Social media envy aggrivates the stress around cuffing season.

Social media envy aggrivates the stress around cuffing season.

Halfway through fall semester is one of the most stressful times of the year for many students. They take notes, make a plan for the next few months and kick themselves for procrastinating.

It’s not midterms — it’s cuffing season.

“Cuffing season” is a term that first appeared on Urban Dictionary in 2011 and refers to the months during the fall and winter when single people yearn for a relationship or to be “cuffed” to a partner as a result of societal pressure.

The season starts as temperatures drop in early autumn and popular fall activities that cater to couples, such as fall hikes and pumpkin picking, take over social media.

Pressure continues to rise throughout the holiday season when office parties and family dinners incentivize having a steady “plus one” to fall back on. The season unofficially peaks on Valentine’s Day and these short-lived romances die off before the last snow melts.

These flings are doomed from beginning to end and very little of value can be gained in between.

While remaining single could have provided a season of reflection and personal growth, your cuffing season relationship will never live up to your favorite married New England Instagram influencers and their golden retriever. Not only because setting your expectations based on social media is setting yourself up for failure, but because you’re rushing into a serious relationship with the wrong partner.

So this cuffing season, cast off oppressive societal norms, turn up to Lizzo and cuddle yourself by that fireplace.

The seasons of the year do not dictate the seasons of your life.