Eh, I have never been big on Valentine’s Day. Yes, I am a hopeless romantic, and yes, I manage to carry this off while simultaneously being the world’s biggest cynic. It’s one of my more delightful qualities. I believe the term would be complex. Aren’t you all jealous of Mike, who gets to be married to such a delightfully complex woman?

So Valentine’s Day. I spent the majority of my V-Days single because I could never scrape together enough cash to pay someone to date me. Very aware of my unique ability to repel the opposite sex and yet helpless to do anything about it, I did the next best thing; I instituted S.A.D., or, Singles Awareness Day. Yes, I know, a very proactive approach. You better believe I’m not just going to sit around and let other people be all happy and in love around me, nope, I’m going to participate in a non-holiday so I don’t feel left out.

S.A.D. for me was actually not a bad holiday. See, its components consisted of:

  1. Eating a lot of chocolate and/or ice cream
  2. Hanging out with your girlfriends
  3. Watching a romantic movie to reinforce the knowledge that yes, one day, John Cusack will stand in front of your bedroom window holding a boom box. Until then, you get to keep all your fabulousness to yourself, and not have to share the remote. Watch ESPN on TV? Not unless you want to (which let’s face it, I don’t ever want to).
  4. Use a lot of sarcasm in everyday conversation. When discussing love, only do so layered in ironic tones.
  5. Reading a romance novel, strictly for visualization purposes. Naturally, a tall, handsome gazillionaire will fall in love with me for my pluck and quick wit, and overlook my mousey brown hair and “fluffy” hips. He will then proceed to buy me a Porsche and take me to the theater. Visualize it: realize it.

All of these options are flexible, depending on how in-the-spirit you get, and may be added to if necessary. For example, after I reached legal drinking age, S.A.D. would include a bottle of champagne with my girlfriends (or just me. It’s all about flexibility). I generally got more in the spirit the lonelier I was, and truly, it was a great way to forget about my general undesirability with the menfolk and focus more on my bad-ass qualities, such as my great capacity for sarcasm.

Now that I’m married, I sort of miss S.A.D. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love Mike more than Patrick Swayze (“It’s amazing, Molly. The love inside, you take it with you.” How can you be human and NOT CRY at the end of that movie?). But I was single for most of my life, and I got kind of attached to the annual celebration of being an anti-establishment misfit. It was a celebration of me. Now, I don’t have an occasion to celebrate my self-indulgence. No, my birthday doesn’t count. That is a completely different holiday.

And yes, it’s a holiday.

So single gals, do me a favor. Pop in a movie where Johnny won’t put Baby in a corner or Colin Firth dives into a pond at Pemberley (or likes Ms. Jones, just as she is). Crack open a bottle of Cliquot and unwrap the foil on those Dove hearts you know you’ve stashed away in your emergency chocolate drawer. Toast yourself and your fabulousness. Celebrate you – and the fact that you have the remote all to yourself.

Single guys? You can celebrate S.A.D., too – only I recommend not doing it in front of your more macho friends. That way, you can cry over P.S. I Love You unmolested by beer swilling dudes who are out of touch with their feelings.


Do men really do this? I don’t know, the secrets  of men-lore are beyond me.

Who knows? That Porsche fantasy may yet be in your future. And that is something to celebrate.

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S.A.D. – A Valentine’s Day Alternative — 22 Comments

  1. I love the idea of SAD. I’ve been single most Valentines Days as well, but I’ve “celebrated” tradionally by ignoring everything to do with the holiday. Today, i got to hold my son in NICU and got a card from my older son. Life feels full and complete, without having a “love
    Of my life” like in romantic novels

    • That is wonderful! To me, that is what is most fulfilling about life. Not necessarily having a love to complete you, but to do it yourself. 🙂 And I suppose having two wonderful children helps! Congratulations on your new baby!

  2. I love this! I wish I had thought of something like this when I was single. I can’t even remember what I did. I either went out and got drunk with friends or stayed in and wallowed in self-pity. I’m sure I did both. I like: “Visualize it: realize it.” I laughed out loud at that.

  3. I wish I would’ve seen this yesterday, as many of my “overly dramatic” high school girls were crying (yes, in the morning) about the fact that they didn’t have a boyfriend come Valentines Day.

    I, of course, reminded them of the history of the day, and how Hallmark was responsible for its inception (trying to knock down the significance of the day), but I didn’t give them something ELSE to celebrate. Themselves. Good advice for loneliness or happily chosen singledom.

  4. Oh yes, S.A.D. is a wonderful distraction from all that crying and self-pity. It’s funny, I wish I could tell all those young girls to just enjoy life and not worry so much over the big V-Day reminder you’re alone – when you’re older and you actually have someone to be with, it’s not all as “magical” as we’d always fantasized…

  5. I love the way you broke down S.A.D.!! My best February 14th was a S.A.D. celebration with three of my closest friends in college. We got away from the “dry” dorms to spend the night at one friend’s house to watch reruns of Buffy over a bowl full of vodka Jell-O that we dug into with spoons. It’s not S.A.D. if you’re not keeping it classy!

  6. Oh please…as if I’d cry over that movie…just because he has a terminal illness and leaves sweet romantic letters to her and it’s so touching and they love each other so much and oh man, why am I weeping like a baby?!

    You could always buy your husband a combo mitten and I guarantee you’ll both be single again within hours.
    Daniel Nest recently posted…WTF Report: “Bloody Valentine”My Profile

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