As February approaches and store isles fill up with teddy bears and chocolates, the increasing complaints from people who consider themselves “lacking a Valentine” begin. These kinds of complaints have become a widespread normality in society. Yet, something that has always bothered me about this idea is that it appears rather selfish.
These complaints are often due to a feeling of sadness for lacking a partner to celebrate love with. Yet, what people fail to see is there are a number of ways to share love on Valentine’s day that don’t consist of flowers, sharing dinner, and exchanging gifts with a significant other.
Why not spend the day serving food at the homeless shelter down the road, instead of going out to dinner where someone else will inevitably serve you? Why not bring teddy bears and chocolates to the sick children confined to a single room at the nearby hospital, instead of posting up in bed wishing you had someone else to exchange with?
In other words, Valentine’s day, a holiday originally about love, and therefore, a concept of selflessness, has seemingly become all about the opposite: selfishness.
Does Valentine’s day not allow us to share a feeling of love with people outside a romantic relationship? I would argue no, but rather we have just forgotten the true meaning of what it is to share love.