All should participate in Valentines Day traditions

Simran Devidasani

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Valentine’s Day should be regarded as a day of love, not just within the commercial definition, but for all the people that are important to us. Photo by Simran Devidasani.

As February 14 rolls around, so do the eyes of many. This acclaimed romantic holiday seems to push away those who feel as if they are “forever alone,” and prompts Facebook statuses and Tumblr memes satirizing romance and PDA. Valentines Day, however, is not only just a holiday to express love just to your significant other, but rather a day to show appreciation for family and friends as well.

Though Valentines Day originated from a Saint who united lovers during the Victorian era, it has evolved into a commercial holiday. Businesses take advantage of this and television is flooded with commercials of merchandise goods and promises to “impress your girl”. However, this concept of Valentines Day as being restricted solely to lovers is undermined by the tradition in elementary school—passing out cards and candies to your classmates. Classrooms would be covered in “You rock!” and “You’re my star!” cards, while children’s teeth would be coated in sugar.

However, as we grow from kids to teenagers, we tend to buy more into media, thus believing that Valentines Day is Singles Awareness Day. Reading magazines claiming to stir one’s romance on Valentine’s Day can brainwash teenagers into believing that having a partner to celebrate this holiday is necessary. If they do not have that other half, then they should disregard this holiday all together. Some of the problem also lies within the mentality of those from traditional backgrounds who do not believe in love at such a young age.

Many believe that it is solely a reminder of the fact that they are alone, and choose to stare at couples with envy and scorn. It’s heightened to such an extent that places throughout the country throw anti-Valentines Day parties.

This change in mindset thus deters what the true purpose of Valentines Day should be, which is showing your love for more than just your other half. This day should be ingrained with chocolate, flowers, cards, and even the annual Singing Valentines for all—or even a simple “Thanks” or “I love you”.

Instead of choosing to look at this day through a negative lens, we should use it as a day to say thanks to all that our friends and family do for us. Furthermore, teachers should part-take in this holiday by allowing Singing Valentines in their classrooms and by sending their co-workers some. We need to see that Valentines Day is what we make of it — it can be commercial and disruptive, or it can spread positivity and a sense of community. It’s up to us to choose.