Candy hearts, greeting cards and advertisements, they are everywhere. Valentine’s day rolls around and you are wondering how you are going to cope alone. It is a day dreaded by some and cherished by others. I for one was never a fan of Valentine’s Day. I think the “perfect date” happens unexpectedly and not by pre-planning and spending heaps of money. But then again I am a hopeless romantic.
For a newly divorced or separated person, Valentine’s Day reopens wounds that may have just started to heal. You may be tempted to throw darts at a picture of your ex, stab at a voodoo doll effigy or shred some old pictures. But that is not going to make you feel better and it does not have to be that way. You need to think about yourself and how you can make yourself feel good. It’s maybe the day to celebrate You! By making a plan you take power over the situation so grief can’t sneak up on you. This year instead of dreading the day, do something for yourself.
Here are my top tips for surviving (and maybe if I may dare say!) enjoying the day.
- Make a plan – with your single friends. Plan a fun night out and go some place you have not been before. Or if you don’t feel like going out, plan to have the party at home. It does not have to be one of those fancy parties with fancy food and drink. It can just be a gathering of good friends with some good music. Am sure you will have lots of friends who don’t really want to go out on “Valentine dates” so you can all celebrate the day and have some fun together instead. You will be surprised at how much fun you will end up having.
- Celebrate being single – and maybe plan a solo activity to spoil yourself. Indulge in a visit to a spa and get pampered, schedule a dance class, do a yoga class or just do some home baking. Do something you have been meaning to do for a while and just did not find the time. You now have the freedom, so make your choice and do something that really excites you and make the day all about You.
- Become a Giver – instead of lamenting the fact that no one has sent you roses or chocolates. Take the initiative and make a list of people you love and surprise them with something special like roses, chocolates or just an unexpected visit. You will have so much fun doing this and you will feel so good when you see all those smiling faces. Spread the love.
- For those of you who don’t want to be alone – check out the singles events in your local area and sign up for something fun and exciting. You never know who you may meet and you may even be in for a surprise!
- Take a break from social media – for the day or maybe a week. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat maybe filled with photos and stories of love and this may not be what you want to see now. So it’s best you just take a break. You will feel so much the better for it.
- Don’t feel like doing anything – then Don’t! Go about your business as you would on any other day and stay focussed on what you have to do during the day. You don’t have to do anything if you don’t want to. You may just want to curl up on the couch and watch Netflix and what better way to spend an evening! Pretend you didn’t hear if someone wishes you a happy Valentine ’s Day! After all it’s only one day out of a whole year.
It may not be easy but remember that you are taking the steps towards getting better and healing. There are going to be reminders and hard days and Valentine’s Day may be just one of those days. Don’t beat yourself up. You are healing. Remember to be Kind to yourself because who knows what life has in store for you.
Anne-Marie Cade’s Bio
Anne-Marie Cade is an award winning Lawyer, Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner/Nationally Accredited Mediator and founder of Divorce Right. She is passionate about family and relationships and works with couples to empower them to reach a peaceful, amicable separation and stay out of the Family court as she believes that this approach will ensure a positive outcome for the family. She is currently working on her soon to be released book “Peaceful Divorce, Happy Kids.”