Valentine’s Day. Quick, list the first five thoughts that came to mind? I’ll show you mine, if you show me yours. Okay, you’re a little shy?  I’ll go first…

1.  Expectations.
2.  I’m single.
3.  I need a drink.
4.  Awww, romance.
5.  Make that drink a double.

The holiday of LOVE is often a double edged sword.  If you’re single, it probably feels like both edges are serrated, and you have no chance of making a clean cut. As a gal that is casually dating, Valentine’s Day is more like a blackout date. You may as well forget it exists and not even admit you know it’s February. If you’re a new couple, you’re bound to fumble a little, and you might come away let down by how little your new beau knows you.  Also as a weathered couple, you may struggle to find new and interesting ways to express your affections.

High Expectations

It’s a holiday filled with expectations unlike any other. Your love interest is obligated to wine, dine and woo the panties off of you. It’s a day that has been designed, over the years, to make a competition out of our feelings. The amount of effort your partner puts into the day is thought to be a direct projection of how much he thinks of your union, and more specifically, you. Are you starting to see how much pressure this puts on our relationships? We have taken advantage of this holiday’s theme and made it into an exhausting and often disappointing celebration. There’s an expectation of candy, flowers, dinner, booze, jewelry and undivided attention. Once you secure a date, there’s clothing decisions, shoes, getting a blow-out at the salon, and don’t forget the waxing! I’m ready for a nap and all I’m doing is writing about it. When did one day a year become a sporting event for proving your adoration for another person? Shouldn’t we be doing that everyday? Spread the chaos out, sisters.

All My Single Ladies

As a single woman, just north of my twenties, I’ve learned to calm my ego over St. Valentine’s Day. Instead, I take the opportunity to give my closest friends little tokens of my admiration and to be a naughty nuisance to them. (I like to shop at the adult stores for my most special presents.) I’ve gifted vibrators, ridiculous porn, steamy novels, and how-to books on “solo pleasures”. I think it’s EXTREMELY important to love yourself first. To my friends in relationships, I give novelty condoms (ones with flavors, warming agents, etc.) bottles of wine (or whiskey), Kama Sutra books, and lovers’ calendars. However, no matter the gift, I like to include a note about the reasons I think these people are each a god or goddess of love.

If gift giving isn’t your single girl MO, plan a girl’s night. Get dressed up and get liquored up! There’s absolutely NO reason that you should stay home alone this year. Valentine’s Day falls on Thirsty Thursday and it shouldn’t go wasted. However, I fully support YOU getting wasted. Make reservations for four, or six if you must; restaurants don’t care as long as there are asses in the seats! Hell, plan an entire weekend getaway and make bad decisions in another zip code. There are endless possibilities and you shouldn’t be wasting the night crying into your Ben and Jerry’s. Why aren’t you already Googling vacation spots?

Plan Ahead

If you’re in a relationship, I think it’s smart to share the planning. A few simple pointers to your boyfriend will help avoid an anticlimactic evening. Don’t leave it all to your lover to read your mind about how you’d like the night to go. Make suggestions: dine in or out? Fancy or casual? Flowers or chocolate? You get the idea. If you want a surprise, that’s great! Tell them but please make sure you give them a little surprise too. Something as small as whispering your dirty plans for the evening goes a long way! Everyone wants to feel special, and think of the extra consideration you’ll gain in the bedroom (or cab ride home) when you make him the center of your attention. Men eat that stuff up as much as we do!

Whatever your status, make sure to celebrate yourself on Valentine’s Day.  Please do a naked dance in front of the mirror and love everything about your body and the pleasures it can provide you and the people with whom you choose to share it. Take yourself on a trip to the adult novelty store or the lingerie boutique. (You can always shop online if you’re feeling a little embarrassed. And, of course, if you want to cash in on all of our affiliate deals.) There is no shame or guilt in your sexuality, no matter how big or small your experience level. Be a great lover to as many or as few as your comfort level stretches. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll need all 365 days on the calendar to celebrate your love life!