Valentine's Day - What do we want?

Gifts From The Heart

Copyright 2011

Erin LeFey

As a follow up to last year’s hub “Valentine’s Day: What do Women Want?”, this year I did a survey (both men and women) via a Hubpages question (random write in) and a Facebook notes question to all my friends (200+) about what they wanted for Valentine’s Day. I did a similar thing last year but only asked the women. Here are this year’s results:

ROMANCE

Everyone wants to be romanced on Valentine’s Day, right? No, as it turns out. Oh, don’t get me wrong! A good percentage of the population still dreams of that perfect evening with the man or woman they are in love with, sharing a wonderful meal, wine; receiving that fresh bouquet of flowers or balloons; and of course there is no substitute for a box of chocolates from your sweetheart. Some would like a more venturous date to remember! A hot air balloon ride or parachuting trip were some of the more aerodynamic activities mentioned as a perfect Valentine’s Day gift! I thought it best to put this year’s answers in these categories: single, married/partners and then some of the more random ideas that came up in the narratives. Enjoy!

SINGLES

From single people out there who don’t happen to be dating at the moment, Valentine’s Day can be a grim reminder of how alone a person actually feels and some may even sink into loneliness. There are a good deal of people you would not find out of the house on any given night of the year who will be in clubs and bars on Valentine’s Day, if only to escape that extra hollow sound the walls make on the night set aside for lovers. Somehow the distraction, noise, and music make up for the silence at home. Most singles would prefer just one person to share a special evening with and may turn to an internet dating site or another social network to feel connected with another person. Most would rather have a romantic friend if there is no boyfriend/girlfriend at the moment to spend the evening with. It may be just my survey, but there was not one respondent who chose to be alone on Valentine’s Day.

MARRIED/PARTNERS

Married couples, on great or good terms in their relationship, will go the extra mile to solidify the feelings between them and use this day to find time to show appreciation for each other. If the relationship is on rocky ground, Valentine’s Day can be used as a way to further drive a chasm between them in adding to their disappointments or sadness. Setting up the other partner for failure by not letting them in on your expectations is always a bad idea when trying to save a relationship.

On the other hand, married couples who have been together, let’s say, 20 years or so…the responses from them are pretty much the same too. Maybe it’s the economy, maybe it’s just the result of having spent a lot of Valentines Days together and having received the every gift imaginable or maybe it stems from a much deeper reason; but many of them are opting out of the gift exchange this year – maybe this is a trend. Alone time, that is what they are opting for. No matter what age their children are or if they have children at all, couples are recognizing the need to have a “date night”. Reconnection is so important for both men and women respondents, too many things can keep them from enjoying time alone with their spouse. So for their Valentine’s Date, it’s to be with the one they love.

Many families are going through some sort of crisis right now. I can’t say why, the reasons seem to be as varied as night and day. The stars at this point in time are aligning in a rather strange way though – if that means anything to you – according to your beliefs. But the point of the matter is that many families are finding themselves in stressful and “crossroads” places in their lives – that defining moment when they know something happening at this moment is going to make an impact on the rest of their lives. Joyful or sorrowful, big decisions or small ones – this year, this time of year is lining up for many to be a time of huge transition. Their Valentine’s wish is to make it to the other side of this “crossroads” and luckily they are banding together to do just that. They’ve put Valentine’s day on the backburner to focus on more important issues in life. Sometimes it doesn’t matter what the holiday, time on the calendar, or what the rest of the country or world is doing; you just have to pull together and face whatever it is you need to face. To these people, couples and families – I wish you all the love, peace and blessings your heart deserves and can really use at this time.

A very special young couple I know who has been in the planning stages for years would like very much to conceive a child on Valentine’s Day. Here’s hoping the magic is alive and well with them on this special day!

IDEAS From the Reponses:

1.       After putting the children to sleep, have a romantic time together – maybe a special meal together at home, just like when you used to cook just for each other or order in – some more exotic “adult” food.

2.       A lot of women wrote that the perfect treat for them would be extra time to pamper themselves with either quiet time, rest, or a spa treatment. For most, this would mean usually a partner/husband voluntarily taking extra time to do some extra chores, walking animals, feeding children/animals, etc. thereby freeing them from the responsibility but most of all – not having to ASK for it. Women want to feel appreciated for their role in the family, home, and life. Having to ask for every pleasure, gift, or indulgence takes away from the value of the time. Show your appreciation for the special woman in your life by giving her a surprise gift of time to herself to spend her way – uninterrupted bliss. Whether it’s for a bubble bath, a weekend away with the girls or an afternoon at the spa. Every relationship could use some rejuvenation! Ladies, it’s not a bad gift to turn around a give to the man in your life as well.

WISHES

                Some people answered in wishes. I think some people wish, pray, gamble, and hope for special things around any holiday and believe that somehow there is a special magic associated with it. I think it’s beautiful too, like energy forces combine on that special day because of all the good feelings and wonderful thoughts – the collective will bring positive energy to whatever we are going through.

Again, this year everyone, Save Your Money! The consensus is – we’re not all asking for gifts of the physical kind. BUT, if you are proposing marriage on Valentine’s Day – that might require some jewelry to seal the deal…

We want your time, love, thoughtfulness and tenderness.

As for me, I’m making it last all weekend with the one’s I love. My parents, friends, and some other really special people – and I haven’t bought one present yet! I say yet because I might get sucked in if I see something totally appropriate.

Happy Valentine’s Day – Everyone!

