The True Meaning Behind ‘Cuffing’ Season

Tradition tells us that spring is the time for love, right? All those warm breezes and flowers bursting to life – it’s enough to get anyone in the mood. But what about winter, with its long, cold, dark nights? Surely that’s when you need comfort (and somebody warm beside you) the most! That’s why there are lots of people out there looking to turn a hook-up into someone they can “cuff” for the hibernating season. But if you’re getting involved in cuffing up this winter, what might you be waking up to when the spring thaw comes? 

What Is Cuffing?

One-night stands, long-term relationships, friends with benefits – it’s pretty clear what these set-ups are, even if the emotions involved in them sometimes aren’t! But what does it mean if you’re looking to cuff someone, or if you find yourself all cuffed up? Well, the term itself comes from handcuffing someone or tying yourself down to that one person as a way to keep the cold and loneliness of winter at bay, even if you wouldn’t ordinarily be interested in a long-term commitment, either with that person or in general. 

two sets of feet in socks next to each other with a fire in the background
The cuffing zone is somewhere between an actual long-term relationship and a friends with benefits situation.

That means the cuffing zone seems to occupy a space somewhere between an actual long-term relationship and a friends with benefits situation. You might not be seeing anyone else, but there are certain expectations that might be missing from your arrangement, and the person you’re cuffed to might not even be someone you’d normally think of settling down with. 

These relationships are usually pretty short-term, as well; most people acknowledge that the “cuffing season” starts in October or November, with most couples starting to snap out of it by the time the more mushy romantic stuff surrounding Valentine’s Day has them rethinking things. That’s not to say that a cuff will never turn into a more serious relationship, but most don’t look like your typical long-term partnering, so you’ve got to go into it with your eyes open.

Why Get All Cuffed Up?

Well, why get into any relationship at all, right? Ok, maybe that’s a little unhelpful, so let’s look at why you might want to be tied to someone temporarily when you don’t really have a strong desire to be committed to them (or even to anyone). The answer really does seem to lie in the seasonal nature of it: we’re just naturally looking for comfort and connection, both physical and emotional, at this time of year. And, to be honest, jumping right into the cozy part of a relationship can seem pretty appealing as the potential for outdoor fun disappears!

According to certified sex therapist Holly Richmond, Ph.D., LMFT, CST, “The emotional side is we’ve got the holidays […] where people go home to their families, and some single people feel lonely or different or sad about not being coupled up. The physical side, I think, is more of an evolutionary biology piece. We’re pack animals, and in the winter months, we had to spend time together literally for warmth.”

Are They (or You!) A Cuff?

Now that we’re fully into cuffing season, you might just be falling prey to your natural instincts and biological urges (not to say that can’t be fun…) to keep warm and stave off seasonal depression – remember, seasonal affective disorder is a thing, after all. That means it’s time to take a good look at your winter crush or fling and figure out what’s really going on, so you know what you’re getting into, and so you can both get on the same page. You’re probably cuffed up (or your potential winter mate is probably looking to cuff) if:

two people standing far apart holding hands

  • You or they are not concerned about long-term compatibility. If you’ve got mismatched goals for the future, but it’s no big deal, you’re probably not going to be their plus one at any summer weddings.
  • You spend time together, but you and/or they are not interested in defining the relationship. Like we said, a cuffing situation can feel like a weird limbo between a casual and serious relationship, so you’re probably not meeting each other’s family, but you might be the only one for each other – for now.
  • You’re probably not heading out on a lot of dates. If you’re dating life mostly consists of Netflix and takeout, you’re probably just getting into hibernation mode with each other.
  • They might do a lot of hinting that they are looking to cuff, even saying things like they hate being alone on New Years or that they’re relieved they have a date for their holiday parties.
  • Some things about the relationship are just not quite “right.” For example, there might be some on-and-off ghosting, the connection might feel purely physical, the sex might only feel “good enough” for now, or you or your partner might be acting in emotionally unavailable ways. 

Some or all of the above starting to sound very familiar? Well, you might have been cuffed, or you might be on the hunt to do some cuffing, which is totally fine if that’s what you’re into! But you might want to keep a few things in mind this season.

