The Scientific Reason Behind Cuffing Season

The Scientific Reason Behind Cuffing Season

As the temperature drops and the leaves fall, so does the desire to be single. Read on to see how "Cuffing Season" is a biological response.
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When you think of fall, you probably think of overly commercialized pumpkin treats, changing leaves, and the incoming onset of some of America's favorite holidays. However, according to various statistics, scientific analyses, surveys, and observations, the drop of temperature means an increase in monogamy among the younger population where they rush into relationships to keep themselves warm in these frosty months.

Urban Dictionary defines this intriguing phenomenon, known as "cuffing season," as an instance where "during the fall and winter months people who would normally rather be single or promiscuous find themselves along with the rest of the world desiring to be 'cuffed' or tied down by a serious relationship. The cold weather and prolonged indoor activity causes singles to become lonely and desperate to be cuffed."

Whether or not these instances of increased relationships are a mere coincidence or an uncorrelated happening of human connection, there are undoubtedly causes that boil down to the essential reasons why the cold weather makes everyone eager to "cuff," and it all comes down to science.

First off, the frequency of "cuffing" relationships in the colder months is supported by statistics.

As shown in the image above, for those under the age of 25, the daily net percentage change in relationships is highest towards the end of the year and carries on into the early months of the new year (while the temperature is still relatively low).One reason for this phenomenon could be coffee. A lot of people associate the fall and winter month with treats like pumpkin spice lattes, peppermint mochas, and classic hot chocolate, and this may be why everyone is getting cuffed. According to a 2008 Williams and Bargh experiment, physical warmth provided by outside sources (such as holding a cup of coffee) directly correlated to psychological "warmth," or increased happiness and friendliness. In a similar study, participants either held a paper cup of hot coffee or a cup of iced coffee, and it was recorded that those with the hot coffee were more kind, selfless, and generous. Could it be possible that these "basic" coffee drinks are the reason people are finding love?

Another reason for cuffing season could be a desire for warmth.

As colder months approach, our bodies have an innate response to look for warmth. For most people, this happens through dressing in layers of clothes, putting on the heat indoors, and reducing exposure to the cold. However, our mating choices may largely play into our survival instincts. When one experiences the emotions of happiness and love, their entire body undergoes activity that stimulates warmth.

Because of this, in addition to a cozy blanket, we may be looking for love to keep us warm during the cold season.

Finally, seeking companionship during winter months may be because of S.A.D, or seasonal affective disorder. This condition is caused by reduced serotonin in the body in colder and darker weather, resulting in the winter blues. However, serotonin is one of the most prominent chemicals involved in the body's response to love, so a new romance could make dreary nights spent in more enjoyable, according to your hormone levels.

Whether the idea of "cuffing season" fills you with hope or angst, just realize that this occurrence is your body's way of surviving and making the cold months more enjoyable. Along with having a companion for haunted trails, pumpkin picking, Christmas shopping, mistletoe kissing, New Years partying, and Valentine's, cuddling up to a winter fling may be the fuzzy blanket for your soul that you didn't realize you needed.

Cover Image Credit: Wooder Ice

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To The Parent Who Chose Addiction

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

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When I was younger I resented you, I hated every ounce of you, and I used to question why God would give me a parent like you. Not now. Now I see the beauty and the blessings behind having an addict for a parent. If you're reading this, it isn't meant to hurt you, but rather to thank you.

Thank you for choosing your addiction over me.

Throughout my life, you have always chosen the addiction over my programs, my swim meets or even a simple movie night. You joke about it now or act as if I never questioned if you would wake up the next morning from your pill and alcohol-induced sleep, but I thank you for this. I thank you because I gained a relationship with God. The amount of time I spent praying for you strengthened our relationship in ways I could never explain.

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Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

The amount of hurt and disappointment our family has gone through has brought us closer together. I have a relationship with Nanny and Pop that would never be as strong as it is today if you had been in the picture from day one. That in itself is a blessing.

Thank you for showing me how to love.

From your absence, I have learned how to love unconditionally. I want you to know that even though you weren't here, I love you most of all. No matter the amount of heartbreak, tears, and pain I've felt, you will always be my greatest love.

Thank you for making me strong.

Thank you for leaving and for showing me how to be independent. From you, I have learned that I do not need anyone else to prove to me that I am worthy of being loved. From you, I have learned that life is always hard, but you shouldn't give into the things that make you feel good for a short while, but should search for the real happiness in life.

Most of all, thank you for showing me how to turn my hurt into motivation.

I have learned that the cycle of addiction is not something that will continue into my life. You have hurt me more than anyone, but through that hurt, I have pushed myself to become the best version of myself.

Thank you for choosing the addiction over me because you've made me stronger, wiser, and loving than I ever could've been before.

Cover Image Credit: http://crashingintolove.tumblr.com/post/62246881826/pieffysessanta-tumblr-com

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You've Heard Of 'How To Be Single,' But Let's Talk About 'How To Be Romantic'

For some of us, it takes work to be cutesy and romantic.

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Okay, I'm probably the least romantic person anyone has ever met. Not to say that I'm a bad girlfriend or that I'm not caring. I just find love in simple things like knowing what to order for them at restaurants, doing their laundry, planning unique dates, or cooking for them. It's not that I'm opposed to being arduous, I've just never been a chocolate and flowers kind of girl. I'm more of a Mongolian hot pot and "let's walk across the Brooklyn Bridge!" kind of girl. I appreciate some effort, tailoring something to fit a person's idiosyncratic personality or general spontaneity, not how flowery something looks. Not saying that I'm not feminine, I'm just my own entity, so to speak, and that translates into my love life. Needless to say, I thought I should learn how the other half lives, so I've challenged myself to take a course on being a classic/hopeless romantic just to understand how others think and who knows I might change some of my habits!

1. Leave notes

I think it's a really cute and simple idea that I will try to do because it makes everything very personal.

2. Write them a poem

I've had this done for me but I've never actually done it, because believe it or not, I didn't like to read or write poems up until this year.

3. Cuddling

Okay, so I'm not a cuddler, I have no idea why — it's more or less a personal space and attachment issue, I guess. I love hugs though! I guess I just have to be in the mood to cuddle and at times I can be. Other times it just makes me nervous.

4. Dedicate a song to them on the radio

It seems like the people on the radio that do this are crazy in love and honestly, to be able to have the ability to go on the radio and just declare your love for someone else is really inspiring.

5. Surprise them!

I personally cannot stand surprises, but I love to surprise other people and just be spontaneous, so I sort of do this already.

6. Carve your names into a tree

I've thought about doing this, but I've never got around to it, so I promise one day I will.

7. Go see a romantic movie

Nope, nope, I'll barf! Not happening, strictly horror movies for this girl, sorry!

8. Make them a care package

See, this makes me think a lot about what really defines romantic, because I do this all the time, but I don't consider it romantic, I just think it's sweet.

9. Take a walk on the beach together

I've done this, but I have to be doing this while looking for seashells or I feel like I'll be bored.

10. Make a CD for them

"THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER," CHARLIE IS QUAKING.

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