Opinion | As another February 14 comes and goes

Published by Sophia Geitner, Date: February 11, 2022
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Valentine’s Day has been one of the most controversial holidays among all genders across the nation. During the process of writing this piece, I needed some inspiration.

So, as anyone else does, I turned to my friends and asked them “How do you feel about Valentine’s Day?” Every person I asked has had a strong opinion on it one way or another.

Some say, “It’s a capitalistic holiday created to force people to spend money just to try to hookup,” while others say, “It’s meant to bring two together and celebrate the love that they have for each other.”

All of these views on one simple holiday left me thinking, what do I think Valentine’s Day is for? What side of the spectrum do I land on? So far, the answer is inconclusive.

Before, if someone were to ask me, “How do you feel about Valentine’s Day?” I’d say something along the lines of: “I hate it. Nothing ever goes right, and I’m always left disappointed and mad at the end of the night.” But why?

Yes, I’ve had bad experiences with the holiday in the past, but so have other people. Why should that deter me from future experiences, or should it?

Society puts so much pressure on people to have the most perfect and romantic Valentine’s Day. If you’re single, you’re supposed to be independent and happy alone, ready to take care of yourself with no help, until you look around and everyone else is holding each other with one hand and a bouquet in the other.

People start feeling left out and the sense of FOMO (fear of missing out) sets in, then you’re scrambling to make plans with your friends or someone off of Tinder just to feel included.

If you’re in a relationship, what do you get your partner? How much are you going to spend? How much are they going to spend? What should you both do?

The worst might be while you’re in a “situationship.” For those who don’t know, in my opinion, that’s someone you go on dates with but aren’t in an actual relationship with.

This leaves too much room for consideration. Are they going to ask you out? Should you ask them out? Are you both doing something? Should you just make plans with your friends? It leaves everything up for interpretation, and you can’t even be mad if they don’t ask you because you both aren’t dating.

In every situation, it leaves one or both people stressed and tired trying to coordinate everything for that one day. So, where does that leave us?

I know it usually leaves me with a glass of wine on the couch watching the same movie I’ve watched every Valentine’s Day for the past 4 years.

Sure, I would love to spend the day with someone special and get flowers and candy, but who says we need to celebrate at all?

If you’re stressed or overwhelmed or lonely, why not just do something that day to make yourself feel better? Take a bubble bath with a face mask on. Go play games with your friends. Even reading a book or taking a nap alone would be better than stressing about being single or being pressured to make the day perfect for your partner.

This year for Valentine’s Day, do something that is going to make you happy. If that’s going to a fancy dinner with your partner in a dress or a suit, do it. If it’s sitting alone with a rom-com and some popcorn, do it. If that means just spending quality time with people you love, whether it’s a romantic relationship or not, then go do it!

Reclaim this holiday to do whatever makes you feel loved and happy.

Maybe this is a little more of a “Hallmark” message than what I was going for, but turn the holiday of love into the holiday of self-love.

If you were like me and hate Valentine’s Day because you’re single or in a situationship, then change the way you think about it. Take the day and make it all about you. If you love Valentine’s Day because you’re in a relationship, then relax a little.

There is no point in crushing yourself under the pressure for just one day. Try to take some pressure off yourself and spend some quality with your partner and enjoy a movie at home together or just sit and talk about your Monday over some snacks.

In the grand scheme of things, every day should be about making yourself happy and showing your loved ones you appreciate them, why would February 14 change that?

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