Keeping Your Head During Cuffing Season

Again, we want to make it perfectly clear that there is absolutely nothing wrong with cuffing – hey, whatever gets you through the winter! You could end up spending a lovely season with someone and looking back on those long months with fondness as you move on, or you could even end up with someone you want to spend time with even when the snow melts – who knows? But what is clear is that you need to make sure you’re making healthy choices for yourself, so keep these things in mind if you find yourself on the hunt or being hunted this cuffing season:black and white picture of a woman with her hand on her chin thinking

  • Know what you want – Before you decide whether cuffing season is worth your time, and you start swiping up a storm on those dating apps, be honest with yourself about what you want and whether a temporary relationship will fulfill your needs. 
  • Communication is key – Anytime you add two human beings into a situation, there’s the potential for hurt feelings, so make sure you both know what page you’re on. You also need to know how to set boundaries (even if it’s something as simple as knowing whether giving gifts to each other is cool or not), and be open about how open you actually want to be. Tell them what you’re looking for, and if the other person says they’re not looking for anything serious, listen to them and take what they say at face value! 
  • Keep your standards – You might be feeling that winter itch, but don’t rush into anything, and don’t feel pressured by anyone else to have dates for holiday events – don’t end up acting out a relationship you’re not actually in! Dating out of loneliness or boredom could end up leading to unhealthy relationships, so you might be better off spending time with friends or family instead of hastily picking the wrong person to give your time to. And remember, always, always be safe when it comes to sex!
  • Be in the moment! – Don’t worry what the calendar says, and don’t worry what anyone else says about your relationship – if it’s right for you at that time, enjoy it for what it is. If you do find yourself catching feelings, and that’s not what you want, or you feel like your cuffing partner won’t be down to take things further, that’s when it’s time to reassess. 

The bottom line is that cuffing can be just the thing to get you through these long winter nights, as they stretch into long winter months. As with anything in life, though, go into it with open eyes, be present, know what you want – and then be safe, and honest with yourself and the person who’s warming you up on the couch. And if you find yourself dreaming together and getting eager to introduce each other to mom, well, you might be more than just cuffed, so watch out! 

How to Own Menopause AND Your Sex Life

Hot flashes. Mood changes. Chills. Slowed metabolism. And worst of all, vaginal dryness. These are just some of the symptoms that accompany menopause.

When the time comes, menopause will be a new phase of your life, and that phase comes with changes. Your biggest concern may be sex-related.  The main culprit stealing the fun from sex is thin vaginal walls, or even the dryness we talked about earlier.

women smiling with menopause and sex life
Keep a bright outlook! Not everyone experiences life changes in the same way.

These problems all stem from lower estrogen levels. When menopause occurs, your hormone levels decrease, and this can trigger unwanted changes. The physical ones can be uncomfortable enough, but with such a huge role, lowered estrogen (and testosterone) can wreak havoc on your libido, energy levels, and more. 

However, it’s not all bad. Some women report their lives improving after menopause! There are simple fixes to these problems that’ll have you back in the saddle in no time.  

Exercise Your Sex Drive

Want to revive your sex drive? Simple, just exercise more. 

The healthier you feel (and are), the sexier you will feel, which aids in good mental health. Confidence and proper self-care are key factors in a healthy sex life. Weight-lifting, cardio, even yoga can give you a wellness boost; things you can feel in both mind and body. 

It also doesn’t hurt to be stronger, and keep up your stamina in the bedroom!

Lube Is Important

Out of all these issues, vaginal dryness is the easiest to treat. Personal lubricant, or “lube” as it is affectionately called, is sold over the counter at grocery stores and pharmacies. No need for a prescription. 

Apply a water-based lube before you have sex. Why water-based? Well, water-based lubricants are less sticky than oil or petroleum-based lubricants, making for an easier clean-up. Also of note, some condoms can dissolve in oil-based lubricants. If you want to practice safe sex, then steering towards water-based is a good rule of thumb.

woman in pink making a face about menopause
Supplements? Lube? Uncomfortable conversations? This doesn’t seem like fun, but these ways are manageable, and they can open new doors.

