Courtesy of Dana Townsend

A cynic’s guide to surviving cuffing season

The weather is getting colder, your Instagram feed is full of cute couples at the pumpkin patch and let’s face it, scary movies by yourself just aren’t as fun. That’s right—as fall begins, we all have the same thought: “Maybe this frigid ass season would be better with a boo.” Plus, you’re tired of saying “No Grandma, there’s still no ‘special someone’  in my life” every single Thanksgiving.

Cuffing season—the time of year where happily single folks idealize the idea of being tied down or “cuffed” when the season changes, sometimes for the sole purpose of staying warm—can, unfortunately, bring out the thirst and desperation in the best of us. Here are some tips for making it through. 


Don’t put too much faith in apps

As scary as actually going up to a human being you find attractive can be, swipes and likes can be toxic AF. Think about how superficial it is to picture a relationship with someone just because they’re photogenic and have Fleetwood Mac set as their anthem song. Plus, there’s no way to know what someone’s intentions are, unless they have “here for a good time not a long time” in their bio like every fourth person you swipe on. (Side note: Why do people hold up dead animals they hunted in their Tinder pictures? Does that get some people hot and heavy? Hard pass.) 


Don’t text your ex 

It happens. You’ve had one too many hot toddies, and all inhibitions go out the window. But for the love of god, don’t use this new boozy courage to rekindle an old flame. It ended for a reason. They won’t change. Go talk to the cutie at the bar instead—just don’t be messy. 


Make a move!

That person with the cool tortoiseshell glasses in your writing class? Who you’ve made eye contact with at least six times since week one? Talk to them! You never know if you’ll wind up in a class together again. Maybe you’ll get a new study partner out of it if no sparks fly. If they don’t seem interested, then at least you tried talking to a real-life human in person. 


They’re not interested? Stop trying 

Rejection sucks. Having to let someone down easy once and then resisting the urge to tell them to fuck off when they keep trying sucks even more. If they turned down an opportunity for free drinks, they’re definitely not interested and definitely do not want to grab coffee with you after class. Move on. 


Put yourself first 

Remember—above anything else, your happiness and health are what is most important, even if it means staying warm until New Years with a fuzzy blanket, a glass of wine and a virtual fireplace playing on Netflix, then so be it. Light a candle. Do a face mask. Write that essay you’ve been putting off. Nothing good ever comes from desperation.