A Show-Don't-Tell Guide to Valentine's Day

 
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“What is love?” is an age-old question that can be answered a million different ways. The meaning of love is shaped and defined by our experiences, our culture, our personal beliefs and our wants, desires, and motives. Personally, I define love in the doing, not the saying. For me, love is defined in those small moments that are so often taken for granted: letting me choose the movie, giving me your time when I need help, holding me while I cry, challenging me to be a better person, I could go on and on and on. 

Unfortunately, our culture likes to view love in an overly romantic, fairytale type of way; a love that can only be had through the purchasing of mass-marketed, stereotypical consumer goods. I read just yesterday that people, in total, spend $18.2 billion on Valentine's Day. That averages out to $136.57 per person! Gah! Now, don’t get me wrong, buying someone you love a gift can be fun and exciting, but it will not make, create or sustain love. Gift-giving should be used as an accent. It's the frosting, not the cake.

With Valentine’s Day (and for what seems like the six months leading up to it) comes pressure-filled advertisements for jewelry, chocolates, and flowers. It can be hard not to feel stress about what to get your “someone special.”  Fear not!  Today I am going to share with you 14 of my favorite ways to “show, don’t tell” your love for your significant other or your best friends!

  1. Make their favorite meal
  2. Write a love letter or a letter of appreciation
  3. Dance the night away in your living room to their favorite music
  4. Take a drive out to a quiet place and stargaze
  5. Watch their favorite movie
  6. Buy their favorite snacks and ask them about their best life experience 
  7. Make a list of things you love about them
  8. Re-create your first date or first hang-out
  9. Binge-watch their favorite Netflix show (even if you have already seen it 100 times)
  10. Sit together and make a timeline of your relationship (embarrassing moments, favorite dates, etc.)
  11. Play games, tell jokes, tickle and laugh together and goof off as much as you can
  12. Hold hands while taking a late night stroll
  13. Complete a chore on their “to-do” list
  14. Ask them what their hopes and dreams are for their future

As you can see, these suggestions take a little bit of thought, but they are full of meaning. Great love is built upon great moments, so if you and your partner enjoy celebrating Valentine’s Day, do it in a way that highlights your love for one another, not your pocketbook. As the late, great Maya Angelou once said: “People will forget what you did, people will forget what you said, but people will never forget how you made them feel." Happy Valentine's Day!

 

amy sutherland - founder

Hey all! My name is Amy Sutherland (she/her), and I have been passionate about sexual health since before I hit puberty. I've spent most of my adult life working as a writer focusing on health and wellness. More particularly, women’s reproductive health. 

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