My high school days are only a distant memory, but I still remember Valentines Day rituals in my school. I wasn't anti-Valentines back then per se, but I remember feeling icky when I watched the other girls in my school get deliveries of flowers, balloons and teddy bears. Yes, even high schools promoted cupid, and the local florists danced with glee.
Girls watched the other girls with envy, who paraded around with all of their love loot. Guys who didn't plan ahead, completely "humiliating" their girlfriends in front of their peers, were cowering the rest of the day. A girl's popularity seemed to stem from the size of the teddy bear or balloon bouquet, so even those girls getting just one rose felt somehow inferior.
This carried on into college and adult life. When Valentine's Day would come, girls were comparing and contrasting how fancy the restaurant was, how expensive the jewelry, etc. It is hard to imagine guys sitting around bragging about their Valentine Day gifts, though some probably do.
In sum, Valentine's Day seems to be a lot about the women receiving and the man giving...and making sure it is more spectacular than his girlfriend or wife's best friend. So the question is, even if a couple celebrates Valentine's Day, if a man feels pressure or a woman is disappointed, isn't that a bit anti-Valentine? Shouldn't it be about love - and that is enough?
For us, this Valentine's Day we will most likely be found hanging out in our rv with our hilarious rving pets and listening to music, laughing and saving a whole heck of a lot of money. There's a little Valentine and Anti Valentine in all of us, so maybe I'll pull out the red and pink crayons and make him a card - but Hallmark won't be getting a donation from us this year...