Valentine’s Day is a constant lightening rod for anger and off-handed dismissal and rudimentary mockery. I’ve heard all of the arguments about the evils of Valentine’s Day, and, quite frankly, none of them are valid, and worse, they’re all boring and trite. I am not the defender of Valentine’s Day, but I’ve put myself in the unenviable position of trying to convince others to not be a jerk, and just relax and have fun.
- “It’s a corporate holiday made up by corporations to sell corporate things!” So? You know you’re not obligated to actually buy things for your loved one on Valentine’s Day, right? You could exchange hand made cards, or even a simple piece of paper with an honest expression of your love for your partner (only, please, don’t use the word “lover”, that’s just gross). Also, sorry that it’s a day where you have to think about expressing genuine emotion to someone else, I know that’s painful, try drugs…on yourself, don’t be a creep.
- “I’m alone and thus, bitter about the coupled who dare celebrate their coupling!” So? Shut up, you sad recluse. I don’t celebrate Yom Kippur but I’m not anti-Semitic. I don’t care about Thursday, but I’m not vitriolic against the Norse religion (look it up). If you’re single, alone, left with nothing but lifeless sexual tools or your cold, dry hand, no one is telling you you’re a bad person incapable of love on Valentine’s Day. Just ignore it. Gather your cats in a candlelit room, fire up Netflix (not an ad) and pour yourself a comically large fishbowl of wine. No one is saying it’s sad. You’re lashing out because you are self-conscious. Just as the coupled don’t have to go out and spend exorbitant amounts at a restaurant, the single don’t have to do anything out of the norm, it’s just a normal Saturday.
- “I don’t need a special holiday to express my love to my loved one.” What do you want, some applause, your own holiday? Let’s assume that’s true. Then, by your own admission, you write down the pure expression of your emotions created by and for your loved one every day. Oh, you don’t divulge every inch, every piece of the heart-of-the-hurricane, clarified expression of emotion you feel for the person you claim to love, every day? No? So that was a hyperbolic exaggeration of how you interact with your loved one? If you’re going to lie to me, a stranger, about your love life, maybe you need a day to honestly express your love to your loved one.
- “My children were murdered on Valentine’s Day.” I–uh–That’s–Well, uh–You realize that’s not the fault of the day, right? If a horrible thing happened on a random Thursday, would you hate all Thursdays?
- “I just hate it.” Oh, no rationalization? You have now empathized with the irrationality of racism/sexism/other things you don’t want to be associated with. Enjoy that life
Those are the big ones. But there are other, smaller gripes:
- “I just started dating this person.” Go for modest flowers and offer to cook a meal for the person and offer to be the first to stuff your own insecurity.
- “I would break up with this person but…” Your fear of dying alone shouldn’t force you to stay in a desperate situation. It’s like you’re holding your own life hostage. That’s on you.
- “Society is trying to make me feel bad.” Society is trying to make you feel bad for a hundred things, and trying to create insecurities unrelated to your temporary state of being single.
- “My significant other expects a grand overture of love in the form of a grotesque expenditure of money.” Again, that’s on you. You knew you were dating a gold digger. Find someone who’s not fixated on opulence.
Turns out, anyone who actively hates Valentine’s Day, is missing the point. You are empowered. You, yes, you, are empowered. You don’t have to pay attention to every holiday because you already don’t. And getting in touch with the emotion your significant other invokes in you is inspiring and exciting and a spiritual experience. Have fun, don’t over-think it. Happy Valentine’s Day.