The Resentment and Obligation of Valentines Day

It is official. The countdown to Valentines Day has begun in our house.

Resenting Valentines Day

My daughter Lilli gets so excited about Valentines Day, as it is a day in which she can shower her friends with the cutest little pre-made Valentines Day cards signed by her–attached with a cute little note that her 5-6 year old friends can’t read–BUT HEY, it’s the thought that counts, right?

Even five year olds know the value in feeling loved and how a small little card given with love could mean so much.

As she gets older, I know that her perspective on the holiday will change and evolve through time. What I want her to remember as she grows up is what this Hallmark holiday truly symbolizes: love.

In an article I read recently, “Valentine’s Day Isn’t About Love—It’s About Obligation” by Olga Khazan in The Atlantic, she states,

“Most people agree that Valentine’s Day is a good, if somewhat random, opportunity to shower loved ones with affection. At the same time, people also seem to resent the holiday’s obligatory nature.”

Valentine’s Day Isn’t About Love—It’s About Obligation, “Olga Khazan,” The Atlantic (February 14, 2014)

What makes people resent this holiday to the point where celebrating love becomes an obligation? Why resent something that represents what we need most in this world?

The resentment could be stemmed from insecurities of not having a significant other on Valentines Day–ultimately leading some to feel unloved and alone. Resentment could also come from unmet expectations– as many of us place such high expectations on this holiday. I think we ALL have a story in which we felt disappointed and felt unloved on Valentines Day. In fact, for the longest time I resented everything that came with February 14th as I, a hopeless romantic, felt every insecurity ringing in my ears. I would subconsciously ask myself why I was alone or why I didn’t have romantic plans to celebrate the day.

Recently, however, I have come to the realization that their is so much good that comes with celebrating love.

What I want my daughter and all who feel unloved or unwanted on this holiday is the importance of self love. There is beauty in confidence and power within the understanding that you do not need a significant other to celebrate what love can do for your life.

If you are one to call Valentines Day ‘Single Awareness Day‘, or one who simply feels alone and unloved, I encourage you to treat and love yourself this February 14th. Whether that means dressing up and taking yourself out to dinner or sitting on the couch (in your comfiest PJ’s) watching Netflix while eating your favorite Ben & Jerry’s ice-cream.

You are beautiful and wonderfully made!!! Let’s us love ourselves and love one another this Valentines Day!

The Gadabouter

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