As the weather gets colder and the holidays near, people are as eager as ever to find someone to snuggle up with. This is known as cuffing season. People who are in undefined relationships look to establish a label, and those who are completely single desperately seek to find a partner. While cuffing season will be particularly different this year due to COVID-19, here are some tips for anyone participating in the search for a seasonal sweetheart:
Be open to the idea of a relationship
The idea of being tied down can scare a lot of people, especially when the college hookup culture encourages people to play the field and not settle down. Other people may feel the need to focus on school or extracurriculars and believe that they do not have time for a relationship. Either way, do not completely close yourself off to the idea of being in a relationship. You could be missing out on something/someone truly special just because you are scared of a label.
Allow yourself to be selective
You might be someone who is completely single but still searches for someone to spend cold nights with and take home for the holidays. Just because you have not found anyone yet does not mean you should settle for just anyone. You must allow yourself to have some standards if you truly want a relationship that will last. Settling for that one match on Tinder or that one guy off the street that offers to buy you Big Momma’s will not make a sustaining relationship. You must make sure you actually connect with someone, both on an emotional and physical level.
Be wise with dating apps
Apps like Tinder and Bumble are used by many college students for a variety of reasons. However, the majority’s reason is not to have a relationship. Many have found great partners using these apps, but be upfront with your intentions when using them. If you want a real, lasting relationship, be upfront with people whom you are talking to seriously. This will avoid any confusion between serious dating and the occasional hookup.
Remember to be safe
Being safe does not just involve sex. With the increasing cases of COVID-19 on campus, make sure that you are being safe with the people who you choose to go out with. Instead of going out to the bars and meeting up at parties, opt for a picnic or another outdoor date. This will allow you and your potential partner to get to know each other without the risk of spreading the virus further.
While many people are feeling the pressure of committing to someone before the weather drops below freezing, others do not feel the need to settle down or would rather focus on themselves for the time being. These are some tips for how to get through cuffing season without actually being cuffed:
Be real with your partner
If you are in an undefined relationship or hookup situation and do not want to take things seriously, be honest with that person. We have all been in situations where one of the two partners caught feelings and wanted something serious while the other was fine with things as they were. Make sure to be real with them in order to avoid any awkward conversations later. Even though your partner says they may not be in a rush, you both should still be on the same page.
Spend this time focusing on self-love
You might be someone who identifies as a free spirit and does not want to be tied down anytime soon. This is completely fine. While your friends might be going out on dates and cuddling up to their partners, use this time to focus on yourself. You cannot love someone else unless you love yourself. By using this time, this will make you even more prepared for the next relationship that comes your way.
Remember that you do not need to be in a relationship to spend time with someone
You might currently be at a crossroads with a friend or “more than a friend.” You both like spending time together but do not feel the need to rush anything or put a label on what you two have. This is completely fine as well. You do not need to be in a relationship to spend time with someone. Feel free to take your time with this person and figure out what you want in this relationship. As long as both of you are happy and on the same page, you do not need a label like boyfriend or girlfriend.