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The Pressure of St. Valentine’s Day

valentine's day
Aww, you shouldn’t have. Really.

We’re coming up on the that great bastion of love for some, heartache for others, and general indifference for the rest. That’s right, I’m talking about *cue ominous sound effects* St. Valentine’s Day.

Before I go any further, let me say I am not inherently against Valentine’s Day. I’m all for love being celebrated between two people. However, it needs to be celebrated at all times. Love, and it’s singular day,  have become commercialized. And what’s worse, we’ve all fallen into the trap. Women tend to reap most of the benefits of the day.

And we men?  We will spend time trying to find the perfect gift for our lady.  We’ll be setting final plans for the evening, in hope of making our woman’s day, and night, a special one.  All in the name of showing (proving?) our love.  Not too many of us will take the time to examine if we’ve been putting that same energy into our relationships all year.

How do I know? A degree of stealth is needed to find this out, but for the fellas who can pull it off, ear hustling can be our best friend. Just listen wherever you may be the day after V-day.  For every woman who felt special and loved, there will be another who appreciated their guy’s effort, but wonders why he only puts energy into Valentine’s Day.  If ol’ boy took as much time the rest of the year as he does for that one day, I’d venture to say his girl would appreciate his efforts even more.  Heck, she might even not trip off the day (too much) because he’s shown his love, not just said it.

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This isn’t to disparage the fellas who want to do for their girl just because. It’s to get the ones who are lazy to be more proactive. There’s no reason, if a man wants his relationship to last, that he isn’t doing what’s necessary to ensure it does. Existing throughout the year, just to make it to V-day like it’s the big shebang is a recipe for being unfulfilled. And if the two people stop feeling engaged, then their connection begins to wane.

All this could be avoided if a man maintains some semblance of consistency throughout the year.  But, there are the times when even when he does, he *still* has to “do it up.”  This usually depends on a man’s respective lady. Does she expect him to go above and beyond because she deserves it? Is it really the thought that counts for her, or what he is willing to do? Add all this up and we get one word: pressure.

Yet, it shouldn’t be so.  Showing our love, even on the swindle day that is Valentine’s Day, should be freeing.  If we feel pressure to do something, anything, then perhaps we need to take a inventory of why we feel it.  Is Valentine’s Day a referendum on the relationship, or how we view it?  Ideally, it’s not the best way to think, especially about the day set aside for romantic relationships. It still needs be considered if a guy is feeling pressure.

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No, not everyone is going to feel, or admit to feeling pressed.  For those that do, it’s vital to differentiate if the pressure is internal, or external.  If it’s internal, then we need check ourselves and find out why.  But if it’s external, we really must ask ourselves, if Valentine’s Day is like this, what will the rest of the “major” holidays and potentially our life together be like?

Think about it.

Do you plan on celebrating Valentine’s Day?  Fellas, do you feel pressure to go above and beyond for your lady, or does she not really trip off of V-day?  Ladies, do you feel like your beau should go above what he may usually do to make you feel special?


  1. My man has his mom’s funeral tomorrow on vday. How many women could handle that…vday not being about them. Our 5th vday will be me giving him the gift of space and patience he needs to mourn without feeling internal pressure to plan something for me. vday is for suckas anyway. dont ever get me more than a hotel key. no gifts please. just buy the room and lets express that real love. that balcony love. eff all the jewelry flowers candy. something that benefits us both.

      1. Thank you.
        Im thinking from now on making this a day to honor his mother. next year get his something honoring her. just sad for him on a day like vday.
        Oh well no balcony love this vday

  2. I’m a stay home mom and my husband travels for work. He’s gone 55-65% of the time. The best gift he can give me is to bring his arse in the house and take his daughter out. That would be better than chocolates and stank roses any day. But alas, he won’t be back in town until Friday.

  3. Yikes. I happen to love Valentines day! Even as a single woman, I loved it. It's just a day to focus on how much you care for the people you love. Just like Christmas is a day to focus on Christ, Thanksgiving is a day to focus on your blessing and your birthday is a day to celebrate being alive. What could possibly be wrong with doing that? Setting a day aside to focus on being happy about something is a win/win in my book.

    Also, I'm planning this years V-day for my husband- and so far I don't feel the insane amount of pressure you describe.* IJS*
    My recent post Are You OK With Your BF Frequenting Strip Clubs?

    1. If it works for you, congrats. I’m not saying it’s always pressure, but there are instances when this is the case. My goal is to get folks to enjoy it, and not feel the restrictions that sometimes do accompany the day.

  4. Pressure busts pipes. I'm good on V-Day. I agree with the post. You should be showing love year around and not just on one specific day because commercials, cards, news anchors, etc says you should. I'm all for getting my girl flowers on any day of the year….just because she is who she is. I don't need nobody on the TV telling me how much to spend on this day to show her how much she is loved and appreciated. There are ways of doing that. Tell her she's appreciated. Complement her. The commericalization is waaaay out of hand for this 'holiday' and other holidays as well in this country. Be it internal or external, again pressure busts pipes.

  5. I was just telling my girl that I don't do V-Day because it's still close to Christmas. I always go all out for Christmas, so to turn around and do the same thing like 6 weeks later is silly. Plus if you're on your job the rest of the year, your woman won't be phased by flowers at her job or reservations at a restaurant she's never even heard of. Women want all the hoop-la because they're conditioned to want it. But if you look at the women who undoubtedly know their dude loves and adores them, it's just another day.
    My recent post We’re the same but different: a tale of 2 cultures

  6. So over Valentine's Day!!!! Good hubbies put in work the whole year. Of course, nice dinners, pretty flowers and sappy cards are good, but not when everybody else is expecting and experiencing the same thing on the same day. I like "Just Because" efforts. The surprise is nice and makes me feel special .
    My recent post Grammy’s Looks 2013

  7. I hear what alla y'all r sayin… But here's what I'm sayin: good intentions… (pave the road to hell). It would be GREA T if (most/some) people practiced celebrating their loved ones every day, but honestly,realistically, this doesn't often happen. So y not set aside one day, whichever day/s u choose, to make special? It doesn't hav to b commercial, make it your own! Do what u feel! Ijs, we often mean/intend to do things that never get done. This way, at least, u will b sure to get at least 1 day special. Also, it can suck to feel left out, & even though I hate the commercialized, mainstream, unimaginative vice that holidays have become (in general), well… I'm personally not ready to give it up… Imma just do it MY WAY!! Just my 2 cents

    1. As I said above in another comment, do what works for you. I’m all for people enjoying their holiday as it relates to them. Folks just need to not put the onus on the one day. Even if it’s every few weeks. Just let the S/O know that they’re cared for.


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