Working Agreements

At all meetings and events, everyone should please try to respect our Working Agreements:
  • Step Up, Step Back - Although we seek to foster conversation in our meetings, try not to interrupt when another person is speaking. Also, please try to be conscious of how much space you are taking up, especially if you are aware that others have not had many chances to share. Please also note that no one is required to speak, apart from during the introduction round, and may otherwise "pass" at any time
  • You Know You, I Know Me - Make no assumptions about others, related to gender or otherwise. When speaking, please try to use "I" statements and avoid making generalizations or applying your own ideals to others.
  • Respect - Please use folk's stated names and pronouns, both inside and outside of the space. This means that if you see someone outside of this space in the future, discreetly check in with them before using a name/pronoun, especially in the presence of others.
  • Vegas Rules - What happens at ManCave stays at ManCave. Though you are welcome to share your experiences, feelings, etc with others afterwards, please refrain from repeating others' stories, names, likenesses, etc outside of the group.
  • Oops/Ouch - If something offensive, problematic, or hurtful is said or done during group, anyone may say, "ouch." The person that had been speaking should please say, "oops," and then the problematic nature of what was said should be discussed by those persons and/or the group.
  • Ouch, Anon - If any person feels that an "ouch" needs to be said, but is not comfortable saying so at the moment of occurrence, this should please be communicated to our Organizers via the "Ouch, Anon" tab on our website, where one may choose to identify themself, or remain anonymous.
  • Consent Before Touching - Please always ask consent before touching another, and know that ManCave Chicago provides a NO JUDGEMENT space for refusing consent. One good practice is to offer alternatives, such as, "Would you like to hug, high five, or greet each other with a cute wave?" Please also note that anyone's preferences may shift by day, or from moment to moment; this means that we should be mindful about re-gaining consent on an ongoing basis, and in occasionally checking in with those for which we have longer term consent agreements.
  • Escape Route - Anyone may enter, leave, or re-enter the meeting at any time, for any reason. Please be mindful to do so with respect for the space and whoever may be speaking.
  • Know & Check Your Privilege - Be conscious that all folks exist at many intersections of both privilege and oppression, and that all of us view life through our own lens. Our goal is not to engage in the “Oppression Olympics” nor to erase the experiences of others with our own, but to learn from each other and celebrate our diverse narratives.

Group Values - In an effort to ensure that our group’s values match those of our members, facilitators, and organizers, let us affirm them at each meeting, and if necessary, propose additions or fairly debate any principle’s removal. Currently, they are listed as: diversity, intersectionality, respect for others, accessibility, harm reduction, social and economic justice, the abolition of systems of oppression, real gender equity beyond the binary, feminism, reproductive justice, anti-ablism, anti-bigotry, and #BlackLivesMatter

***Please note that these are Working Agreements. If there are any additional suggestions or issues with anything listed above on the day of the event, we will work towards some common agreement at that time. You may also contact me ahead of time with any additions, or questions, via the Contact tab.***