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Relationships. A word I both dislike and have no experience with – which is probably why I dislike them. I wake up on February 14 to see all of the statuses, tweets, and tumblr posts about love and significant others. Instantly, I am in a bad mood.
If I could, I would just go back to bed. Usually, I end up babysitting on Valentine’s Day and fall into a cloud of hate, depression, and apathy. Call me a cynic – it’s true. In terms of my depression, Valentine’s Day is probably my worst day of the year. I fall into a deep cycle of thinking I am not good enough and that I am worthless.
I blame my all-around bad mood on the media, explosion of materialism, and the overall insincerity of the day. Why should a day be dedicated to pressure to spoil your significant other? Why should Valentine’s Day come with such heavy expectations?
I completely disagree with the seemingly inevitable result of the holiday – people adopt extremely unrealistic expectations for their significant other, often causing more harm than help. A recent poll found that one in ten young adults admitted to feeling lonely, insecure, depressed, or unwanted on Valentine’s Day. See? Unrealistic expectations. It’s a holiday based upon feeling in love and celebrating that, so why has 10% of the young adult population admitted to negative feelings surrounding it?
I deal with my unhappiness by blaming it on everything but myself. It’s not my fault that I’m constantly bombarded by star-crossed lovers and people with their tongues lolling out of their mouths, drool falling in a slow but constant drip, drip on Valentine’s Day. Right?
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In reality, the only person responsible for my happiness is myself. I can choose to hate this holiday, or I can choose instead to be happy for the people who have found their significant other – and be happy that I haven’t just settled. I can also choose not to go to Starbucks, and the mall, and all of the other places that will trigger my depression.
There are many possible ways that I could go about improving my Valentine’s Day. I can choose to pay for someone’s meal at a restaurant, or treat my parents to dinner. Lately I have realized that I feel elated, almost euphoric, when I do something good for another person. Instead of constantly focusing on myself, my situation, my lack of a girlfriend – me, me, me, I can focus on showing my love for the people around me.
When I stop having a “woe is me” mentality, I know that I will begin to come out of that annual February 14 depression. And I will definitely try to do that this year. I am tired of dwelling on my hate for a holiday when I could use the opportunity to help others. I’m tired of drowning in a narcissistic ocean of “I don’t have _______.”
If you hate Valentine’s Day as much as I do, then maybe changing your perspective will drastically improve how you feel about it. Since the big day hasn’t come, I can’t tell you for sure if that is true, but I can tell you that I’m now looking forward to February 14 and showing my love for others in an unconventional way.
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