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7 Reasons Why I Hate Valentine’s Day

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I’m about to write the one post you would never expect a professional matchmaker to write. So, first, let me clarify that I am actually a matchmaker. Yes, that’s my “real” job and one that I love.

This time of year is the Super Bowl of my industry – lots of events, lots of media attention, lots of new client requests. You would think I should just shut my mouth and enjoy the ride. However, I can’t…because I hate Valentine’s Day.

Hate Valentine's Day

Yes, that’s how I truly feel and let me give you the 7 reasons why…

1)  You get “penalized’ if you’re not in a relationship

Let’s face it, nothing is worse than being alone on Valentine’s Day. At least, that’s what our society tells us. Several studies suggest that being alone on Valentine’s Day can cause depression in both teenagers and adults.

2)  You get “penalized” if you’re in a relationship

I’ve been married 12 years and I still feel the stress to “make something extravagant happen” on Valentine’s Day. The pressure doesn’t come from my wife, but from everyone else who asks me (and my wife gets similar questions, too), “What big surprise are you planning for your wife this year, Paul?” “How many roses is she getting this year?” “You know girls love diamonds Paul, are you giving her some?” And on and on. The second she or I hint at doing something “low-key” on Valentine’s Day, the eyes start to roll.

3)  People make wild purchases they really can’t afford

Guess when the most profitable time of year for matchmakers and online dating sites is? That’s right, Valentine’s Day. I notice with my matchmaking agency this is the time of year when inquiries for services spike.

I’ve had many clients tell me that it was so important they attempt to find a mate that they have delayed buying a car they needed or they made other significant sacrifices – which indicates that this was not a service they could truly afford. This “holiday” drives a “desperation” on the part of many. And, as a result, price is no longer important (the sad thing is corporations know this, which brings me to my next point).

4)  We all get price-gouged

When would someone in their right mind pay $500 for a couple’s dinner, or $150 for flowers, or $75 for a box of chocolates? NEVER… except on Valentine’s Day. Nearly every business inflates their prices on Valentine’s Day. The crazy thing is, we all know about this artificial inflation and STILL line up to get ripped off.

5)  It prematurely forces people in or out of relationships

The days leading up to Valentine’s Day and the days right after are some of the busiest in the romance “game.” It probably doesn’t come as a surprise that days leading up to (and on) Valentine’s Day, are the most popular for proposals and exclusive dating commitments.

Care to guess what the days following Valentine’s Day are most popular for? That’s right, break-ups. I’m not saying these are couples would not have eventually committed to each other or broken up with each other, anyway. But, the Valentine’s Day season brings about feelings of “do or die,” and ultimatums never help a relationship.

6)  Kids are indoctrinated too young

My 3-year-old is ridiculously excited about Valentine’s Day. Almost too much so. What does he know about it? You give and get gifts. That’s it. I know this is where parents need to step in, but it’s damn hard when the country wraps up the Christmas holidays, and it feels like almost immediately after, every store inundates us with Valentine’s Day promotions. I chalk this up to corporate programming at it’s best (bringing me to my next point).

7)  Inappropriate focus on gifts

Love takes on many forms. According to Dr. Gary Chapman, we actually give and receive love in 5 ways, but if you were dropped on this planet on Valentine’s Day, you would think it’s all about gifts and nothing else. Buy this, buy this, buy this, is the theme EVERYWHERE we go and that messaging impacts us psychologically. So much so, that we’re programmed to believe gifts are the single most important tool to obtain and receive love (and it’s not – quality time is significantly more important).

 

Let me end by saying despite all this hating on Valentine’s Day I just did, I am, ironically, a romantic. However, the commercialization (of all holidays) just ain’t working. Sure, it generates billions of dollars and I’m sure some economists can trace that back to more jobs, country security, etc., BUT we’re being negatively impacted, as well. In my opinion, the corporate takeover of Valentine’s Day is doing far more harm than good for relationships today and, more importantly, relationships tomorrow.

 

How do you feel about Valentine’s Day?

Posted on: Feb 13, 2014

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288 comments
Eugenia Berg
Eugenia Berg

You know if you happen to celebrate Valentine's Day doesn't mean you aren't showing love everyday. Some of yall can really kill a buzz. I got my husband two cards, one from me and one from our twins. I got a charm for my bracelet and 3 massages. I'm straight. Now let me get back to celebrating with 3 favorite valentines.

Angelique Walker
Angelique Walker

So why not say I hate Christmas, or Mother's Day, or Father's Day? It's all commercialized, so why not hate them all? Or is this because your business is matchmaking?

Liz's Daughter
Liz's Daughter

Lets just call it a 2nd Halloween and call it a day?

Kandie Magdalene
Kandie Magdalene

#7 is also true about most of these holidays. Awesome article! Me and my love are appreciative on a regular basis so We are just gonna take advantage of the next day sales like we do every holiday(esp Christmas) It pisses my mom off but I HAVE to be realistic about my budget and long term fifinancial goals. I don't like feeling pressured to do shit no matter how "normal" big Corporations try to tell us it is

Joy Hunt
Joy Hunt

I don't believe one day set aside to show love makes sense. Every day do something to express your love.

