Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
Wellness > Sex + Relationships

Don’t Fall for it! Red Flags to Avoid this Cuddle Season! 

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Towson chapter.

By Cierra Lindsey

As the weather begins to change from summer to fall, here’s a few tips for how to spot red flags this cuddle season. No matter if you’ve been eye-balling a crush, are in the “talking stage”, a committed relationship, or simply vibing out, there’s one thing we can all agree on- cuddling is a love language. And admit it, it’s one that makes us all feel warm and comforted.  

 Even though comfort can be expressed through a variety of love languages’, it’s important to make sure that we’re doing so in a healthy and safe way. It’s also important to ensure that we’re partaking in actions like cuddling, with those who equally value ourselves as important as well. What may seem like a small act to some can mean a lot to others. Sometimes it can even lead us to other conversations and actions as well. 


If you’re the type of person whose unsure about your red flags or is simply unaware to the topic, let’s break it down. A red flag is socially considered to be any act, word, or behavior that you subjectively find to be offensive or unappealing. Usually red flags can be noticed as you get to know another person, but sometimes we can’t always determine one’s character before deepening our connection with them. And that’s okay, because mistakes happen!  

 To enjoy all of your cozy cuddles this season, make sure you take the time to first get to know your cuddling partner to the best of your abilities. Don’t be shy to start the conversation for what it is that you may want, need, or desire from them. A conversation can go a long way when communicating feelings and describing satisfaction versus dissatisfaction.  

If you ever find yourself feeling uncomfortable or unsatisfied with your cuddling partner, read below some common red flags that you should heed this cuddle season- 

1. Foul and Offensive Language: 

As descriptive as this title, if your cuddling partner says something to you that you find offensive – communicate your distaste to them. Do not be afraid to voice your opinion and to take action if need be.  

People who have this red flag tend to forget to filter their language! Or are simply not people you want to be around.  

2. Body Odor:  

Nobody wants to cuddle with someone who smells or resembles poor hygiene!  

3. Unwanted Company:  

Though typically uncommon, extra parties shouldn’t be present at cuddling sessions unless discussed beforehand. This is a red flag that regards a safety matter for an intimate setting so if there’s other people present in your environment, make sure to talk to your partner. 

4. Forced Kissing: 

While cuddling can be a romantic act, kissing or any other form of physical activity shouldn’t be enforced in the moment. If you don’t want to kiss your partner or are unsure of your feelings make sure to communicate this to them.  

A partner who refuses to listen to your desires and imposes themselves on others is a huge red flag! 

5. Removing Clothing: 

If your cuddle partner decides to remove any article of clothing that you find to be excessive or leaves you feeling uncomfortable, pause your cuddling and discuss your boundaries with them. Unless communicated beforehand, no portion of clothing should be removed or feel pressured to be removed.  

This red flag may reflect a partner who isn’t sound to your boundaries.  

6. Physical Press: 

As cuddling can take shape in many different forms, it’s important to respect the intimate areas of our bodies. If you feel that your partner is invading your personal areas with their body, especially with hands or the pelvis, communicate your boundaries and ask them to either stop, give space, change positions, or come to a conclusive resolution. It’s extremely important in this situation to be clear with what it is that you want and do not want from your partner.  

A partner who brushes, rubs, or presses any part of their body onto you unwarranted is a red flag! 

Now that we’ve shared some common red flags, please spread this advice to your family and friends. Note the crucial importance of communication with your cuddle partner in all aspects of your relationship with them. Remember to never be afraid to voice your opinions or concerns and to look out for these red flags. Let’s all have a safe and fun cuddle season! 

From Prince George's County, Maryland - Ciera Lindsey is a senior at Towson University majoring in Dance, Performance, & Choreography with a minor in Mass Communications concentrated in Public Relations and Journalistic studies. In pursuit of her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, Ciera has demonstrated her passion for the arts and literature throughout her college career. She is an active member of various student groups involving poetry, national honor societies, social movements, and a leader in dance education. In her spare time, she enjoys painting, exploring, and remaining physically active! Upon graduating Ciera aspires to become a professional dancer and writer in her future for the advocacy of inclusive arts and humanities in society.