These lubes relieve the dryness, and you can enjoy sex again without the pain. If you want a more natural lube, coconut oil also works great. Just make sure that you don’t have a coconut allergy!

Testosterone Replacement

We tend to focus on men when it comes to testosterone supplements. It’s an easy fix for their erectile dysfunction or other male issues. However, everybody uses testosterone, just in different ways.

Women’s sex drive can also be boosted with a little testosterone. Talk to your doctor about it if it intrigues you, but know that there are side effects that come with it such as thinning hair and acne. Like most hormone supplements, successful use is directly tied to your body chemistry, so remember to pay close attention if you choose this route.

Let’s Get Physical, Physical

Have more sex. Yes, you read that right.

Menopause can make sex painful, so it is understandable when you say it hurts. We went over the thinning and dryness issues earlier. However, the more penetrative sex you have, the better equipped your body will be to keep your vaginal walls thick. It’s kind of like exercise.

Arousal leads to blood flow down below. And don’t worry if you lack a sex partner, masturbation works just as well.


It’s hard to talk about menopause; it’s not the sexiest issue out there, and many women aren’t looking forward to this time of life.

On top of societal concerns, you have to deal with vaginal dryness, painful sex, lowered libido, and more. The last thing you want to do is bring up how sex has to change. It’s not a conversation anyone is prepared to have.

However, communicating these issues with your partner will only bring you closer.

woman smiling in a sweater about menopause solutions
More communication can only make your relationship stronger! Think of sexy ways to keep life interesting.

Help them to understand the changes you are dealing with and ways you can have more enjoyable sex. If you are open about it, you gain assistance while you walk this difficult path Plus once you get it out in the open, it’s just a matter of time and teamwork.!

Your sex life does not have to end once you go through menopause. Yes, it might cause pain when having sex, and yes, you might not want to have sex as much, but maybe you’ll find it’s a blessing in disguise. Communicating and exploring your body can only improve sex. 

Like any uncomfortable situation, you can take the best from it and move forward. With menopause, there are alternatives to kick it in the butt, and still have a great life. 

Confidence is important. Do not let the word menopause define you. Take it on with a positive attitude and own it!

Can Long-Distance Relationships Really Work?

Long-distance relationships require a lot of patience and work. Not being able to physically touch the person you love is not easy. Many times it can be extremely hard, but studies show that couples within these relationships are more likely to share meaningful thoughts and feelings because in place of physical time together, all they have is

Two caucasian hands trying to reach each other to grab onto.
Long-distance relationships require a lot of patience and work. Not being able to physically touch the person you love is not easy.

communication. I interviewed Toni, owner of her own nail business (P10 Nails) in Georgia, and Darius, a truck driver residing in Florida, who have been successfully making a long distance relationship work for 2 years. They helped me understand how they make it work, while keeping the relationship exciting.



It is not always easy to match each other’s schedules when you live close to your partner, let alone when you are miles away from them. Communication is pivotal in a long-distance relationship because at times it is all you have. Even though they are not physically there, a person can still “be there” for their partner and prioritizing their needs is just as important when living apart. 

“I make it a priority to call him on my lunch breaks even if I have other things to do during that time,” says Toni. “Because he drives trucks, his schedule is sporadic and he might have to be asleep during most of the day and drive through the early morning hours, so if I don’t call him on my break, I may not speak to him all day. If I really can’t find the time for a call I make sure to send a text telling him I miss him or I love him or just to ask what he ate that day. Being on a truck can get lonely and my job as a nail tech can keep my hands busy for 12 straight hours a day, so making time to talk is really important.”

Talk When You Can

When you are in a long-distance relationship, the only way to really learn about your loved one is by talking when you can. Days can be really busy, so finding the time to talk to your partner when you have time is key in making it work. Because they have a short window to talk, couples in long-distance relationships share a connection like no other couples. This is because they share more deep, and intimate feelings with each other when they have the time to talk. 