Terry Gill
Terry Gill

Significant other, with the phones turned off, and we just spend the entire in seclusion.....

Terry Gill
Terry Gill

Valentines Day should be everyday!! Love is shown in solo many ways. And money should never be the focus. For me, Valentines day would be a day I spend at home with at signifant other

Nita Stevenson
Nita Stevenson

So true I don't celebrate Valentine's Day! It puts so much pressure on people in relationships!

Yaffa Ma
Yaffa Ma

One of your best articles, glad your expressing the truth behind Vday. It's a holiday all about the money not love.

Cynthia Dillard
Cynthia Dillard

My husband and I don't celebrate Valentine's Day. It was my decision. I hate the idea that businesses capitalize on this day. Couples should be good to each other All Year Long, not just the one day that people are told to celebrate the day which we are made to think of Love and Romance.

Danielle Watson
Danielle Watson

In agreement with you, so much so that you've inspired me to write my own article on society's dictatorship and the pressures people face when one doesn't conform. Thank you Paul :)

Jewelle Huggins
Jewelle Huggins

I just don't understand why people get so spun up over a holiday that circles around plants and sugar. And yet, there is no issue dressing in costumes and...chasing sugar. Of ALL of the "holidays", this is the only one that brings out people talking about how much they hate it. Are you not thankful 364 days of the year? Are you not aware of the Birth of Jesus the other 364 days of the year??? It's okay to celebrate other holidays, and yet this one gets so much negative drama. SMH. It's a day just like anything else, so please get over it. By the way, I'm single and have NEVER been in a relationship on Valentine's. I just don't feel the need to attach any unnecessary negative baggage to a holiday.

Denise McKeever
Denise McKeever

I agree with your 7 reasons. I also think if you love someone enough to celebrate them on 2/14... You should do that all year long, without all the commercialism.

Michelle Hutzel Berryhill
Michelle Hutzel Berryhill

I've always hated Valentine's Day for all of these reasons. All it is in my opinion is worldly, outside pressure to buy the "perfect" gift and plan the "perfect" evening to prove how much you love and care about someone. This is the way I see it: if you need a special, designated "day" to basically force you into showing your wife/husband, gf/bf, parents, kids, or whoever it may be, that you love them, then there is already a huge problem in your relationship. When you truly love and care about someone, you will make sure that they know how you feel about them every day with your words and, more importantly, by your actions and the way you treat them. Because let's be honest..if you don't already have confidence that you are loved, wanted, and valued by those who claim to do so, Valentine's Day isn't going to suddenly and magically change that.

AmberRThomas
AmberRThomas

I agree. But I feel this way about all holidays really. I usually do community service or just chill out real low key.

Nita Chaneé
Nita Chaneé

It ax heavily commercialized which distracts from the true value and meaning of celebrating all forms of love

Lety Perez
Lety Perez

You can make the difference by showing your love to your mom, dad, and friends ...... in a simple and nice way. Start loving valentine's day. It is just like mother's day, father's day, teacher's day, etc. At least you can make a day different by showing your feelings to the people that you appreciate. I do no let anybody to put pressure on me , I take what I want.

Esther Smathers
Esther Smathers

I wish everyone sooooo much happiness on this special day!!! I personally have never gotten to enjoy it but am sure to one day!!!! Paul, you have handsome Tupac eyes!!!!!!

Aziza Binti
Aziza Binti

I agree Glenda. Glad you're making your day the loving, fun day YOU choose to make it :-)

Aziza Binti
Aziza Binti

I love Valentine's day. I can get lots of gifts for lots of people and spend less than I might any other time of year on just ONE person. Inexpensive flowers, chocolates, cards it's awesome. I am single this year on Valentine's day as I have been for the last 4 years and had a BALL. My single friends and I had a Valentine's Day exchange giving out candies and children's valentine's day cards. We hung out, bowled, shot darts, danced and really had a good time. As with anything...it really is what YOU make it. We made it about love. We didn't worry about or even talk about the fact that we were all single. We even gave out gifts to others at the bowling alley and they joined in our fun. If someone overspends on this day..sorry for them. If they feel pressured, sorry for them. YOU have to make YOUR experience what it is. Eff what other people may be trying to get you to feel. In our case we chose what the day would mean to us and it meant, fun, laughter, joy and, love.

Linda Murphy
Linda Murphy

You and me both. Valentine's day was a massacre because he didn't know what true love was/is! SMH.

Stacy Dale
Stacy Dale

You sound bitter, let people enjoy their day without the negative comments.

Larrverne Gaines
Larrverne Gaines

The funny thing about V day is that I never viewed it as a "holiday"..but it's what people choose to make of it, just like any other holiday

Eva
Eva

I agree totally. I'm single and stopped feeling bad about not having a relationship on Valentine's Day. Great post Paul!

Carla Roberson
Carla Roberson

I need love to be shown daily! My friend and I don't acknowledge Valentine Day! He enjoys making me happy any given day! I will be joining you on your business trip to Miami! Thank you for asking!!!!

Bianca Butler
Bianca Butler

That's what I'm looking forward to Vernetta!

Kevin Thompson
Kevin Thompson

Only Communists and Mu-slims hate Valentines Day _ So which are you?