Column: As cuffing season sets in, high schoolers should not be ashamed of wanting to be in romantic relationships

Isabella White

With the colder months upon us, many things are beginning to change. As we retire our summer dresses in exchange for warm sweaters, an annual trend even more significant is simultaneously setting in: cuffing season.

As it is defined by Urban Dictionary, “cuffing season” is an alternate name for the fall and winter months in which people search out a significant other to combat both the freezing temperatures and the crippling loneliness associated with this time of year.  

It seems to me that cuffing season gets a bad rap. As a result of its association with desperation, people do not tend to look fondly on it. While I certainly do not encourage—nor condone—excessive displays of public affection, which are not terribly uncommon in the halls of CHS, I also find myself generally in favor of the notion of high school relationships and the desire to have one.   

High school, among many things, is a time for discovery and experiences. It’s the time to meet people, have fun and learn social skills that can prove vital in college and as students finally venture into the real world. According to a study done by the University of California Los Angeles, dating in high school is foundational and allows teenagers to gain experience is the area of romantic relationships before reaching adult-life. Additionally, an article written by Adrienne Wichard-Edds and published by the Washington Post states that dating in high school also takes place in a safer environment with parents there to help guide their teenager. 

More than facts and statistics, though, high school dating should be encouraged simply because it is fun. As a student, I can firmly attest to the fact that high school is stressful in ways not limited to classwork. All around us, there lies responsibilities for extracurriculars, athletic commitments, part-time jobs, familial obligations and social stressors that make our adolescent years particularly difficult. Why is it so terrible, then, for students to want to have a romantic relationship as a way of lessening the burden of these responsibilities or, at the very least, making them bearable because they have someone in their life that makes it exciting?   

There does, however, exist a point in which high school relationships can turn unhealthy or obsessive if the couple lacks a sense of trust or boundaries. While this is something to avoid, as long as both parties of the relationships feel happier with the other person in their life, I see no issue, and, in fact, encourage high schoolers to date to their hearts’ desires.  

Speaking from personal experience, dating in high school is a learning experience, a chance for personal growth and a way to get away from responsibilities every now and again. When people are in a relationship, the stressors of everyday life do not seem so burdensome because, at the very least, they have that one person they know will be there for them. At the root of all of humanity, there is a desire for companionship; I see no reason for teenagers to be excluded from this group. 

So, as the temperatures continue to fall, high schoolers should partake freely in cuffing season. If possible, just try to refrain from the aforementioned public displays of affection.