Written by Natasha Lawrence
Another day, another series. Welcome to The Dating Diaries. A series on the trials and tribulations of our collective dating experiences. Our rants, our raves, our first dates and our worst dates. It feels good to get this all off our chests.
Cuffing Season: As the weather grow colder during the fall and winter seasons, single people look for a consistent partner to spend time with. Someone to spend the weekend indoors watching Netflix with, and someone who can provide company and intimacy during the holiday season.
If you live in places where cold weather dominates a good chunk of the year, you’re well aware that in winter, no one wants to go out. Almost everyone you regularly socialize with is now busy with family or staying in to avoid the cold. And, while Netflix does have a good selection of streams, it does get boring after a while. Especially if you find yourself sans lover. Enter the notion of “Cuffing Season”. While the term isn’t the most respectable and has a bit of an animalistic tone, it’s actually the perfect temporary solution to winter loneliness.
Post Thanksgiving, it seems singletons of all sexes grow tired of casual dating and weekly first dates, and start to open themselves up to dating someone seriously…well…semi-seriously. Because, while the relationship may not have an exact expiration date, it’s almost an unspoken agreement of those partaking in cuffing season, that the relationship will probably not last during the colder months.
While I’ve managed to go through countless Canadian winters without cuffing anyone, this year, as most of my friends are settling down (see more here), the notion of cuffing someone entered my mind. It started with a night of too much wine, and too many re-runs of The Mindy Project (R.I.P.). Bored, I downloaded Bumble and started swiping until my thumbs started to cramp. I landed on *Ben, a guy I went to high school with, who I can’t remember having a single interaction with during those four years. Ben was decent looking, but from what I remember, he was never my type. Nevertheless, I swiped right and was a little giddy, maybe from the wine, when we immediately matched.
We started messaging through the app, and then eventually moved over to texting. The conversation was easy, and fun, so when he asked me for a drink, I said yes. Meeting out for a drink was…nice. He was an okay guy, the conversation flowed easily, and I was comfortable around him. But, as I texted my friend when he went to the restroom, there was nothing sexual there. He was great to hang out with, but, the chemistry, well, I just didn’t feel it. The night ended with a hug goodbye and we went our separate ways. Here’s where cuffing season began to plan on my mind.
You see, working in a predominately female industry, I’m short on men in my life. So, it was nice to go out for drinks and just flirt a little. What made Ben appealing to me was that our conversation was fun. I felt like I could be myself and I wanted to hang out again. And, the more I thought about it, I thought about how great it would be to have him over to watch movies over a glass of wine, maybe cuddle with post credits, maybe, if sparks magically appeared for me, some kissing too. What I felt for Ben was an urge for companionship. We’ve continued to chat via text since our date, but, when it comes to rescheduling a second, I feel conflicted. Do I really need someone, whom I’m at best, mildly attracted to, to keep me from feeling lonely this season? Is it unfair to him? Do I even like him? It’s all very confusing.