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5 Valentine’s Day Alternatives for the Anti-Romantic

anti romantic valentines day
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Do you feel queasy at the thought of voluminous bouquets, shiny foil balloons, and cartoon hearts? You’re not alone. Not everyone is into the commercial version of Valentine’s Day, and—believe it or not—it’s 100% possible to celebrate the holiday without going down the holiday aisle at Walmart.

Valentine’s Day isn’t really about presents and public professions of affection, anyway. At its core, it’s a day for you to let the people you love know how much they mean to you. Therefore, it’s not even just a day for couples; it’s also for friends and family members. Whether you’re single or in a relationship, you can try these non-romantic, but still meaningful ideas this Valentine’s Day. I pinky promise you won’t be required to touch a single pink teddy bear if you don’t want to.

1. Show Your Fam Some Love

Growing up, my mom always gave my brothers and me gifts on Valentine’s Day. When I went off to college, I was incredibly homesick, so I decided to send my family surprise Valentines. I had so much fun choosing cards and small gifts for each of them that I turned it into a tradition. Now I do it every year, and I’ve even started doing it for my roommates, too.

All you have to do is purchase some cards and write short, heart-felt messages in them for your loved ones; you don’t have to do little gifts if you don’t want to. This is particularly fun to do if you have nieces or nephews. Honestly, I think I enjoy choosing gifts and writing cards to send in the mail to my two nieces more than they love opening them.

2. Invite the Whole Gang

Valentine’s Day dates are overrated. One of my best friends has always been anti-Valentine’s day, even though she’s been in a committed relationship for several years, so she and her boyfriend like to wrangle the whole gang together to do something fun rather than be romantic. Last year, about 20 of us hit up the horse races to gamble, drink beer, and eat corned beef sandwiches. It was starkly different from a cozy couple’s dinner, but it’s a memory we’ll all look back on with big grins (partially due to the fact my friend was iced by her boyfriend—#relationshipgoals).

Throw a potluck, find a nearby event, or plan a game night. Just choose something that your friend group will enjoy and it’ll be a success.

3. Don’t Be Basic

You could do the same thing every other couple in the world is doing, or you could do something that rings true for you and your better half. If you’re both major foodies, then spend the evening in the kitchen testing out a new recipe. If you two like to hike, then go hiking. You’ll both enjoy Valentine’s Day much more if you celebrate it in a way that fits your relationship. Don’t go out and buy chocolates if your significant other hates chocolate. Don’t do gifts at all if gifts aren’t really your thing.

The most important thing is spending the day with each other so you’re able to demonstrate your affection in a genuine way. All of that stuff in the commercials is pointless. It’s better to think of what your significant other actually likes and enjoys and to do that, even if it just means ordering in a pizza and watching The Avengers.

4. Get Sloshed at the Bar

No, I’m serious. The best way to avoid anything romantic is to go to the bar and kick it. You can invite your friends to meet you, start a ring of tequila shots, and dance the night away. There’s nothing romantic about the bar, and it’ll likely lead to a great story. Just make sure to drink responsibly and call an Uber when you’re ready to go. Oh, and try not to get into a fight with your S.O.

5. Make it a “You” Day

This is a pretty standard thing for the single population, but it can also be a good option for anyone in a relationship. Tell your person that you want to celebrate Valentine’s Day by treating yourself. The most important relationship is the one you have with yourself anyway. If this is what you want to do, then go see a movie by yourself, make your favorite meal, read your favorite book, go get your nails done, or treat yourself to a massage.  Encourage your S.O. to go have a day/night out with friends or do something that he loves, but you hate. Then it’s a win-win for everyone.

Whatever you want to do by yourself is what you should do. For me this means I want to go to a hot yoga class, take a long bubble bath, and read a good book with a large glass of malbec before I tumble into bed for 12 hours of sleep. That might not be your glass of wine (get it?), but you get the gist. You do you, girlfriend.

Follow Terra on Instagram: @terrabrown3

Last modified on February 15th, 2018

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