We Should Treat Ourselves, Not Others

We have Valentine’s day which is all about treating others, but where’s the day to appreciate ourselves?


Does anyone actually like Valentine’s Day? Seriously, of all the holidays we get throughout the year, who honestly says “Valentine’s day is my favourite, I can’t wait!”? Or perhaps that’s a cynical thought to have… Either way, it’s a day that the majority of us dread. Even those in relationships often don’t celebrate it, and yet it still manages to get rammed down our throats every February.

But, what is it actually about?

It’s a commercialised holiday but to be honest, none of us really know where it’s come from. It’s believed someone called St Valentine had something to do with it but even that isn’t much more than an assumption.

Basically, we have to spend money on the person or people we’re romantically involved with as a way of telling them we love them. Why we can’t just do that in our own time is bizarre. Why we need a national commercial holiday to tell us exactly when to treat those we’re romantically associated with is odd. But the biggest confusion of all is why we have a day dedicated to treating someone else, yet no day dedicated to treating ourselves.

The closest we get to a day for ourselves is our birthday, but that tends to come with stress and we often don’t actually treat ourselves. We receive presents from others, not from ourselves, we try to fit in seeing every family member and friend in our lives, we plan and organise events but have to make sure everyone is available and happy with the arrangements. Rarely do we get a moment to ourselves on our birthday, and rarely do we buy ourselves a treat just for being us.

“The closest we get to a day for ourselves is our birthday, but that tends to come with stress and we often don’t actually treat ourselves”

There is a running ‘joke’ that if you’re single on Valentines day, it’ll be depressing and lonely. But why? Single people actually have the ability to completely ignore the existence of the day, while people in relationships are pressured everywhere they go to feel the love. In fact, people seem to be so against Valentines Day, an anti-Valentines trend has cropped up. It’s gotten so much traction that even Pinterest has got involved.

If we want to treat someone, we will. That’s our prerogative, that’s our choice to do so when we please, and when we can afford to – which usually isn’t in the first two months of the year. We don’t need adverts shoving red glittery hearts in our faces, and we certainly don’t need ‘jokes’ towards people who are single – usually by choice, and if not, have some sympathy for goodness sake.

But the idea of having a holiday all about treating someone else when we don’t have a single day in the year dedicated to treating ourselves is quite frankly ridiculous. The thought of buying ourselves something nice, giving ourselves a day off and simply appreciating ourselves is pretty radical in the current capitalist world we live in, so it’s even more important now than ever before.

Why don’t we swap Valentine’s Day with a holiday all about loving ourselves, and not others? A day all about being selfish. A day where we don’t feel guilty about buying ourselves an expensive pair of boots. A day where we go to the spa, go to the cinema, stay in bed or go to the pool, whatever we want to do – but we’re doing it because we want to and we damn well deserve it.

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One thought on “We Should Treat Ourselves, Not Others

  1. In my family ,we don’t treat the people we’re romantically involved with. And I’m also confused as to why other people don’t do this, and why people don’t remember that single people also have families.

    Valentine’s day is one of two days during the year that the kids get to eat chocolate, so we buy candy for any kids in the family. I like to find snarky Valentine’s cards for my Mom (she gets a kick out of it), and I buy some chocolate for my little sisters, and any close friends.

    We really don’t treat it like a romantic holiday really. We just buy candy (and flowers) for our friends and family.

    Like

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