Yes, V-Day is upon us, and if you’re in a relationship then it’s nice to make a bit of an effort. Even if you’re skint. Things to seem to have been getting increasingly out of hand in recent years though – and should you really feel obliged to buy perfume and underwear and jewellery and a slap up meal (especially when most of us are short of cash)?
If you look back at the original traditions, the most ancient ones were about general debauchery, fertility and revelry. Thanks, early Romans. Or if you’d like to go more in the British direction, it was all about stealing away from your everyday obligations, meeting up with your sweetheart and spending some time with them. Then the Victorians made it all chaste and pure and wholesome, but sod the Victorians.
So, taking a hint from history, it should be about spending some quality time together and having some fun. It’s not about shopping. If you’re low on funds you could:
- Make a card – personalise it as much as you like
- Buy (or pick) a single red rose or other flower
- Turn off the TV/computer/smartphone
- Set the table or put a picnic blanket on the floor
- Light a candle or two
- Make some cake or chocolate truffles, or an indoor picnic
- If you’re a good cook, get cheffing
- Open a bottle of fizzy plonk (even the really cheap stuff tastes pretty good if you chill it right down)
- Make time to listen to your other half
- Talk about their day, or plans for the future
- Offer a back rub or other massage
- Etc etc
If you hate the commercial side of things, and the related clichés and expectations/obligations then that’s fine. All you need to do is make a tiny, genuine effort to make your someone special feel appreciated (nobody likes to feel taken for granted – don’t forget).