Valentine's Day PTSD: How to recover from unmet expectations, or what do I do with a f@*king ferret?
Were you underwhelmed with your partner’s Valentine’s day surprise plans? Or shockingly overwhelmed? I was searching around online last week, as one does, for good Valentine’s Day ideas and discovered many lists for how to connect with your partner. Many, although offered in earnest, were comically terrible. Highlights included:
Visit a pet store and get yourselves a pair of turtles. Name them Edward and Bella, after the Twilight main characters, to remind you both of your commitment to love and cherish each other. - Turtles are illegal in most states because they carry salmonella! And, Twilight? Really? 2009 called and wants its reference back.
Try doing some online IQ tests together. See who has a higher IQ, you or your spouse? - Competing over which of you is smarter is a terrible idea. As a general rule, never engage in an activity that highlights one’s intelligence over the other. Besides, you already know you’re the smart one, right?
Pretend to be Tarzan and Jane as you swing from tree to tree at the Forest Adventure Park. - Really? What the actual F? And, are you ready to see your partner in a banana hammock?!
Compare your financial portfolios and give each other suggestions since you know they are desperate to hear your ideas on how to better manage money. - Like IQ tests, competing over who has more money is also a terrible idea. You want to demonstrate that you are on the same team as your partner, and not in a courtroom playing judge, jury and defendant.
Wake your partner in the middle of the night and invite him or her to go outside to watch the stars. - Perhaps you didn’t think this one through and consider your partner’s early morning presentation to the CEO. Plus, many people would simply be annoyed at being awakened in the middle of a sound sleep.
Go to an eat-all-you-can restaurant and have an eating contest. - Mmmmm, an eating contest that leaves you stuffed and gassy? How sexy! I’m not making this up - this was a real suggestion for a 21st century couple.
Surprise your partner by coming home from work early. Prepare his or her favourite dish and be their personal server for the night. - Sounds a little lonely for Valentine’s day - sitting across from no one. Not to mention that it feels creepy.
Surprise your partner with a pet. - Surprise! It’s a snake! Or, an Amazonian parrot that lives to be 90 years old! Or, a frantic ferret!
Devise a way to start a fight with your spouse just so you could “kiss and make up” later. - Seriously?! This one is my personal favorite because THIS IS SIMPLY TERRIBLE ADVICE. Picking fights for no reason is never an endearing trait and is the most likely to backfire.
I’m reminded of that old adage: it’s the thought that counts. Women often complain that they would love some originality for Valentine’s day, and, maybe that’s what you got. At least your partner tried. Maintain your sense of humor and perspective -- you’ll have some good laughs for years. And, don’t worry, most pet stores have a 24 hour return policy.
PS. I actually think ferrets are adorable, but I just don’t want one as a surprise pet.