When the nights draw in and the temperatures drop, the desire to get cozy with someone else sure gets tempting. Imagine snuggling up on the couch with a hot cocoa, watching your go-to comfort movies. Plus, having a special someone can help put those ‘are you dating anyone new?’ questions at bay when you’re attending holiday parties.
As ideal as this scenario is, there are some important questions to ask if you’re interested in making it a reality. Are you looking to establish a long term relationship, or are you after something shorter term?
Let’s talk about cuffing season. First, let’s address the elephant in the room - the name. Cuffing? You may automatically think of handcuffs, and you’re not too far off - it’s where the term stems form. But worry not, it’s nothing remotely illegal! Rather, this is all about exploring short term connections. Forming these brief relationships - known as getting cuffed - becomes more common when things get chilly outside. And it’s something that many people look to pursue.
If you’re new to cuffing season, it can all seem a little daunting. But don’t worry, we’re here to help you navigate it! Find out more about these types of relationships, who they’re suited for, and how to date during cuffing season in our comprehensive guide! Let’s get stuck in.
What is cuffing season?
Simply put, cuffing season is when people form short term relationships over the winter. It’s essentially the wintery version of the summer vacation romance. Relationships formed during cuffing season typically last a few months, but there’s no hard set rules.
The relationships formed during cuffing season are all about getting cozy with a romantic partner. Totally understandable if you ask us - it’s cold outside! Think staying home where it’s warm rather than spending evenings out together. It’s less about dates, and more about closing the drapes, lighting the candles, and hanging out indoors.
These types of relationships can bring real comfort to many. Winter can be a lonely and difficult time, and the desire to share it with a romantic partner can be strong. It’s important to underscore that getting cuffed - or wanting to get cuffed - is not wrong, bad or shameful. Short term relationships definitely have their place, and can be meaningful. Like any relationship, it’s important how you approach getting cuffed. We’ll cover this in detail a little bit later.
When is cuffing season?
Cuffing season usually kicks off late October, and ends around Valentine’s day - just when spring starts to wake up. Peak cuffing season hits in midwinter, slap bang in holiday season. However, this is not to say that cuffed relationships can’t start earlier or later. These dates are more of a rule of thumb.
Cuffing season rules
Although there are no ‘official’ rules to cuffing season, there is certainly etiquette and important points to consider before embarking on getting cuffed. But this is true of any relationship. Long or short term - being transparent about your intentions and desires is crucial. Whoever you date - whatever time of the year - should know what you are looking for. And, they should be on a similar, if not the same, page. This is particularly important to cuffing season relationships, as they are intended to be short term.
If you’re looking to date during cuffing season, it’s first a good idea to check in with yourself. Are you looking to get cuffed, or wanting something long term? Do you get easily attached to romantic partners? This will help make navigating the dating scene a little easier. If you’re open for something long term, it’s worth bearing in mind when cuffing season falls. Understand that this may be part of the dating scene for a few months.
And remember, even if you’re cuffed, this doesn’t mean that all communication is taken off the table. All types of relationships require openness and understanding on both sides, even if they’re not long term. It’s important to establish boundaries and expectations to ensure everyone remains happy with the setup you have, and have their needs met.
If you’re cuffed, don’t forget to make time for your other relationships with your friends and family. It can be very tempting to just stay in with your partner, but you don’t want to accidentally isolate yourself. Keep prioritizing your self care.
What does cuffed mean?
Cuffing, cuffed, uncuffed. We’ve covered what they mean, but where does it all come from? It all relates to the idea of being ‘cuffed’ - figuratively handcuffed - to someone. The act, as it were, of getting ‘cuffed’ is ‘cuffing’. It’s important to note here that ‘cuffed’ doesn’t necessarily mean forcibly attached, or anything super intense. Rather, it’s the idea of being coupled up or temporarily ‘tied down’. Think of it as being a cozy duo rather than being detained by the police.
To cuff or not cuff?
When explored openly and thoughtfully, getting cuffed can result in comforting, enjoyable relationships. Sure, it’s not for everyone, but likewise it can be just the thing that someone is looking for. Remember, there’s no one way to ‘do’ relationships! Human connection, in its many forms, can be affirming and soothing. Plus who can resist the idea of cuddling up when it’s cold outside?