Love is in the air as Valentine’s Day brings couples closer together than any other time of year. However, for most, Feb. 14 might just be another day on the calendar.
Valentine’s Day is a time to celebrate those you love and hold dear. The holiday extends from just honoring relationships. Some have coined “Galentine’s Day” as a term meant to encompass the love girls have for their girl friends. Valentine’s Day can be about loving anyone, and should be.
Valentine’s Day is way more about materialism, unfortunately, than actually celebrating with people you love. There is a high level of pressure for couples to perform for each other, and while it is nice to encourage people to be extra for those they love, a lot of gifts and products made for Valentine’s Day get wasted because they are single use or just not valued.
Valentine’s Day definitely has some issues. Like some other holidays (Mother’s, Father’s, Veterans) they can be a source of a lot of stress in peoples’ lives. They emphasize a specific group or relationship, and there’s a societal expectation for you to perform some kind of obligation or gift giving. If you do not get your partner, (or mother, father, or whoever a certain holiday is celebrating) an appropriate token of your appreciation, you are labeled as a bad partner/child/person.
Valentine’s Day puts a lot of stress on people in relationships to make sure they are being a good partner, as well as on those not in relationships. For them, the holiday is a reminder that they are not in a relationship. Instead of concentrating all the lovey-dovey-ness into one day, maybe it would be better to spread it out throughout the year, and be better partners full time.
Growing up as a child and celebrating Valentine’s Day in elementary school was particularly harmful. If you did not get a lot of valentines, you would feel like none of your classmates liked you, or like the odd one out.
Valentine’s Day should be broadened as a holiday to showing love to things that bring you love, which may not be specific to a relationship. Nobody can really control if they are in a relationship this time of year, so the idea that the holiday is reserved exclusively for those in relationships will understandably cause some “Scroogeness” on Feb. 14.