When I asked Toni how often she and Darius get to talk on the phone, her answer was interesting, because even if they were silent on the phone the whole time, she still feels connected. “Sometimes it’s once a day for 30 minutes, sometimes even 10 minutes, but when I’m off work and he’s up late driving, we’ll stay on the phone for 6 or 7 hours straight, just to keep each other company. A lot of the time we’re not even talking honestly, it’s just nice to have each other present for whatever is going on at that time. It kind of replaces actually being able to physically do everyday things together like grocery shopping or watching a movie. It helps add a sense of normalcy to the relationship. We got to learn each other’s habits and routines, in a way, even though we weren’t together just by spending extensive time on the phone and Skype/Facetime.”

Visit Each Other

Caucasian woman's torso sitting down in an orange sweater with a planner on her lap writing in it.
Set a rule of never going more than X amount of time without seeing each other physically.

A relationship needs more than just Facetime, and texting. If you can take the time to visit each other, for example, set a rule of never going more than X amount of time without seeing each other physically. Toni and Darius see each other “about once every 2 or 3 months for a few days. Sometimes a few hours if he only has time to stop the truck for a little while.”

Do Not Stay Angry

Disagreements are the worst in any relationship. It causes stress, and changes your dynamic as a couple, especially if you let it fester and build up. Communication is the only way to get through it. 

Toni stressed that talking about the issue is essential. “Talk, talk, talk. There’s no make-up sex or even a kiss to remind them that you still care, when you can’t find the words. You have to find the words, or you don’t speak at all. But, because I’m the weaker communicator in the relationship, sometimes the conversation ended with ‘I don’t want to talk about this right now, I’ll call you tomorrow.’ If you live together, you can’t just ignore it. So, long distance does give you more space to cool off.”

Digital Dates

Just because you aren’t physically close with your loved one does not mean you cannot go on dates. It can be a Netflix and chill date, or a Facetime dinner date. Toni mentioned that for Valentine’s Day, they both dressed up for their Facetime date. 

Trust & Respect

When you think of a long-distance relationship, you might wonder ‘how can you really trust that the person is faithful? You have no clue what they are doing at every moment.’ There must be some kind of boundaries that couples have within this type of relationship, right? When asked, Toni and Darius were united in their reply of “no.” 

Toni went on to explain that “We both understand that in this situation the truth is you don’t know at all what the other person is doing. We spend so much time apart, he travels a lot, and I work really late; we could lie about where we are all the time. We have to have an amplified level of trust. Both of us are pretty introverted anyway, so we don’t go out much. We stay open about things like that and check in to see what might make the other person uncomfortable. For instance, I don’t see an issue with having lunch with a male colleague, but I made sure to ask my boyfriend how he felt about it, even though he had never expressed any discomfort about it before.”

Twice The Work

Both Toni and Darius agreed that being in a long-distance relationship was harder compared to past, closer relationships. What helped them is the fact that they were friends for 14 years before they decided to be a couple. A strong foundation is important for a relationship, especially one that is long-distance.

Couple stanging next to each other with the man's hand out about to take a key from another hand that is giving it.
The couple are now licing together, and both Toni and Darius expressed that the transition has been a little challenging.

The End Goal

After dating for two years the couple has met one of their end goals, living together!  This can be a huge adjustment after dating someone long-distance for such a long period of time. There are new things that you learn about each other that you might not have been able to pick up on while being so far apart, some are cute, while others annoying. Toni and Darius have been living together a little over a month, and both shared their experience so far.

Both Toni and Darius expressed that the transition has been a little challenging. The hardest part? Learning each other’s quirks, and habits around the house. For Toni “I like to cook just about every night because that’s what my parents did when I was growing up, but for him it’s tedious. e got used to eating out a lot when he was living on his own… I’m more picky than he is, it’s small  things that I didn’t know he did, like eating out of containers instead of a bowl or plate, but that’s such a small thing. It wasn’t any kind of issue, but after I asked him why he did that once, he hasn’t done it as often since.”

Darius said it is a bit challenging because they were raised differently and little things he wouldn’t have thought twice about he now has to, for example, “she doesn’t like for me to use paper towels for anything but spills. That wasn’t a thing in my household growing up. We used paper towels and napkins for dinners, spills or just to wipe our hands but if I did that here all hell would break loose (lol).”

