When the weather outside is frightful, and the thought of staying in is delightful. So since you have no place to go, it’s time to swipe yes or ‘no’! ‘Tis the time of year to forgo the commitment-free theme of summer and settle into a relationship. Deemed as ‘cuffing’ season, matchmaker and dating expert Mallory Love says the practice of looking for something serious as the temperature drops isn’t just a cultural phenomenon, but one that’s biological. After all, when early settlers first set up camp, they needed to stay warm and reproduce to create communities. Even if you don’t intend on having a child anytime soon, even toxic bachelors (and bachelorettes) are lured into the temptation of snuggles, Netflix and chilling and having dates for holiday parties. Each year, based on various factors, trends around this tradition change. From politics to the arrival of Facebook dating, here’s what experts predict will be trendy this cuffing season:
Men are team Cuffing, while women… not so much.
While typically men are given a bad rep for denying and running far (far!) away from relationship, recent data from OkCupid suggests this year, the tables are turning. As global chief marketing officer for the dating site, Melissa Hobley explains, 85 percent of male users are not afraid of commitment. That’s compared to 82 percent of women who claim the same. It’s a subtle difference, but a meaningful one, since 78 percent of dudes also shared they hoped their next relationship would last more than just a few months.
Matchmaker with It’s Just Lunch Cleveland Ashley Bakewell says this switch in the sexes could be due to an uptick in confidence levels among women. Not only are they more comfortable waiting for the right person but they’re also investing deeply into their careers and personal development, rather than seeking a better half. “Expect to see women embracing their single lives and enjoying time with their family and friends instead of cuffing,” she adds.
Cuffing isn’t going to end in the spring.
By its original definition, cuffing refers to a period between October and March, where singles develop relationships that last until the first thaw of spring. However, Love shares this won’t be the case at the turn of the year — and um, decade! She predicts with the landslide of opportunities to meet people in 2020, from apps to meetups and more, cuffing season will happen a few times throughout the year, rather than merely fall and winter.
Political discussions will guide cuffing.
Discussing your stance on political issues may not be a hot-and-steamy way to fall in love, but chief dating expert for Match, Rachel DeAlto says it’s at the center of cuffing seasons. In fact, data from Match revealed 98 percent (wow!) want to know their potential match’s views ASAP, and may refuse to enter even a short-term anything, without discussing ballots.
How come? NYC-based relationship expert Susan Winter says more than ever, having a unified partnership on shared values is essential for relationship success. “From climate change to social justice, causes are taking a main stage in not only the news, but our daily conversations. Expect this trend to continue on into our dating sphere, as motivated individuals seek like-minded others who share the same passion for justice, peace, and our planet’s health,” she adds.
Online dating is slowing down.
If you have been looking digitally for your one-and-only, it’s likely you’ve hit a wall more than once. Online dating fatigue is a real issue for many singles, and Love predicts people will shy away from overuse this cuffing season. Sort of like a renaissance, more hopefuls are putting their resources (and hopes and emotions) in real-life situations. Not only does challenge folks to step outside of their comfort zones and strike up a conversation rather than shooting a text, but it can be a more personal way to determine if you’re bound to be cuffed together.
Cuffing via Facebook dating will rise.
If if some online dating is seeing a decrease in numbers, Facebook dating is just getting started. Winter predicts FB will be the digital destination for cuffing, since all generations are intrigued by the algorithm. “Facebook Dating is going to be the next big thing with millennials who’ve otherwise lost interest in this social media platform. Due to Facebook Dating’s integration with Instagram, this platform provides a one-stop shopping destination for singles eager to explore friends of friends, and a whole new data base of prospective, curated partners,” she shares.
Singles get to the point, faster.
Though some people are on the market for a temporary cuffing arrangement, many seek a connection that has lasting power. Regardless if they want a few months of snuggles or a lifetime of love, expect them to tell you their expectations right from the start, according to Bakewell. “Expect singles to be more upfront and honest about the relationship they’re looking for. Having a relationship strictly for cuffing season can be fun and enjoyable if you’re both on the same page and enjoy each other’s company,” she explains. “Make the most of it, even if it’s just for the season. There’s always the possibility it could lead to a long-term relationship.”