Valentine’s Day is a loved and loathed holiday. It’s over commercialized, there’s pressure to buy expensive gifts, flowers, chocolates, and finding the perfect card that expresses exactly what you feel. Some couples get into Valentine’s Day and see it as the perfect way to reiterate their expressions of love, while many single people would rather ignore the day all together.

 

If you are newly divorced, your first Valentine’s Day as an unmarried person may stir up a lot of  emotions. You may feel free, you may feel relieved, or you might feel totally bummed out. If you’re dreading Valentine’s Day, there are numerous ways to get through it and you may even end up enjoying the day:

Don’t Dwell On the Past This Valentine’s Day

 

Were the Valentine’s Days of your past horrible or were they fairytale material? Regardless of how Valentine’s Day used to be, it’s important to focus on the present. This is your time to change the way you feel about Valentine’s Day. While there’s an overwhelming pressure to celebrate your love for a significant other or even finding your soulmate, people often overlook the general celebration of love. Valentine’s Day should be a day where you celebrate the love you have for family members, your children, friends, and even yourself. You are in control about how you choose to view Valentine’s Day, make the best of it.

Celebrate Love & Treat Yourself

 

Don’t wait and wish for someone to buy you flowers or other tokens of love and appreciation. This is a day to treat yourself and celebrate self-love. Buy yourself your favorite chocolates, a bouquet of flowers, or the latest tech gadget you’ve had your eye on. Don’t feel guilty or feel undeserving, everyone deserves a little something and you are no different.

Have Kids? Have a Special Date with Them

 

If you are feeling emotionally raw this Valentine’s Day, don’t forget about how your children might be feeling. Kids will often hide their emotions, particularly if they sense that their parents are bummed out. Consider putting aside your own feelings and focus on making the day extra special with your children. Whether you make homemade Valentines for family and friends or go out to eat and see a movie, forget about all the negative feelings you have about your divorce and focus on the love you have for your children.

Spend the Day with Friends

 

You may be tempted to spend the day at home, alone, but unless you plan on doing something productive you’re likely to feel lonely and upset. Rather than having a pity party for one, call up your friends and go out to dinner or host a gathering at your house. Remember, you don’t need to be in a relationship to appreciate and love others. Tell your friends how much you appreciate them and show your gratitude for the support they have given you during a difficult transition.

Pay it Forward

Even if it feels like you are the loneliest person on the planet, you aren’t. Sometimes one of the best ways to get out of a “I hate this day” funk is to perform random acts of kindness. Buy a big bouquet of flowers and hand a flower out to each person you pass on the street. Buy bags of chocolates or other treats and give them to a nursing home facility or a food shelter. Your small token may brighten someone else’s Valentine’s Day.

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