How do you show the love?

So obviously it’s Valentine’s Day. You’d have to be hiding in a cave, with no access to media or facebook, to be able to avoid it. And if you were in said cave, you wouldn’t be reading my blog post.

Anyways, it’s Valentine’s Day and there is a lot to be said about the many many things wrong with the holiday. But what I want to use this hook to talk about is how we show the love to people in our lives OTHER than romantic partners. The irony of Valentine’s Day, for me, is that our romantic partners are probably the people we show the most love to, most often. Think about it. If you are in a romantic relationship, chances are you express affection towards that person constantly, whether through physical displays of affection, saying I love you, or sending cute texts.

But what about the other people in your life that you love and appreciate, even if you aren’t romantically involved with them? Those relationships deserve a national holiday, so you can remember not to take your friends for granted, or even your neighbor, or the person you see on the bus.

I have to admit I borrowed this question from a board meeting I was at this weekend at the Astraea Foundation.

I answered this question by sharing that this year, I’ve tried to institute a practice of sending gratitude cards to friends whenever I want to appreciate them and their role in my life. I found some nifty ones on etsy, gathered up some stamps and away I went.

A notecard that says: "You're f$%&*&^ amazing"

From a.favorite on Etsy

So, Feministing readers, how do you show the love to the people in your life who aren’t your romantic partners?

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8 Comments

  1. Posted February 14, 2012 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    One of my friends arranged a “Galentine’s Day” dinner for last night. She got the idea from the TV show Parks & Rec. It was six of us girlfriends, all out together for the night. We had such a blast! One friend made us cute pink and red name tags, another put together a mix CD of all female musicians or outspoken feminist male musicians, another put together gift baskets with conversation hearts and chocolates, another brought us cake bites, and I made a cinnamon rum cake. We had tapas and drank wine, and it was fantastic.

    I’m planning on celebrating Valentine’s day with my significant other tonight, but I do think it’s nice (and important!) to take the time around Valentine’s day to acknowledge the presence of other people in your life and thank them for supporting you. I’ve been sending cards to my far-away friends and family, too. :)

  2. Posted February 14, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    i f@!%ing love that card!

  3. Posted February 14, 2012 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

    I show the love with a long seemingly random hug…or a blown kiss!

  4. Posted February 14, 2012 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    I made “Bad Day Boxes” for my roommates. It’s a pretty box filled with goodies, a motivational/roomie love note, and something else that’ll make them feel good like homemade jewelry, but they can’t open it right away. They’ll wait to open the Bad Day Box until they have a particularly stressful day, so they can feel the love whenever it’s needed most.

  5. Posted February 14, 2012 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    My ways of showing affection aren’t extremely ornate. Most people just want to know that someone is thinking about them. I send people text messages periodically, letting them know I care.

    Even though it’s very simple, that’s often what people want most, especially in the middle of a stressful workday.

  6. Posted February 14, 2012 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

    I think the best way to do it is just by thinking of each other each day. Once the student center of our school was giving away pop and chips, I grabbed one and my friend didn’t. I asked him why he didn’t and he said he didn’t want them. I told him that he could have grabbed them for our other friend, who was not with us. He told me, I never thought of that.

    I’ve given away laptops, sports tickets, desktop computers, baby’s clothes, strollers, play pens, beds, monitors, dressers, movie tickets, gift cards, a lot of food stuffs, etc. Most of the stuff I’ve gotten for free or at a really reduced cost. Some of my most appreciated gifts were information. Telling someone about an opportunity is often well received. In general, keep your eyes open for opportunities, keep each other in mind and look out for one another.

    One time I won an autographed baseball, since my employer was sponsoring the Cubs. I asked my mom who her favorite Cub was and brought her the autographed baseball. She started crying. I thought I must have gotten the player wrong. She said it was because you were thinking of me.

  7. Posted February 14, 2012 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    Our Galentine’s Day party is going down tonight! All of the coolest feminists in my law school are convening to watch the V-Day episode of “Glee,” followed by margaritas and wine, followed by a group trip to the local adult entertainment shop – we’re going ALL OUT to celebrate our sexual liberation on this fine holiday. I can’t imagine anything I’d rather be doing this evening.

  8. Posted February 14, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

    Just, enjoying others company, collaborating together, sharing experiences, offering help and support when needed, fostering a sense of community.

    Honestly, as far as avoiding Valentine’s Day goes, single or attached, I pretty much used to barely acknowledge it, you know, if you don’t want to think about it, read a book, pop in a horror movie or something. Romantic comedies and candy hearts have about as much bearing on my experiences with genuine love as flags and crying eagles do with my experiences on 9/11.

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