Thursday, 14 February 2013
flying solo around valentines day ain't all that bad, you know
Everyone's been talking about today since the first day of February hit us in the face. I've had press releases all month telling me to "get hot for Valentines Day!" "woo him for Valentines!" "wear this dress on the big day!" etc let alone all the online and print advertising that's bombarded my life. I managed to avoid/delete most of it, only getting suckered in by one thing that benefited and made me feel good - the Bobbi Brown Valentines collection - but what almost annoyed me was the persistent tone of looking great on Valentines Day for a man. I've been single for about nine months now, and while that might seem like a short while to some of you, it's the longest i've been alone in my later teenage to adult life.
I've never been one for Valentines, even when in past relationships. I hate the cringeworthy cards with the vile words on, I hate the notion of feeling inclined to look happy at receiving flowers or chocolates like it's a duty bound thing from a man to a woman - we don't just coo at flowers and eat chocolates all day you know - and most of all I hate the way that love is defined by one day alone. If you love someone, you love them 365 days a year, not just February 14th. Call me a sucker for old romance, but I think if you want to truly show someone you mean what you say, you surprise them at any given opportunity - not on the day they expect it. My ex actually listened to me last year when I told him I hated Valentines Day, and he took me to a dingy gig in Kingston with about ten other people (all men) and I had my chest punched by the singer of Gay For Johnny Depp while he screamed in our faces and it was perfect because he knew it was something we could do together and that it was something i'd enjoy. I'm not entirely anti the sentiment of Valentines, more the message advertisers push out to us. If you're in a relationship today, enjoy every second of being with your loved one, I can guarantee he's done something fabulous like my ex did that you'll enjoy. (I hope!)
What really sits uncomfortably with me though goes back to what I said at the start of the post. The notion that you can only look hot as a female or do sexy things as a female on Valentines Day if they're for a man. Okay number one annoyance; i've seen no advertising or press releases about women wanting to look hot for their female partners - where's the equality in that? Number two, if I want to look hot on Valentines Day, I want to look hot for myself. Thing is, it's this kind of mentality that's been installed in us for so long that it's hard for women to shake those thoughts away. You suddenly start hearing things out and about while shopping with your girlie mates like "ooh I think he would love me in this!" and "your husband will go nuts for you in that!" and that's just a commonplace thing that we almost say to make our friends feel good about themselves. But does it really? Why as girls can we not just dress in the way we want to, or wear the underwear we want to because we simply feel good doing it ourselves, for ourselves.
Life is full of pressure, pressure, pressure. Everywhere we look we're pressured into fitting into a nice little box that slots into society perfectly, and being in a relationship is always a part of that. Take the pressure off yourself and remember that when you dress in the morning of each day, you do it for you, regardless of whether you're married or single. If a boy gets to see you in it, it's a bonus for him, and not a requirement of you. I wear sexy underwear with no intention of men ever seeing it some days because it makes me feel good about myself, not because a man will "go wild" seeing me in it. We need to dispel this Valentines curse that makes us all go gaga for what a man or another woman wants from us and be strong independent women without the need to feel like what we do in regard to our self style and look is for someone else.
When I googled "being single for Valentines Day" a bunch of rubbish articles from stupid female glossy mags came up, that had some ridiculous suggestions in that in all honesty made me boke. However, for a change the underlying sentiment was right. It went on to say that being single meant you could "watch every episode of Gossip Girl uninterrupted!" or "not have to worry about understanding stupid sports games you don't care about!" and even "you can totally give that waiter your number on a napkin stress free!" and while they're superficial and stupid, you basically can actually do whatever you want, and by living your life like that for you it's helping you become your very own person when you do meet that man, instead of turning into his mute girlfriend.
So if you're in a relationship, don't fall into the trap of trying to recreate some cliche movie moment with your partner today, because quite frankly we all know it's a load of junk. And if you're single, don't fall into the trap of trying to recreate some cliche single girl movie moment, because come on, it's junk. Being honest with you, I hate single people crying into their pillows about Valentines Day as much as couples vomiting love memorabilia all over each other because they feel like they have to in this 24 hour time frame. Valentines Day is as bad for the soul as McDonald's is for the arteries. Today is just like any other day, there's 365 of 'em this year alone, so go treasure each and every minute of each one.
when the heat get too hot, they just keep turnin’ it up. never let ‘em see see, that you sweat, gotta go hard. where those winning women thats' really willing to take it off? where them girls at?