Advice for Valentine’s Novices

Valentine’s Day is a minefield of dos and don’ts, Laura Hutchinson has warned us of some of them…


So it is Valentine’s Day on Thursday, that time of the year when couples can be all smug about their indestructible love and smooch each other’s faces off like a pair of slobbery walruses.

Singletons can either go out and prey on the desperate and lonely, or cry into a big tub of Ben and Jerry’s singing along to ‘All by myseeeeeeelf’ with Bridget Jones. All well and good for them. They will either overindulge into a litre of ice-cream or stare at the night sky wondering when their prince charming will sweep them off their feet until normality resumes the next day.

However, what about those testing the waters of the world of romance? What about those who have maybe been only a couple of dates? Valentine’s Day can end up being an awkward disaster.

Maybe you should pretend it isn’t even Valentine’s day? Just carry on going on dates like nothing even happened. After all it isn’t a relationship yet and when you are testing out the waters it is less about romance, and more about making sure he/she isn’t a total psychopath.

If you haven’t got to the stage when you want to call each other vile soppy pet names and declare they are your soul mate, one true love and your heart beats in time to theirs, Valentine’s Day can make you or break you.

If all else fails…

This is where I found myself last year. Debating whether I should even buy a card. Is that too forward and presumptive? Or if you don’t get them one is that rude? I decided to go for it and I set off to Clintons. I spent about an hour and a half traipsing around town, searching every card shop at least twice in the hunt for the perfect card.

WHY DO ALL VALENTINE’S CARDS PROCLAIM UNDYING LOVE?! If not smothered in sickening tripe like ‘I love you my bunny wunny pumpkin’, the inside of cards come laced with dreadful poems that would leave you scrambling for the nearest bucket.

Finally, I found the only card in Nottingham that didn’t come already addressed to my boyfriend/fiancé/soul mate. It was simply two nice (and non-psycho looking) owls and it read: ‘You are very very very nice!’ SORTED. Not likely to scare him away, but also nice enough that I don’t look like an emotionless amoeba.

The perfect amount of sop

Then, you are faced with the next challenge: should you get a gift? It’s easy for boys, you can just grab a bunch of flowers or a box of chocolates (there’s a hint for anyone still struggling) and you’ve got yourself a happy date.

But buying presents for boys is probably the hardest thing ever. I don’t have a brother and my close male friends are gay or ridiculously camp so how am I supposed to know?! How is any girl meant to just know?!

In the end I panicked. I bought him a heart shaped biscuit on a stick. Probably the world’s worst present ever – unless it is for someone particularly fond of biscuits. I was pretty mortified to hand over this terrible present, especially when I was in turn presented with a necklace and earrings from one of my favourite shops! Oops!

The moral of the story is it is definitely easier just to decide beforehand, as a couple, whether to do cards/presents/dinner to save yourself all the panic and avoid looking like a class A moron clutching a biscuit on a stick.

But if you are just lucky enough, you might find that someone who actually does appreciates biscuits on sticks and owls on cards, rather than shit poems.You might be lucky enough to spend another Valentine’s day with them the next year (cue the sick bucket!). Hopefully one that doesn’t involve awkward panicking and fears of looking more desperate than Katie Price in-between marriages.

But to all those alone on this dreaded day, I dedicate this to you: roses are red, violets are blue, vodka costs less than a dinner for two.

Have you had any bad Valentine’s experiences? Are you rating or hating Cupid this year? Drop us a comment and let us know! If you want to get involved with The Tab email us at [email protected]