You MIGHT have noticed from all the rows of heart-shaped chocolate, mass-produced red roses, and cards full of watered-down love poems, that Hallmark’s Cupid is in the air. As authentic and special as true love is, many Valentine’s Day traditions find a way to take the authenticity out and put the Cheez Whiz in.
It’s easy to scoff at this holiday when we’re single – almost satisfying to make fun of all the dumb people in love, doing their stupid traditions. But what do you do if you’re actually in love and happy? Hideout and apologize for it?
I’ve worked with many couples who scream “It’s so cliche!” when asked about their Valentine’s Day plans. They believe that by celebrating this holiday, they cheapen their relationship in some way. But as they put their noses in the air and write this day off for good, they come out looking like the Scrooge of Valentine’s Day – Vooge? St. Valooge? (I’ll work on that!)
While this choice is certainly understandable – it’s not always healthy for relationships. By crossing your arms and choosing to “sit this one out” while love is being celebrated all around you, a lot of feelings can get hurt. Even if both parties are on board, why become that couple?
The good news is, there’s always a middle ground. There are countless ways to celebrate your relationship, have a great sense of humor about this holiday, and still show your partner genuine adoration and appreciation. Below are 8 ways to take the cliche out of Valentine’s Day for couples who cringe at this commercial holiday. Try one, try all, or add to this list. We make up our own rules around here 😉
♥ Make your own darn card.
For a lot of us, cards were those things we had to read before we opened our actual present. Or they were something we shook to see if our grandparents left us any cash in the mail. But they can be quite personal and sentimental.
Unfortunately, society has evolved from having a friend help us write a poem, to a little company called Hallmark. And even though some of these cards are a whopping $5 a pop, it doesn’t feel very romantic when hundreds of others are receiving the exact same message. Make your own. The goal shouldn’t be perfection, but personalization. Think of them as the modern day love letter – which is totally romantic.
♥ Netflix and chill with a twist!
There’s something hilarious about snuggling up with your loved one and watching a movie that is the OPPOSITE of romantic – like an an old horror film. Save A Star is Born for another evening and enjoy the fun of seeing zombies, monsters, and clueless college students die a slow death in a bad scary movie like “The Cabin in the Woods.” And while you’re at it, treat yourselves to a pizza.
♥ Play opposites
If you’re both a couple of closet comedians, have a good laugh by getting each other the most cliche Valentine’s Day gifts imaginable. Make sure you’re both on the same page so there’s no confusion, then enjoy making your boo blush by delivering that lip-shaped balloon that made her cringe in the store window.
♥ Volunteer together
Find a place to get out and give back. You can do acts of service at a shelter in your area, or take the money you would have spent on a romantic dinner and donate it to your favorite cause. When you do good together, you’ll feel inspired and admire how special your partnership is.
♥ Create your own holiday
It could be six months from now or the day before or after Valentine’s Day, but have fun making up your own holiday! Create a special day to celebrate your relationship in your own unique way. After all, you’ve finally found each other.
Use this holiday to celebrate your one-of-a-kind relationship. Do you both love Star Wars? Have a marathon and spell out your love with lightsabers. Big sports fans? Buy tickets to a game or get each other matching jerseys. The best part of this holiday is that you can name it whatever you want. You’re welcome 😉
♥ Go back to grade school
Remember those boxed Valentine’s Day card kits for kids? You know, the ones that have things on them like a picture of a cartoon snail that says “I’m stuck on you.” Make sweet little notes on the back of them and hide some all over your lover’s home. In this case, the more ridiculous the better. Your partner will find them when they least expect it, causing them to stop and smile during a day that would otherwise be normal with no surprises.
♥ Romantic voiceovers
A fun addition to your Netflix night, this one is perfect for couples with a creative sense of humor. Find the most romantic scenes in movie history on YouTube, turn the volume down, and enjoy telling each other about your day. There’s nothing more entertaining than hearing Tom Cruise’s romantic monologue in Jerry Maguire replaced with something like “I forgot to take the laundry out of the dryer and now all my good shirts are wrinkley.”
♥ Double date
Meet up with another cheese-free couple and have a private party for four. Order takeout, play board games, and enjoy your partner while not feeling the pressure to make this night the most romantic in history.
The key to any of these activities is to have fun. Couples who can laugh together, last together. And if you do want to seriously celebrate on this day do it unapologetically. No matter how “cool” we become in our super adult relationships, there’s still a piece of us that’s just that little girl or boy in class who wants a special Valentine from their one true crush.
Let me know what ideas you’re going to try! And if you come up with something new, please share about it in the comment section!