This is how the cold weather might be affecting your love life

Whether you’re single or in a relationship, the weather might have more of an effect than you realise.

Imy Brighty-Potts
Tuesday 18 October 2022 11:24 BST
Saying goodbye to summer may have you seeking someone to settle with (Alamy/PA)
Saying goodbye to summer may have you seeking someone to settle with (Alamy/PA)

As the evenings become darker and the days colder, you may find yourself longing for a cuddly companion, someone to share in the chilly months, Christmas party plans and New Years kisses – and you aren’t the only one.

According to Kate Mansfield, dating and relationship coach: “Cold weather evokes feelings of wanting to snuggle in front of a fire, cosiness and coupling up – which is how the concept of ‘cuffing’ came about.”

What’s known as ‘cuffing season’ is the time of year when people couple up to cope with a more insular, winter lifestyle. Said to last from October until February, things may seem more serious in your love life over the next five months.

While, “in general, summer gives us a feeling of hope, of wanting to travel, to party and to be free,” says Mansfield. “We also feel a sense of optimism and adventure in summer. The cliché of the holiday romance lives on.”

So, what will winter look like for you romantically?

If you’re single

Mansfield sees autumn and winter as a plus for the unattached.

“For singles, cold weather season is definitely much better for online dating,” she says. This is because “more people are available and in the mood for commitment”.

However, meeting in-person might be harder. Clinical psychologist Dr Marianne Trent says feelings of lowered mood in winter may lead to social withdrawal – so you might meet less people, and therefore, less potential matches.“Despite how you may feel because of the weather, just because everyone else is coupling up at this time, you don’t have to settle for substandard treatment or respect – you deserve happiness and kindness,” she says.

If you’re in a long-term relationship

So, you’ve been with your partner for a while now, and are seeing in the cool months together. “The cold weather for happy couples can be a romantic time, it can strengthen and increase the bond as we hunker down and hibernate together,” says Mansfield.

We are, Trent says, “humans but also mammals – and many mammals hibernate so it may be the case that when it gets cold you will have more of an urge to stay in and socially dettach from the wider world.”

If you’re in a situationship

In a short term thing, fling or ‘friends with benefits’ situation, the cold weather could spell settling.

“Situationships might turn more serious in the cold weather but beware,” says Mansfield, “this might not be a long term change. For those who are hoping to turn your situationship into a real commitment it will take more than a cold spell. You would need to have a real conversation about it

“A healthy relationship is always based on a steady pace, solid friendship and having those difficult conversations up front to make sure that you’re on the same page. Don’t rush in too fast.”

And don’t try and save the un-saveable just because you don’t want to be alone in winter.

If your relationship is on its last legs don’t use cuffing season as an excuse to stay,” she adds.

The cold season can be the perfect time to spend some time by yourself too, reflect on relationships past and work out what you really want.

Mansfield says: “It’s a great time to do you, do that deeper work and get out there to boost your relationship life. Never settle no matter how cold it gets.”

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