What Valentine’s Day is Like When You’ve Been In A Relationship Forever

Valentine’s Day is often about new love more than it is about true love. When you’ve been in a relationship forever, you don’t need to go all out on a holiday or follow standards Valentine’s protocol in order to feel special or appreciated. You feel loved all year ’round, so this is what Valentine’s Day ends up being like when you’re in a long term relationship:

  1. You scoff at couples who make reservations a month in advance. Silly new couples always get so worked up about having the perfect Valentine’s Day dinner. You laugh at all the time and effort they put into planning because you know that not only is no date perfect, but they’ll also lose their excitement about the holiday after years and years of being together.
  2. You can’t stand prix fixe menus. If there’s a prix fixe menu, you don’t want to go there. If you’re getting all dolled up and spending a ton of money on a date, you damn well better be able to eat whatever you want to eat.
  3. You desperately try to reuse an old outfit. You stare at your closet trying to find the perfect outfit that’s old enough that you haven’t worn it recently, but not completely out of style yet. If you have to celebrate, you’d rather not have to spend money on another red cocktail dress you’re only going to wear once.
  4. You want practical gifts (if you want gifts at all). Valentine’s Day gifts for the long term couple? How about a new coffee pot, a box full of batteries, or a couple student loan payments? If you really want to make your lady swoon, try going shopping for her at Sallie Mae.
  5. You’d rather spend the money having an experience together. Dinner is nice, but you’d really rather put the money towards an experience. You’d prefer to dump the Valentine’s Day budget into a vacation fund, or buy concert or sporting event tickets. After years of doing things together, you know experiences stand out in your mind the most.
  6. You try to never celebrate on the 14th.  The 14th is for new lovers! You can’t stand being surrounded by the googly eyes in an overcrowded restaurant with no available parking. Anything difficult is basically not worth the effort at this point, so you celebrate on another day when all the lovebirds are (hopefully) at home.
  7. You need a lot of alcohol to get the romance flowing on cue. It simply being Valentine’s Day isn’t enough to put you in the mood for romance. If things aren’t clicking that day, the pressure’s still on to be super into each other. Being in a long term relationship means you aren’t going to be obsessed with each other every day, so you might have 100 cocktails to get things moving on Valentine’s Day.
  8. You’ve run out of new sexy things to try. The after hours part of Valentine’s Day isn’t quite as exciting as it used to be. You might have a lovely time together, but you’ve run out of every new position, toy, or fantasy long ago. You at least have an extensive lingerie and toy collection at this point, however, so you can break out all your goodies and have a variety filled night.
  9. You’re annoyed at how close this holiday is to Christmas. And New Year’s Eve! You’ve barely just finished hemorrhaging money from the holidays when Valentine’s Day comes around and smacks you right in the bank account. You feel like someone should have planned this out better, especially if your partner has a winter birthday, too.
  10. You have silly traditions. You have some kind of silly tradition you do on Valentine’s Day that just seems corny to outsiders. Maybe you have a pancake breakfast, or give each other morning massages, or make your own cards for each other. Whatever it is, it’s always heartfelt and often the part of the holiday you cherish the most.
  11. You’d prefer to do your own thing. You’ve done all the stereotypical Valentine’s Day celebrations and at this point in your relationship, you’d rather just do the things that make you happiest. You don’t feel pressured to go to an expensive dinner or buy jewelry if that’s not what brings you the most joy. If you’re happier chugging pints at a sports bar, cuddling up with Netflix, or going cross country skiing, you’re going to do your own things, whether or not it’s considered a V Day activity. If your relationship doesn’t fit the mold, you don’t care, because you’re the one that needs to be happy with it long term.
Holly Harris is a freelance writer, full time student, and mommy to a toddler sass monster. In her (nearly nonexistent) free time, you can find her lifting something heavy in her home gym or chugging vodka sodas with friends. She contributes to several other sites, including Elite Daily.