Why today is not the day to hate on love

If there’s one thing I hate more than Valentine’s Day (and who am I kidding, I freaking love Valentine’s Day) it is people who decide that this is the year they’re going to hate on Valentine’s Day. Now, understandably, it’s a tempting headspace to be in. Last February 14 you were with your boyfriend or girlfriend or favourite Tame Impala record on vinyl at some fancy restaurant having the best sex of the shortest month in the year. The sex was actually so good, your love so authentic and the feelings so pure and unrivalled by even Pablo Neruda himself that you legitimately went on social media to tell everyone about it. 

And then you broke up.

That this happened to you, or that you propagated such a thing is no surprise. It’s what couples do. In fact, breaking up is not even exclusively what young couples do; it’s what married couples and engaged couples and animal couples (those philandering penguins…) do all the time. We acknowledge the basic reality of this fact and attempt to move on with our shattered, incomplete lives for the other 364.5 days of the year, but then this motherf-cker just comes out of nowhere and as a not-so-subtle reminder that everyone else in the world is happy right now except you. Purely on statistics, this cannot be true. But you believe it anyway. We all do.

So you hate on Valentine’s Day. You tell everyone within earshot that it’s a stupid holiday, artificially constructed by Hallmark and Coca-Cola and florists and Nazis. You tell them that you don’t even care, that you’re spending the night with your mother, or getting drunk, or getting drunk with your mother. There should be little doubt in anyone’s mind by the time you’re through that being content and in love in the middle of February is the worst kind of fate that could possibly befall a human being.

Not only is this unfair, it’s also just not in line with how we normally act. Imagine if we blocked out all the great love stories of the world just because they didn’t apply to us personally. If we only read Gabriel Garcia Marquez, listened to the two Seal songs that actually matter or watched Woody Allen movies when there was someone sitting there holding our hand. That would be a very sad state of affairs, wouldn’t it?

As horrible as many people think it is to be single, dumped or divorced on Valentine’s Day, it’s even more horrible to hate on the concept of other people being in love. For the sections of society who have little to no imaginative spark, this is the day when they truly shine. There are amazing love stories that pop up all over the place on February 14. Some of the greatest displays of human selflessness and compassion show themselves amidst the kitschy Teddy Bears and overpriced Ferrero Rochers that were stale before we even opened the box. It is stories and incidents like these, albeit ones that have been prompted by a circled date in a calendar, that go on to form the stories and novels and films and songs that we carry with us through life.

It’s just another day. In five months, or five years, when you have a wedding anniversary or a kid or a life-threatening illness or a natural disaster tear down your home, it won’t even matter. In fact, some of those things are happening to people in your country, probably even your city, right now. There’s so many other issues on this Earth to get mad about aside from people who want to use a tokenistic date to express their love. If you had the chance, you’d be doing it, too.

So don’t hate on Valentine’s Day. Love is great. Even if Cupid got a bit lost on the way to our mailboxes this year.  

Lead image via Shutterstock.

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