Be your own Valentine

Amanda Ngudle

Amanda Ngudle

Let's face it, if you haven't been asked to keep this evening open by now, chances are that yours will be just another night in front of the television.

If you do not decide that Jack must hit the road, you could overhaul your relationship by helping yourself first.

Women spend the first two weeks of February in search of clues that Cupid might just sharpen his arrows and send an uninspired partner to all four corners of the mall in search of the perfect present.

But living in hope and going about the relationship like a woman skating on thin ice creates strain.

"Women must learn to present themselves with their heart's desires so they get over the 'gifts' issue and deal with the relationship," says therapist Immaculate Tlakula. "Expectations create unnecessary tension."

Tlakula says many women get into relationships without any intention of contributing to it and only want to harvest what the man brings to the relationship.

"It's natural for women to want their partners to foot the bill for everything, but given women's emancipation, it's really foolish to expect things to be done purely in appreciation," she says.

She says women have to learn to give themselves the gifts they want from their partners; this might iron out some of the issues.

Some of the gifts to consider:

l Book yourself for a spa treatment. If it doesn't leave you feeling like a brand new woman it will certainly give you a fresh outlook.

l Buy yourself roses. It's a mood enhancer. Besides making your house look and smell like a queen's boudoir, it will definitely send the right message.

l Get a fine portrait of yourself painted. Ask an artist to make a fabulous portrait of you as a princess and see if the feeling rubs off.

Ask the artist to enhance the picture so that you look like an aristocrat.

l Buy your favourite CD. Nothing soothes a troubled heart like good music.

l Upgrade your phone. It will send a powerful SMS to the man who thought you were going to milk him dry.