The Glasgow Courier - Serving Proudly As The Voice Of Valley County Since 1913

By Michelle Bigelbach
Big City Views 

Valentine's Day Expectations

 


Valentine’s Day has gained the reputation of being a “Hallmark” holiday, where the only people consistently benefiting are those in the candy, flower, dining, jewelry and card business. Those who don’t have a significant other in their life are made to feel lonely, not important and looked down upon.

If you are in a relationship, you have this expectation to make grand gestures to your significant other to prove your love to them. Men, more so, have a higher expectation to express their unconditional love by being expected to buy a bouquet of red roses, a box of chocolates, a piece of jewelry and an overpriced card with words written by someone else.

This expectation starts at a young age. As early as preschool and elementary school, the pressure was on to receive as many Valentines as possible from classmates. Parents would be up late the night before, helping their child address and put together Valentine's Day cards and candy bags for the classroom. Students would decorate a brown paper bag or mailbox to hold all of the valentines being handed out from their classmates. Students judged each other on the type of valentines they were handing out and the type of candy the parents decided to purchase for the event. A mixture of emotions would be felt at the end of the day depending upon how many valentine greetings and candy was in their bag or box, compared to others, and if their secret crush put anything in there.

Society feeds these expectations by having romantic comedies premiere on the weekend preceding the day. Jewelry stores show commercials of men proposing to their girlfriends on every network or show. Television shows have Valentine-themed episodes which often go a couple of ways; man proposes to girlfriend in an extravagant manner often involving a romantic dinner, and the ring is placed in a champagne glass which is given to the wrong table by the waiter, man doesn’t plan anything for Valentine’s Day which results in a huge fight, and potential break-up, but the results of the fight isn’t shown until the next episode, or a group of girlfriends spend the day out on the town because they don’t have a significant other and the entire episode is spent trying to find and meet that special someone.

Valentine’s Day does not need to be just a commercial holiday filled with expectations. With our fast-paced lifestyle, this day can be a reminder to anyone to slow down and take the time to tell everyone in your life how much you care and appreciate.

Pick up the phone and have a conversation (an actual conversation, not just a text message or emoji exchange) to a friend or relative you haven’t talked to in awhile.

Pick up your friend’s favorite food and drink, knock on their door and spend the evening on their couch binge watching your favorite shows.

Take time out of the day for a quick lunch with the special people in your life. If you have young children or grandchildren, spend one-on-one time making a valentine or winter craft with them.

And remember, these actions don’t have to occur once a year on this day. These actions can occur on any day of the week or month. The people in your life will appreciate the extra mile and thought you put in, no matter the day of the year.

 

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