I hate Valentine’s Day with a passion, which is ironic because the day is meant to be all about that. It’s another “New Year’s Eve” type day of the year – filled with expectation, and yet all you feel is greatly disappointed and wonder what all the hype was about. Even now as I spot cards in the shops I shudder. That day of the year when all restaurants are filled to the brim with couples sitting between bunches of roses.
I think there’s many reasons why I don’t like Valentine’s Day, although this post would turn into an essay which wouldn’t be very enjoyable for you. One, is that I don’t like the idea that there’s only one day of the year where we HAVE to express/show our love; your partner should be doing this all the time anyway. Two, like Christmas you only end up comparing your Valentine’s to someone else’s. You think you’ve had a great day, until you see that someone else was surprised with a minibreak. It’s the one day where you feel utterly shit if you partner does nothing (unless you have a pre-arranged agreement not to celebrate it).
“He explained that he “doesn’t do flowers”, yet weeks later he bought his mum a lovely bunch for Mother’s Day”
This is exactly what happened to me last year. I’d been with my ex boyfriend for around 6 months, so I was really looking forward to our first Valentine’s together, despite the fact that I had a few niggling doubts about the relationship. I went to the shops and spent ages staring at the cards trying to pick one that represented our relationship, eventually I settled on a cute one of two pea’s which said ‘HaPEA Valentine’s Day’. Corny, I know. I couldn’t wait to see what he had up his sleeve for the day, as he told me that he was going to surprise me. I’d already told him that I’d got him a card and spent the weeks in the lead up to the day hinting that I’d like him to buy me one. He’d always said that he wasn’t a “card person”, so I was genuinely concerned that he wouldn’t get me one.
On the actual day when he gave me my card, I didn’t feel special at all as I remembered how much I’d had to badger him to get it. I told him that some flowers would have been nice, yet I got nothing as he explained that he “doesn’t do flowers”, yet weeks later he bought his mum a lovely bunch for Mother’s Day. Also there was no surprise other than the fact that he was a shit boyfriend. He went on to explain that I had no present because he basically couldn’t afford one – “I was going to take you to Paris but couldn’t afford it in the end”. I SMELT A RAT. After this we went for a walk, and on the drive there we spent the whole time arguing. Then he cooked me dinner and didn’t even try and make conversation with me. It was an awful day. And yet I’d thought that because it was Valentine’s Day, hearts and flowers would somehow come into the mix.
“The best Valentine’s Day I’ve ever had are the ones where my friends have sent me joke cards”
I’ve also experienced what should have been a perfect Valentine’s Day. Another ex boyfriend bought me a massive card telling me how much he loved me, showered me with gifts and had my dinner on the table when I came back from work (actually it was my mum that cooked it – he just bought the ingredients). I really appreciated how much effort he’d gone to and thought it was lovely, but I didn’t feel the same way he felt about me. So this Valentine’s was shit, but in another way. I really wanted to love this guy that had been so generous, but I just didn’t.
I’m coming to realise that I don’t like Valentine’s because I’ve never met the right guy. It’s all very well someone spoiling you rotten, but if you’re not in love with them then the day has no meaning or significance. If I’m quite honest the best Valentine’s I’ve ever had are the ones where my friends have sent me joke cards from a “secret admirer”. I love it when people take the piss out of the day and what it stands for.
This Valentine’s I think I’ll show myself some love. I could take a long bath and curl up with a book and hot chocolate. I’ll probably avoid all restaurants, cinemas and card shops. I’ll build a cave under my duvet and try and pretend the day isn’t happening, because it’s only happening if you celebrate it. I also want you to show yourself some love – because Valentine’s Day shouldn’t just be about romantic love.