It's February 14th, and you are either entirely happy or despairingly nervous for the day ahead. Gone are the days of middle school cards and lollipops or flower exchanges. It's a new age of candlelit dinners, declarations of the heart, and sometimes a fancy gift or two. For singles, especially, it's an age of trying to avoid the commercial holiday of chalk candy hearts and oversized stuffed bears. Fear not — here are a few ways to conquer and complete your Valentine's Day — with or without that special someone.
This is a big holiday, folks
I don't care if you've been dating for less than a month, you still have to do something remotely nice. She'll be expecting it. Flowers go a long way.
If you're old pros at Valentine's Day
and want to change things up, try celebrating with everyone you love! That means grandparents, cousins, another couple, or even kids! Yes, take the alone time that you two need, but if you're looking to spread some love on this day, bring some more people!
Don't ask what your partner wants
For some couples, if you have to ask, there will be trouble. No, you don't have to read his mind and maybe she's already been hinting at what she wants to do, but play it cool and avoid appearing hopeless on this holiday. Go with something you think will work. It's the thought that counts.
There are plenty of ways to stay upbeat on Valentine's Day. First things first, don't look around at everyone else and compare. You may not know it, but everyone has their own problems. Valentine's Day just brings out the mushy gushy in everyone.
Find out what's going on in your town
Some local hotspots or clubs may have a singles night to mix and mingle. Take a friend and go speed dating — you'd be surprised how many people are out looking for love rather than avoiding it.
Remember the people close to you that you do love
Family, friends, and neighbors are especially important on this day. You don't need to have a hand to hold to appreciate the love in your life.
Watch a romantic comedy and curl up with some ice cream
Maybe this is a girl tactic, but it really works. Crying is also acceptable.
FOR THE REST
Don't know if you're in a relationship? It's complicated? You're OK with being single? Don't sweat it! Valentine's Day is a great day to determine where you stand with someone. If you get a high five from that boy you've been having that thing with, maybe it's time to move on.
We all know someone who will be miserable on this day. Why do we treat Valentine's Day like it's the plague? Reach out a hand — or an ice cream carton — and share this day with a friend.
No matter what happens, I hope you come out alive on February 15th. There are often a lot of break ups on this day too, which I recommend you avoid. If you come home empty handed, remember that your heart is never empty. If you come home with candy hearts and a Disney Valentine card, be happy. This day only happens once a year, but don't forget to show your love year round, daily, to those who matter most.
Jenna Koford is on the content team at FamilyShare. She graduated with a degree in Communications—Journalism and a minor in editing. Jenna enjoys painting and calligraphy, planning a wedding, and Pinterest and Netflix.