It was interesting to interview the two about living together, sometimes their answers were unanimous, while others were different. It made me realize just how differently two people view things. I asked the couple what is something new they learned about each other. Darius said “She swears she doesn’t know how to cook but she is very detailed in the little things she does when she cooks and everything I do cooking-wise is wrong according to her.” While Toni said “He likes to cook with garlic salt. I don’t like garlic salt at all.”

No matter how long you have known someone there is always the chance of learning something new from them, even if its small. For Toni it was “how to correctly turn off the playstation without losing all the saved game.” Darius took a different approach, stating that he has learned “to have more patience and to take our time and appreciate one another.”

Both stated that this transition has not been easy, but one thing is for certain, since living together, they both agree that their connection is stronger than ever. “Every little gesture and sacrifice made to make sure you’re comfortable,

Red heart balloon floating in a blue sky. long-distance
Relationships are a lot of work, especially long-distance ones. It is hard having the one you love so far away from your reach. There has to be a lot of trust and respect to make it work.

making meals for each other, having long conversations while cuddled up on the couch, encouraging one another and physically showing affection strengthens the connection we have.”  

Relationships are a lot of work, especially long-distance ones. They have their advantages and disadvantages. Some people cannot imagine being away from their loved one for over a week. In Toni’s case, she mentioned that their relationship was long-distance from day 1, making it a bit easier. 

In order to commit to a long-distance relationship, there has to be a huge level of respect and trust involved. It requires prioritizing, a lot of patience, and love for the person you are taking the journey with. It can lead to a deeper, more meaningful connection between the couple. The long-distance eventually comes to an end once goals are fulfilled, with the support of each other. If a couple can work together through long-distance relationships, they can work through almost any obstacle together.

You Can Fake It Till You Make It; Just Not With Orgasms

Many women find it hard to achieve orgasm. Because of this, some women fake an orgasm when they are with their partner. In fact, a 2010 study found that over 50% of women reported “faking it” during sex

Some choose to fake in order to spare their partner’s feelings, stroke their partner’s ego, or get frustrated and feel like an orgasm isn’t going to happen, just wanting the sex over with. It can be embarrassing to tell your partner that you can’t get to the big O. But faking an orgasm does not address the issue at hand, and in the end will just leave you sexually frustrated, and disappointed. These are not the only consequences.

Asian woman sitting up in bed with her hands crossed with someone hiding under the sheets.
Faking oragasms will just lead to a road of frustration, and disappointment.

A Long Road of Frustration

As mentioned, the more you fake it, the more you will associate sex with disappointment. You might be able to “fake it until you make it,” but when you do, you disconnect your bodily sensations. You are basically telling your partner that what they are doing is working. This will lead them to think they are doing a great job, and if you do not fake it the next time, they will get confused and think something is wrong. This will just lead to a never-ending circle of faking it to please them. Like most things, communication is key to a healthy relationship. 

Your Partner Won’t Trust You

Some people have the ability to sense if their partner is faking it. You put your relationship at risk because you are being untruthful to your partner. Your partner will be more hurt by the deceit, and that they were unable to please you all those times. It will lead to a lack of trust in your relationship, and we all know that once trust is gone, it is hard to get it back. Your partner will forever wonder if you are faking it or not.


When a person orgasms, oxytocin is released. This hormone is the “love hormone,” which helps a person bond with their partner. When you fake an orgasm, the hormone is not released. This can build a skewed connection with your partner and eventually cause issues in the relationship. A study published in 2014 found that people who orgasmed

An asian woman and man with their backs towards each other.
When a person orgasms, they feel closer to their partner afterwards. Faking orgasms will rob you and make you feel disconnected from them.

opened up more to their partners in bed afterward than those who did not. 

Be Honest

In order to achieve an orgasm, speak up. Tell your partner what works for you, and what does not. People are not mind readers, so if they hear you moan and pretend, they continue what they believe is right. If it is hard for you to achieve an orgasm at all, then let your partner know so you don’t have to begin the faking process. Explore together so your partner can learn exactly how to help you reach an orgasm. 

