Help! I’m stuck in a f*ck funk and am trying to get out

Lately I have struggling with what to write about….like reaaaallly struggling. So much so that some of my friends have given me random topics to comment on in an attempt to get me motivated. Well, fear not friend-os, my single ladies survival guide to Valentine’s Day is on its way. It’s just that I’ve been feeling so lethargic and uninspired lately that my creative juices are basically at a standstill.  And it’s not even like I haven’t had any hookups to talk about. On the contrary, I saw Mr. Views of the 6ix last weekend and let me tell you his apartment was as glorious as ever. I honestly tried to take a pic of it on my way out the following morning but bailed when I heard him coming out his room.

The fact remains that besides for my disturbing apartment fetish, I couldn’t think of anything to write about. What the heck was causing my writers block? Don’t forget, I’m the girl who wrote about shaving her legs so clearly it doesn’t take a lot to get a post out of me. Well, while lying in bed staring crankily at the ceiling last night I suddenly realized the issue.

I am in a F*ck Funk.

F*ck Funk /fuk/fəNGk/

Noun: A dater’s version of the winter blues. Characterized by waning energy, lackluster affect and ambivalence toward both dating and men.

The F*ck Funk is an annual occurrence result from a failed cuffing season. When summer flings are no more than a distant memory, the days are short but feel so very long, and everyone is coupled up or too lazy to care, yup. You’ve got the makings of the F*ck Funky time of year. Now, I may not be a scientist. I can’t prove that this is a real thing or that my foul mood is correlated with a serotonin or dopamine deficiency. But hell, this is my blog, and as such I own the right to make shit up as I go. So in continuing to abuse that right, I, Dr. Samantha Jones, will suggest that based on personal experience alone, this funk is a totally legitimate thing that I can both diagnose and help treat. I know, I really am amazing.

Doctorate credentials aside, let me explain how a F*ck Funk manifests through my most recent meetup with Mr. Views. It was Friday night and I was ready to paaaarttttaaaayyyyy! Alongside some of my best friends I headed to Motionball charity gala with one goal in mind: I was gunna find me a man. Lately I have been so apathetic toward J-swipe, tinder, and hookups in general because yes, ladies and gentlemen, Samantha Jones wants a little something more. Despite all this, I was totally not “feelin it” from the moment we arrived at the gala. I felt ugly, lacked confidence and definitely didn’t want to put myself out there in front of the overwhelming number of hotties around me. I even wing-womaned for my friend so she could meet her “dream bae” but barely made an effort with his friends standing nearby. I wanted someone without trying which is how I ended up at Mr. Views.

Now we can all see where this is going and loneliness is never a good reason to hook up with someone, but against better judgment I still hit him up on my cab ride home. We actually had a great time, I’ve alluded to our great sexual chemistry, but I was really put off by our lame attempt at small talk during a post-coital cuddle sesh. We have nothing in common and it was painfully obvious to us both.

A F*ck Funk appears  when “just doing me” loses it sheen and becomes stale. I was bored of the meaningless hook ups and missing the intimacy that just doesn’t come from a 2 am booty call (shocking…). As I stared at his ceiling while his neighbors blared Sia at 8 in the FREAKING MORNING, I found myself thinking, “How did I end up here? Has my self-esteem really fallen so far that I’ll bang anyone just to feel some closeness? AM I REALLY THAT MUCH OF A CLICHÉ?”

Armed with the fear of my own banality and realization that I was on the edge of a self-esteem breakdown, I slipped back into my gala dress and said “see you later”, knowing very well he’d probably never see me again. I was in a F*ck Funk and I needed to figure out how to get my mojo back.

How to get your mojo back by Dr. S. Jones

The following is my how-to guide for beating da funk and RSVPing “No” to the pity party that has recently characterized my love life.

  1. Le Gym
    • The oldest adage in the book and for good reason. I am not by any means suggesting you need to look a certain way to be happy. I’m definitely not the skinniest person in the world but can honestly say I love myself as I am (90% of the time). HOWEVER, whether you are a size 10 or a size 2, going to the gym releases endorphins and endorphins make you happy. So get yo ass to dat spin class, simple as that.
  2. Show Gratitude
    • This is the easiest fix ever. A couple years ago Harvard published a paper proving that the best way to feel happiness is by telling someone you love how important they are to you. It’s a pretty dense read so if you don’t feel like investing the hours that I was forced to during my undergrad, you can just watch this video from Soul Pancake that highlights the awesome power gratitude really has.
  3. PUT DOWN THE NETFLIX
    • I know, Netflix is bae and we all love a Sunday afternoon binge-watching The Good Wife. But if you’re in a funk – Fk related or not – it’s important to put down the laptop and find something intrinsically motivating to do instead. For those of you without a psych background, intrinsically motivated activities are the ones that we do not because we have to or because we get something for it, but because they just feel good to do. For me that’s crafting because let’s face it, I’m an overgrown 5 year old.
  4. Grab a Kit Kat bar (and take a break)
    • Needing a break from dating is perfectly acceptable, but it does not mean you give up hope. If you need to take some time, detox and delete all your dating apps I support you entirely! Untethering your self-esteem from your phone is only a positive thing, but it should not be a permanent state. We are too damn young to give up on finding love, so if that’s what you want, then you’re probably going to have to go out there again and just try. Have some good dates, have many bad ones, have another Kit Kat! Once the burnout passes you’ll be ready to start all over once again.
  5. Fake it till you make it
    • If all else fails, act like you’re killing it and soon enough you will be. Studies have shown that even if you’re feeling sad, physically smiling leads to improved mood despite your best efforts at misery. Resting bitch face is a meme folks, not a way of life.

