I imagine we’ll be marking V-Day by sitting on the settee, not touching, while I mess around on my phone and he pretends he’s not asleep.
We might splash out on a takeaway although if I get motivated the M&S Meal Deal is aways attractive and offers an appropriate level of let’s-pretend-we’ve-tried.
To be honest, we probably wouldn’t be celebrating “properly” even if we didn’t have two children running us ragged because we’re both Grinches who don’t like being told what to do by card and flower companies trying to make some extra cash in between the actual things of Christmas and Mother’s Day.
If you’re busy planning your celebrations however, and are now annoyed at me for belittling your heartfelt romantic gestures, please don’t be. It’s perfectly possible that I’m twisted because no one ever bought me chocolates, a card, breakfast in bed or flowers on the 14th Feb. (At this point the Mr is going to pipe up with “I have!” – incredulous because one year he bought me Maltesers…).
Given my lack of experience in this field of roses, I’m also uncertain about the etiquette of Valentine’s – is the onus on the man treating the woman, or should the man and woman be equally nice to each other?
And if it’s a man and man, or woman and woman, who buys the present/flowers/ card then?
And what if you are (whisper it…) S.I.N.G.L.E on Valentine’s Day? Well, there I do have an answer because every year the media does their best to make people who are single on Valentine’s Day feel better about it.
A video called Why being single is the best gift you can give yourself did the rounds a couple of years ago and every year there is an excess of articles that suggest being single is rubbish and anyone who is single on this particular day feels even more rubbish than usual, therefore they need advice to make them feel less rubbish.
I appreciate I’m not the target audience for these patronising pieces so you’re welcome to shout what do you know? at your computer screen, but some of the advice was errrr, a bit rubbish?
One of the articles I read encouraged single people to go out and buy themselves a Valentine’s Day present. Call me a coupled-up clueless fool, but the last time I checked, going and spending your own money on something for yourself, was called shopping. No?
Anyway, that’s not really my point. Contrary to popular opinion, single people are not to be pitied on Valentine’s Day. We should save our concern for parents of small children. We are the ones who suffer most and no one is making us feel better.
There is a chance the people who write How to cope on Valentine’s Day features think we have got it sorted. But it seems to me that all of the traditional methods of celebrating this occasion are most-hard-to-go areas for parents.
Romantic meals? It’s far more likely you’ll be interrupted every half-an-hour by someone needing a cuddle/ water/ wee/ to tell you something really important, until the food is cold and all parties are ready to go to sleep.
Luxury chocolates? Will only be eaten standing up behind a cupboard door. To attempt eating them anywhere else will result in them being tracked down, demanded, chewed up and spat out once reality dawns that Belgian Truffles don’t taste like chocolate buttons. The indignity will be compounded as the slimy mess and strings of saliva are deposited into your reluctantly out-stretched palm. This is better than it being wiped on the walls and you will consider whether to eat it.
Flowers are fine as long as you don’t have a small child who likes to eat them.
Candlelight? Four words – Disney Princess polyester dresses.
A lie- in? Who gets it? The argument about who is more tired/ deserving could alone spell d.i.v.o.r.c.e which surely isn’t the general goal of Valentine’s Day.
All the “romantic” stuff doesn’t just make the single people sad, it’s also a thorny rose in the heart of the average parent.
And all of this, of course, assumes that you’re still in a relationship with the person you had sex with and made another person. Eff me – imagine what V-Day is like for people who are single AND have small children?
In a pleasurable backlash against the sappy-soppy-sloppy-flowers-and-card-brigade of which I am definitely not one (although perhaps maybe possibly one day someone will buy me a card and some flowers and give me a kiss and some breakfast in bed and take the children away for a few weeks…) there are people out there who take pleasure in marking Valentine’s day in rather less typical ways.
A trip to Ikea? A £5 Superdrug voucher? A cross stitch proclaiming “Come the f*ck in, or f*ck the f*ck off”? Or perhaps some cookies with the words penis, c*nt and c*ck emblazoned across them? No?
Well, perhaps you would like to celebrate by being sick on the kitchen floor at 3am after one too many while celebrating Galantines, and gift your husband the pleasure of mopping it up?
Whatever way you look at it though, V-Day for parents is not even close to victorious. Especially when you realise that this year it lands during HALF. TERM…
Roses are dead,
Romance is too,
When you have small children,
Surviving is sometimes all you can do.