OPINION

Maturity is…Not Hating Valentine’s Day Anymore

A look at the changing attitude towards Valentine’s Day

The most commercial and contrived holiday is upon us again. Valentine’s Day.

Around the same time last year I was sat at my desk, writing about how Valentine’s Day is the worst.

Even the subtitle of the post reeked of negativity- Photo by Amandeep Ahuja

Well, not in so many words. I got my friends to give me one-sentence statements to highlight how much everyone hates Valentine’s Day.

My favourite one continues to be about Hitler- Photo by Amandeep Ahuja

But this year I seem to have woken up on the right side of the bed and realised that I don’t hate Valentine’s Day nearly as much as I hated it last year.

Last year I was listening to Jamie O’ Neal’s ‘All By Myself’ for an added dramatic effect on how Valentine’s Day is a difficult time of the year for so many. Some struggle with a recent breakup. Others, like me, object to the very existence of cute moments with beaux because I haven’t experienced many myself and have only recently realised that I don’t mind them so much.

Not to mention the role that social media plays in the spreading of negativity on Valentine’s Day. When one comes across someone else’s post about how their special someone arranged for something incredibly romantic like a beautiful dinner at the beach, one can’t help but compare that to one’s own Valentine’s Day plans. If one hasn’t had a similar experience, one becomes jealous and brings on a host of negative emotions. Like wanting to kill someone.

This commercialisation of St. Valentine’s heroic escapades to unite lovers has indeed gone too far. Everything about it is OTT. Restaurants offering discounts if you show up as a couple- surely single people are on a budget too? The love songs on the radio. The excessive use of pink and red everywhere.

Once, as a young bird of 19, the library cafe at University was decked up in pink and red and made the day quite ridiculously distracting. Swayed by everyone’s attempts at romance, I decided to try my own luck at it and ended up having one of the worst dates of my life. I won’t go so far as to say that the University pink-and-red decorations were to blame but I do feel they played a part in making me realise that I was 19 and had never had a boyfriend.

However, this year I seem to not hate it so much. Bring on the pink, I say. Let’s do a red/pink theme at work, I might suggest. My Spotify has generated a Romantic Mix for me and when I listen to it, I don’t cringe. I have been smiling shyly all morning listening to ‘I Only Have Eyes for You’- and I don’t understand why. I no longer seem to be objecting to the existence of ‘cute moments’ with a beau. Could it be? No. Is it possible? Could I be growing up?

Is this what maturity feels like? Not shaming the existence of Valentine’s Day because I haven’t got any presents. Not hating Valentine’s Day because the last Valentine’s date I had was at Subway (I spoke about this extensively on my podcast and I will mention it again because Man was a prick and pricks deserve to be shamed). Not constantly wondering if I even deserve to have someone doting over me on Valentine’s Day or indeed any other day? Letting people enjoy Valentine’s Day if that’s what makes them happy? Live and let live? Live and let die, even?

I mean, it could be, I am nearly thirty so I could well be growing up but it’s hit me at a random stage of my life and now I’m looking forward to seeing what this newfound maturity will look like during Christmas and New Year.

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Musings of a 20-something old in this big scary world. I use humour as a coping mechanism and it shows.

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Amandeep Ahuja

Amandeep Ahuja

Musings of a 20-something old in this big scary world. I use humour as a coping mechanism and it shows.

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