five reasons valentine’s day sucks

So I walk into the grocery store the other day, and this is what I see:


Good grief!!!


And I was like, “Whoa!!” I start laughing and whip out my camera. And people start staring. What’s so funny? they look at me.

What’s so funny? Can’t you see??!!

I spoke last year of my distaste for Valentine’s Day. “Roses are red, violets are blue. Sugar is sweet, and so are you . . . There. Are you happy now?” is what I said. I was single at the time, and some mistook this as a lament. “There, there,” they said. “Someday your prince will come!” But what they didn’t understand (what I didn’t make clear) is that I dislike Valentine’s Day PERIOD. Whether I’m single or in a relationship has nothing to do with it. Why?

Here are five reasons Valentine’s Day sucks:

  • It’s forced. Romance is supposed to be fun, carefree, and spontaneous. Nothing says “I love you” better than, “Oh sh_t! It’s Valentine’s Day!”
  • It’s too commercialized. Chocolate, teddy bears, roses, red and pink hearts, cheesy cards . . . Really? That shows love, people? No wonder more than 50 percent of marriages fail.
  • There’s too much pressure — on both couples and singles. When you’re single, Valentine’s Day serves only as a reminder that you’re single — that you’re (supposedly) missing out on that “other half” of life. (As if you can’t live a fulfilling life on your own . . .) When you’re in a relationship, it’s that, “Oh, sh_t! It’s Valentine’s Day!” again. “What can I do to make this year special?”
  • There’s too much pressure on guys. Roses, hearts, chocolate . . . Diamonds, necklaces, dinner . . . When was the last time you saw a Valentine’s Day ad featuring football and a movie (or whatever)? Don’t we girls owe it to our guys to show them how much we love them, too?
  • Roses die. And pink and red and candy hearts are gross. Enough said.

Still not convinced? Check out this hilarious clip from Saturday Night Live. I’m having a hard time embedding the video into this post, so please, click on the link. You won’t regret it!!

SNL Valentine’s Day Commercial


So there you have it: My thoughts on Valentine’s Day. Care to share yours?

Note:  For those who may think my thoughts harsh, I will add that my birthday falls very closely to Valentine’s Day. Incidentally, so does my boyfriend’s. That’s one reason that, for us, Valentine’s Day is a lot of pressure all at once.


Image: Mine. All Rights Reserved.

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46 thoughts

  1. Your wallet is empty
    But your heart is full
    We think you’re a sucker
    A doofus, a fool.

    Happy Valentine’s Day,
    From the Overly-Commercialized Holiday Group

  2. There are quite a few Saint Valentines knocking about, check out wikipaedia, I like this bit:-

    “The Legenda Aurea of Jacobus de Voragine, compiled about 1260 and one of the most-read books of the High Middle Ages, gives sufficient details of the saints for each day of the liturgical year to inspire a homily on each occasion. The very brief vita of St Valentine has him refusing to deny Christ before the “Emperor Claudius” in the year 280. Before his head was cut off, this Valentine restored sight and hearing to the daughter of his jailer. Jacobus makes a play with the etymology of “Valentine”, “as containing valour”.
    There are many other legends behind Saint Valentine. One is that in the 1st century AD it is said that Valentine, who was a priest, defied the order of the emperor Claudius and secretly married couples so that the husbands wouldn’t have to go to war. Soldiers were sparse at this time so this was a big inconvenience to the emperor. Another legend is that Valentine refused to sacrifice to pagan gods. Being imprisoned for this, Valentine gave his testimony in prison and through his prayers healed the jailer’s daughter who was suffering from blindness. On the day of his execution he left her a note that was signed “Your Valentine.”

    no fluffy bears and roses for having your head chopped off! :)

    • I thought about looking into the history of Valentine’s Day for this post, Fraggle, but in the end I decided my focus was Valentine’s Day today. Certainly there *is* a good reason for its origin, though. The note to the jailer’s daughter signed “Your Valentine” is awfully romantic… Thank goodness when we say “Happy Valentine’s Day” today we aren’t usually doing so on our way to the chopping block!

  3. My sentiments exactly. Your list matches mine. I can’t stand Valentine’s Day. I’d much rather get a gift and give one on some random day throughout the year, when the gift actually means something.

    • I am glad I’m not alone in my thoughts. It just seems like a really silly holiday for the most part. A friend of mine pointed out on facebook that it *was* fun when we were kids, though. I guess it’s the “grown-up” side of me that dislikes it.

  4. Friday is a Hallmark holiday, about as sturdy as the paper they use to make their cards or line their chocolate boxes. As for me, I look toward the eternal. Love that is more than a day, but for a lifetime when I love my spouse, children, family and friends as we are to love all who are made in the Imago Dei. Therefore I side with St. Augustine when he wrote:

    But what is it that I love in loving Thee? Not corporeal beauty, nor the splendor of time, nor the radiance of the light, so pleasant to our eyes, nor the sweet melodies of songs of all kinds, nor the flagrant smell of flowers, and ointments, and spices, not manna and honey, not limbs pleasant to the embracements of flesh. I love not these things when I love my God; and yet I love a certain kind of light, and sound, and fragrance, and food, and embracement in loving my God, who is the light, sound, fragrance, food, and embracement of my inner man – where that light shineth unto my soul which no place can contain, where that soundeth which time snatcheth not away, where there is a fragrance which no breeze disperseth, where there is a food which no eating can diminish, and where that clingeth which no satiety can sunder. This is what I love, when I love my God. ~The Confessions of St. Augustine, Book X

    • That’s beautiful, Jeff. And I agree. Love is more than a day. It is something eternal. And Saint Augustine says it well when he recognizes that he loves not the temporary things that we can see and touch and smell, and yet that, at the same time, the goodness of God is *in* those same things: Everything good *comes from* and *is* God. What a concept.

