Has Valentine’s Day become all about the pressure of showing off your love to your social network followers? Nisha JamVwal explores
Is love about a day or a moment? Do we have to celebrate it for one day or for every single day, nurturing it and allowing our lover to feel cherished, indulged and desired? Now don’t get me wrong, there’s no harm in celebrating love like we celebrate a birthday. It’s perfectly delightful to have one day in the year when you reiterate your vows, your love, and your passion more than the others. And who does not want to be treated to a special date night once in a while? Even for your parents, siblings, and friends — making it special and is great. But when it comes with pressures of presents, holidays and expenses, materialism that is imposed upon you by propaganda and social media, it becomes a commercial gimmick of shopkeepers.
Sort of like monkeys performing in a circus, we are taken to perform to our social network audience, by posting pictures on Instagram and Facebook to prove how much of a fuss you were made of and how grandly your lover celebrates you. The pressure is to put out the perception that that you are so much in love and showering each other with red hearts, red velvet cake (never mind your girth) and mass produced prototype valentine’s greeting cards. Don’t forget that this ultimately leads to dissatisfaction, disappointment and a lack of true fulfilment in a relationship over time.
ALL HYPE AND NO FEEL
That said, I’m definitely one for romantic dates, staring into each other’s eyes, holding hands, receiving surprise presents, kissing publically and just making much of special occasions, birthdays and anniversaries. And yet, when my roommate from LA calls her mother only on Mother’s Day and sends her a present (charged to her mother’s credit card), never concerned about her mother for the rest of the year, it just proves to me even more how much of a farce all this is. The charade of proving points to other people about your love for your loved ones is such an absurdity. And when I see couples bored or nagging each other on all other days other than Valentine’s Day, I begin to wonder about this much-hyped day, and how it creates such disparities in behaviour Advertisements on gifting are feverishly making an appearance on television, and red hearts on shop windows, pendants brandished through online marketing, friends boasting, and a commercial ‘ring’ are all in the air, just after you’ve heaved a sigh of relief that the performance pressure of New Year’s Eve is finally over. It’s inevitable. There’s no way out of giving cards and gifts to best friends, parents, lovers and probably even the domestic help. Why must we succumb to all this pressure proliferated by the sham of propaganda and circus of advertorials? Speaking purely for myself, I instead look for a ‘no reason’ moment to pamper, love and show indulgences to the special people in your life. There really does not have to be a reason to rejoice and spoil your loved ones.
KEEP IT REAL AND SIMPLE
What happened to the joy of just kissing and walking barefoot on a white beach in that intangible moment of unadulterated desire? Desire of each other, of proximity, of love! No material desires and expectations. Moments stolen in the knowledge of what both of you want and desire is sometimes more meaningful than surprises that can throw you off guard. Sometimes your expectations may not be what your partner has planned to surprise you with. A candlelight dinner could be his idea of romance; yours might be a passionate getaway at a beach house.
So it’s smarter to discuss and decide what works for both of you. Perhaps a light candlelight dinner at the beach house?
Pink La Perla lingerie or mass produced heart-shaped pop-up cards, a twelve carat diamond or a couple’s ticket to holiday at Tahiti wrapped in a red heart box — these do not endorse your lover’s love. All the pampering is fabulous if it’s spontaneous, but not so cool or of much value if it’s forced and gimmicky. Love is supposed to be a feeling in the heart that makes your spirit flutter with joie de vivre, not with the wanting of solitaires! Let’s cherish every special moment with each other. Nothing lasts forever; even life itself is transient. Don’t wait for just one day to spoil, pamper, and celebrate love. Little gestures spread over the year make for happier relationships.
Tweet Me at @nishjamvwal
Volume 4 Issue 8