Growing up, Valentine’s Day was one of the greatest days of the school year. For one day, classmates tried to be kind to each other, and everyone got a valentine from everyone else. It was difficult to find a valentine that came in a box that said anything negative. In fact, I use to worry about sending something like “You rock” to someone who really didn’t. I had no idea that Valentine’s Day would become such a big deal with expensive gifts, flowers, and candy. In fact, it has become such a big deal that people who are alone on Valentine’s Day or fighting with their partner actually begin feeling depressed the week before and well into the week after Valentine’s Day. I don’t think this was ever the intention for a holiday that celebrates love. Valentine’s Day has become symbolic of whether or not you have a special person in your life. It makes no difference how loved you are all year; this holiday reminds you that you are with someone who really loves you.
Valentine’s Day certainly puts the pressure on men. The commercials are geared toward women, and they give women the illusion that, if our man really loves us, he will buy us this special diamond, bouquet of flowers, or Godiva Chocolates. I buy my man something for Valentine’s Day, but he doesn’t necessarily expect it nor do I feel that I have too. If I told him I didn’t buy him something because I wanted to save our money, he would be okay with that. But…if he forgets me on Valentine’s Day or doesn’t buy or make me something special, I am programmed to question his depth of love. This is crazy thinking, and I know it as does every woman, but we still begin hinting in early February.
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I feel bad that men are the ones who have most of the pressure for this holiday. I understand it really isn’t fair and maybe we should work to even it out a bit. Maybe we should begin gearing the advertising for men, so they will hint to their women that they need a new wrench or watch. Something stops me from taking this thought further. Valentine’s Day is an opportunity for men. It is a day when they really can rise to the occasion and make a woman feel special. It makes no difference if that woman is your wife, girlfriend, or best friend. Men have an opportunity to “shine” on this day, and it would be regretful if that opportunity was taken away.
In my effort to help men with suggestions, I put out a survey, and these were a few of suggestions women sent me. If any of them apply, here is your chance to shine. Please note these ideas do not cost a lot of money: