It’s Valentine’s Day, as we are all aware. Between the heart-shaped boxes of chocolate lining the shelves in every store, the pop-up flower stands on every street corner and the endless stream of blabbering by those struck with Cupid’s bow, it’s a holiday that is hard to miss. It’s another corporate windfall, where couples spend too much money on gifts that would have been equally as appreciated any other day of the year and love translates into dollar signs for big businesses.
But what about those who aren’t in relationships?
Well, if you’re not celebrating Valentine’s Day today, perhaps you’ll have heard of Singles Awareness Day, the February 15th holiday that allows those without a significant other to “proudly stand up and show that it is OKAY to be single!” While I certainly don’t begrudge people the right to celebrate whatever the hell they’d like, I have to wonder: is a separate holiday for “single pride” actually all that necessary?
I’m sure those who support SAD (which… terrible acronym, whether intentional or not) will disagree with me when I say that I find the need to create an additional “holiday” out of your relationship status is just a bit silly. I think Valentine’s Day is equally as silly – after all, you shouldn’t need an excuse to treat your significant other like the king or queen he or she is. The point of loving someone is to do it daily and do it well – not to spend one day a year on overpriced merchandise that’ll get shoved in the bottom of a drawer or dumped in the recycling by week’s end.
The problem I see here is the need to define yourself in terms of your relationship at all. It’s wonderful to be in love, wonderful to share your life with someone who understands you and adds happiness and laughter to your days. It’s also wonderful to be on your own, getting to know yourself and what you love to do, where your interests lie. You should be proud of whatever situation you’re in, whether that’s happily committed, dating openly, completely intent on being on your own, etc. Still, I wonder if we’re not furthering the damage of the “old cat lady” stigma by creating a day bucking an ideal that’s already rather outdated. After all, it’s not the 1940s, and the idea of a woman remaining independent and unattached is far less shocking in 2014 than it was back then.
As for what Singles Awareness Day is all about, here’s how the website describes it:
The goal of Singles Awareness Day is to let singles have celebrations, get-togethers, etc. and to exchange gifts with their single friends. The awareness day was established by single people who were just sick of feeling left out on Valentine’s Day, and support of the day is growing every year.
Suggested activities for this day are sending yourself flowers, planning parties for other singles to mix and meet and to participate in some sort of single’s event. This is especially recommended if you don’t WANT to be single. Of course, for those who kind of like being single it’s a blessing and a reason to have some fun!
Again, for those who are single (and even those who aren’t)… isn’t this just everyday life? Don’t you do nice things for yourself often, hang out with your friends often, enjoy your life often? If not, perhaps there’s more to it than just not liking being single. I also worry that the establishment of this holiday only serves to perpetuate the stereotype that if you’re single, you’re bitter about it. Hell to the no with that.
Do you celebrate Singles Awareness Day? Do you think it’s an important holiday, or do you not really pay attention to that kinda hype?
Featured image via ShutterStock