  5. Couldn’t possibly agree more. Valentines should just be whenever it is romantically necessary for anyone to show how much their significant other means to them. So pretty damn often. And not with insignificant gifts, cards, candies, flowers etc. Start with 3 simple words that mean everything, and then set about making life lasting memories together. Valentines is a corporate machine run by Hallmark, and FTD florists.

    • “Valentines is a corporate machine run by Hallmark, and FTD florists.” Just like every holiday nowadays, it seems. And I love your thoughts about making life-lasting memories together rather than purchasing “insignificant gifts, cards, candies, flowers, etc.” Meaningful time spent together is worth more than anything money can buy.

  6. You said it. There is not a more commercial holiday, and it seems like it kind of cheapens love & romance. I know, bah humbug, and I know on the 14th I will go to my favorite Irish pub, have me a Guinness and cry in me beer, alone, all night long :-)

    • Why, thank you very much. I’m a little nervous about the birthday. The big 3-0, yikes! But yes, Valentine’s Day is silly — for so many reasons. I’m really quite glad to hear that others agree!

  7. What? What? It’s Valentine’s day? I completely forgot! No, really, in all honestly I pay no attention to it. I don’t know why we need a commercial occasion, a single day, to express love and kindness to someone else. We can buy chocolates tomorrow. We can pluck a flower from the garden next week. We can be nice to someone any other day :)

  8. I totally agree and expect to receive nothing from my husband and give nothing to my husband. (But I am making Valentine’s Day cookies for my kids.) Wish I could watch the SNL clip (it’s blocked outside of the US).

    • Ugh. That’s what I’ve been told. That’s too bad because the clip is really funny! And yes, Valentine’s Day was fun when I was a kid. But then it had a totally different meaning. Glad others agree that (for us “grown-ups, anyway) it’s a silly holiday!

  9. Don’t even get me started how much pressure Valentines day puts on singles. I thought I was the only one who thought Valentines day sucks big time. But, here you are again. It really feels good to know I’m not alone. :)

    By the way… Belated Valentine’s day :P

    • Happy Belated Valentine’s to you, too, Allwin! And yes, you are *definitely* not alone. It makes me wonder so many of us continue to perpetuate such holidays when we really dislike them? If everyone who disliked Valentine’s Day boycotted everything Valentine’s Day-ish, could we make it go away? Haha. Just a thought.

      Anyway, hope your week is off to a great start, Allwin! :)

  10. I agree with you, but mainly on the lack of spontaneity that does everything EXCEPT invoke feelings of romance and levity. Does loving affection really have to be an obligatory, scheduled event???

    • I’m glad you agree on this point. I think it is my strongest, too. Some people have told me they like having Valentine’s Day as a special day set aside to spend more than the usual time letting their loved ones know they are loved. It certainly *is* easy to get wrapped up in the day-to-day and not make time for each other. But I agree that, as far as romance goes, an obligatory, scheduled event is antithetic.

  11. Your reason #2 sums it all up perfectly; however, it is exactly what Americans have set-up for themselves: it is the heart (pun intended) of our wealth & power, our free-enterprise competitive economy…that is now competitive overkill due to Americans gluttony for freedom in all aspects of life! LOL

    There is NOTHING romantic in the least about love expressed through material gifts pushed (forced) by mercantilism. Ironically, that is no different than allowing society to be ruled, controlled, oppressed(?) by too much government — except it is done by TOO MUCH aggressive intrusive business, historically a specific political-party’s agenda by the way.

    When you dig to the deep roots of an issue/problem, see how UN-intimate and unloving it gets? Exactly the opposite of the intended business portrayal of the holiday — Christmas, Easter, Valentines, pick any of the American “holidays”. LOL

    Great post Jess! :-)

    • Ooooh, and great response!! You are so dead on I don’t even know where to begin with a proper response. This is why my boyfriend and I chose not to celebrate Valentine’s Day this year — or ever!

      • I’m in total agreement with you and your boyfriend about over-commercialized holidays. I hope a trend of non-mercantilism and materialism takes hold in America and gains serious momentum. Otherwise, we will simply see the obese economic gap widen until major protests turn into revolutions between the Have’s and the Have-Not’s.

        I’m hoping a shift from Post-WW2 capitalism & imperialism… to socio-economic moderation — dare I say self-imposed pseudo-socialism? — and much more engaging globalization by America where it is less about “Me” (and nationalism) and more about my neighborhood & community as a whole (i.e. pre-1939) soon becomes the norm. ENOUGH with the 4-car 5,500 sq. foot palaces/homes, already, and mega-corporate strangle-holds on our economy & legislation, and executives profits when their business goes belly-up! *screams “Look at the writing on the wall America!* LOL

        But am I being realistic? Hmmmm. :-/

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