Though you might think that you know exactly what your partner is up to whenever you're away (whether that's just a quick business trip, a full weekend away, or even longer), some of the weird things guys only do when their partner is away are a bit more unexpected. Others are probably not super surprising, but still things they likely wouldn't do if you were around, like leaving takeout containers all over the table or letting things get a little more casual than normal. In some cases, the things that your partner chooses to do when you're away might be things that they're doing because they feel like they have the opportunity to do (or not do) whatever they want, because you might make comments if they decide to lay on the couch for three days straight. A lot of the weird things that they do when you're not at home are far goofier and sillier than serious. Like anyone else, they want to take advantage of having some time to themselves.
"As hard as people can be on their partners when they return from a trip to find a 'disaster zone,' how often have we done similar things when they are out of town," Heidi McBain, MA, LMFT, LPC, RPT, a licensed marriage and family therapist, tells Romper by email. "Sometimes it does go both ways!"
When you go away, things might get a whole lot more relaxed and casual than they are when you're around.
1. Avoid The Shower Or Tub
If no one's around and all you're going to be doing is sitting on the couch playing video games, what's the incentive to take a shower or soak in a bathtub? McBain says that guys sometimes avoid the shower while you're gone because, well, they can. They don't have to look put together, they don't have to be anywhere where they'd have to make a good impression, and there's no one else around to tell them that they're starting to get a little bit smelly.
2. Live Off Of Cereal & Takeout
Sure, some guys might love to get in the kitchen and cook for themselves when you're not around, but cooking for one can sometimes feel like more trouble than it's worth. Stephanie Churma, relationship expert, owner, and founder of The Good Love Company, tells Romper by email that takeout and cereal are often the menu of choice for guys on their own when their partners are away, to pair with video games and lots of reruns of their favorite TV show.
3. Walk Around Naked
Again, this is something that he doesn't have to wait for you to go away to do, but the likelihood that he'll walk around naked when you're at home might be lower. "Sometimes after a shower, it’s just easier to do a few things without clothes," Jonathan Bennett, a certified counselor, dating and relationship expert, and cofounder of Double Trust Dating, tells Romper by email. "With no one around and the windows closed, there’s no reason to bother with getting dressed."
You might not think doing tasks without clothing is quite as great as they seem to.
4. Spend The Weekend On The Couch Playing Video Games
Sure, he might lounge around playing video games from time to time when you're at home, but when you go away, he kicks things up a notch. Churma says that spending the weekend on the couch in his underwear while playing video games is pretty likely. Clothing is fairly optional when you're lounging the day away.
5. Play Music He Won't Play With You Around — Loudly
You, obviously, get along well and likely have a lot in common, but if your musical tastes differ (or if he has some guilty pleasure songs, albums, or artists that he secretly loves), he might take that opportunity to listen to whatever he wants to, Churma says. And, since you're not around to ask him to turn it down, he might spend the weekend singing along to his favorite songs at the top of his lungs.
6. Talk To Himself
"Those not comfortable with silence will sometimes talk to themselves a little bit around the house," Bennett says. "This is normal." But while they could, again, do this when you're not away, they might be more hesitant to do so. Maybe they're embarrassed, but with you out of the house, there's no one to catch them doing it.
It's like thinking out loud, just...the whole time you're gone.
7. Clean While Listening To Their Favorite Tunes
You probably don't imagine your partner using their time alone to do a big deep clean, but that's actually exactly what some guys do. Jake, 27, says that cleaning's a good stress reliever, so when his partner's away, he turns on music, cranks up the volume, and does some serious work on the countertops.
It's always nice to come home to a clean house and even better when you didn't have to do the cleaning.
8. Let The House Get Super Messy
But not everyone cleans up when you're out of town.
If you've ever returned to a house that was a complete and total mess after leaving your partner there by himself for a couple of days, this probably isn't super surprising. And, like McBain says, you might also do that same thing, if given the chance. They're allowed to be a little lazier when you're not around, so doing the dishes, taking out the trash, or vacuuming up the cereal they spilled might have not been their first priority while you were gone.
9. Leave The Bathroom Door Open
Yes, some couples leave the bathroom door open when they're both home together, but it's much more likely that they'd do this when you're away. Cory, 27, says that this is what he does when his wife is gone. There's just no need to shut the door when there's no threat of anyone else walking around the house. Plus, you might not be as cool with the door open bathroom routine as they are.
It can be nice to have some time to yourself without your partner, no matter how much you love them. And you might find that you have different regular habits when they're gone than you do when they're around. They do too. Though they might do some of these slightly stranger things when you're away, once you come home, it'll likely be business as usual once again.