If you’ve recently gone through a divorce, Valentine’s Day can be a major downer. Turn on the TV, listen to the radio or walk into any store, and you’re immediately assaulted with romantic movies, heart-shaped balloons and a reminder to do something special for your sweetie. It can feel like a societal conspiracy to add salt to your already open, heartbroken wound.
But you have a choice. You can buy into the pervasive marketing ploy designed to make you believe that everyone but you is happy and in love. Or you can view the holiday for what it is: an opportunity for florists and chocolatiers to make some money.
Divorce is emotionally draining enough. Don’t let this one day of the year make you feel even worse than you already do. In today’s post, we provide some tips to make it through Valentine’s Day better—not worse—for wear.
Social support: Your Valentine’s Day should involve getting out of the house and spending time with the people who love you. Tapping into your support network—whether they’re close friends or family members—is tremendously helpful in the recovery process following a divorce. This is especially true on days—such as Valentine’s Day—that can make you feel particularly prone to a pity party.
Stay busy: This is not the day for you to wallow. Plan out a day you’ll enjoy—scheduling activities from start to finish. You may want to treat yourself to a shopping spree or a spa treatment. It’s also worthwhile to try to dedicate some time to exercise on this day—as the endorphin release from such activities can elevate your mood and reduce your stress.
Social media hiatus: Social media is a fantastical wonderland in which everyone flaunts their accomplishments and conveniently glosses over anything that’s less than perfect in their lives. On Valentine’s Day, all of your smitten friends in the honeymoon phase of their relationship will be posting sickeningly sweet couple photos. These are not the posts you need to be seeing. Vow to take a break from social media for the entire Valentine’s week.
Don’t let one day in the year get the better of you. Valentine’s Day is dedicated to love, so focus your attention on the people in your life whom you love: family, friends—and yourself too.