5 Ways to Avoid Valentine's Day Insanity

Mighty Mommy is exhauted from all the Valentine's Day pressure. Follow her 5 easy tips for surviving this manufactured holiday. (Hint: It's just another day).

Cheryl Butler
3-minute read

Red paper hearts sprinkled with glitter, truffles and chocolates stuffed into heart-shaped boxes, hundreds of greeting cards touting “You are Mine.” Welcome Valentine’s Day!

Celebrating romance is certainly wonderful, but does it have to be done collectively on February 14 each year?

The origins of Valentine's Day are unclear but historians believe that it stems from the story of St. Valentine, a Roman priest who was martyred on or around February 14 in the year 270. Another theory is that St. Valentine’s Day was chosen as a day in mid-February to Christianize the pagan celebration of Lupercalia, a fertility festival.

Written Valentine’s greetings started in the 1400s and by the middle of the 1800s friends and lovers began to exchange tokens of appreciation in honor of this holiday. Greeting cards first became popular in the 1900s and now over 145 million Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged each year.

It’s no surprise that consumers point a shrewd finger at Hallmark when they learn it’s the second largest holiday for card-giving following Christmas. Even many who do enjoy expressing their love and affection struggle with yet another holiday seemingly created to benefit retail manufacturers.

If you’ve had enough of these commercial holidays that rack up the bucks, as well as pressure you to partake in the symbolic exchange of candy, trinkets, and overpriced greeting cards, here are five ways to handle February 14th.

Steer Clear of the Heart Hoopla

Just because the calendar says Valentine’s Day, doesn't mean you have to be a captive audience. When running errands, especially shopping, keep your focus on exactly the items you need and don’t be subjected to the aisles brimming over with chocolates, singing cards, and velveteen underwear. February 15 will be here soon enough and everything will be back to business as usual.

Agree in Advance Not to Celebrate

Deep down your partner may loathe Valentine's fanfare as much as you do. Sit down with your true love, your kids, the grandparents, or anyone else who you might feel obligated to spend time, effort, and money on this Valentine’s Day and state your case. Explain that you don’t need a consumer-driven holiday to feel (and show) the love.

Prepare an Anti-Valentine's Meal

If you are sick of all the heart-shaped mini quiches and pads of XOXO butter, why not cook up an anti-Valentine's Day meals using all the foods that are considered taboo on this day? Use garlic, pepper, and onion with abandon. Indulge in messy, un-sexy nachos. Drink the cider that makes you burpy and bloated. The key is to simply enjoy a great meal without the added pressure of making it romantic. 

Binge on Non-Romantic Flicks

If ever there was a perfect evening to cozy up on your couch and binge-watch your favorite comedy series or horror films, Valentine’s night (or week) is it. Avoid anything with a romantic feel and stick to a genre that will have you doubled over in laughter or hiding under your blanket. And don’t forget the popcorn!

It's Just Another Day

Celebrating the love you feel for your spouse, close friends, family, and children will never go out of style, but it shouldn’t have to be scheduled during a holiday that comes along once a year. Regardless of whether you’re part of a couple or not, February 14 can be treated like any other ordinary day. So if your patience for all the heart-shaped boxes and candy chocolates is spent, just remind yourself that it will all be in the trash tomorrow.

How do you really feel about Valentine’s Day?  Please share your thoughts in the comments section at quickanddirtytips.com/mighty-mommy, post your ideas on the Mighty Mommy Facebook page. or email me at mommy@quickanddirtytips.com

For more ideas visit Mighty Mommy at quickanddirtytips.com.

Couple tired of Valentine's Day image courtesy of Shutterstock.

All content here is for informational purposes only. This content does not replace the professional judgment of your own mental health provider. Please consult a licensed mental health professional for all individual questions and issues.

About the Author

Cheryl Butler Project Parenthood

Cheryl L. Butler was the host of the Mighty Mommy podcast for nine years from 2012 to 2021. She is the mother of eight children. Her experiences with infertility, adoption, seven pregnancies, and raising children with developmental delays have helped her become a resource on the joys and challenges of parenting. You can reach her by email.