Do You Celebrate The ‘Month-Aversary'? Laura Donovan

I caved.

I bought a few things from OpenSky and went to Target on Cyber Monday (but not Black Friday, because I don’t want to get trampled) to get holiday shopping out of the way, and after glancing at the horrifically violent Legos in the kids’ aisle, I decided to wait on purchasing gifts for my nephews and headed for the greeting cards section. Not only do three family members have birthdays in December, but my new flame and I are celebrating our two month anniversary, so I thought I’d grab him a nice note to accompany the pre-Christmas present I’d picked out.

The problem was, there weren’t very many anniversary cards for non-married newbie couples. Everything was categorized under “Anniversary for the wife,” “Anniversary for the husband,” “Anniversary for the parents,” “Happy 20-year wedding anniversary,” etc. I finally found a lighthearted, cute card that could apply to folks who are dating, but it was the only one there and I had to steal an envelope from another greeting card.

It makes senses that there are more cards for people who actually tied the knot and aren’t just calling each other boyfriend and girlfriend, but I started thinking about anniversary celebrations in general and realized they can create a lot of stress or annoyance, depending on the situation.

At my best college friend’s wedding, a groomsman joked that the bride and groom were very good at honoring “month-aversaries” in Facebook status updates. They’d recognize the anniversary of their first date, first kiss, first “I love you” declaration, engagement, etc., all of which are special but hard to remember for those outside the relationship. It’s tough to keep up with all of that even if you’re in it, but it does help maintain some sort of fire and excitement, and when work and life pressures build up, it’s nice to have something sweet to celebrate every month. It could very well cheapen the small milestones too, so I’d say selectively choosing which ones are significant is a good habit to have.

The last time I cared about anniversaries was when I had my first boyfriend in high school. I’d quietly applaud every week that passed by, but the two of us publicly celebrated our dating anniversary each month. Our six month anniversary fell on my 17th birthday, and he was out of town for a family trip during that week, so it was around this time that I stopped putting so much emphasis on anniversaries. In teenage fashion, I cried about the “unfairness” of the circumstances and complained to my somewhat sympathetic parents, but I also started to understand that my little ritual was exhausting and not worth getting upset at my boyfriend about. Sure he couldn’t be around for our “big” anniversary or my birthday, but he was there the rest of the time, and that counted more than anything else.

To me, it’s better to live in the moment and organically experience a relationship than continuously focus on the progress you’ve made or amount of days, months, and years you’ve been together. I’m thrilled about the 2-month anniversary because I like seeing how far we’ve come — both as people and as a couple — since I got to LA and we began hanging out, but that doesn’t mean I’ll shower him with sentiment and giddiness on the fifth of every month. Maybe I’m doing that now because this is still technically the “honeymoon phase,” but if I’m lucky, that will never fizzle anyway.

Do you celebrate anniversaries, “month-aversaries,” or little milestones? Tell me your stories in the comments section!

Featured image via ShutterStock

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  1. I loved your quote, “it’s better to live in the moment and organically experience a relationship than continuously focus on the progress you’ve made or amount of days, months, and years you’ve been together.” I don’t like being asked how long I’ve been dating my boyfriend and often tell people I don’t know just because. It makes me feel like I am automatically being judged. My relationship is more or less legitimate because of the length of time or that because I’m younger (I’m nineteen) that I’m either throwing away my college years in a relationship or don’t know what I’m missing or what I want. I don’t know if we will be together tomorrow (I hope so!) but it is more important to me to focus on the present.

  2. I’ve never celebrated a “month-aversary” so this was really interesting for me to read! Most of my relationships (the ones worth acknowledging!) have been 2+ years or so, my current one is over a year and a half, I’m fairly sure… I once celebrated how long I’d been living in a particular country, and it hit me that I wouldn’t be there for much longer and made me depressed; so maybe that’s why I avoid counting down time in relationships! We have plenty of other things to celebrate… like how awesome each other is, on a regular basis.

  3. We don’t celebrate them…but we with the other a happy xx month anniversary. Its nice to see the progress we make. We’ve been together 18 months and engaged for 6 months.

  4. My boyfriend and I have been together almost nine months now, and the only month-iversary we celebrated was our six-month. There will be days where one of us mentions to the other, “wow, we’ve been together for x months now. How crazy is that?” I think it’s mostly because this is the longest relationship either one of us has ever had. But I like month-iversaries. I think they’re sweet.

  5. I’ve been dating my boyfriend for almost seven years and we don’t celebrate our anniversary or “month-aversary”, we just say “Happy 18th!” and smile a lot. I think love deserves to be celebrated every day, not just once a month or a year.

  6. I’m thinking that people are trying too hard. Don’t look at the past, look to the future. Make those hours and minutes count, you don’t know how many you’ll have. My partner and I went into our relationship knowing those minutes were precious due to my health concerns, so we made the most out of our time. Ironically, I’m still here while she was taken from me, run down in the street by a kid doing 50 in a 20mph school zone. Make the most of your time and always look to the future.

  7. (warning: the following post contains romantic imagery and jargon recent victims of a breakup may find haagen daz inciting)

    My boyfriend and I have celebrated our “month-avarsary” every month for the last 11 that we’ve been together. While technically our relationship is relatively new, I’m an advocate of celebrating every month because it’s an automatic date night! Each month we pick something special to do and reflect on how much we love each other. We don’t feel the need to be sentimental or giddy (more than we naturally are) but it’s a lovely way stop and remind each other of why you’re together and look forward to the following month-avarsary!

  8. We did sort of celebrate “month-aversaries,” or at least acknowledge that they had passed until our first actual anniversary, now we don’t notice each month so much but I think I kinda like it. I still plan on doing something fun for our year and a half.