There you have it, my take on the undiagnosed ailment of the season. I have not shared anything revolutionary in this post, in fact this is more so a message to myself to buck up and take my own advice. Nonetheless, I want to give a shout out to all my homies who feel alone as “the most romantic day of the year” fast approaches. If you want to captain the she-man, male haters club and take a shot at lesbianism, fine. Indulge in the doldrums, depression and double baked cookie dough ice cream for the day, but not for good. In the immortal words of T-Swizzle, shake it off…spring is closer than you think.

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Our Two Cents- The Dbag Dating Guide To Cuffing Season

OurTwoSenseWelcome to the second installment of Our Two Sense, where your dating panel provides their two cents into The Dbag Guide to Cuffing Season.

Dbag Dating
Samantha
Miranda

DD-CUFFING-SEASON

The other night, I was hanging out with my girlfriends, reenacting some sad SATC-inspired scenario comprised mainly of Mirandas, when one of the Mirandas (by way of the Bronx) enriched my jargon with a beautiful expression that I previously hadn’t heard of.

Cuffing Season (via Urban Dictionary) – 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.

How apropos this is what we’re reviewing given the names of our secret identities…eh, Miranda 😉 

I still can’t believe you haven’t heard of this term….smh (shake my head).

Ok, Ok…so I only heard about this cuffing business from Miranda last week but let me tell you, the definition is spot on. All the single ladies I know, and I mean all of them are currently experiencing this seemingly existential crisis about being lonely ’round the holidays. As the weather gets colder, our need to snuggle gets bolder and bolder.

It’s human nature to start feeling this way and now there is the perfect word to describe this sensation of loneliness. The sudden need to shack up with someone can come seemingly at random, but the weather and time of year is truly to blame. Or at least, we’ll use it as an excuse 😛

Suddenly, everything fell into place. The suspiciously friendly text I recently received from a semi-ex? My own attempt to cajole a guy friend into coming over to “drink wine and cuddle”? All of these pathetic pleas have a simple, weather-related explanation, provoked by nothing other than the drop in outdoor temperature. Better yet, said vulnerability presents an excellent opportunity to turn lemons into some mighty fine pisco sours and score a Cuffing Buddy to cuddle up to all winter long!

With the exception of Mr. Netflix and Chill Out, I haven’t experienced many visits from boyfriends past as of late. However, I have definitely caught myself thinking about how exes are doing and if it’s worth reigniting an old flame for lack of better options…Can you say desperado?

Yep, it’s that raw sense of desperation that has girls flocking to the apps and websites. I, too, find myself looking harder on tinder than usual. No more casual hangouts with friends. Give me the club, give me alcohol, and give me a guy that can be mine. At least for a season anyways.

Seriously, I was tindering yesterday to the point where I actually ran out of likes. I mean come on, that only ever happens when I swipe right on everyone just to see how many likes I’d get. …Don’t act like you’ve never done that before. I guess the cuffing season phenomenon is hella real and crept up without our knowing.

And now, a few rules of conduct…

  1. Don’t be too picky.Remember that, when it comes to Cuffing Buddies, practicality is key – all you have in store for this relationship are sex and food and TV, so he must excel in at least two of these areas. I kid you not, my friend once admitted that the best relationship she ever had was with her local deli man, if only because he would bring her cherries and champagne after each shift and speak only when spoken to. Who the hell wants more than sex and food and TV anyway? Haven’t you guys ever heard of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs?

 Hmmm not sure about this one. Sure, I have definitely been a little more lenient on who gets a right swipe these days but there is a definite difference between pickiness and standards. Hooking up with someone less than ideal once or twice is one thing, but I definitely don’t want to date someone I’m not all that interested in. Relationships take work, so I you should be putting effort into the people you actually want to be with. It’s only fair to you and your guy as well.

I guess if it’s just sex and food you’re after, eh  anyone would do in a pinch. But would this satisfy those Cuffing Season blues? I don’t really think so. To me, Cuffing Season is more about ice skating and handholding than booty calls and binge-watching (though I still enjoy those too).

