Keep Her Close, But Keep Your Space

No matter how much you love your girl, you still need your space, right? So how do you manage to keep a bit of distance and still keep her close? You have to strike a delicate balance. . . .

Separate Homes
If you don't officially live together, let her have a drawer or two at your place. That will make her feel like you have a commitment to staying together. But don't let her nesting tendency take over your bedroom or bathroom. If you have to spell it out for her, ask her how she would feel if you tried to spread your dirty socks and underwear all over her place. Just tell her you want her to be comfortable, but you need to preserve the manly feeling in your place. If she respects you, she'll appreciate your need to stand your ground on this matter.

Separate Rooms
If you do live together, it's really important to strike a balance between sharing your time and space. If possible, set up a separate room in your home as your man cave. Make this your spot for playing video games, watching sports, or playing music - whatever you enjoy doing by yourself or with your buddies. You might have to do some negotiating to make this happen. Help your sweetheart set up a separate space for her alone time too. For instance, make her a cozy window seat if she likes to read. Or maybe she paints or has some other hobby or sport that needs special equipment or a dedicated room. Maybe her feminine retreat is in the extra bedroom and your man cave is in the garage. Your goal is to help her see the benefit of these separate spaces for recharging and personal growth.

Together Time
When you and your sweetie both understand how it can help your relationship to spend time apart, you're more likely to enjoy the time you spend together. After some down time, you're ready to give more energy when you and your girl are hanging out together. You'll each feel appreciated and respected by having your own space and spending some time alone or with friends. Then you'll be refreshed and ready to accommodate your sweetie's needs when you're having date night.

Any relationship involves some give and take, but you'll both be more willing to give when you've taken some time for yourself. So if you retreat to your man cave once in a while, you might find that you feel more generous when you step back into her territory and begin blending back into couplehood.

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