The iconic “Hallmark Holiday” is coming this week and sometimes it can make people feel sad when they don’t have a romantic partner to share it with.
We should change the way we think about Valentine’s Day and how in America, we typically celebrate it as the holiday of love.
The history behind Valentine’s Day starts in medieval times. There were multiple saints with the name Valentine and they were martyrs. One legend says before before Saint Valentine was killed, he left a note for a woman with the signature “From your Valentine,” which is a phrase people still use today.
Some say Valentine’s Day was a way to commemorate the murder of the saint, while others say it was to “christianize” the pagan holiday of Lupercalia. Lupercalia was a Roman holiday where animal sacrifices were made and women would be hit with the bloody hides of these animals to ensure fertility. Then women were essentially raffled off to men, which is not ideal.
Today’s celebration is certainly less bloody (thank God), but is still too heavily focused on overspending to show off romantic love.
Last year, Americans spent over $20 billion on Valentine’s Day, buying diamond earring, boxes of chocolate, nice dinners and of course, flowers. And the projected number for 2020 is even more.
I personally think Americans overspend in an attempt to show off for social media. Being a good boyfriend isn’t correlated with how many rose petals are sprinkled on your bedspread.
I think we should change the way we think about the holiday. Let’s focus not only on our partners, if we have one but our other loved ones.
Take your friends out to dinner and let them know how much they mean to you. Call your parents and thank them for the impact they’ve had on your life. Reach out to your siblings and make plans to see them and let them know you care.
This year I won’t be spending Valentine’s Day with my boyfriend, but I’ll be seeing my little sister. We’re going to hang out, I’m going to buy her dinner, and we’re going to have a good time. We’re going to make it more of a “Galentine’s Day,” a more recent trend that emphasizes female friendship.
Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be exclusive to couples and doesn’t require a super expensive price tag to enjoy the day. Celebrate the day with everyone you love, not just a romantic partner.