For many women, who are survivors of DV, Valentine’s Day is a triggering day. This may be your first year alone, or maybe you feel all alone while still in the same house. You may be wondering what you can do on February 14th. Ignore the day? Fat chance. Wallow in your sorrow? Not generally helpful. (If you are at the beginning of your grief, that may be what you choose. Then move on beyond that.) But there are a lot of other options.
First, realize that Valentine’s Day is at its roots not about romantic love. Read the real story of the man Valentine. Use this day to show your love for your kids, other family, and friends! Don’t waste the day feeling unloved. Love yourself, and love others.
Maybe one of these ideas below will help you have a good day on the 14th, or inspire an even better idea! These are all things I’ve done. Not all in the same year.
- Don’t wait for someone else to buy you flowers — or chocolate. If you want them, buy them for yourself. Even a new piece of jewelry, if you can swing it. You are worth loving!
- Make Valentine’s gifts and/or cards for your kids—and give them chocolate. Or your friends’ kids, if you don’t have any. Or even for a nursing home! I also make my each of my (24) grandkids Valentines with candy or other little “treat”. (Yes, I’m such a traditionalist.) This one does happen every year. You could even sit down and make cards with your kids, so they could make one for you too!
- Have a “nice dinner” at home with your kids. Italian tends to be traditional around here. This actually has become one of my married daughter’s traditions. Italian dinner at home with her hubby and kids on Valentine’s Day. Don’t have kids at home? Have a nice dinner for yourself. Make it or go out or bring it in.
- Go to coffee or lunch/dinner with a Gal-entine (girlfriend), or a group of them. Perhaps make her a card or give her some chocolate. If your friends are all married and have other plans for dinner, make it earlier in the day. If you have other single friends, plan a group meet-up for dinner or see if there is a community dinner to attend. Make Valentine’s about caring about others, not romantic love.
The above are all things you can do to show your love. Others may also do things to show their love for you. You don’t have to have a husband for that. Accept love from others. They may give you a card or gift. They may take you to dinner or coffee. They may invite you to a community event. Focus on what you have, not what you don’t. Don’t focus on the ex. Don’t think about what he’s doing. He’s not worth ruining a perfectly good day for love.
Have a Happy Valentine’s Day! <3
Living Coram Deo
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