Cuffing Season Isn’t Just for Singles—Here are 4 Ways It Can Benefit Your Already Established Relationship

Photo: Getty Images/DjelicS
The chill in the air, the pumpkin spice in your latte, the need to get cozy up…. It all points to the same explanation: we're in peak cuffing season. The term generally refers to the time between October and February (just after Valentine’s Day) when single folks look to partner up through the colder months (and ensure they won't be alone during the holidays in the process). However, cuffing season can be for couples, too. If you're in an already established relationship or otherwise spoken for during this time of year, there are plenty of ways that cuffing season energy can still affect your union—and for the better.

As a dating coach, I believe that cuffing season for couples is certainly a real thing. It provides an opportunity to reconnect or connect on a deeper level with someone already in your life and also to create new and meaningful memories. To make the most of cuffing season, I've rounded up some of my favorite strategies.

4 ways cuffing season for couples can increase meaningful connection

1. Being supportive most effectively

When the holidays approach, so do the family members. Sometimes, togetherness can be a blessing, but for those times when it presents more of a challenge, having a partner by your side can you help manage the awkward, dramatic, or inappropriate behaviors that seem to emerge.

The deeper understanding you already have of one another stands to make tricky dynamics of cuffing season easier to navigate, bringing you closer together in the process.

An added benefit of being in a relationship during cuffing season is that your partner likely knows you'll appreciate them fielding questions from your aunt who keeps bringing up triggering topics at dinner. (Or, for that matter, helping to defuse any otherwise tricky family dynamics that emerge over the holidays.) The deeper understanding you already have of one another stands to make tricky dynamics of cuffing season easier to navigate, bringing you closer together in the process.

2. Enjoying the festive season, stress-free

The cold months bring a slew of fun and charming festivities. Pumpkin patches, ice-skating, tree lightings, holiday parties, and the like are great opportunities to have shared experiences with your partner. As an established couple, you don’t need to worry about who will be your date and can instead just focus on having a great time.

3. Connecting on a deeper level while giving back

The early stages of dating that are common to singles taking part in cuffing season relationships often have a light and flirty vibe. But for people who have already gotten to know each other, there's likely a greater understanding and desire of their needs from the relationship and the needs of others.

With your own needs already satisfied, you might have more time and space to dedicate to volunteering opportunities together, which can also provide for a powerful bonding experience. Helping people in need can deepen your bond with your partner while exploring your shared interests.

4. Not worrying about getting the perfect gift

The issue of commitment or wondering how a certain gift (or lack of gift!) might affect the delicate balance of early dating are not a concern for couples during cuffing season. Of course, it's important to still be thoughtful in any relationship dynamic, but baseline questions common to early unions are off the table, like how much is too much to spend and whether they're getting you a gift at all.

Because of this, the benefits of being established romantic partners during cuffing season include having an understanding about gift-giving and -receiving along with other components of holiday dating, like a New Year's Eve kiss and intimacy in general. Enjoy it!

So, even if you're coupled up, cuffing season provides an opportunity for connection. Being mindful to enjoy your partnership during this time of year can afford all parties involved a sense of happiness and ease. Cuddle up and enjoy your partner and the bond you have. 

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