Cupid's Pulse Article: Making the Most Of Valentine’s Day Even If You’re UnhappyCupid's Pulse Article: Making the Most Of Valentine’s Day Even If You’re Unhappy

By Michele Sfakianos, RN, BSN for Hope After Divorce

unhappy valentine’s day? it doesn’t have to be

After a divorce, many holidays can be depressing, and Valentine’s Day can be the most depressing of all. The media promotes this day for lovers, and those not in a relationship — or just getting out of one — may feel left out. The holiday can also leave you feeling as if something’s wrong with you because you don’t have someone special to share it with. But don’t worry — you can still have a happy Valentine’s Day!

Related Link: Surviving Holidays as a Stepparent

If you have children, celebrate your holidays with them. After all, they’re a special part of your life. If you don’t have visitation that day, then pick another day and celebrate. Children love special celebrations, especially when you tell them that they are the reason for the celebration. If you don’t have children, why not plan a special outing just for yourself?

It is time to adjust how we feel about our holidays. We shouldn’t feel pressured to have a significant other in our life. We should love ourselves and celebrate that love every day, not just on holidays.

Look at celebrity couple Hilary Duff and Mike Comrie, who recently announced their separation. They have a one-year-old son and are both very dedicated to co-parenting, loving, and raising Luca as a team. The exes still spend a lot of time together with their son. For example, on New Year’s Eve, Duff shared an Instagram of the three of them at Disneyland the week before. I wouldn’t be surprised if they spent Valentine’s Day as a family as well!

Related Link: Hilary Duff and Mike Comrie Announce Their Separation

Here are some great ideas for your special celebration:

— Call a close friend or a family member and go to a movie, get a manicure and pedicure, or bake a sweet treat.

— Turn off all of your electronic devices and read that book or magazine that’s been sitting on your nightstand for months.

— Take your children on a nature walk or to a local park. Don’t just send them off to play; go play with them!

— Make yourself a fancy dinner. Use your best dishes and make sure to put fresh cut flowers in the center of the table as a present to yourself.

— Take a warm bath with essential oils. Don’t forget the candles! Just totally unplug during this time. Read that book or magazine I mentioned earlier.

— Share your time with someone in need. Volunteer at a local shelter or serve dinner at a soup kitchen.

— Turn on the tunes and dance!

— Set the evening aside to look at old photos, especially those that bring back great memories.

Celebrations don’t have to be expensive, but it is important to acknowledge the holidays. Valentine’s Day is what you make of it. It is a day to celebrate love. No matter if you are alone or part of a couple, celebrate yourself and the power you have to make others feel valued. Remember: The most important thing you can do to bring true love into your life is to love yourself.

For more information about Hope After Divorce, click here.

Michele Sfakianos, RN, BSN, is a Registered Nurse, Life Skills Expert, Speaker and Award Winning Author. She is the owner of Open Pages Publishing, which includes her series of “The 4-1-1” books on Life Skills, Step Parenting, and Surviving Teenhood. Michele is a contributing expert for,,, and