Valentine’s Day is next week, a holiday just as likely to cause disappointment as celebration. Watch your Facebook feed on February 14 and you’re sure to see a variety of responses. I’ve mulled this over — because honestly, I’d like to offer up something that helps — and I wonder if our expectations are a big part of the problem, whether married or single, dating or unattached.
These expectations, both spoken and silent, create an insane amount of pressure to do Valentine’s Day right. I’ve read that while women want a meal at home, men plan on taking them out to eat (obviously nobody polled me). Our Valentine’s Day will involve new floors laid in our home; attending a friend’s book signing; and maybe a night in a hotel. With the kids. Because our insurance company is paying to get us out of the way during our floor installation.
My perfect Valentine’s Day? Hula steak and fried rice at my favorite Japanese steak house plus a good movie or the Valentine’s Day thing at the High Museum.
What will I get? A hello hug and kiss and an occasional wink across the room while we scramble to move furniture for the Saturday phase of our floor install. But that’s okay.
A marriage is more than just one day.
We’ve got six days until the big (one) day, so you’ve still got time to talk expectations with your loved ones. And now we can talk about some ways to make next Wednesday a winner, no matter what we do.
If You’re Married or Have a Steady Boyfriend
What would make your perfect Valentine’s Day wonderful?
- Chocolate and roses, or another thoughtful gift (If your primary love language is receiving gifts.)
- Dinner and a movie or a play, a night on the town, or a scenic hike (If your primary love language is quality time.)
- A handwritten love letter, card, or poem (If your love primary language is words of affirmation.)
- Help with cleaning the house or taking care of the kids, while you take a nap, a hot bath, or a trip to the salon (If your primary love language is acts of service.)
- Holding hands on the couch watching a movie, or strolling through town sightseeing, arm in arm (If your primary love language is physical touch.)
- Spending it with a friend or friends who aren’t in a relationship and celebrating as a couple on another day (If you’re a great friend and your husband or boyfriend agrees to this plan.)
Which of these appeals to you? Think about it and then share it with your husband or boyfriend. Communicate your expectations, ladies, and your Valentine’s Day is more likely to be a success!
If You’re Not in a Romantic Relationship
- Make plans, in advance, with another single friend
- Organize a girls’ night out to a chick flick
- Celebrate Galentine’s Day — girlfriends’ time on February 13! — and then volunteer to babysit for a young married couple that rarely gets a date night (Be a Valentine’s Day hero and love on some kids in the process.)
- Spend a cozy evening at home with pizza and Netflix and avoid overcrowded restaurants
- Enjoy a normal day (Stay offline if you don’t want to see date night selfies on social media.)
No matter how you celebrate, don’t obsess over a Pinterest-perfect Valentine’s Day; high expectations easily lead to disappointment.
Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? Which of the above ideas appeals to you most?
” Let all that you do be done with love.”
(1 Corinthians 16:14)