- It's cuffing season.
- This could be one of the reasons October is the peak month for men to sign up to affairs site Ashley Madison.
- During the cold winter months, men may be looking for more companionship.
- It could also be because it's easier to sneak around in the dark.
- Women aren't as affected by the seasonal change, as their peak month for signups is July.
Autumn is here. The leaves are brown and falling from the trees, the days are getting colder and darker, which can only mean one thing - it's officially cuffing season.
But it's not just singletons who are looking for someone to spend the cold winter nights with. According to infidelity dating site Ashley Madison, October is the month where married men are looking for the most affairs, too.
Ashley Madison surveyed more than 1,400 members and found that over a quarter preferred to have an affair during the autumn months. Nearly a third said winter was their preference. Overall, 47% said they felt like they wanted a new relationship in the colder months.
Signup data supported the findings, with October being the peak month for male subscriptions. Dating and relationship expert Tammy Nelson, author of "The New Monogamy; Redefining Your Relationship After Infidelity," said cuffing season could be to blame.
"The 'cuffing' season is defined in the urban dictionary as that time when the cold of fall and winter trigger a desire to settle into a relationship, to be tied down, or cuffed, during the darker months," she said.
"For people who cheat, it can also mean searching for a new outside partner. It may be that the routine of back to school and early bedtimes at home creates a fear of predictability and those looking for more adventure start affairs to fight off boredom."
Women, on the other hand, mostly sign up in July. This may be because they are more inclined to cheat for sexual satisfaction, rather than having someone to snuggle up next to.
According to the work of sociologist Alicia Walker, women usually outsource their sex lives because they're not getting enough of it at home. It's not all that much to do with companionship and company because they get that from their husbands. They're not cheating because they want to leave, but to stay married.
As for men, Nelson said an affair may simply be a way of fighting off the winter blues, because people need more affection to deal with the long, gloomy days.
"Cheating may also be easier in the dark," she added. "Sneaking around is certainly harder during the bright light of summer."