 My standards usually waver on any given day – it really just depends on my mood and self-esteem that day. Last week even, I did something that I wouldn’t normally do. I met up with someone at 10pm on a Sunday (screams desperation I know) for drinks. And even though by the end I was sure I wasn’t into him, I still let him make a move on me and kiss me, which grew into more of a make-out session on a dark street downtown.  Why would I let him? Well, cuffing season would be the answer to explaining the unexplainable. The need to have someone there to hold can overpower your basic instinct and ability to make a decision if you actually like him. That was my situation, anyway.

  1. Trick him into thinking you’re homey and cozy.Your goal is to exude a warm and comforting vibe, the female equivalent of a pumpkin spice latte. I recommend stopping the diet and Soul Cycle nonsense immediately – after all, who wants to hold on to a rubbery skeleton on those cold winter night? If you’re like me and can’t cook for sh*t, improvise. The other day, I took a guy I’m seeing to my friend’s house for a dinner party – four tacos later, a much happier man was sitting next to me. Suddenly, I became cozy and homey by association – wherever I go, warmth and happiness (and alcohol) follow!

This one I can get behind. I am not a romantic person but something about this time of year really gets me in the spirit of LURVE more so than Valentine’s Day or any other marketing-manufactured reason to appreciate your S.O.

Also, as someone who has been on a strict diet for the month of November, I am really looking forward to cuddling up with cocoa, chocolate and ruining all the hard work I’ve put in for the last 3 weeks. 

 Did she just say food? This would be an easy step for me to accomplish. Most of my life revolves around the world of food. If I’m not eating it, I’m thinking about it and my next opportunity to eat it. I’m sure Samantha can attest to that. YUP Food is the language of love in my eyes so I completely agree with using this as a tactic to entrap a man to becoming yours. Also, rubbery skeleton? I don’t know about all of you but I’m far from that so I’ll be chilling with my winter flubber. All I’m saying is I need my fat to keep me warm. 

  1. Add some glamour.When in doubt, look to my compatriots – despite living in the land of endless winter, Russians manage to maintain an unparalleled air of glamour via the decadent vices of fur, hard liquor, and rich cuisine. Indulge in all of those, and don’t forget to throw in some sexy lingerie to envelope those caviar-nourished curves! In fact, think of yourself as a luscious Christmas gift, covered in ribbons and ready to be unveiled.I promise you, the deli man will appreciate it. 

 Ok, maybe I’ll try spicing up my lingerie but the boy will have to work for it. If I’m a Christmas gift, then I’ll be the best god damn wrapped gift he’s ever encountered. I expect him to peel back my many layers of clothing (seductively) to even come close to reaching my bedazzled thong as the final frontier before revealing my prized possession.

 I have a feeling the only males seeing my lingerie this winter will be two little Maltese fluffballs. Who needs love when you’ve got puppy love?

  1. Explore couple activities. Warning: come December, even the gravest of cynics will feel an overwhelming urge to peruse Christmas Market sen couple and smooch passionately under the mistletoe. To which I say YOLO, ice skating with deli man it is! Just don’t forget to keep your eyes on the main prize, aka the joys of fornication.

Here we go with the ice skating! Gawd why must the holidays be so cute and fun and unavoidably relationship-y? It’s like the world turns into an ever-lasting scene from Love Actually for a couple months.

 Dayum this girl is fixated on fornication….someone needs to quench the thirst STAT.

Samantha, this girl makes us look like the most hydrated people in comparison. Her thirst level is unparalleled it would seem. These activities are super cute though, and definitely a huge part of the cuffing aspect for me. They all tie in together. Go outside, be chilly and adorable as a couple and come into the warmth hearth awaiting you to snuggle with a hot cup of cocoa. Bliss, much?

 Couldn’t agree more my friend. Except, no one could make you not look like a dehydrated camel wandering through the desert for 40 years. #sorrynotsorry

  1. Let it sizzle out organically.I once made the mistake of carrying on a cuffing season relationship way past its expiration date, while simultaneously attempting to keep it casual enough to see other people. The guy being French, the whole thing ended with a jealous rage (his) and a homicidal attempt at a Sunday Sundae party on the Seine (mine). Unless it’s the real deal, cut your losses and get out before somebody gets hurt.(Or falls off a boat. Whoops.)

 I want to read the blog post about that situation :p  

 It’s true, I don’t need something forever, just something to occupy my time for a couple dreary winter weeks. I don’t know man. If we could survive the cuffing season together, it might be worth it to try being in a legitimate relationship. Maybe it’s just me being a hopeless romantic. But, I feel like I’m in “cuffing season” pretty much all year round. Even in summer, I’m reminded of the many activities that are best done as a couple. It’s inescapable to a struggling single like myself.

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I really loved Dbag’s Dating Guide to Cuffing Season as all the rules of conduct please both you and your special someone. The only problem is finding that person that you’d so love to spoil. Having not met anyone remotely interesting lately, I have come up with an accompanying definition for Urban Dictionary:

Cuffing Season Blues: the needless, over-emotional  feelings of insecurity and loneliness associated with being single during the “most wonderful time of the year”.

At least I’ve got my dogs.