Is ‘cuffing season’ real? A life coach’s advice for surviving the holidays single
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We live in an age of empowerment and independence. As men, we're beginning to realise there's no shame in expressing our feelings through our dear ducts. Meanwhile, women that grew up with role models like Kim Possible know they don’t need men to save the world. Or better yet, those who were raised watching Ellen know they can do without men altogether. We tend to tie the knot and settle down much later in life compared to previous generations (even though we all know that girl whose adorable toddler has us reconsidering contraception every time we see their picture on social media). But even in the age of empowerment, the season of thirst eventually rolls around, causing a drop in temperature and a serious epidemic of relationship fever. Urban Dictionary – the source besides Wikipedia we sadly can’t reference in essays – defines the phenomenon as cuffing season. Unfortunately, the term has nothing to do with BDSM. In fact, it refers to the desire to be “cuffed or tied down by a serious relationship” once our willingness to go out and mingle gets crushed by the icy weather. London life coach and dating expert Sabir (@sabir_london) totally believes cuffing season is a thing: “It’s true. People tend to spend more time inside during the cold months, which decreases their chances of meeting potential partners.” He also blames the media for our unrealistic relationship expectations: “There is so much demand and pressure from television programmes, movies and billboard advertisements to be in a relationship and find that perfect person.” According to the Internet, the cold is only one of the reasons people start to resent their single-dom. The holidays also play a major role in people’s desire to be cuffed – either literally or metaphorically. The horns come out on Halloween and linger on our hormone-fuelled heads until Christmas, New Year’s and possibly Valentine’s Day. Being in a relationship can make for a much smoother holiday season. Forget the anxiety when friends back home question you about your personal life and you struggle to recall the last time you were even accidentally touched. Forget bae-less New Year’s Eve bacchanalia or lonely nights in watching The Holiday for the 14th time. Life coach Sabir says singles shouldn’t get discouraged by the festive climate. Instead, he thinks they should see cuffing season as motivation or as an “opportunity to get out there”. But not every matchmaking service is equally efficient when searching for a new flame. Seeing as most of us reserve the old number-on-the-bathroom-door trick for pranks rather than dates, we are left with dating apps, social media or the ever so rare spontaneity of a real life encounter.
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