By Bria Holness

Have you ever heard of cuffin’ as a reference to someone being in a relationship? Well, if you take a little visit to Urban Dictionary and look up the word cuffin’ the phrase “when you don’t want to share a mate with anyone else” pops up as the first definition. Let’s take a harder look at the word cuffin’ and what it really means.

The term cuffin’ derives from being in handcuffs and was first used to describe when a girl or a guy wouldn’t let their significant other do anything but spend time with them. This would keep him or her from mingling or “innocently” flirting with anyone else. But as the term evolved it came to refer to being in a relationship, period. Why you may ask? The logic is that once you enter a relationship it's like putting on handcuffs and being locked away or locked to that one person. Although not everybody uses this term, many look at relationships with a derivative of this connotation.

More and more relationships aren’t looked at as magnificent bonds between two people, where they share themselves with one another to essentially make each other happy and better as individuals. Relationships are now viewed as traps of some sort —as if being in a relationship means you’re locked away, unable to live your own life.

Since when did relationships become about this? Since when did relationships mean demanding things of one another, setting rules for one another, keeping one another away from others, or even stunting their growth? Why do we use such a term to describe such a beautiful thing? I believe the term cuffin’ and all these connotations associated with it came about once people started to obtain these immature outlooks on relationships from the inside and outside. People inside the relationships stopped realizing what a relationship really is about and became more concerned with where they’re significant other was, what he or she was doing, and who he or she was with. Girlfriends and boyfriends become Robocops as opposed to significant others. As harsh as it may sound, this is a matter of insecurity and a lack of trust. Then, people on the outside looking in see this and also develop this mentality, causing people to immediately shut down the thought of ever being in a relationship.

Relationships are beautiful things that can have such wonderful impacts on people. Let’s reference back to the definition that we first started off with: cuffin’ is when you don’t want to share a mate with anyone else.” What is so wrong with this? What is so wrong with the desire of a monogamous relationship? Of loyalty and commitment to just one person? Why do we make fun of those who are happy in their relationship and aren’t afraid to show it? Because as much as some of us may not want to admit, we all desire the comfort of another human being in an intimate and passionate way and making fun is the only means as to hide that desire. Admit it, we all want someone who not only makes us happy, but also that we can make happy. We want someone we can share ourselves with effortlessly. So stop shutting relationships out because society has turned it into a lockdown. Be different and make the best of your own original relationship. Embrace it.

What do you think about relationships? Let us know in the comments below, or tweet us @jerkmagazine.