Sunday, October 4, 2015

It's Cuffing Season!

“Just know you may get cuffed," he said.

I was talking to a male friend one night and I offered to stop by to visit because he wasn't feeling well.
He works late so the hour in which I would have stopped by was not the most appropriate time to make a visit. Back in the day, and actually still today, it would’ve been called a “booty call” hour.  With all good intentions, my motives were pure and there was no getting around his late work schedule. Although he was joking, I came to realize, as strong as I proclaim myself to be, it’s been awhile since I’ve experienced the affection of a man and It was a setup like no other. And if I can be VERY honest, it was a test I was probably not going to pass! I contemplated, prayed, and decided to stay home and cuff my pillow instead!

I recently learned of this term “cuffing” during a church meeting. Go figure! The presenter jokingly shared possible topics for small groups, one of them being the “Cuffing Season” group! I was intrigued and immediately took to my Google search to look up this new term. And lo’ and behold, good ole’ never ceases to give meaning to unusual words and terms. Allow me to share their definition for more clarity:
“During the Fall and Winter months people who would normally rather be single or promiscuous find themselves, along with the rest of the world, desiring to be "Cuffed" or tied down by a serious relationship. The cold weather and prolonged indoor activity causes singles to become lonely and desperate to be cuffed.”
As a single person, cold wintery days, particularly snow days, awaken the yearning for a “boo thang” to snuggle against. Not to mention when you have to go to work in those snow days and he can shovel out your car! Amen! And it's football season! It’s nothing like spending time with a man, wearing his sweats and oversized t-shirts, cuddling while he shouts and scream for his favorite team, all the while you’re asking, “so what’s first down mean again?”
As a Christian, the season of singleness brings various emotions, particularly during the Fall and Winter months. Loneliness and desperation are real emotions that run rampant amongst single persons. It’s a struggle not to cling or “cuff” yourself to someone just to appease your desires and yearnings.  You’re fighting just to abstain and keep your “holiness” intact. So what do you do?
First, be honest about your feelings! It’s important to acknowledge your current state of emotion and yearnings to God and to close friends. God desires that we share every part of ourselves with him. Of course, he already knows, but it's something about audibly announcing your feelings into the atmosphere so that God can encompass and surround you with the peace, comfort, and love that you need at that moment and throughout. It's equally important to announce your feelings to others who can support, pray, and keep you accountable in this season!   
Second, stay busy and flee! Find other activities that will keep your mind occupied and focused on things other than relationship seeking and sulking. The gym has become my new hang out spot! I can work out all my pent up aggression and burn calories all at the same time!! Hanging with friends and doing group activities can ease your discontentment and unsettledness as well. Taking the time to discover and focus on your purpose and passion will definitely occupy a chunk of your mind, space, and time! But, the truth still remains, you want a relationship, not just a Fall/Winter “boo thang,” and that’s ok too.
If and when you do meet someone, it's important to set up realistic and obtainable boundaries that both you and your mate can agree upon. House dates may not be the best idea even though it's 20 below outside, and the sun goes down by 5 o’clock! Talk about a setup!  Keep it out the house. Ladies, this may also cause the brother to have to spend a little extra cash than expected, but you're worth it and so is the outcome! It's called sowing and reaping!
Accountability is another key in this thing called dating. My friends and I decided to text the hashtag “Cuffing Season” whenever we found ourselves struggling to abstain.  My friend actually used it the other night while she was out on a date. We immediately called her, talked with her and prayed. We checked in again at the end of the night just to make sure she went home alone, and she did! It's real out here in this season!  
Now, whether you take heed to the accountability is always where the trouble lies.  “But I just wanted to cuddle” is always the last confessed words after "it" goes down. The question then remains, how bad do you want to please God and have a relationship after his heart? And if you’re seeking to be married, how bad do want to be a wife and not just a convenient “cuddle buddy?”
And one last note to my ladies. Most of the time all we really want to do is actually just cuddle, but we know most men may not be able to just do that. We can't become selfish with our own desires and negate the struggle and desire of the man.  Set your boundaries and keep them! At the end of the day, you are your brother's keeper!
The term “Cuffing Season” just gives a title to a life-long struggle single persons encounter throughout this journey until God drops your mate at the appointed time.  Throughout all seasons, the desire for companionship and intimacy are ever present.  As Christians, we must maintain our purity, cling to God’s principles, and walk this life out before others. We must set an example in this earth no matter what the season.
Is it a bit difficult, cumbersome, frustrating, extra, weird, etc.? Yep! But is it also worth it, and a blessing? Absolutely! Waiting and claiming are still right and bring God glory.  And just for the record, don't beat yourself up if you fall or slip. Cling and “cuff” to God’s word. Your season isn't up yet!