Your partner just wants to please you, so why not give them the proper help to do so. They will not be upset that they couldn’t do it if you are honest. What will make them more upset is finding out you have been lying. Your partner will most likely be happier to help you reach  orgasm through communication. Break the cycle of the need to appease your lover’s ego. Take control of the bedroom. You are not doing anyone a favor when you are faking it- especially yourself. 

Open To Love, A Look Into Polyamory

Open relationships. The first thought that comes to a lot of people’s minds is, “how does that even work?” Or, “I could never!” But many others consider and even prefer the non-monogamous route. There are many things to consider in an open relationship, but most important is your partner and their feelings.

Polyamory is defined as the practice of having more than one romantic relationship at a time. It is not cheating on your current partner, but rather an agreement made between partners to have other sexual and/or emotional partners. After interviewing a full-time relationship coach for polyamorous couples, Cassie Fuller, creator and founder of A Touch of Flavor, I have come to a better understanding of polyamorous relationships, and how they work. Like all relationships, they deal with jealousy, resentment, guilt, love, boundaries, and everything in between.

Three hearts in a row in tic tac toe setting. Polyamory
Polyamory is the practice of having more than one romantic relationship at a time. People choose to be in a polyamorous relationship for different reasons.

People choose polyamory for many reasons, from strengthening their bond and the growth of their relationship, to exploring sexual diversity. However, if this is the route you want to go, do not choose it thinking it will instantly solve problems within your relationship. If you are considering a polyamorous relationship, there are many factors to consider. These factors include managing time, setting boundaries, making and sticking to agreements, and most importantly communicating clearly.

I always wondered how such a relationship worked. Did anyone get jealous? Do they split alone time? These questions and more were answered by Cassie, giving me an in-depth understanding of polyamorous relationships. Surprisingly, monogamous and polyamorous relationships share a lot of the same principles. Let’s take a look at what makes polyamory work.

Your Current Relationship Must Be In Order

Like any relationship, before deciding to jump into any serious commitment, whether marriage, having a baby, or even moving in together, your relationship must be in a good place. The same concept applies before considering a polyamorous relationship.

This point is extremely important according to Cassie, stating, “If you and your partner are having problems in other areas of your relationships, opening up your relationship IS NOT going to fix it! In fact, it may highlight those things and make them worse. If you have problems in your relationship, work on those things first before adding other people into the mix.”

Boundaries Are A Must

I assumed there were rules to help a polyamorous relationship function smoothly. So much goes into multiple relationships, that there must be mutual agreement between all parties involved.

Five different hands placed on top of each other
In order for a polyamorous relationship to work, everyone involved must have boundaries and be in agreement.

Cassie was very passionate about the idea of rules, and how to create an agreement that works for everyone. “Personal boundaries are super important. These are things you aren’t willing to do. But people confuse boundaries by putting rules on their partners. Boundaries are things you decide for yourself. You should not have rules, rules are for children, not adults. Adults make agreements that work for everyone. If you find an agreement isn’t working, you talk about what isn’t working and make a new one,” she explained.

Communication Is The Key To Success

Communication is the key to success for pretty much everything in life. If you want a raise, you communicate it to your boss with supporting reasons. If you want your spouse to understand you, communicate with each other.

Polyamorous relationships depend on communication just as much, between everyone involved. If you do not talk about what you want and need, things will go awry. If an agreement is not working with you, rather than going a different route, you must communicate it first and then work together for a new solution.

Create A Schedule

Life is already hectic with work, your relationship, friendships, children, and being as fit as possible. Creating a schedule is a must in order to survive. Being in a relationship with multiple people makes a need for time management. Once you have established boundaries within the relationships, next comes the time divvying.

Planner open on a table.
When you have more than one relationship, it is important to create a schedule. Find a way to spend time with each of your partners.

“When you have more than one partner you have to really think about time differently. As much as we have no limit to the love we can give, we do have a limited number of hours in a day,” explained Cassie. You can split the time however you want, as long as it is okay with the partners. One may really be into sports, while the other partner may not. You can enjoy different activities with each of your partners that the other/s may not necessarily have an interest in.

