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Valentine’s Day: The Good, The Bad & The (Really) Ugly.

Valentine’s Day has been completely over amplified as a quasi-national-holiday, and I’ve mocked the day for a long time (for reference, I wrote this a couple years back). Although this might be seen as bitter, it is in fact just what the V-day deserves. It should be a day to relish in cringe declarations of love, band together with your pals to drink too much wine and shit-talk your exes, and generally, take the piss. You might have a lovely, awful or an unremarkable one – the most important thing is that you don’t feel any pressure or guilt.

To make you feel less alone and put it all in perspective, here’s an insight into some of the lovely FGRLS community’s good, bad and ugly tales. Everything has been kept anonymous for legal reasons (I kid, I kid, just so exes don’t get pissed off).

THE GOOD

Sometime’s this day provides the perfect opportunity for self-love, romance and laughs.

“Spent single and sitting indoors; ordered myself a dominos and watched Sarah Millican – it was the best day.”

“My ex wrote me a joke-serenade and performed it with a completely straight face. Was silly and lovely.”

“Ate a wheel of cheese with the love of my life, and then we spent the rest of the night alternating trips to the bathroom. True love is being able to overlook camembert farts.”

THE BAD

These walk the line between being quite funny but in a “with hindsight” kind of way.

“I once had a girlfriend take me to the same place my ex had taken me the year before. Awkward.”

“Went ice skating, and he said he couldn’t skate. He ended up falling over and pulling me down with him. I fractured my wrist.”

“I’ve never had a Valentine’s date, ever.”

“We’d only been dating for a few months so decided to have a low-key valentine’s day. He cooked and we had a bottle of wine, with a plan to have lots of sex. About ten mins in, he came quickly, pulled out and looked down in horror. The condom he was wearing was no longer there. We spent the next 15 mins fishing around to try and retrieve it. Needless to say, the mood was killed.”

THE UGLY

If you ever needed more evidence that men are trash, this is it.

artwork by florence given

“He told me he liked the top and bottom of my body, but that the middle was a work in progress.”

“An uncle told me (a lesbian) that no man would ever take the time to get to know me or be interested in my brain if the exterior wasn’t appealing to them, and that I should lose weight. I cried myself to sleep and woke up in the middle of the night to make myself throw up. I was 17.”

“The guy I thought I was dating went to a singles night at university on valentine’s day. I went to confront him and he made me cry so much that when I was walking home I couldn’t really see where I was going. Anyway, I basically walked into a moving car – luckily it was just a nudge.”

Some of these stories won’t make you feel instantly better – they might make you lose even more hope – but what we want to illustrate is that there’s no right way to spend Valentine’s Day. Whether you’re single, in love, dating casually, sworn off romance, in a non-monogamous relationship – one thing we all have in common is the knowledge that the saturated marketing of this day is unavoidable, but how we chose to spend it is in our control. There’s no need to make it more than just another day, but if you want to go all out with personalised cookies and wear a heart-print dress, that’s also totally fine. The main thing is that you do what makes you feel good, and don’t succumb to outside pressures. You do you, baby.

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