There is nothing quite like the beginning of fall—we’re warming up our homes with extra blankets and candles, adjusting our routines to account for cooler temps, reevaluating our career goals that we forgot about in the summer, and dreaming about all the things we want to check off our fall bucket lists from tackling the stack of books next to our beds to going on cozy dates to the pumpkin patch. I associate all of these things with the very beginning of fall, but this year, that last one might look a little different according to this season’s dating trends.
When I think of the dating landscape this time of year, I always think of cuffing season. But this year, we are seeing an end to cuffing season as we know it and walking straight into what eharmony is dubbing “Fall Out Season”. Laurel House, an eharmony relationship expert, says that “The chilled-out summer vibe is coming to an end as individuals are getting serious about life again. Couples who are coming back from summer vacations are now reconsidering what they really need and want out of life and love.”
So, what does this mean for relationships this fall? We’re breaking down what fall’s biggest dating trends mean whether you’re happily single, dating, in a relationship, or looking for love.
1. Singles are reevaluating what type of person they want to be with
The dating renaissance at the top of this year was due to a vast majority of singles who were more willing to try dating apps, look for meet-cutes, and even expand their search for a partner outside of their own city. While the surge in singles looking for a partner in new ways made the dating pool a deep one, it almost got too deep, making daters less likely to commit, get into situationships, and now, reevaluate what they really want out of a relationship. According to House, “The holidays are around the corner, so reevaluating what type of person they want to spend those special moments with is in the back of their minds.”
2. Many singles are choosing to stay single
Since a quarter of singles are going through a breakup as we speak, they have an all-new attitude toward coupling up during colder months. Instead of cuffing season, singles are either choosing to stay single as a whole or aren’t even sure what they are looking for next, according to eharmony. Instead, you can find them coping with their heartbreak by spending time with friends and focusing on themselves for the season. TBH, we love that being a single and sufficient gal with thriving friendships is on the docket this fall.
3. If singles are actively dating, it’s mostly casual
Even though we stan a happily single girlie, we understand that sometimes they still might want to have a little fun too. Enter: casual dating. Since so many singles are just getting out of a relationship, overcoming heartbreak, and aren’t interested in anything requiring commitment, dating just for the fun of it isn’t going to be uncommon this fall. And honestly, that’s not surprising since there really isn’t a better season than fall to have a Netflix and chill ~friend~ to call. Just a word of warning though if this is your vibe this season: Situationships, as previously mentioned, are running rampant this year, so just be careful with your feelings, as being intimate with someone with no commitment can be complicated as hell.
4. Singles are reevaluating old relationships
Whether they are trying to learn from old relationships or they are wishing their ex would call to reconcile, singles are reflecting on their previous relationships now more than ever as the dating scene slows down and they are spending more time reflecting on what they really want and need out of their love life. With that said, these are the two ways we are seeing singles navigate these feelings:
Rekindling with an ex
During the dating renaissance, more people were willing to reconnect with an ex, and that’s not stopping any time soon. As singles slow down this fall, many are realizing that they aren’t ready to close the door on their relationships just yet. This may be because the “familiarity and comfort of the past relationship are more appealing than the uncertainty of starting a new relationship with someone else,” explains Minaa B., an eharmony relationship expert, or they are willing to put in more effort this time around. The good news is that “with honest conversations, couples therapy, and commitment from both partners, there is opportunity to establish a healthy and fulfilling relationship,” says Minaa.
Looking for closure
68% of those in relationships believe it’s important to get closure from an ex after a breakup to help them move on, according to eharmony. This comes as no surprise though— you can’t give your all in a new relationship if you are still hung up on an old one. So, if this is hitting close to home, and you are thinking about how you want to close out the second half of the year, whether that be happy and single or looking for love, make sure you get the closure you need so you can show up as the best version of yourself.
The ups and downs of dating and relationships are normal, so if you’re feeling uncertain about your love life going into fall, consider it a good thing. This is the best time to take a step back, spend some time with yourself and those who are closest to you, and figure out what you need out of this season and beyond as it pertains to your romantic relationships. Maybe you spend more of your time going on solo dates or maybe you do the complete opposite and rekindle an old flame—whatever that looks like for you, let this fall be the season you become confident in yourself and your relationships.