Valentine's Day Pressure When You're Married

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Even though you are married, Valentine’s Day can still be a big deal. If you don’t “get it right” tears are flowing, doors are slamming, and someone is definitely sleeping on the couch. The last thing you want to see is that gut-wrenching look of disappointment in your beloved’s eyes. What stress this holiday brings!

Valentine’s Day is big business. According to U.S. News and World Report, sales will reach $18.9 billion this year.

People on average will spend nearly $100 on their spouse of significant other.

As wonderful as it is to celebrate love and do something special for our life partners, the pressure is seriously on. Expectations can put a damper on the romance. Buying gifts for birthdays and holidays such as this can be like stepping in a landmine. No one wants to end up in a fight on a day like Valentine’s Day.

Is there a way to get through Valentine’s Day with your relationship unscathed?

Here are some helpful V-day ideas:

1. Make sure you are on the same page about what you expect.

We are pleased or disappointed based upon how well reality has matched our expectations. If she expects flowers delivered to work and he turns up with the heart shaped box of chocolates at home, she will feel let down. Same for him if he expected a home cooked meal and she suggests a fancy dinner out.

It is best to avoid surprises.

  They often do not come off as successfully as we would like them to. To prevent disappointment or a major mistake, have an open and clear conversation in advance about what you would both feel is an appropriate way to celebrate the day.

2. Don’t blow your budget.

Money can’t buy love and love is not measured in dollars.

It is measured in thoughtful and kind gestures, intimacy and connectedness over the course of time. Getting your wife her rare favorite plant may mean more to her than dozen long-stemmed roses. If you both decide upon a dinner at a four-star restaurant and can afford it, then go for it. But if one of you thinks this is a colossal waste of money, a picnic on the beach may work just fine. It all boils down to what you both agree on.

4. Don’t think your partner will be different just because it is Valentine’s Day.

If your spouse is never romantic, why would he or she suddenly be on February 14th? This may be something really good or really bad. If this is consistent with their behavior in a good way, then consider yourself lucky. You can wholeheartedly count on this person.  If you are consistently disappointed, then this is a much more serious problem in your marriage that needs to be addressed.  Besides, if your spouse was amazing only on your birthday and Valentine’s Day, you would be incredibly unhappy as well. 

5. Some people just don’t get it!

A person who just doesn’t get all the hoopla of Valentine’s Day should not be taken personally. It may be for a couple of reasons: negative past memories, believing that many holidays are too commercialized or having no concept of romance and never did.

6. Focus on what’s really important.

There are many ways people show their love. Some do so more outwardly and others in a more subdued and understated way. There isn’t really a right way to show love, just a way that works for you both.

What matters every day, and not just on this one particular day, is that you and your partner both feel mutually loved, valued, cared for and respected. Honoring this day is a great opportunity to do that, so don't miss it!