Valentine's shmaletines? When day of love is anything but for couples

Valentine's Day may set hearts aflutter for some happy couples
Valentine's Day may set hearts aflutter for some happy couples

Valentine, shmalentine!

Well, this is the attitude that some people have this Valentine's Day .

This is because while some couples may be cuddling, exchanging gifts or making reservations for dinner at exclusive restaurants, some people are having a black Valentine's because there really is nothing to celebrate.

Sowetan spoke to a few of those wishing this day would pass.

I'm single on the most romantic day of the year

This is the predicament that Jade Mothobi, a 32-year-old marketing consultant from Mahikeng, finds herself in.

"I've been single for about two years now. I used to be one of those who looked forward to the day, buying gifts for my lover and having great anticipation for what thoughtful gift I would get from them, but now I find the day just sad. It is a reminder that while others are coupled up, I'm alone."

Relationship counsellor Lethabo Ntsasa says that for those who are single on the day of love, focusing on self love is crucial.

"You could use the day as one where you celebrate yourself. Take yourself out, splurge on a gadget you have always wanted or even take yourself out to a spa for some pampering. Sometimes self love is worthy of celebrating."

I got the most unromantic gift ever

This is one that 40-year-old stay-at-home mom from the Vaal, Salome Dikganyane, can relate to.

"My husband of seven years tends to get me kitchen appliances or something for the house on Valentine's Day. I would get him something personal like watches, cologne or something that means a lot to him, but when it comes to me, he just doesn't seem to make an effort. Last year he took me and the kids to Spur. I love my kids, but Valentine's is not family day!"

Ntsasa says that communication is key.

"Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and actually ask for what you want. Some people, especially men, are very practical and cannot be thoughtful about romantic gestures or gifts. The fact that he makes an effort every year means that his heart is in the right place, he just needs directions."

My partner claims to not believe in Valentine's Day

"When I see colleagues with flowers, chocolates or gushing about how they have booked suites at hotels for Valentine's, my heart sinks. My boyfriend of three years does not believe in Valentine's and says it is the biggest marketing gimmick ever. He thinks I have made peace with it... but deep down, it hurts. I wish I could celebrate the day like other people," says Lerato, a 34-year-old sales agent from Kliptown.

Ntsasa says that in relationships, there should be compromises made, not sacrifices.

"The big mistake that Lerato made was to make her partner believe that she was OK with his stance of not believing in Valentine's. She should have stood her ground, so that a compromise could be reached. Perhaps the partner does not believe in lavish gifts. Maybe they could resort to home-made cards that express how they feel about each other, or home-cooked dinners."

My partner is a cheapskate

Sello Kobedi, a 29-year-old boilermaker from Slovoville on the West Rand, says there is an unfair gender dynamic in his relationship when it comes to Valentine's Day.

"I always go out of my way and spend money on her on the day, while in the two years we have been dating, she has gotten me a CD and last year I got nothing. She says as a man I'm supposed to spend more. It's frustrating," he says.

Ntsasa says the day is about partners celebrating each other. "If both partners have the means, then an equal effort should be made to make each other feel special... Talk to her about it, and if she persists, start reciprocating and not breaking the bank for a partner who doesn't do the same."

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