Don’t @ me: Valentine’s Day is lovely

Stop hating on Cupid, he’s trying to help

Graphic Olivia Shan

Valentine’s Day is one of my favourite holidays. I know that it might not be the most popular take, but hear me out. 

Valentine’s Day is about love, and that doesn’t have to mean just romantic love. Whether it’s you and your partner, or your best pals, it’s a great excuse to celebrate and spend quality time with the people you care most about.

Love is friendship, and who doesn’t love a Galentine’s Day? Pull out your favourite snacks, some booze, and your favourite movies or board games to have a nice night in.

Love doesn’t have to be an extravagant declaration screaming in the rain “I love you!” It can be a quiet night with good music, a couple laughs and your besties. For the first 18 years of my life, I only ever celebrated with family and friends and I loved it all the same. It’s really important to not let anyone single-shame you. 

For those of us spending it with a partner though, it’s also a great time to reconnect. Finding time to be romantic or spend intentional quality time together is a struggle. It’s easy to fall into a routine with your partner taking them for granted. Having this one day to kind of force yourselves to really be present with each other and appreciate each other is a gift. 

Despite the stereotypical Valentine’s Day, you don’t have to go out for an expensive dinner and drain your bank account on gifts and roses. It’s really just about being romantic and intentional for a day, no matter how that looks for you. 

Personally, I’ve always loved Valentine’s Day. Through being single, to now with my partner whom I love, it’s always been a favourite holiday—second only to Christmas. Back when I was single, I’d celebrate with friends, but more importantly, I always bought myself a small gift. From ridiculously sized squishmallows and extra overpriced coffees to some skincare I’ve been meaning to get but is a little pricey. 

Self-love is just as important as any other type of love. Even now, with my partner, I continue to buy myself a small gift every year as a tradition. To celebrate myself as a small act of self-love. 

Don’t let capitalism turn Valentine’s Day into a heart-shaped consumerist box and ruin it. Remember that love is something you define, and it’s a day to remind you of, and to celebrate all the love you have in your life. 

Sending you a big smooch, happy Valentine’s day! 

This article originally appeared in Volume 44, Issue 10, published February 13, 2024.