Mental Health Relationships

Surviving Valentine’s Day – By Max Hovey

Valentine’s day is a long-standing tradition, that was once celebrated between 2 people and showcased their love, commitment and appreciation towards each other. This is still the case, to an extent. However, it now seems that Valentine’s day is no longer between 2 people, it is fact between the couple and social media.

Don’t get me wrong, if I came home to a romantically candle-lit house, flowers, a cooked dinner etc – you know the vibe – I would be so moved that firstly I would probably burst into tears (because I cry at everything) and secondly I’d want to tell people how amazing my partner is. The downside now however is that when we log onto social media on this very special and intimate day, that we find our ENTIRE feed filled with roses, romance and love – none of which is aimed at us. This, just like the social media highlight reel can make us feel super left out, and like we’re missing something.

I have never celebrated Valentine’s day, never had someone buy me flowers, cook me a romantic meal or just show that general love and appreciation. So, as soon as the dreaded Valentine’s day approached, it just reminded me of that lovely fact that I was still single. Not only that, but I would see the level of love that “Insta-couples” are showing each-other and would feel super lonely. 

What can we do about it?

Stop giving a f**k

Just because you’re not in a relationship does not mean that there is anything wrong with you, you just haven’t found the right person yet. In the meantime, don’t look at other people’s relationships.

Turn your phone off

Take the day to yourself! If you feel like you can’t go onto Social Media without feeling bad for seeing Valentine’s day posts, just take some time away! Appreciate those around you.

Love yourself

Valentine’s day doesn’t just have to mean appreciating your partner, appreciate you! Treat yourself to your favourite dinner, watch your favourite film, do absolutely nothing, or do everything that makes you smile. Turn Valentine’s day into a day of self-love.

There’s nothing wrong with being single

We’ve been brought up with the idea that our life goal will involve marriage and kids, this is society. Take the time for you, there’s nothing wrong with being by yourself as it can actually be quite liberating. 

People are always going to post their Valentine’s day, it’s a day we feel loved and appreciated, and we almost want to show it off. But it does just become another part of the social media highlight reel – one which can have a negative impact on many social media users.

So, the next time you log in to social media and feel bad for seeing posts like this, think about why and do what’s within your power to make yourself feel better. Also, the next time you log in to social media and go to post these sorts of photos, think about why you’re really posting them. Is it to show appreciation for your partner, or to tell the world what you’ve got – maybe consider this a little longer?

ANYWAY – Valentine’s day is just round the corner, and however you end up spending it, I hope you feel loved, no matter where it comes from. 

For more from Max, check out his Instagram @max_hovey

Loved this? Read Max’s article on being the last single friend in the group here.