“Cuffing Season”

While the leaves turn brown, the trees go bare and the temperature decreases. The human desire of affection from a significant other increases. During the transition from Fall to Winter is what the millennia’s like to call the beginning of “Cuffing Season”. Cuffing Season is the season in which serious relationships commence and majority of promiscuous singles find themselves at a crossroads. People who identify themselves as independent, carefree, young adults tend to feel otherwise once the weather falls under 45 degrees. Humans no longer want to play the independent role that comes along with being single. Instead they normally find themselves partaking in “Cuffing season”. Cuffing season is full of holidays such as Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Valentine’s Day. These holidays are normally full of love and relatives creating memories and experiences. During these holidays are when boyfriends and girlfriends are introduced to the family and memories of their own are normally conducted. During the holidays is the only time most families get together. Subconsciously during these times the mind associates desire. But why is that? How does physical warmth correlate to psychological warmth? For those of you who are curious as to why single people desire to become dependent; this blog post is for you.


” Im not sold! I don’t think cuffing season is real. Where are the facts?”

Before the development of our modern human society we know and love; civilization went through a time period called the Stone Age. During the Stone Age a method called hunting and gathering, the invention of agriculture, came in to place for hibernation and survival purposes. Hibernation and surviving was difficult during the winter due to beastly animals and scarce resources. Therefore, having a mate was important to help increase your chance of survival. While one hunts for meat the other gathered twigs and berries to maintain not only a nutritional balance but for heat/firewood. Causing cuffing season to be our “Mating season”. Now, that you have the history of why you may feel the need to be desired during the cold weather. Cuffing “the desire to date”, being a natural survival mechanism during the winter. I believe there is a correlation between physical warmth and psychological warmth.

“Okay, but how does this correlate to science”

There has been  data collected that associates with “cuffing season”. Scientific experimental study conducted by social psychologist John Bargh 7allowed 53 (51% percent female) participants to hold both cold and warm packs to determine psychological warmth with physical warmth. Recipients answered yes or no multiple choice questionnaires in regards to pleasantness, and effectiveness. The experiment had one control substance; the temperature of the packs.  Studies showed that the cold pack participants identified with loneliness and antisocialness. These participants at the end of the experiment were given the option to give a gift (dependent variable) to a friend or to keep a gift for themselves. The gift option at the end of the trial was used to determine whether the participants were prosocial. 75% of the cold pack holders chose the gift for themselves while 25% chose a gift for a friend. In contrast, to those given warmth who 54% chose a gift for a friend and 45% chose for themselves.  Predictable with my hypothesis, people who are exposed to physical warmth crave interpersonal warmth.

Based upon psychologist John Bowlby attachment theory, it is possible that security and physical warmth provided by caretakers connect to psychological warmth. Bowlby’s attachment theory concluded that children are brought into the world with a natural instinct to form connections with people in order to survive. In order for an infant to survive he/she must maintain physical closeness to caretaker during their helpless times as an infant. This allows the infant to become dependent on the caretaker for love, food, shelter etc.  Teaching the infant trust during the physical time-shared with the responsible caretaker. During this experience of attachment a mental correlation in the insular cortex develops and processes the association between physical and psychological warmth. The insular cortex is made up of two regions: the anterior and posterior insula. The posterior insula is heightened/active when a temperature and touch sensation occurs. This is known because during a thermo sensory activation of insular cortex participants who were exposed to thermal intensity produced an increase of activation in the posterior insula. In contrast, to the anterior insula which is heightened/active during emotional interaction such as social rejection or unfair behavior. The insula is linked to both physiological processes and emotion. The insula manipulates interpersonal experience, feelings, desire, motives, sight, cognitive functioning and motor control.

For these theoretical reasons I hypothesize that temperature and touch sensation (physical warmth) correlates to emotions (psychological warmth). Which then subconsciously influences the behavior in which humans interact with one another.






3 thoughts on ““Cuffing Season”

  1. Joshua Righter

    I will admit, when I saw the title of your blog post, I was very skeptical of what I was about to read. Though, I completely agree with Caroline on this one. I can tell you put a lot of thought into this post of yours. As well, I did not think a topic like this would have all the different sources you used. You were creative in using your sources to explain your topic more effectively. The idea of cuffing season is interesting, because it is so true when actually thought about!

  2. Taylor M Lender

    If warmth increases are desire to be with a mate, why aren’t more people committing to relationships in the summer? I think that meeting family members and pressure of giving holiday gifts might cause people to commit to their partners.

  3. Caroline Sorrentino

    This is such a great post! I can tell you put a lot of time and thought into it. It’s funny because I never put two and two together that me and my boyfriends anniversary is on Valentine’s day and we had been seeing each other since Christmas time before we made it official. It is ironic, though, because my aunt told me about the “Turkey Drop” which is when long distance relationships tend to end right around Thanksgiving. Could this be true also? This Her Campus post describes why a lot of people get dumped right around Thanksgiving. Something to think about…

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