Today is a day that is celebrated across the world known as Valentine's Day. Society portrays this single day as a time to celebrate love and demonstrate care for others...I despise this day for a number of reasons. I've celebrated this day, don't get me wrong. However, I think a shift of perspective occurs with maturity.
This day sends messages to children, both males and females that illustrates how males should care for the opposite and says to women how there is an expectation of what a male should provide to show his love and care for you or worth. In adulthood, gifts can range from flowers, dinner, getting proposed to, receiving a car or house, etc. In other words, this day reinforces gender roles more times than not. What message is sent to girls in childhood about their worth based on Valentine's Day? When they receive gifts does it illustrate they can be bought? When they don't receive gifts are they cared for less or not as important? What about the fact we are assigned one day to celebrate love.
Many times we have grown to dislike this holiday because of singleness. However, I have noticed women coming together to celebrate each other or engage in self-care. Great!...and why is it we feel compelled to engage in this day because society says so? I won't even start on this holiday as being created after a male White male. I highly encourage you to research St. Valentine or Valentinus to help inform your participation in the holiday. If you feel the most celebrated today than you do other days, he or she might not be "The One"
As Women of Color, I hope we take care of ourselves each and every day. We don't need a holiday to do this or someone to gift us with items. In some ways the idea of needing this creates codependency. When the gifts are gone or the person is no longer in our lives do we still loved? Instead, achieving inner peace and happiness will allow us to celebrate and feel self-love.