Are you preparing for Valentine's Day with fun and determination to make it a really special day for your partner? What about your own excited or anxious anticipation of what your partner may come up with for you? Do you worry about whether or not he or she has even 'bothered'?
I am hoping here to add a little depth to the proceedings.
I hope you may still find this page helpful even if you consider yourselves 'too old' for all of this, and if the two of you have long given up on the idea of celebrating Valentine's Day.
If your relationship is in trouble though, then do hop over to my starter page on the 25 most common relationship problems. You'll find loads of help and advice on how to get that spark back, and set your relationship back on the road to happiness again.
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Having a great Valentine's Day may mean to you...
However, if you're bestowed with all that you'd wished for, you'll want to know that your partner:
Whatever your partner does or doesn't do on Valentine's Day, you mustn't consider it the making or breaking of your relationship or marriage. Chances are, you probably already knew what would happen anyway.
Love does not consist of gazing at each other, but in looking together in the same direction"
Antoine de Saint-Expupery
Truly being able to spend quality time together with both of you acknowledging just how fortunate you are is much closer to an authentic experience.
It's far more valuable than any Valentine's idea you could come up with. No Valentine's Day quotes will be as great as the ones that come from your heart.
Those sayings come from your experience of being with your partner and from how you truly feel about him or her. Those quotes don't need to sound Shakespearean at all to have an impact.
Rather than copying a Valentine's poem - made up by someone else and perused by the masses - I have a suggestion for a very personal Valentine's present, which your partner is likely cherish for years to come; a 'gratitude letter'.
The notion of deliberately setting out to write down all the reasons for you to be grateful comes from the field of positive psychology. Research clearly shows that it has a wonderfully uplifting effect on the writer's mood (see links in Part 3). Of course the receiver benefits too. Double whammy!
And guess what...? You can make it into a free printable Valentine's card with an ordinary word-processing program if you're short of funds. The Valentine's pictures on this page come from artists who've made their work freely available on stock.xchng, so it is easy for you to 'jazz up' your special letter with just the right images.
Here are some ideas on what you can write about in the special gift of a Valentine's Day letter:
Flick through some old photos to remind yourself of some of your best moments together. The best ones? Just remember how much attention you were giving each other at that moment.
Once you've done that all you need to do is print it off, find an envelope and raid the garden for a few sprigs or flowers to decorate it (though a red rose would really be the icing on the cake of course!).
Giving and receiving attention are the most important and basic emotional needs we have as human beings. These particular needs are part of - and underpin - the meaning of every human interaction.
The quality and quantity of attention is what can really make or break a relationship - not just what happens on Valentine's Day.
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On Valentine's Day particularly, more than any other day perhaps, you may be painfully confronted with the fact that your relationship or marriage just isn't what you want it to be.
Perhaps you've been unhappy for a while, maybe you've found out that your partner is cheating on you and/or you can feel that they are slowly withdrawing from you.
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