alors courage chère Elle
    Amicalement
    Poppy

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