Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Why I Hate Valentine's Day

I hate Valentine’s Day. Don’t get me wrong. I think St. Valentine Day was a great guy. Whether he defied the Emperor and married soldiers, whether he was imprisoned because of his faith and sent a letter to the girl he fell in love with during his confinement, or whether Valentine actually did both of these, or even if Valentine was actually two men who did these things but died on the same day, I respect the ideals that St. Valentine represents. However, Valentine’s Day has very little to do with St. Valentine and it has become a day every year that I detest.

I’ll admit part of my distaste for the day is because I’m a single guy that has never had a significant other to share the day with. I see all these couples around me staring at each other and eating nice dinners and I feel jealous. It doesn’t help either that starting almost immediately after the confetti thrown at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Day has hit the pavement until the midnight of February 15th I am bombarded by messages and images about Valentine’s Day, the so-called “holiday” of love. If you’re married or in a relationship, congratulations to you. However, there are millions of single people that don’t have a special person in their life. We are quite aware that we are single and we don’t need the world to constantly remind us for six weeks that we’re still single. I don’t feel I have been called to a life of singlehood and would like to be married someday. That is one of the deepest desires of my heart. But so far it hasn’t been meant to be. Currently, I am content with life, but my contentment isn’t enough for the world. Every year for six weeks I’m told repeatedly in the newspapers, on the radio, on television, on the internet, and even by some family members that if I’m not in a relationship there must be something wrong with me. That’ll cause some bitter feelings and resentment. I won’t deny it.

However, that doesn’t negate that there’s something about the whole day that is artificial and trite. If you truly love someone, there shouldn’t have to be a day each year to remind you that you love that person. If you truly love a person you should be celebrating Valentine’s Day with them throughout the year and not just on one day.

But, Valentine’s Day really isn’t about love. It’s all about money and manipulating people. It changes people. Women seem especially susceptible to the seduction. Perpetuated by greeting card, confectionary, and flower companies as well as the soft-core pornographic paperback novels they read, women come to believe that if their husband or boyfriend doesn’t do something special for them on Valentine’s Day then he doesn’t love them. “He’ll send flowers. He’ll get me that ring I’ve been wanting. He’ll take me out somewhere nice for dinner. If he really cared he’ll do this or that.” Women have been seduced into connecting their self-worth with this created “holiday”. Good men want to please their wives and girlfriends and because of their love for the women in their lives they go along with it. The gifts and messages and nice dinners are meant to be an expression of love but are really just duties performed out of doting affection and the hope of a bedroom treat later.

Valentine’s Day is supposed to be about love, but by buying into what the culture has presented us, it has very little to do about love at all.

That’s why I hate Valentine’s Day.

No comments: