10/02/13 - The V-Day Debate

Personally, I've never been quite sure about Valentine's Day.  And that's not because I'm bitter or because I've had my heart broken or because I'm lonely.  I just don't think it should be as big a deal as it is.  This is the first year since I've been at university that I will be single on February 14th, which means that the past two years, I have had Valentine's plans.  And the bulk of this blog post is adapted from a Facebook message I sent a depressed single friend this time last year. So I'm not down on V-Day because I'm single, let's just clear that up at the very start.

I believe that the people you love should know it every day, not just once a year.  I think most of the Valentine's Day merchandise on the market is tacky and the whole concept puts a lot of pressure on couples, and particularly on men, to make forced and expensive romantic gestures.  If your boyfriend wants to do something sweet for you on Valentine's Day, then good for both him and you...but don't make him feel like it's a necessity.  I know girls who make their partners feel so guilty if their Valentine's plans aren't as romantic or extravagant as the girl feels they deserve, and it's just not fair particularly when these couples are living on a student budget.  If you choose to go for a weekend away or a nice meal out, then great!  But if that isn't the case, the day can be just as special; a night in can be just as romantic, if not more so, than being in an overcrowded restaurant full of couples under as much pressure to have fun and make the most of the day as you are.  It's not about flash presents and sparkly cards, it's about spending time with the person you love.  And if you're single, that doesn't change!  My plans include one of my closest friends, some form of delicious food, a lot of wine and a certain man that any of the Les Mis or Gossip Girl fans amongst you will recognise...Lauren and I will be watching a bootleg YouTube version of Aaron Tveit as Link in Hairspray on Broadway, and we couldn't be happier!

This girl...
...and this guy.  V-Day sorted!

It is my opinion that Valentine's Day isn't just a consumerist day solely for lovers.  Take this opportunity (a day when spilling your feelings isn't frowned upon, a day on which we are openly encouraged to be soppy) to tell your friends and family just how much they mean to you.  Love takes all forms, so let people know how much you love them - whether it's your parents, siblings, best friends, colleagues, or even your pets.  If you're single, that doesn't mean you can't enjoy the day as much as people in relationships.  Gather your best friends and have a cosy night in, or a crazy night out.  Equally, February 14th is a day like any other, so there is no shame in not celebrating anything at all - be it your loved-up coupledom, or your singleness.  Sit at home with a DVD and a tub of Ben and Jerry's.  Catch up on some TV you've missed.  And go to bed sound in the knowledge that you haven't wasted a ludicrous amount of money on a box of chocolates which will be half-price tomorrow.

Whatever you decide to do, I hope you have a really lovely day filled with love, no matter what form it comes in.  And that's the end of the sappiness, I promise.