Dads: Perspectives on Valentine’s Day

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What do you think of Valentine’s Day? Is it a day to celebrate art of romance? Or just another ‘event’ day that has been commercialised to death? Here are six perspectives from six different dads.

Overpriced and multi-coloured flowers

Mark from Big Man in the Woods expresses what I think many men (and women) feel about Valentine’s Day.

It’s just a commercial day. It’s not romantic to be forced to say “I love you.” February 15th and the red roses are back to their normal price rather than triple the cost.

I think anyone who has shelled out on flowers or paid over the odds at an overcrowded restaurant for a set menu with poorer-than-usual service will know exactly what Mark means. It’s hard not to be jaded by the way February 14th has become a licence to print money for retailers, florists and restaurateurs. (Incidentally, does anyone know why ‘restaurateurs’ is spelt without an ‘n’? I’m just asking for a friend …)

You can always rely on John (Dad Blog UK) to put his own spin on things. He isn’t normally one to make a big fuss about Valentine’s Day but I loved his photo and short post capturing a rainbow rose. His explanation of how they are grown was particularly interesting. If you’ve ever wondered how they’re made, John’s in the know.

The true meaning of Valentine’s Day?

Ian from Dad’s Delicious Dinners offers the single dad’s perspective as he asks Who needs ‘Netflix and Chill’, when you can have Netflix and chill? For him, Valentine’s Day is about spending time with those he truly loves, rather than splashing out on material gifts for the sake of fulfilling a stereotypical expectation.

Yes, I had spent another Valentine’s night alone. But, I had spent the afternoon and evening with three other people who all mutually loved each other unconditionally. Yes, we argue sometimes, yes we get stressed and fall out sometimes. But the true love for each other cannot be broken. That’s what Valentine’s should be all about. 

For Danny (How to Daddoo), the day presented an opportunity to look back on how he and his wife met and fell in love. The true meaning of Valentine’s Day and how to love your wife lies in relationships rather than presents.

I’d love to constantly shower her with gifts. Whisk her off her feet for romantic days out, meals and getaways. One day maybe I will but for now I make sure I support her in everything she does and I’m thankful that she’s happy for me just to love her.

Finally, Nigel from DIY Daddy talks about how love changes the world for the better, and how meeting ‘the one’ is all about two stories with one ending. He concludes with a universal truth which embodies what Valentine’s Day should really be all about.

Love the one in your life, with all your heart, body and soul.

(Also, it’s cheaper than buying a dozen red roses.)

A personal perspective

As for me, this was our 28th Valentine’s Day together; our 22nd as a married couple. So you’ll forgive me if I wasn’t overflowing with romantic gestures on the day itself. Been there. Done that. Bought the t-shirt, the flowers, the chocolates and many other associated presents over the years.

These days, my wife and I have an unspoken agreement not to buy each other anything more than a card. This year, we didn’t even go out for dinner on the day. Instead, we put the kids to bed and bought in one of M&S’s £20 meal deals.

I did go out for dinner the following night, though … with some fellow dads, where we all agreed how overpriced and over-commercialised Valentine’s Day now is. Who says romance is dead, eh?

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About Tim Liew

Tim, also known as @thatchamdad, is a blogger, a podcaster, a father of three (aged 11, 9 and 7) and a master of none. By his own admission he’s forever stuck somewhere in the mid-1980s, probably a Thursday. In between bouts of nostalgia, complaining about his aching joints and compiling endless music playlists, he has been writing about his experiences as a working dad on his blog Slouching towards Thatcham since 2008.

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