Jealousy Is Normal

Jealousy is a normal emotion and occurs in all relationships, including polyamorous ones. The important thing is how you handle the jealousy. We have all dealt with jealousy in our lives, whether through relationships, work, and even friends. You can choose to handle it two ways, talk about it, or make it an issue.

“Jealousy is like any other emotion. We all get angry or sad sometimes. It’s what you do with those feelings that matter,” Cassie added, “Do you talk to your partner about your feelings, needs and wants? Or do you cause an argument? It’s all about figuring out why those feelings are happening and what can be done about them.”

Loving More Than One Person Is Possible

This was something I had to inquire about. I always wondered how the dynamic worked between multiple partners, and if you love one more or less than the other. Cassie made a reference about loving your children; you do not love your first child as much anymore when having a second one. The same goes for another partner.

You Want To Try It But Your Partner Doesn’t

I am sure not everyone is down to be polyamorous, but what if someone in the relationship wanted to explore it? What if the spouse did not? What happens then? I asked these questions to Cassie, and her response was spot on. While polyamory is not for everyone, some people are okay with their spouse being polyamorous while they remain monogamous. In order for this to work, they both have to be okay with it. Some partners may not be okay with their significant other seeing other people.

the back of three people. A man in the middle holding hands with women on each side of him.
Polyamory is becoming more common, and studies suggest people are becoming interested in trying it.

I couldn’t agree more with the response given. According to Cassie, “Many times someone not wanting to give this a try is scared that they are going to lose their partner. You are going to want to really discuss their concerns. But at the end of the day, if your partner is not okay with it, you can’t force them. And cheating is always a no-no! At the point where you two don’t see eye to eye on this, you have to decide if the two of you are compatible.” In the end, it is important to be compatible, and accepting of the person you are with and their choices.

Polyamory and monogamy share a lot of the same principles within a relationship. Polyamorous couples experience many loves in their life without having to choose just one. Also, it is more common than you think. A study in 2014 found that between 23-40% of men and 11-22% of women are curious to try it. In 2016, YouGov conducted a study, which found that only half of Millennials (under 30-years-old) want a completely monogamous relationship.

Open relationships are different from “standard” social expectations. But they are not wrong; they are “extraordinary in an ordinary world.” Choose whatever fits your desires and what works for both you and your partner. If you need some guidance and want to work on creating amazing non-monogamous relationships, without destroying the one you already have, I recommend reaching out to Cassie at A Touch of Flavor.

Before Sex, Open Your Mouth

No strings attached, casual, marriage, and friends with benefits are just some of the labels we hear when it comes to relationships and sex. Defining a relationship and what you are looking for is important to your partner. Communication is key to not only express what you are looking for in a relationship, but also what you are looking for in a sexual partner. Whether you are in a long term relationship, or just a one night stand, there are some things to keep in mind for a healthy relationship and sex life.


This is probably the most important aspect in your life when it comes to relationships-whether professional, sexual, or love. Do not hold back expressing exactly what you are looking for, this way the two of you are always on the same page. If you are looking just for sex, let it be known, if you are looking for something more serious, say that from the very start. The person you are considering starting a sexual relationship with may have different ideas about where this relationship is heading and being on the same page is important before you have sex.

A lot of times you will hear that a friends with benefits or casual relationship goes sour because the other person begins to want more- and that’s okay. As long as you say that things have changed and you want more then let it be known, so you can move forward together or seek the serious relationship you desire elsewhere, as long as you are open and up front about your intentions and desires.

What’s most important is making your voice heard when it comes to sex. Talk to your partner about what you like, what you are not willing to do, and what feels good of course! Having a healthy sex life can boost your immune system, your confidence, and even your metabolism.

Practice Safe Sex

Whether you choose to have no strings attached sex, are in a relationship, or are married, safe sex is crucial. Did you know that one in two sexually active people will contract an STD by the age 25? The CDC estimates that nearly 20 million new STD infections occur every year in the U.S.

It’s a lot more to think about than just an infection that you can take antibiotics for and get rid of. STDs such as HIV and AIDS can kill you, and once contracted you have it for life. Practice safe sex and use a condom with people you have casual sex with in order to protect yourself.