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Comments 14 comments

Mom 5 years ago

So true in all cases!


Caity 5 years ago

About gifts...

My husband is horrible at gifts. Especially compared to my dad, who used to buy me beautiful clothing, jewelry and make-up that was exactly my style when I was growing up. For our first two Valentine's Days and for our wedding my husband only got me roses, no gift. My original engagement/wedding ring was the tiniest, smallest, and cheapest-- everyone thought it was a high school promise ring, not a real wedding ring. For one of my birthdays he got me a set of Carl Sagan DVDs. Cool, but not the most romantic gift. I mean, anyone could've gotten that for me, but I count on my man to give me a romantic gift, right? For my 20th birthday, he got me the ugliest peace sign necklace. I mean, what the heck?! I started trying to spell out for him what I wanted... leaving coupons for Jared's prominently displayed in the kitchen, circling items in catalogues, etc. When he still couldn't take the hints, I had my mom call him and make suggestions for me. Then I had to deal with the guilt when he gave it to me. Of course, it's not that I am materialistic, but it's just that I want to be romanced. It's the thought that counts. I always fantasized about a man courting me and giving me romantic gifts. But I just had to come to terms with the fact that that fantasy would not be reality with my guy!

I had to overcome the fact that my husband is terrible at giving gifts, that no one will ever give me the types of gifts my dad did, and that we don't have much money for gift-giving anyway, which might have been why some of his gifts were dull or absent altogether! (Although I have a feeling that, even if we were rich, his gifts would still be kinda sucky.) Overcoming this was easier than I thought when I took a big step back, smacked myself on the head a bit, and realized how lucky I am to have someone who loves me so much, who is so devoted to me, and who treats me like a queen, opening my doors and pulling out my chairs, helping me into and out of my coat. What would a kick-ass gift matter if my man was a cheater, or didn't love me, or was never there for me? I am the luckiest girl in the world!!

So my husband and I made an agreement. Even though we are both very young, and are only approaching our third wedding anniversary, we have decided: no gifts. Not for Christmas, Valentine's Day, anniversaries, birthdays, or what have you. All we require of one another is a card, a card with a beautiful, sappy, romantic, long-winded message or poem about how much we love one another. It can be handmade or bought, as long as we write a long message that jerks tears, brings laughter, and reminds us of how loved we are. I have since become very detached to material things; they don't mean much to me. But I do treasure my husband's poems and cards, and reread them often. This Valentine's Day, I can't wait to get my card. Where chocolate goes stale, roses wilt, jewelry tarnishes, clothing goes out of style, and other gifts & gadgets break down, these cards will live on and be passed down to our children and their children, everlasting testaments to the love that exists between me and my hubby. :)


Erin LeFey profile image

Erin LeFey 5 years ago from Maryland Author

Mom, thanks for reading and agreeing! (the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, ya know!) xoxoxox


Erin LeFey profile image

Erin LeFey 5 years ago from Maryland Author

Caity, my lovely goddaughter! What a beautiful story and lesson! You are so right, in this case, to just stop the material gift giving - you can both pick out together the things that you need or want. But those precious sentiments come straight from the heart, and it doesn't sound like he has any trouble when it comes to expressing in words or deeds how much you and the relationship you share mean to him. You certainly have no problem putting your thoughts into words either - maybe you should start your own hub pages! Have a wonderful Valentine's Day sweetheart! Love to you both!


Caity 5 years ago

Hehehehe Happy Valentine's Day, my beautiful godmother!!


daydreamer13 profile image

daydreamer13 5 years ago

So well said! You're good!


Erin LeFey profile image

Erin LeFey 5 years ago from Maryland Author

Thank you daydreamer, just reporting the story Ma'am! Have a wonderful Valentine's Day!


always exploring profile image

always exploring 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

A great story. To each his own, just make it special.


Erin LeFey profile image

Erin LeFey 5 years ago from Maryland Author

Happy Valentine's Day Ruby!


epigramman profile image

epigramman 5 years ago

.......well there's a little too much pressure I think for people to live up to the one day only expectations of Valentine's Day - I prefer the old cliche that any or every day should be treated a Valentine's day for your loved one - why wait for just one day or a special occasion when you have 364 days to choose from ......

Erin, I always love your mind, you are so inquistive and full of questions - such is life and you definitely add life to your hubs - and we are so grateful for it!!!


Erin LeFey profile image

Erin LeFey 5 years ago from Maryland Author

Thank you for your thoughts Epi and how gracious you always are with your comments. What should I do without you, my muse? Happy Valentine's Day!


caity 5 years ago

*zoinks* OMG, Open mouth, insert foot! Hubby actually brought me home some chocolates and a gift today! I couldn't believe it! The gift was beautiful, I am going to email you about it... And amazingly, I was the one who only had a card and no gift to give in return... A taste of my own medicine... hahaha

Happy Valentine's Day!!!


fibo777 profile image

fibo777 5 years ago

Nice hub. Everybody needs some romance. Both men and women. Valentine day is a good opportunity to organize something special for our loved ones. Thanks a lot.


Erin LeFey profile image

Erin LeFey 5 years ago from Maryland Author

Caity,I see he still has some surprises for you! What a guy! Have a great night!

Fibo, you are right, everyone needs and deserves some romance in a love relationship. I like the fact that there is one day set aside to honor the most important relationship in our lives - even for singles, the most important relationship, at the moment (that was for my benefit :)

Happy Valentine's Day Everyone!!

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